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Geography Topics

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Question# 1
The geocentric view of the universe was long since developed in ancient Greece by an astronomer named Claudius Ptolemy (AD 90- 168). Ptolemy believed that the sun, stars and other planets revolved around the earth. The idea of “Geocentric” means everything revolves around Earth. It wasn’t long until Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543), an astronomer from Poland came up with a new theory that the solar system actually revolved around the sun. He invented the idea of a solar system. Revolutions (1543) was Copernicus’ final work explaining the heliocentric view of the universe. “The trouble was that nothing he could say or do made people feel they were living on a moving, spinning planet” (Gingerich & MacLachlan, 2005, p. 111)
The four major contributors to the development of modern astronomy after Copernicus were Johannes Keppler, Galileo Galilei, Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein.
Keppler defended the Copernican system in developing the three laws of planetary motion. Kepler’s First, Second and Third Laws are
1. The orbit of every planet is an ellipse with the sun at a focus.
2. A line joining a planet and the sun sweeps out equal areas during equal intervals of time. 3. The square of the orbital period of a planet is directly proportional to the cube of the semi-major axis of its orbit. ("Johannes Kepler Facts, Quotes, Laws of Planetary Motion, Astronomy, Information", n.d., p. 1)
Galileo in some cases is given credit to creating the telescope but in fact, he vastly improved them. His telescope was the first to see the craters of the moon. He also spotted the four moons of Jupiter (now known as Galilean moons). Galileo strongly believed in the Copernican system and was punished by the Catholic Church and labeled a heretic for not believing in the geocentric view.
Isaac Newton invented calculus and developed the theory of the universal law of gravity and the laws of motion “for every action in nature there is an equal or opposite reaction” ("Sir Isaac Newton: Quotes, Facts & Biography |", n.d., p. 1) Newton’s laws and mathematical discoveries helped pave the way for scientists and astronomers to understand the solar system and how we orbit around the sun.
“Newton's work completed Galileo's. For example, Newton showed that comets followed paths that were either long, narrow ellipses or parabolas. In either case, their orbits fitted his inverse square law of gravitational force. Newton also proposed that ocean tides come from the same force. They result from the differential force of gravity from the moon and the sun on the waters on opposite sides of the earth.” (MacLachlan, 1997, p. 109)
Einstein was a very smart man; he had an IQ of 160! Einstein’s contribution to modern astronomy is the theory of relativity.
“In 1905, Albert Einstein determined that the laws of physics are the same for all non-accelerating observers, and that the speed of light in a vacuum was independent of the motion of all observers. This was the theory of special relativity. It introduced a new framework for all of physics and proposed new concepts of space and time.” ("Einstein's Theory of General Relativity: A Simplified Explanation |", n.d., p. 1)
“Many historians mark 1543 as the start of the Scientific Revolution. That would make it the quietest revolution on record. Indeed, the immediate response to Copernicus’s Revolutions was mild. No serious attacks were mounted against it; nor did it receive any immediate flurry of support” (Gingerich & MacLachlan, 2005, p. 108)
“One reason why the geocentric model remained in popularity for so many years is because it did explain many observations made by the early Greeks. For example, the geocentric model explained why things fall toward Earth – gravity – as well why Venus seems to stay the same distance from Earth based on its unchanging brightness. As astronomers saw problems with the geocentric theory, they altered it in order to account for these discrepancies. Another reason why this model remained in popularity so long was because it went along with the Roman Catholic Church’s policy.” ("Difference Between Geocentric and Heliocentric", n.d., p. 1)
It took a long time to convince people that geocentric views were a thing of the past, because people chose to live in the past. They didn’t want open there minds to the developments of science. They ridiculed those that had beautiful minds to make the wonderful discoveries now known to our universe.
Albert Einstein: Theories, Facts, IQ and Quotes | (n.d.). Retrieved from

Difference Between Geocentric and Heliocentric. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Einstein's Theory of General Relativity: A Simplified Explanation | (n.d.). Retrieved from

Famous Astronomers | List of Great Scientists in Astronomy | (n.d.). Retrieved from

Galileo Galilei: Biography, Inventions & Other Facts | (n.d.). Retrieved from

Gingerich, O., & MacLachlan, J. H. (2005). Nicolaus Copernicus: Making the Earth a planet. New York: Oxford University Press.

Johannes Kepler Biography | Kepler’s Laws & Other Facts | (n.d.). Retrieved from

Johannes Kepler Facts, Quotes, Laws of Planetary Motion, Astronomy, Information. (n.d.). Retrieved from

MacLachlan, J. H. (1997). Galileo Galilei: First physicist. New York: Oxford University Press.

