Not available in 2020/21
The London Lab: Geography in the City

This information is for the 2020/21 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Alan Mace STC315a


This course is available on the BA in Geography and BSc in Geography with Economics. This course is not available as an outside option. This course is available to General Course students.

Course content

How can we understand the human geography of London? How have people shaped the city and how does the city’s landscape impact people? How is this differentiated by race, class, gender, sexuality and ethnicity? We address these questions using London as a lab. You will be encourage to engage with the city in numerous ways including through walks, media and the use of archives. Themes include; landscapes of empire, suburbanism, migration & diaspora, social housing and gentrification. To capture the specificity of the relationship between people and place the themes are sometimes developed in relation to particular settings; for example, Finsbury (housing), Hackney (gentrification) and Westminster (empire).


20 hours of lectures and 10 hours of classes in the MT. 18 hours of lectures and 9 hours of classes in the LT.

Formative coursework

Students are expected to write two formative assignments and to participate actively in classes in the MT and the LT.

Indicative reading

Mapping tool (don’t miss ‘layer tools’ in bottom left of right-hand window)

Municipal dreams –

Jonathan Meades on Letchworth Garden City (The suburbanisation of the UK)

de Botton, Alain. 2009. A Week at the Airport: A Heathrow Diary. London: Profile Books.

Hall, Stuart. 2017. Familiar Stranger: A Life Between Two Islands. London: Penguin.

The course’s own website


Essay (50%, 2000 words) in the MT.
Essay (50%, 2000 words) in the LT.

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2020/21 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the situation of students in attendance on campus and those studying online during the early part of the academic year. For assessment, this may involve changes to mode of delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Geography & Environment

Total students 2019/20: 13

Average class size 2019/20: 12

Capped 2019/20: No

Value: One Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Problem solving
  • Communication
  • Specialist skills