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GEO 220: Human Geography

Course Description

This course is designed to provide an introduction to Human Geography. This is a course concerned with the way the world’s peoples and their culture interact with the physical regions in which they live to create the resultant cultural landscape. At the heart of the course is an understanding of culture and how such cultural attributes as religion, language, agriculture, folk and popular cultural practices, ethnicity, population, industry, urbanization and political systems manifest themselves on the landscape. Current issues in development and inter and intra regional interaction will be highlighted.

Prerequisite

  • None

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Upon successful completion of the course the student will be able to:

  1. Describe how the world’s physical landscapes may influence patterns of human activity.
  2. Examine the origin, nature and distribution of the world’s cultural regions and their interaction with their physical environment.
  3. Explain economic regions as a result of patterns of livelihoods including past and present industrial activity, agricultural systems and service economies. 
  4. Examine a selection of the introductory concepts, models and analytical techniques human geographers apply in a world, regional and local context, to explain patterns of human activity.
  5. Describe, in depth, the geographical issues and problems in the world today

General Education Outcomes (GEOs)

Please check the applicable GEOs for this course, if any, by outcomes at GEO Category Search, or by subject area at GEO Discipline Search.

Course Activities and Grading

Assignment(s)Weight

Discussions

20%

Assignments and Exercises

10%

Midterm Exam

20%

Mini Quizzes

10%

Weekly Reflection Papers

20%

Final Exam

20%

Total

100%

Required Textbooks

Available through https://bookstore.mbsdirect.net/vbm/vb_home.php?FVCUSNO=35478
  • Fellmann, Bjelland, Getis and Getis (2010). Human Geography; Landscapes of Human Activity (11th Edition). McGraw Hill.

Additional Materials

  • Students will be expected to listen to one genre of music and watch one movie each week and report weekly on its nature as it relates to the particular regional culture from which it is drawn.
  • For many weeks you are expected to watch a film as part of that week's assignment. All assigned films should be readily available through commercial video rental stores (Blockbuster, Netflix, etc.). It is strongly recommended that you locate the films ahead of time, even if out of sequence, as the film you need may not be available at your preferred video rental store the week you need it.

Course Schedule

WeekSLOsReadings and ExercisesAssignment(s)

1

4

Topic: Themes and Fundamentals of Cultural/Human Geography

  • Chapter 1 (pp. 2-29)
  • Chapter 3 (pp. 57-87 but excluding pp. 73-84 on Migration)
  • Introductions by/of students
  • Read assigned chapters
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Complete assignments/exercises

2

4, 1

Topic: What is Culture and What is Cultural or Human Geography?

  • Chapter 2 (pp. 30-56)
  • Watch film: The Gods Must Be Crazy
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Watch assigned film
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

3

2, 4

Topic: Population/Demographics in the World Today: Global/Regional/Local

  • Chapter 4 (pp. 88-121, plus pp. 73-84 in Chapter 3)
  • Watch videos posted in course:

    • "People Paradox"
    • "China"
  • Read assigned chapters
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Watch assigned video
  • Complete Population Pyramid exercise
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

4

2, 4

Topic: World Religions

  • Chapter 5, World Religions section (pp. 143-163)
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Complete assignments/exercises
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

5

2, 4

Topic: World Languages

  • Chapter 5, World Languages section (pp. 123-143)
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Complete assignments/exercises
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

6

2, 4

Topic: Folk Culture

  • Chapter 7 (pp. 201-217 only)
  • Watch film: The Song Catcher
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Watch assigned film
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

7

2, 4

Topic: Popular Culture

  • Chapter 7 (pp. 217-232 only)
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Complete Midterm Exam

Midterm Exam

Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 7

SLO’s 1, 2 and 4

8

2, 4

Topic: Ethnicity

  • Chapter 6 (pp. 164-199)
  • Watch one film: either Crash (movie, not TV series) OR Hotel Rwanda
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Watch assigned film
  • Complete assignments/exercises
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

9

2, 3, 4

Topic: Agricultural Systems

  • Chapter 8 ( pp 233-257)
  • Watch film: The Milagro Beanfield War, dir. Robert Redford
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Watch assigned film
  • Complete assignments/exercises
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

10

2, 4

Topic: Urban Systems

  • Chapter 11 (pp. 339-382)
  • Site and Situation exercise
  • Mini Sim city type exercise (planning boundaries and neighborhoods)
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Complete assignments/exercises
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

11

2, 4

Topic: Political Systems

  • Chapter 12 (pp. 383-418)
  • Geography and Gerrymandering
  • Drawing National Borders
  • Exclaves and Enclaves
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Complete assignments/exercises
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

12

2, 3, 4

Topic: Industrial Systems

  • Chapter 8 (pp. 257-271)
  • Chapter 9 (pp. 273-305)
  • Watch film, Roger and Me, dir. Michael Moore
  • Read assigned chapters
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Watch assigned film
  • Complete assignments/exercises
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

13

2, 5

Topic: Patterns of Development and Change

  • Chapter 10 (pp. 309-338)
  • Jared Diamond, “Lessons from Environmental Collapses of Past Societies,” Fourth Annual John H. Chaffee Memorial Lecture on Science and the Environment, Jan. 29, 2004 (link provided in Blackboard course shell)
  • Watch film, Chinatown
  • Read assigned chapters
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Watch assigned film
  • Complete assignments/exercises
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper

14

3, 6, 8

Topic: Human Impact on World Systems

  • Chapter 13 (pp. 419-452)
  • Watch film: An Inconvenient Truth, narrated by Al Gore, Jr.
  • Read assigned chapters
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Participate in the Discussions
  • Watch assigned film
  • Complete assignments/exercises
  • Take mini quiz
  • Submit reflection paper
  • Course Evaluation

15

Final Exam

Chapters 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13

SLO's 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

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Students are responsible for knowing all Charter Oak State College (COSC) institutional policies, course-specific policies, procedures, and available academic support services and resources. Please see COSC Policies for COSC institutional policies, and see also specific policies related to this course. See COSC Resources for information regarding available academic support services and resources.