Sir Isaac Newton: Quotes, Facts & Biography | (n.d.). Retrieved from
Question #2
Geography is similar to other scientific disciplines because they evolved from geography. Geography in my opinion is one of the oldest science disciplines. Astronomy, biology, geology, oceanography, etc. are all a product from geography.
Geography is derived from the Greek words meaning “Earth description” (Hess & McKnight, 2014, p. 3)
“Geography is the world discipline.” (Bonnett, 2008, p. 121)
“Geography is rooted in the human need for survival; in the necessity of knowing and making sense of the resources and dangers of our human and physical environment. But it also seeks the bigger picture: geography helps us imagine that there is meaning and sense in the world. Geography allows us to see order in, and impose order on, what otherwise would be chaos.” (Bonnett, 2008, p. 121)
“Geography is both pre-modern and modern. It is a paradoxical and necessary combination. Geography’s wide horizons and holistic sensibility are antithetical to an age of intellectual fragmentation and specialism. Yet a commitment to world knowledge is essential in a globalizing era defined by environmental and political crises.” (Bonnett, 2008, p. 121)
Geography is misinterpreted as a discipline in which you study maps, but in fact once you study geography, you are enlightened with the knowledge of how everything on Earth and the universe are tied together. Geography is broken down into two groups physical geography (environmental geography) and cultural geography( human geography. It is important to learn how both these groups effect each other, land and the human. Geography asks the fundamental question “Why what is where and so what?” (Hess & McKnight, 2014, p. 4) In geography we learn the of the effects to our earth caused by nature, and the effects we as humans cause to the Earth, we also learn ways to try to prevent these catastrophes. Learning geography helps you get in tune with what is really going on in the world we are living in. To know geography is to know the world you are living in. I share a mutual respect with the founders of geography I and appreciate this world and all its wonders.

Bonnett, A. (2008). What is geography?. Los Angeles: Sage Publications.
Hess, D., & McKnight, T. L. (2014). McKnight's physical geography: A landscape appreciation. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.
Question #3
“Weather is the short term atmospheric conditions for a given time and specific area. Climate is an aggregate of day-to-day weather conditions and weather extremes over a long period of time. “(Hess & McKnight, 2014, p. 67)
“Think about it this way: Climate is what you expect, weather is what you get. Weather is what you see outside on any particular day. So, for example, it may be 75 degrees and sunny or it could be 20 degrees with heavy snow. That’s the weather. Climate is the average of that weather. For example, you can expect snow in the Northeast in January or for it to be hot and humid in the Southeast in July. This is climate.” ("What is the difference between weather and climate?", n.d., p. 1)
I’m originally from the Central Valley in California, when I visit Home in July I can expect the temperature to be 100+ and sunny because this is how the climate is for that region during that specific time of year.
The greenhouse effect is an important warming process for the Earth. It helps regulate the warmth of the Earth and the lower troposphere. Without the natural greenhouse effect the average temperature on earth would be -15 degrees Celsius. The transmission of shortwave and long wave radiation (in the troposphere) from the sun is what heats up the planet. It’s part of the cycle of life. The Earth would be too cold or maybe even frozen if we didn’t have the greenhouse effect. ” (Hess & McKnight, 2013, p. 86)
Global warming is the increased amount of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere; moreover, global warming is human induced. An increase in carbon dioxide from human activities such as burning fossil fuels, coal, petroleum and methane fumes are being released into the atmosphere. When this happens, it causes the Earth’s temperature to rise and it contributes to the effects of climate change. It has been noted that these effects seemingly took place with the boom of the Industrial Revolution in the mid-20th century.
Greenhouse effect and global warming are not one in the same. Greenhouse effect is a natural occurrence to the Earth, whereas global warming is human induced. The temperature of earth is being altered by human activity.
“Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, as is now evident from observations of increases in global average air and ocean temperatures, widespread melting of snow and ice, and rising global average sea level. Most of the observed increase in globally averaged temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions” (Hess & McKnight, 2013, p. 105)
Global warming will cause droughts effecting crops, effect livestock productivity, interrupt water quality, it would threaten the marine ecosystem (coral reefs) when the seas rise or there temperature is altered. The long terms effects would make life on Earth very unpleasant, in fact human life may not be able to sustain the full blown effects of global warming.

Cossia, J. M. (2011). Global warming in the 21st century. New York: Nova Science Publishers.

Hess, D., & McKnight, T. L. (2014). McKnight's physical geography: A landscape appreciation. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.

