Topic 6urban Environmentsgeography

Posted : admin On 8/23/2021

Continuing Tom L. McKnight's well-known thematic focus on landscape appreciation, Darrel Hess offers a broad survey of all of the physical processes and spatial patterns that create Earth’s physical landscape. McKnight’s Physical Geography: A Landscape Appreciation provides a clear writing style, superior art program, and abundant pedagogy to appeal to a wide variety of students.

This optional section of our specification focuses on urban growth and change which are seemingly ubiquitous processes and present significant environmental and social challenges for human populations. The section examines these processes and challenges and the issues associated with them, in particular the potential for environmental sustainability and social cohesion. Engaging with these themes in a range of urban settings from contrasting areas of the world affords the opportunity for students to appreciate human diversity and develop awareness and insight into profound questions of opportunity, equity and sustainability. Study of this section offers the opportunity to exercise and develop observation skills, measurement and geospatial mapping skills, together with data manipulation and statistical skills, including those associated with and arising from fieldwork. Urbanisation

Urbanisation and its importance in human affairs. Global patterns of urbanisation since 1945. Urbanisation, suburbanisation, counter-urbanisation, urban resurgence. The emergence of megacities and world cities and their role in global and regional economies.

Economic, social, technological, political and demographic processes associated with urbanisation and urban growth.

  • The Five Themes of Geography are important to know when looking at any topic in the field of geography. This lesson will explain those themes and how we can use them.
  • Geography & the Environment Chapter Exam Instructions. Choose your answers to the questions and click 'Next' to see the next set of questions. You can skip questions if you would like and come.

Urban change: deindustrialisation, decentralisation, rise of service economy.

Urban policy and regeneration in Britain since 1979. Urban forms

Contemporary characteristics of mega/world cities. Urban characteristics in contrasting settings. Physical and human factors in urban forms. Spatial patterns of land use, economic inequality, social segregation and cultural diversity in contrasting urban areas, and the factors that influence them.

New urban landscapes: town centre mixed developments, cultural and heritage quarters, fortress developments, gentrified areas, edge cities. The concept of the post-modern western city.Free dancehall music downloads mp3. Social and economic issues associated with urbanisation

Issues associated with economic inequality, social segregation and cultural diversity in contrasting urban areas.

Strategies to manage these issues. Urban climate

The impact of urban forms and processes on local climate and weather.

Urban temperatures: the urban heat island effect. Precipitation: frequency and intensity. Fogs and thunderstorms in urban environments. Wind: the effects of urban structures and layout on wind speed, direction and frequency. Air quality: particulate and photo-chemical pollution.

Pollution reduction policies. Urban drainage

Urban precipitation, surfaces and catchment characteristics; impacts on drainage basin storage areas; urban water cycle: water movement through urban catchments as measured by hydrographs.

Issues associated with catchment management in urban areas. The development of sustainable urban drainage systems (SUDS).

River restoration and conservation in damaged urban catchments with reference to a specific project. Reasons for and aims of the project; attitudes and contributions of parties involved; project activities and evaluation of project outcomes. Urban waste and its disposal

Urban physical waste generation: sources of waste - industrial and commercial activity, personal consumption. Relation of waste components and waste streams to economic characteristics, lifestyles and attitudes. The environmental impacts of alternative approaches to waste disposal: unregulated, recycling, recovery, incineration, burial, submergence and trade.

Comparison of incineration and landfill approaches to waste disposal in relation to a specified urban area. Other contemporary urban environmental issues

Environmental problems in contrasting urban areas: atmospheric pollution, water pollution and dereliction.

Strategies to manage these environmental problems. Sustainable urban development

Impact of urban areas on local and global environments. Ecological footprint of major urban areas. Dimensions of sustainability: natural, physical, social and economic. Nature and features of sustainable cities. Concept of liveability.

Contemporary opportunities and challenges in developing more sustainable cities.

