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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Geography

Undergraduate Course: Encountering Cities (GEGR10102)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course explores the everday geographies of cities through the concept of encounter. Questioning how we understand cities, the course introduces diverse theoretical approaches to the city and examiners different modes of researching and representing cities. Using Urban examples as diverse as Bradford and Baghdad, the course is organised around lectures and discussions that address 3 key conceptual concerns: understanding the everyday sociality of cities (the spaces of encounterand mundane interaction that mak up so much of urban life); grasping the emotional and affective life of cities (the embodied experiences of inhabiting and using urban spaces); and appreciating the urban materialities (the often overlooked things, technologies, natures, and infrastructure that are a part of every day life in cities). These conceptual concerns then form the basis for examining a series of important issues facing contemporary cities including; urban multiculture and living with difference; segregation and the sorting of bodies in cities; fear and the city; terrorism and wounded cities.
Course description Syllabus:
Week 1: The everyday city
Week 2: Urban materialities
Week 3: Urban affects
Week 4: Knowing cities
Week 5: Everyday Edinburgh
Week 6: Urban multiculture: Bradford
Week 7: City of walls: Sao Paulo and Baghdad
Week 8: Haunted cities: Berlin
Week 9: Urban ruins: Detroit
Week 10: Wounded cities: London
Week 11: Revision lecture
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2015/16, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  41
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 22, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 22, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 152 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 60 %, Coursework 40 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) One Essay (40%)- 2000 words
One Degree Exam (60%)

Overall mark for the course (ie degree coursework and examinations) of at least 40.
Feedback During the course you can expect to receive prompt, informative and helpful feedback on your assignments and progress. Feedback will take a number of forms and will be given at different stages of the course. You can expect:
- written and pro-forma (tick box) feedback on class essays, degree essays and reading blogs
- verbal feedback on assignments and progress during lectures and class discussion, as well as during office hours and by appointment
- feedback to be provided on the content and presentation of group presentations
- peer feedback on group presentations and reading blogs
- a revision lecture and pre-examination revision session to prepare for written exam
- a designated feedback session feedback on the degree essay and examination. The date, time and location will be announced closer to the date.
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S1 (December)2:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. provide students with a thorough knowledge of the city
  2. introduce students to a range of different ways of knowing the city
  3. provide a critical understanding of key concepts including encounters, sociality, emotions, materiality
  4. critically identify and analyse complex problems facing the city and to demonstrate some originality in dealing with these problems
Reading List
Amin, A. and Thrift, N. (2002). Cities: Re-imagining the Urban. Cambridge: Polity Press.

de Certeau, M. (1984). Walking in the City in The Practice of Everyday Life. Berkeley: University of California Press. Pp.91-110.

Hubbard, P. (2006) City. London: Routledge.

Latham, A., McCormack, D., McNamara, K., and McNeill, D. (2009). Key Concepts in Urban Geography. London: Sage.

Lefebvre, H. (1996). Writings on Cities. (Oxford: Blackwell).

Pile, S. (2005). Real Cities. London: Sage.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Course organiserDr Daniel Swanton
Tel: (0131 6)50 8164
Course secretaryMiss Sarah Mcallister
Tel: (0131 6)50 4917
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