The concurrent processes of globalisation, computerisation, and integration shape and constantly modify developmental factors and generate multidirectional social changes. Among social life fields, one of them has been particularly sensitive to the impact of those processes and has remained in clear feedback relationship with them is education, including university-level education. This article aims to present some reflections on the key processes which influence the environment of higher education institutions’ activity and on what their impact specifically is. The factors taken into account include: the transformation of the political and economic system, integration with the European higher education area, the market shift of education, evolving social demands towards higher education institutions and society’s attitude towards work. As knowledge has become an asset largely affecting the quality of life of people and society, universities have changed their focus from searching for and exploring truth, good and beauty in the world towards becoming innovation centres, transferring knowledge as offering their educational services. In this article, those trends have been exemplified in relation to geography degree programmes, and shown through an evolution of the model of the university. Based on a review of the literature, it seems that the processes discussed also concern geography degree programmes, and the future operation of these programmes closely depends on whether they can maintain their care for high quality education coupled with genuine efforts to ensure the smooth transition of graduates into the labour market.