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Understanding, managing, and planning in the world's largest industry

The Travel and Tourism Studies emphasis within the Geography Department at BYU is a popular and challenging program of study that introduces students to the expanding world of tourism. A multi-disciplinary geographic perspective examines the history, structure, patterns, and research issues of the world's largest industry. By integrating concepts of location, place, environment, climate, landscape and economy, the geographic foundation of this emphasis helps students to understand where and why tourism sites are located, the movements of people created by tourism, and the changes tourism brings to the cultural and physical landscapes.

Although the majority of students in this emphasis are more interested in an informative and enjoyable major than a career, there is a focus on professional skills, including tourism planning, management strategies, and geographic information systems, that equip students for a variety of careers in the travel and tourism industry as well as many other areas of employment.

This emphasis is ideal for students who: love to travel, work well with people, and are looking for a fairly short but interesting major.

Career Opportunities

  • Typical employers include: local and state governments, convention and visitors bureaus, tour operators, airlines, hotel chains, cruise ship lines
  • Job titles include: tourism planner, tourism promoter

Expected Learning Outcomes

Successful graduates of this program should be able to:
  • recognize the geographical underpinnings of global travel patterns and explain the relationships between generating and destination regions, and transit routes between them using geographic concepts, models, and principles 
  • explain the tourism industry, including its major sectors, determinants, motivations, structure, dimensions and impact 
  • identify tourism potential in a given region, evaluate promotion options, and create and implement strategic plans 
  • explain the historical development of the tourism industry and its impact on present and future economic, social, and environmental well-being. 
  • leverage tourism activities to promote greater understanding and respect for cultures and individual differences. 
  • access, interpret, and evaluate tourism information and communicate this in written, verbal, and visual forms. 
  • use interpersonal and leadership skills in teams to solve practical tourism industry problems 

Tourism Studies Requirements.pdfTourism Studies Requirements.pdf