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Working towards Chartered Geographer

Planning and recording the development of your career from an early stage will make the application process more straightforward when you become eligible to apply for Chartered Geographer status.

Chartered Geographer »Whether you are just starting your career or are a few years short of the required work experience needed to apply, the following guidance outlines how you can work towards achieving Chartered Geographer status.

You should regularly evaluate your skills, knowledge and career progress, to assess what is needed to become a Chartered Geographer.

Keeping a record...

...of all your achievements, roles and responsibilities is an integral part of the process. This record will provide the evidence to support your application for Chartered Geographer, without which the accreditation cannot be awarded.

You should also keep a record of your continuing professional development (CPD) activities. CPD is the process throughout a career by which professionals keep their subject, skills, knowledge and understanding up to date. Please see the page on CPD to find out what is required to apply, and information about the types of activities which can be included in your CPD record.

Planning CPD annually supports your career planning and skill development - your record is not just a review but should be a process you actively think about. Our template form for CPD (MSWORD) illustrates how this can be done, and can be used to record your own CPD. A good CPD record will strengthen your application for Chartered Geographer.

Developing your career

As your career progresses, you should be thinking about a range of issues that will help develop your case for Chartered Geographer. This guide is aimed mainly at graduates and early career professionals - if you are established in your career you may already have the required skills and experience and be eligible to apply.

Stage one 

  • Once you have received training in geography by completing a geographical undergraduate degree, the first step is to start work in a job which requires you to use your geographical skills and/or knowledge on an everyday basis. You may also want to read our advice on being a professional in the workplace.
  • For examples of the jobs in which geographers can use their skills and knowledge, take a look at the Going Places with Geography booklet. When you apply for CGeog status you will have to make the case as to how the skills and experience you are using in your job are geographical
  • Entry-level positions are fine - over the next few years you should be able to increase your skills and responsibilities

Stage two (often your third year of work)

  • You should now have a good level of experience using your geographical skills in your work
  • If you have not already begun thinking about your CPD, your line manager should be able to help you identify any courses or training which will be beneficial for your career
  • At this point you should be trying to get involved with the Society, Association for Geographic Information or other appropriate professional organisations, keeping up to date with industry developments, and thinking about how to make contributions beyond the specific responsibilities of your job

Stage three (often your fifth year of work) 

  • Your career should have progressed to a level where you are beginning to have an influence upon people around you - your role may include management or supervisory elements
  • Assess your experience and achievements against the application criteria and what the assessors look for. This should help you identify any weak areas in your future application
  • Work out a plan for how you are going to address these weak areas over the next two years, whether it is technical knowledge and CPD, or engagement with the wider geographical community

From time to time the Society holds networking events where you can meet current Chartered Geographers, or sends representatives to geographical conferences who you can talk to about an application. Please keep an eye on Chartered Geographer events or join the Working towards Chartered Geographer LinkedIn group for news of these opportunities.

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