National key discipline----Geography

Beijing Normal University established the first Geography department in China. Academician Tingru ZHOU was the leader of the department for over 30 years, beginning with the study of the Cainozoic palaeogeography. Professor Lansheng ZHANG further developed the research field to environment change, and thereby featured Physical Geography was eventually shaped, and the first doctoral program for Physical Geography was founded in 1981. With closely focus on the development trend of geography in China (1995), and in 1996 the National Geographic Base Scientific Research and Teaching and solving the resource and environmental problems facing China, the geography department has achieved remarkable success through 1990s to nowadays. Beijing Normal University Geography department was ratified to be among the first post-doctoral research stations of geography Talent Cultivated Base was established. The Physical Geography Discipline was accorded as a National Key Discipline in 2000 and checked and accepted in 2006. In 2007, Geography was accorded Primary National Key Discipline. The Geography department has featured emphasis in the following areas:

1. Physical geography

Emphasizing on the earth surface process and focusing on quantitative research on climatic hydrothermal process, hydrologic process, soil-plant-landscape process and the process of morphological sedimentation. It also focuses on developing the research on soil erosion and land-water resource management and the assessment of environment change and its influence on earth surfaces.

2. Human geography

Featured by regional planning and development, urban geography and cultural geography, human geography emphasizes the research on the industrial and spatial dependency of metropolitan development, urban expansion, the environmental evolution and its effects, structural change, and technology development of urbanization, globalization and regional development.

3. Cartography and Geographical Information System

It Emphasizes researches on basic theories of remote sensing and remote sensing mechanism & quantitative remote sensing, develop resources & environment remote sensing, land coverage survey and resource information system and strengthen construction & application of the geographic information system.

4. Global Environmental Change

Emphasizing the climate change in history & the present age and the coupling process of the earth and atmosphere and focusing on the research areas of rebuilding the history climate process and impacts of climate change, simulation of climate change, biogeochemical cycle, etc.

5. Geography education and Education for Sustainable Development

Featured by geography courses and textbooks for middle school and high school students, environmental education and sustainable development, and environment & heritage interpretation, it emphasis on educational practices and international comparative research, with comprehensive international cooperation in these fields.

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