Powerful Geography
Judges and Hearing Officers

Judges and Hearing Officers

Judges and Hearing Officers


Main Topic: Human Geography
Secondary Topic: Environment and Society

Overview: Judges and hearing officers are employed by the federal, state, or local governments to oversee legal cases in court settings. Judges can preside over legal cases dealing with any type of issues, from workman’s compensation, families and marriages, traffic violations, to criminal offenses. It is up to judges and hearing officers to interpret laws and how they should be applied in the trials at hand. Judges may impose punishments for criminal trials such as prison sentence lengths, or compensation for individuals or groups who win lawsuits against corporations. Having knowledge over the spatial distribution of crimes, how culture and society might have influence over crime, may aid judges if they preside over cases that take place in an area where a certain crime appears to be a common offense. If a judge or hearing officer mainly oversee cases pertaining to immigration, having a broad background in different countries and the push and pull migration factors that exist there might aid them in understanding motives behind cases.

Geographers at work: Political Geographers, Geography Researchers, Legal Geographers

Recommended College Courses:  Research Methods in Geography, Political Geography, Cultural and Political Ecology, Geography of Crime, Environmental Compliance, Race, Class, and the American City, Geographic Elements of Environmental Law, Geography of A Specific Country of Region

Skills: Cultural geography, human geography, political geography, urban geography, communication skills

Occupation Group: Legal

Learn more about Judges and Hearing Officers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: https://www.bls.gov/ooh/legal/judges-and-hearing-officers.htm

Written by Ally Schlandt


Judges and hearing officers apply the law by overseeing the legal process in courts.
Judges and hearing officers apply the law by overseeing the legal process in courts.