What is the difference between weather and climate? (n.d.). Retrieved from

Question# 4
The direction of wind movement is determined by three factors which are the pressure gradient, the Coriolus effect and frictional force. Pressure gradient is a change in atmospheric pressure over horizontal distance. The Coriolus effect is the apparent deflection of free moving objects to the right in the Northern Hemisphere and the left in the Southern Hemisphere because of the rotation of the Earth. Frictional force helps slow wind movement. These forces play a role in wind movement because the pressure gradient moves air from high to low pressure, the Coriolus effect deflects at 90 degrees from the pressure gradient’s path and forces the wind to flow down. The gradient force prevents the Coriolus effect to force the wind back up. The two factors actually balance each other and the frictional force helps reduce the wind speed, which reduces the Coriolus effect’s deflection, as a result, “the air flows into an area of low pressure and away from an area of high pressure.” (Hess & McKnight, 2014, p. 114)
“If the Earth didn't rotate, winds would travel either north or south due to differences in temperature and pressure at different latitudes. But since the Earth does rotate, the Coriolis force deflects these winds to the right in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere.” ("HowStuffWorks "The Coriolis Effect in Action"", n.d., p. 1)
The wind pressure system from the Equator to the North Pole in the Northern Hemisphere is known as the Hadley Cell (also exists from Equator to Southern Hemisphere). In equatorial latitudes warm air rises and produces a region of low pressure and reaches the troposphere. When the air reaches this height, it cools. The air spreads to the North then descends back down to the Equator to be warmed again. The winds in the Northern Hemisphere blow in a counterclockwise direction (cyclone) then the air descends down to the equator (anticyclone).
“The Hadley cell remains an excellent explanation of the Earth’s atmospheric circulation occurring in both hemispheres equatorward of approximately 30° latitude.” ("Hadley cell (meteorology) -- Encyclopedia Britannica", n.d., p. 1)
“In the Northern Hemisphere, wind from high-pressure systems pass low-pressure systems on the right. This causes the system to swirl counter-clockwise. Low-pressure systems usually bring storms. This means that hurricanes and other storms swirl counter-clockwise in the Northern Hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere, storms swirl clockwise.” ("Coriolis effect - National Geographic Education", n.d., p. 1)
“The amount of precipitation on any part of Earth’s surface is determined by the nature of the air mass involved and the degrees to which the air is uplifted.” (Hess & McKnight, 2014, p. 167) The highest annual precipitation is found in the Region of the ITCZ and Trade Wind Uplift (Central America), Tropical Monsoon Regions (Southeastern Asia, India and the Guinea coast) and Coastal areas in the Westerlies(west coasts of North and South America). (Hess & McKnight, 2014, p. 167,168)

Coriolis effect - National Geographic Education. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Hadley cell (meteorology) -- Encyclopedia Britannica. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Hess, D., & McKnight, T. L. (2014). McKnight's physical geography: A landscape appreciation. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.

HowStuffWorks "The Coriolis Effect in Action". (n.d.). Retrieved from

Question# 5
The Mediterranean climate in Southern California (Csa) and the humid subtropical climate in South Carolina (Cfa) are similar in way that both occupy the equatorward margin of the midlatitudes. The summer in both of these climates and long and hot. And the winters are usually short and mild. But they are divided based on their precipitation seasonality and their summer temperatures. (221,223)
Csa’s characteristics are modest annual precipitation will fall in the winter and have less rainfall in the summer. The winter temperatures are mild and the summer is warm or hot. Blue skies and sunshine are typical. (223)
Cfa’s characteristics are high summer temperatures with extreme humidity. Generally receive rainfall in the summer and winter. Winter is mild but can produce severe weather and frost. (223)
Western United States is dramatically different from Eastern United States because the air is not humid and the rainfall is primarily dry in the summer and wet during the winter.
“Precipitation varies more between these climate types than any other factor. In general, the rainfall of the humid subtropical climate is more or less evenly distributed throughout the year. In the Mediterranean climate, the summers are dryer than the winters. Additionally, the Mediterranean climate stays dryer throughout the year compared to the humid subtropical climate. For this reason, Mediterranean climates are sometimes called "dry subtropical climates." ("Differences Between Mediterranean Climate and Humid Subtropical Climate | Science - Opposing Views", n.d., p. 1)
El Nino is an abnormal warming of surface ocean waters in the eastern tropical Pacific also known as Southern Oscillation. The Southern Oscillation is a pattern of reversing surface air pressure between the eastern and western tropical Pacific. When the surface pressure is high in the eastern tropical Pacific it is low in the western tropical Pacific. When the surface pressure is high in the West it is low in the East. The El Nino/Southern Oscillation(ENSO) occurs because the there is a change in temperature and wind pressure(seesaw pressure). At this time the cause for ENSO is “elusive”, “the effects are not completely predictable.”(Hess & McKnight, 2014, pg. 134).
The ENSO can bring heavy rainfall and flooding or severe drought. Examples are drought in Brazil, weak monsoons in India and fewer hurricanes in the Atlantic. For the last 30 years scientists have been many efforts to crack the code on El Nino and forecasting its next events through the use of better satellites (TAO/TRITON), some scientists also speculate that El Nino’s vicious cycles are linked to global warming, but no connection has been found to link the two. (Hess & McKnight, 2014, pg. 134, 135)
El Nino of 1982-1983 causes several droughts in Australia, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Mexico, Central America and southern Africa. It caused flooding in western U.S., Cuba and southwestern South America. Destructive cyclones in Hawaii. Caused massive destruction of marine-life, 1500 humans died. El Nino of 1997-1998 Caused 30 billion dollars of property damage, approximately 2100 humans died, several blizzards and tornados ripped through U.S. And California had unusual amounts of heavy rainfall. There’s no telling how strong or weak El Nino will be. But when it hits and it hits hard, the loss of life and property cannot be avoided. (Hess & McKnight, 2014, pg. 131)
“While El Niño will not have an impact on this spring and summer's severe weather, it may come on early enough and strong enough to have impact on the upcoming hurricane season in the Atlantic and Eastern Pacific. Disruptive winds, known as wind shear, often develop off the Atlantic coast of the United States and sweep over a large part of the basin during El Niño. "It is possible that a budding El Niño and developing wind shear may truncate the number of hurricanes originating from near the west coast of Africa during the middle and latter part of the season," Paquette said.” ("El Nino May Tame Atlantic Hurricanes, Bring Beneficial Rain to California", n.d., p. 1)

