GEOG101: World Regional Geography

Course Syllabus for "GEOG101: World Regional Geography"

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Geography is the study of the physical features of the Earth and its atmosphere – including landscape development, weather and climate, and geologic concepts – as well as the influence of human activity – including cultural, economic, and political activity – on those physical features.  Geography students, as they study the many aspects of our physically and culturally diverse world, tend to become more adept at tasks that require both spatial and critical thinking skills. World Regional Geography covers the basic elements noted above but within a regional context.  Ultimately, World Regional Geography is concerned with the physical and human characteristics that make the regions of our world distinctive.  As you progress through the course, the units will discuss each major world region in detail, placing particular emphasis on cultural and societal structures.  Regions will be discussed within a global framework in the hope that you will gain a better comprehension of how the world map is being defined and redefined.  In addition, you will study key global issues such as international conflict and cooperation, environmental degradation, population growth, and globalization. This course makes primary use of a comprehensive textbook to facilitate learning.  The concepts presented in World Regional Geography will build upon one another as you progress through the course.  Supplemental readings and online video lectures will be integrated throughout each unit as well.

Learning Outcomes

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

  • Identify and describe the world’s major geographic realms and significant contemporary issues within those realms.
  • Explain the economic interdependencies and cultural interconnections between realms and regions.
  • Define the major sub-disciplines within geography, and provide examples of realms and regions of the world.
  • Identify the fundamental parts of the geographic grid.
  • Use a variety of thematic maps to analyze worldwide distribution patterns of population, religion, language, politics, vegetation, climate, and other elements of geography.
  • Identify the fundamental elements of population distribution and migration patterns.
  • Compare and contrast major political systems, and identify where they are prevalent in the world.
  • Categorize and evaluate regional economic systems.
  • Compare and contrast major world religions and languages within a spatial context.
  • Compare and contrast worldwide urbanization and urban systems.
  • Compare and contrast the climate, physical landscape, and natural environment of the major world regions.
  • Identify and evaluate environmental issues prevalent in the major world regions.
  • Describe and discuss how the physical environment influences human landscapes.
  • Describe and explain socio-economic, cultural, environmental, health, and political issues that result from both homogenization and diversification in historical and contemporary contexts.

Course Requirements

In order to take this course, you must:

√    Have access to a computer.

√    Have continuous broadband Internet access.

√    Have the ability/permission to install plug-ins or software (e.g., Adobe Reader or Flash).

√    Have the ability to download and save files and documents to a computer.

√    Have the ability to open Microsoft files and documents (.doc, .ppt, .xls, etc.).

√    Be competent in the English language.

√    Have read the Saylor Student Handbook.

Course Information

Welcome to GEOG 101: World Regional Geography.  Below, please find general information on this course and its requirements. 
Course Designer: Ken Yanow, Professor of Geographical Sciences, Southwestern College
Primary Resources: This course is composed of a range of different free, online materials.  However, the course makes primary use of the following resources:

Requirements for Completion: In order to complete this course, you will need to work through each unit and all of its assigned materials.  You will also need to complete:

  • Subunit 1.1 Activity
  • Subunit 2.1 Activity
  • Subunit 4.1 Activity
  • Subunit 4.4 Activity
  • Subunit 5.2 Activity
  • Subunit 5.3 Activity
  • Subunit 5.4 Activity
  • Subunit 7.1 Activity
  • Subunit 8.4 Activity
  • Subunit 9.1 Activity
  • Subunit 12.1 Activity
  • The Final Exam

Please note that you will only receive an official grade on your Final Exam.  However, in order to adequately prepare for this exam, you will need to work through the activities presented throughout the units.
In order to “pass” this course, you will need to earn a 70% or higher on the Final Exam.  Your score on the exam will be tabulated as soon as you complete it.  If you do not pass the exam, you may take it again.
Time Commitment: This course should take you approximately 144.5 hours to complete.  Each unit includes a “time advisory” that lists the amount of time you are expected to spend on each subunit.  These should help you plan your time accordingly.  It may be useful to take a look at these time advisories and to determine how much time you have over the next few weeks to complete each unit, and then to set goals for yourself.  For example, Unit 1 should take approximately 20.5 hours to complete.  Perhaps you can sit down with your calendar and decide to complete subunit 1.1 (a total of 5 hours) on Monday night; subunit 1.2 (a total of 3.25 hours) on Tuesday night; etc.
Tips/Suggestions: Unit 1 provides an introduction to geography and sets the foundation for the entire course.  Take your time with Unit 1 and be sure you feel comfortable with the concepts and Learning Objectives before progressing to the next unit.  

Many of the units include a map activity.  It is very important that you can locate geographic areas, referenced in the course readings and lectures, on a map.  It is also advisable to complete the resources in sequential order as they are assigned.

The chapters and sections assigned from the course textbook, World Regional Geography: People, Places, and Globalization, align with the subunit and sub-subunit breakdown of the course.  Each section of the textbook also contains a series of “Discussion and Study” questions.  Before you read the assigned section or chapter, be sure to review the end-of-section Discussion and Study questions first, and then begin your reading.  While you are reading the text and watching the lectures, you will want to be actively answering and considering the questions.  This will make the learning process much more engaging and efficient. 

Table of Contents: You can find the course's units at the links below.