What is Geography?
The study of spatial aspect of human existence.
An integrative discipline that brings together the physical and human dimensions of the world.
Subject matter is the Earth’s surface and the processes that shape it, and the relationship between people and environment.
Asking and answering geographic questions (much more than rote memorization of isolated facts).
- What is there?
- What spatial patterns exist?
- Why there?
- What has changed since ...?
- What if …?
- Basic inventory
- Cause and effect
Five Traditions of Geography
Location (location/allocation analysis)
Place (site and situation)
Society and Environment (human ecology)
Movement (interaction between places)
Regions (similarity and difference)
What is Human Geography?
Focuses on people: where, what, how to interact over space, and what kind of human landscapes.
A systematic subject (like physical geography) versus the regional approach (like regional geography).
A connector for all of the social sciences as with the necessary spatial and systems viewpoint.
Five Geographic Skills
Asking geographic questions
- ability and willingness to ask questions.
Acquiring geographic information
- locate, collect, observe, read, record, interpret, etc.
Organizing geographic information
- map, graph, tabulate, present, narrate, etc.
Analyzing geographic information
- seek patterns, relationships, trends, and connections.
Answering geographic questions
- development of generalizations and conclusions.
Basic Geographic Concepts
Location, direction, distance of a place.
- absolute versus relative.
Size and scale (the degree of generalization).
Physical/cultural attributes of a place.
Spatial interaction between places.
Spatial diffusion from places.
Density, dispersion, pattern.
Regions (formal, functional, perceptual).