Differences Between Mediterranean Climate and Humid Subtropical Climate | Science - Opposing Views. (n.d.). Retrieved from
El Nino May Tame Atlantic Hurricanes, Bring Beneficial Rain to California. (n.d.). Retrieved from
Hess, D., & McKnight, T. L. (2014). McKnight's physical geography: A landscape appreciation. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.

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...03-Montello-4862.qxd 1/30/2006 12:17 PM Page 35 CHAPTER 3 Data Collection in Geography Overview Learning Objectives: • • • What is the distinction between primary and secondary data sources? What are the five major types of data collection in geography? What are some of the ways geographers and others have made a distinction between quantitative and qualitative methods, and how do they relate to scientific and humanistic approaches in geography? I n the previous chapter, we explained that the empirical part of scientific research involves systematically observing cases in order to record measurements of variables that reflect properties of those cases. Researchers analyze the resulting set of data (usually numbers) graphically, verbally, and mathematically in order to learn something about the properties of the cases. Data collection efforts do not generally go on continuously but are grouped into periods of activity focused on particular research issues or questions. Such a focused period of data collection and analysis is a study (in Chapter 7, we learn that there are two major categories of scientific studies, experimental and nonexperimental). In this chapter, we introduce some basic characteristics of data collection in geography, including the distinction between primary and secondary data sources, the five major types of data collection, and the distinction between quantitative and qualitative......

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...TOPIC 1 INTRODUCTION This work equips Geography teachers with appropriate techniques of teaching Geography in secondary Schools and other institutions. It deals with methods and approaches used in teaching Geography. Be aware that each area of specialization has its own techniques though some are similar. Classes of Geographers – we have two classes of Geographers (a) Geographers with content - those who have learned Geography content from lower levels to the highest levels (primary to university). Some of them are reputable Geographers in teaching. (b) Geographers with content and methodology – Those that have learned Geography content right from primary to the University/Diploma level in some cases they have been classmates in group (a). They have an element of teaching methods for Geographers. In case two, content is integrated with methodology. NB – A teacher’s teaching methods will motivate or demotivate/discourage students from enrolling in Geography. Nature and Content of Geography Definition of Geography Geo – Greek word meaning the earth, graphia – meaning to write/describe Literally means – descriping of the earth/writing about the earth. Thus, there is no total consensus on the definition of Geography. Geography has diverse content leading to conflicting definitions, concepts and aims. Geography is a science of place/space (spatial characteristics). Geography as a science deals with description and explanation of the spatial distribution......

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...Geography Programme, School of People, Environment and Planning ESSAY WRITING AND FORMAT GUIDE FOR GEOGRAPHY STUDENTS Essay Writing and Format Guide 2 Essay Writing and Format Guide Table of Contents Introduction: Why Write Essays? ........................................................ 4 Types of Essay........................................................................................ 5 Analysing the Question: Answering the Question............................ 5 Planning Your Essay ............................................................................. 8 Writing Your Essay................................................................................ 9 Introduction ..................................................................................... 10 The Body of the Essay.................................................................... 10 Concluding ....................................................................................... 12 Editing............................................................................................... 13 Writing Style ......................................................................................... 13 Spelling.............................................................................................. 13 Writing numbers.............................................................................. 14 Grammar: plurals and apostrophes .............................................. 15 Syntax:......

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