Geography 201

GEOG 201

Catalog Entry

GEOG 201 North America. (SS)
Three hours lecture (3).

Qualifies as a U.S. geography course for the Social Science major. Presentation of integrated spatial construction of the continent. Study of physical and human elements in the creation of the present diversity of life.  General Education credit-Social and Behavioral Sciences.


Detailed Description of Content of Course

The course examines North America from the perspectives of topical and regional analysis. Included under the former are such topics as population, urbanization, agriculture, industrialization and transportation.

Following a continental overview, individual regions (e.g. New England, Appalachia, Canadian Heartland, Pacific Northwest) are examined in detail. Appropriate models and theories are explained and used during the course, including demographic transition model, central place theory and theories of agricultural and industrial location.


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

This is a three-hour lecture course. Extensive reading is assigned in the course text, and/or supplementary texts in the reference section of the library and books placed on library reserve. Although lectures by the instructor provide the basic format, classroom discussion and student participation is encouraged by the instructor and stimulated by the use of films, and slides.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

  • Students will understand the concept of regional geography.
  • Students will be able to identify the physiographic provinces of North America and explain the consequences of early settlement in each of these provinces.
  • Students will be able to interpret the role of the environment in North America.
  • Students will develop an understanding of the reasons for the divergence of socioeconomic conditions in North American regions.

Goals of General Education Program

  • Students will develop the ability to think critically and creatively about spatial relationships in the modern world and understand how these relationships have developed through time.
  • Students will be introduced to a variety of tools, methods and data used in geographic analysis.
  • Students will use Internet and other computer technologies to retrieve geographic data.
  • Students will acquire a geographic perspective, permitting them to identify cultural values and historic precedents that shape regional and international relationships both here and abroad.

Goals for Area 8. Social and Behavioral Sciences

  • Students will understand how geographers approach the study of a place and its peoples.
  • Students will know how to collect geographic data, analyze and present spatial information, and solve geographic problems related to people and their use of the lands they inhabit.
  • Students will acquire basic geographic knowledge and skills that they can apply in evaluating and interpreting their own culture region as well as those elsewhere in the world.
  • Students will understand cultural factors that through time have shaped spatial interactions.
  • Students will understand the diverse ways in which human relations have been structured across space, time and cultures.


Assessment Measures

Assessment measures may include more than one of the following: participation in class, writing exercises, oral discussions of readings, presentations, and testing that includes objective and/or essay questions on examinations. Tests are structured to demonstrate student mastery of the stated goals and objectives. It may also include quizzes, journals, portfolios and class participation in discussion. The weight of each assessment item will be determined by the individual instructor and announced during the first week of class.

To assess the attainment of the broad general education goals, essay-type questions on exams and term papers/projects require synthesis of a variety of information related to both the natural and social sciences and presentation of that data in well-conceived narratives and graphics.

To assess the attainment of specific Area 8 goals, students will be challenged in assignments, exams and projects to demonstrate their skills in working with geographic data to interpret the ways human relations are structured across space, time and cultures.


Other Course Information




Date Action and Approved By
September 2005 Bernd H. Kuennecke