Geography essays topic

Strategies for developing more sustainable cities. Case studies

Case studies of two contrasting urban areas to illustrate and analyse key themes set out above, to include:

  • patterns of economic and social well-being
  • the nature and impact of physical environmental conditions

with particular reference to the implications for environmental sustainability, the character of the study areas and the experience and attitudes of their populations.


  • Specification for first teaching in 2016 (876.5 KB)

What Is Geography?

GeographyThe spatial study of the earth’s surface. is the spatial study of the earth’s surface (from the Greek geo, which means “Earth,” and graphein, which means “to write”). Geographers study the earth’s physical characteristics, its inhabitants and cultures, phenomena such as climate, and the earth’s place within the universe. Geography examines the spatial relationships between all physical and cultural phenomena in the world. Geographers also look at how the earth, its climate, and its landscapes are changing due to cultural intervention.

The first known use of the word geography was by Eratosthenes of Cyrene (modern-day Libya in North Africa), an early Greek scholar who lived between 276 and 194 BCE. He devised one of the first systems of longitude and latitude and calculated the earth’s circumference. Additionally, he created one of the first maps of the world based on the available knowledge of the time. Around the same time, many ancient cultures in China, southern Asia, Polynesia, and the Arabian Peninsula also developed maps and navigation systems used in geography and cartography.

The discipline of geography can be broken down into two main areas of focus: physical geographyThe spatial study of natural phenomena that make up the earth’s surface. and human geographyThe study of human activity and its relationship to the earth’s surface.. These two main areas are similar in that they both use a spatial perspective, and they both include the study of place and the comparison of one place with another.

Topic 6 Urban Environmentsgeography

Physical geography is the spatial study of natural phenomena that make up the environment, such as rivers, mountains, landforms, weather, climate, soils, plants, and any other physical aspects of the earth’s surface. Physical geography focuses on geography as a form of earth science. It tends to emphasize the main physical parts of the earth—the lithosphere (surface layer), the atmosphere (air), the hydrosphere (water), and the biosphere (living organisms)—and the relationships between these parts.

The major forms of study within physical geography include the following:

  • Geomorphology (the study of the earth’s surface features)
  • Glaciology (the study of glaciers)
  • Coastal geography (the study of the coastal regions)
  • Climatology (the study of climates and climate change)
  • Biogeography (the study of the geographic patterns of species distribution)

Some physical geographers study the earth’s place in the solar system. Others are environmental geographers, part of an emerging field that studies the spatial aspects and cultural perceptions of the natural environment. Environmental geography requires an understanding of both physical and human geography, as well as an understanding of how humans conceptualize their environment and the physical landscape.

Physical landscapeThe physical environmental features that make up the earth’s surface. is the term used to describe the natural terrain at any one place on the planet. The natural forces of erosion, weather, tectonic plate action, and water have formed the earth’s physical features. Many US state and national parks attempt to preserve unique physical landscapes for the public to enjoy, such as Yellowstone, Yosemite, and the Grand Canyon.

Geography Topics For Research Papers


Human geography is the study of human activity and its relationship to the earth’s surface. Human geographers examine the spatial distribution of human populations, religions, languages, ethnicities, political systems, economics, urban dynamics, and other components of human activity. They study patterns of interaction between human cultures and various environments and focus on the causes and consequences of human settlement and distribution over the landscape. While the economic and cultural aspects of humanity are primary focuses of human geography, these aspects cannot be understood without describing the landscape on which economic and cultural activities take place.

The cultural landscapePlaces where the earth’s surface has been altered by human activity. is the term used to describe those parts of the earth’s surface that have been altered or created by humans. For example, the urban cultural landscape of a city may include buildings, streets, signs, parking lots, or vehicles, while the rural cultural landscape may include fields, orchards, fences, barns, or farmsteads. Cultural forces unique to a given place—such as religion, language, ethnicity, customs, or heritage—influence the cultural landscape of that place at a given time. The colors, sizes, and shapes of the cultural landscape usually symbolize some level of significance regarding societal norms. Spatial dynamics assist in identifying and evaluating cultural differences between places.

