Perceptions of Geography as a Discipline among Students of Different Academic Levels in Pakistan
Geography is facing the problem of its identity and recognition as a useful academic discipline inPakistan. This research paper examines the perception about geography as an academic disciplinefrom the students of different academic levels i.e. intermediate, graduate, master and M.Phil. Datawere collected through structured questionnaires and a total of 106 students were surveyed, of which45 were male and 61 were female students. Students’ perceptions were analyzed about the concepts,themes, nature and scope of geography, choice of geography as an academic discipline, majorproblems they are facing while studying geography and possible career opportunities. Results revealthat students have clear perceptions about the concept, themes, and nature of geography. In terms ofsignificance, intermediate students consider it as a third or the least ranked subject while graduate,master and M.Phil students considered it as a first or second ranked subject. Geography was perceivedto be very informative and equally important for both girls and boys. Research, teaching andcartography were considered as major job opportunities by students. As a whole, geography wasperceived as an interesting, multidisciplinary, and useful subject. Different levels have differentproblems; some of them include difficulty in understanding geography, lack of resources, insufficientfield work, and inappropriate medium of instruction, lack of jobs for geography graduates and lack ofresearch in geography education.
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