Feb 06, 2023  
2016 - 2018 CNM Catalog, Volume 49 
2016 - 2018 CNM Catalog, Volume 49 [The CNM Academic Year includes Fall, Spring, Summer Terms]

Geography, Associate of Arts

School of Math, Science & Engineering (MSE)

Geography is the field of science describing, analyzing, and understanding the distribution and spatial interaction of Earth’s physical and cultural landscapes.  Using tools such as mapping, it focuses on the complex interrelationships between Earth and human systems, sustainability of global and local resources, and social and demographic phenomena.  This program is designed to meet the requirements for an Associate of Arts in Geography from CNM and prepare a student to obtain a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in Geography at the University of New Mexico. However, students from CNM seeking a baccalaureate degree may also transfer to other institutions. Students interested in transfer to UNM should consult the UNM Geography Department. Students should always refer to the catalog of their intended transfer institution for admission, program, course, and graduation requirements. College catalogs are generally available online. Students should also consult a faculty advisor and/or an Academic Coach with CNM Connect Services.

See Recommended Sequence of Courses

Educational Option Information

  • This educational option is an Associate of Arts Degree
  • This educational option can be completed Part-Time or Full-Time
  • This educational option is designed for: Immediate employment and transfer into a baccalaureate program.
  • This educational option can be started: Any Term
  • Scheduling Information: Follow course catalog recommendations to avoid scheduling problems.
  • Primary course location: Main Campus

Special Requirements

Students are expected to purchase textbooks, lab manuals and lab safety equipment.

Information for people with felony convictions

  • A felony conviction will not prevent entry into the program or employment; however, it may limit available employment opportunities.

Approximate Costs of this Educational Option

Financial Aid Considerations


Career and Educational Opportunities

Educational Opportunities

Many of the courses in this program are transferable and some may be applied to four-year degree programs at other institutions. CNM currently has transfer agreements with many colleges and universities in New Mexico and elsewhere.


Career/Employment Opportunities

Career opportunities are available in both the public and private sectors, including industries and businesses that require management, supervision, administrative support, and entrepreneurship. Example industries include advertising, marketing, entrepreneurship, human resources, sales, real estate, retail, small business management and supervision. Example job titles/descriptions include business owner, manager, team leader, entrepreneur, project manager, supervisor.

Program Proficiencies and/or Prerequisites

Students may demonstrate proficiency in these areas either by Diploma/GPA , placement exam scores , or specific course work.

Recommended Sequence of Courses

Term 2

Term 3

Term 4

Associate of Arts in Geography 60 - 68 credit hours

* MATH 1331   recommended. A strong background in statistics is required for almost all geography applications.  MATH 1331 provides additional statistical context and applications, with an emphasis on using many of the statistical tools that geographers use every day, including Excel and other software packages.

** ECON 2200  recommended. A background in macroeconomics is essential not only for study in economic geography but also provides foundational knowledge in very marketable applications of the geography major, including town planning, location analysis, market research, and sustainability and conservation work.

Program Approved Electives


§  Students should choose elective courses that are conducive to their future career and college plans.  Those whose future major/career goals are in physical geography should ensure that they have a strong background in science and math, while those whose future major/career goals include economic, political or cultural geography should acquire a strong background in the appropriate social and behavioral sciences.  It is wise for students to consult with an advisor at the 4-year institution to which they wish to transfer to best determine which courses to take.