Traditionally, the field of cartographyThe art and science of map making., or map making, has been a vital discipline for geographers. While cartography continues to be an extremely important part of geography, geographers also look at spatial (space) and temporal (time) relationships between many types of data, including physical landscape types, economies, and human activity. Geography also examines the relationships between and the processes of humans and their physical and cultural environments. Because maps are powerful graphic tools that allow us to illustrate relationships and processes at work in the world, cartography and geographic information systems have become important in modern sciences. Maps are the most common method of illustrating different spatial qualities, and geographers create and use maps to communicate spatial data about the earth’s surface.

Geospatial techniquesThe tools used by geographers to illustrate, manage and manipulate spatial data, which can include cartography, GIS, and remote sensing. are tools used by geographers to illustrate, manage, and manipulate spatial data. Cartography is the art and science of making maps, which illustrate data in a spatial form and are invaluable in understanding what is going on at a given place at a given time.

Making maps and verifying a location have become more exact with the development of the global positioning system (GPS)System that uses satellite signals to determine exact location on the earth’s surface.. A GPS unit can receive signals from orbiting satellites and calculate an exact location in latitude and longitude, which is helpful for determining where one is located on the earth or for verifying a point on a map. GPS units are standard equipment for many transportation systems and have found their way into products such as cell phones, handheld computers, fish finders, and other mobile equipment. GPS technology is widely implemented in the transport of people, goods, and services around the world.

Remote sensingThe acquisition of data about the earth’s surface through aerial photographs taken from airplanes or images created from satellites orbiting the earth. technology acquires data about the earth’s surface through aerial photographs taken from airplanes or images created from satellites orbiting the earth. Remotely sensed images allow geographers to identify, understand, or explain a particular landscape or determine the land use of a place. These images can serve as important components in the cartographic (map-making) process. These technologies provide the means to examine and analyze changes on the earth’s surface caused by natural or human forces. Google Earth is an excellent example of a computer tool that illustrates remotely sensed images of locations on the earth.

Figure 1.1 Low Elevation Air Photo of Cultural Landscape in Morehead, Kentucky

Geographic information science (GIS)Science (or system) that uses a computer program to sort layers of digital data to create specialized maps focusing on specific topics., often referred to as geographic information systems, uses a computer program to assimilate and manage many layers of map data, which then provide specific information about a given place. GIS data are usually in digital form and arranged in layers. The GIS computer program can sort or analyze layers of data to illustrate a specific feature or activity. GIS programs are used in a wide range of applications, from determining the habitat range of a particular species of bird to mapping the hometowns of university students.

Figure 1.2 Illustration of Layers in a GIS Process

GIS specialists often create and analyze geographical information for government agencies or private businesses. They use computer programs to take raw data to develop the information these organizations need for making vital decisions. For example, in business applications, GIS can be used to determine a favorable location for a retail store based on the analysis of spatial data layers such as population distribution, highway or street arrangements, and the locations of similar stores or competitive establishments. GIS can integrate a number of maps into one to help analysts understand a place in relation to their own specific needs.

GIS also focuses on storing information about the earth (both cultural and natural) in computer databases that can be retrieved and displayed in the form of specialized maps for specific purposes or analyses. GIS specialists require knowledge about computer and database systems. Over the last two decades, GIS has revolutionized the field of cartography: nearly all cartography is now done with the assistance of GIS software. Additionally, analysis of various cultural and natural phenomena through the use of GIS software and specialized maps is an important part of urban planning and other social and physical sciences. GIS can also refer to techniques used to represent, analyze, and predict spatial relationships between different phenomena.

Geography is a much broader field than many people realize. Most people think of area studies as the whole of geography. In reality, geography is the study of the earth, including how human activity has changed it. Geography involves studies that are much broader than simply understanding the shape of the earth’s landforms. Physical geography involves all the planet’s physical systems. Human geography incorporates studies of human culture, spatial relationships, interactions between humans and the environment, and many other areas of research that involve the different subspecialties of geography. Students interested in a career in geography would be well served to learn geospatial techniques and gain skills and experience in GIS and remote sensing, as they are the areas within geography where employment opportunities have grown the most over the past few decades.