This module focuses on the theme of migration, a hot topic in national and international arenas, and frequently contested in politics and the media. Migration can have a key influence on social, economic and political geographies and this module aims to address some of the issues on a range of scales, both spatial and temporal. It also aims to clarify the differences between groups of migrants and to challenge some of the stereotypes that students may encounter in the media and the home.
The first lesson of the unit, Have I got news for you? considers the different ways that migration is reported in the media. Students discuss a range of headlines and challenge the images portrayed. Students can debate the pros and cons of having an open-border policy on migration, or look at the implications of migration for communities and how community cohesion can be promoted.
The next three lessons consider the different reasons why people might choose – or be forced – to migrate. Moving for money explores economic migration: the migration of Turks to Germany following the Second World War, then a focus on recent economic migrations to the UK resulting from the expansion of the European Union. Leaving for lifestyle considers the movement of British citizens out of the UK (to southern Spain, for example) in search of a better quality of life. Is there a choice? develops understanding of what it means to be an asylum seeker, looking at the case study of Darfur in The Sudan and investigating the reasons why people are being forced to leave this region.
How has our local area been shaped by migration? presents the opportunity to conduct a piece of local fieldwork to investigate how the local area has been shaped by migration: culturally, socially and economically. Alternatively, a classroom-based approach is suggested in which students use GOAD plans of the local area (or use the example provided) to investigate the same issues.
Finally, Who do you think you are? enables the class to concentrate on their own contributions to processes of migration, and to consider whether the patterns revealed in their class are representative of those occurring throughout the UK.
PublisherRoyal Geographical Society
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