GEOG 101S Cultural Geography
The objective of this course is to provide knowledge and understanding of the cultural patterns created through human interactions with the environment and the processes responsible for cultural change. Topics will include: origins of culture in prehistory, human adaptations to the natural environment, the impact of different resource systems (hunting-gathering, agrarian, industrial) on nature in historical and spatial perspective, the creation of culture areas of the world, how states influence cultural survival, and the impact of globalization. The course will follow a lecture/discussion format to enhance critical thinking and writing abilities.
GEOG 120S Human Ecology
Humans can be considered a threatened species. Humans have induced this situation by overcrowding cities, exceeding the carrying capacity of available land, polluting the air, water and land, and eliminating many of the ecological systems that have evolved over thousands of years. But as population continues to grow, and more land is converted to other uses rather than food production, it will soon become apparent that life, as we know it today, will change in the next 100 years. This course examines some of the basic ecological systems that help sustain our existence, how humans have impacted these systems, and how governmental interference and hidden agendas have hampered efforts to rectify them. It is hope the student will have a better understanding of what needs to be done in the future, to make the world a better place for future habitation by our offspring no matter what part of the world they live in.
GEOG 220N Physical Geography
Prerequisites: Math Placement 22
Climate, vegetation, soils, and landform formation processes all influence human activity in any region; they are the focus of this process-oriented study of the physical environment. Heat and water budgets and their influence upon ecosystem development as well as fluvial, glacial, and coastal land shaping processes will be studied. Relationships between human activity and various physical environments of the world provide a central theme. Evaluation will be based on four exams and numerous in-class lab exercises.
GEOG 230S Urban Geography
Prerequisites: Math Placement 22
World urbanization has increased dramatically in the course of the 20 and 21st centuries. About 50% of the global population lives in cities now verses to 5% in the 1800s. Developed countries are 73% urbanized, with Europe and Russia facing shrinking population. Developing countries with large portion of their population in rural areas face an extremely fast rate of urbanization, and lead the world in number of mega-cities, often surrounded by shanty towns. What is the origin of urban growth and decline? What is the spatial organization of a settlement’s network? What is the structure of the land use in North American cities, and how different it is from European, Russian, and Latin American, and Asian centers? All these questions require that cities be constantly rediscovered. The emphasis will be on American cities with their long standing inner-city/suburb dichotomy. A lecture/discussion format is anticipated. Field
assignments connect theories to the real world. There will be two exams, one oral report, a final paper, several field projects, and multiple computer assignments targeting urban management issues.
Geog. 250, Globalization, C/W
The world is undergoing a historic transformation, one of those political, economic and social cornerstone changes about which we usually read in history books. It is happening today, in front of our eyes: new alliances are forming, old empires are disappearing, new ideas are traveling with a speed of the Internet, and old traditions feel vulnerable. We live in the age of Globalization. The future world order is indeed in the making: the new world map will look quite different from the old. Our task is to understand the ongoing processes, to make sense of the new directions our world is taking. Geography is the most powerful ally in this mission. In this course we will examine and discuss the pros and cons of globalization and its consequences for different world regions.
This course is partially Web-based: time between class instructions/discussions and web-based discussions and assignments will be split approximately 50/50.
GEOG 250C/S 01/02W Russian and Central Eurasian Geography
For the first time in all Russian history geography speaks for itself. After the disintegration of the Soviet Empire regions became exceedingly important in this highly centralized state. The current government is trying to reestablish control over the regions. Who will win in this geo-political game? Will Russia become a democratic state or it will pull back to the dictatorship? Will newly independent states like Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan gravitate to Russian economic and political domain or create new alliances with other bordering countries?
We will discuss it throughout the course. The class will be focused on changing space economy, environmental and population issues, national identity problems, political orientation in different regions of the post-Soviet space. This course has a lecture-discussion-project format. Students are expected to complete several map assignments, participate in class discussions, and to write a final paper on major topics.
This course is on WebCT.
GEOG 290 S Business Geographics
Geography plays in increasingly important role in many business decisions. In fact, a surprisingly large amount of information is geographical in character. It is related to such features as zip codes, street addresses, company or school locations, census tracts, cities or states. Micro marketing is gaining in importance because supply and demand is structured geographically. Until recently, business examined geography with colored pencils on legal pads or by pushing pins into wall maps. There is a better way. Business Geographics allows students to have hands-on experience in handling data and maps in a computer lab. This course brings the power of visualization into solutions of real world problems such as marketing, direct customer targeting, finding potential customers, site selection, and international trade. During the course, students will conduct several projects analyzing spatially business data, handling database conversion, geocoding, managing GPS, and mapping. The final project is centered on local business or public issues.
GEOG 380 01 Topic: Map Interpretation
Prerequisites: Math basic skills and GEOG or GEOL 101 or a 200 level course in GEOG, GEOL, or BIOL
A methods course designed to introduce interpretation principles for maps this course is designed for majors and minors in geography or geology (and biology students with an ecology focus). A programmed instruction approach is followed, which means that students will learn primarily through their work on laboratory exercises. Brief explanations in lecture format will precede each topic. Evaluation will be based on lab assignments and exercises (about 50%), several quizzes, and two exams.