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High School AP Human Geography

Pre Requisites



The AP® Human Geography course is designed to provide college level instruction on the patterns and processes that impact the way humans understand, use, and change Earth’s surface. Students use geographic models, methods, and tools to examine human social organization and its effect on the world in which we live. Students are challenged to use maps and geographical data to examine spatial patterns and processes and analyze the changing interconnections among people and places.

Segment One

Module 01 - Thinking Geographically

  • Types of maps
  • Methods of geographic data collection
  • Geographical effects of decisions made using geographical information
  • Major geographic concepts that illustrate spatial relationships
  • Scales of analysis 
  • Regions
  • Human-Environmental Interaction

Module 02 - Population and Migration Patterns and Processes

  • Factors that influence the distribution of human populations at different scales
  • Calculating population density
  • Population distribution and density’s affect society and the environment.
  • Elements of population composition used by geographers
  • Contemporary and historical trends in population growth and decline
  • Causes and consequences of an aging population
  • Theories of population growth and decline
  • Population and immigration policies 
  • Factors encouraging migration
  • Forced and voluntary migration
  • Historical and contemporary geographic effects of migration

Module 03 - Cultural Patterns and Processes

  • Characteristics, attitudes, and traits of culture 
  • Characteristics of cultural landscapes.
  • How landscape features and land and resource use reflect cultural beliefs and identities
  • Patterns and landscapes of language, religion, ethnicity, and gender
  • Types of diffusion
  • Effects of diffusion on the cultural landscape 
  • How historical processes impact current cultural patterns
  • Factors leading to diffusion of universalizing and ethnic religions

Module 04 - Political Patterns and Processes

  • Different types of political entities
  • Processes that have shaped contemporary political geography
  • Political power and territoriality 
  • Political boundaries 
  • Nature and function of international and internal boundaries
  • Federal and unitary states
  • Factors that lead to the devolution of states
  • Political, economic, cultural, and technological challenges to state sovereignty
  • Centrifugal and centripetal forces 

Segment Two

Module 05 - Agricultural and Rural Land-Use Patterns and Processes

  • Connection between physical geography and agricultural practices
  • Rural settlement patterns 
  • Methods of surveying rural settlements
  • Major centers of domestication of plants.
  • Global diffusion of plants and animals 
  • Advances and impacts of the second agricultural revolution
  • Consequences of the Green Revolution on food supply and the environment in the developing world
  • Economic forces influencing agricultural practices
  • von Thünen model 
  • Interdependence among regions of agricultural production and consumption
  • Environmental and societal consequences of agricultural practices
  • Challenges and debates related to the changing nature of contemporary agriculture and food-production practices
  • Geographic variations in female roles in food production and consumption

Module 06 - Cities and Urban Land Use Patterns and Processes

  • Processes that initiate and drive urbanization and suburbanization
  • How cities embody processes of globalization
  • Urban concepts such as hierarchy, interdependence, relative size, and spacing 
  • Internal structure of cities using various models and theories
  • Low-, medium-, and high-density housing 
  • A city's infrastructure as it relates to local politics, society, and the environment
  • Urban design initiatives and practices
  • Causes and effects of geographic changes within urban areas
  • Urban sustainability challenges

Module 07 - Industrial and Economic Development Patterns and Processes

  • How the Industrial Revolution facilitated the growth and diffusion of industrialization
  • Spatial patterns of industrial production and development
  • Social and economic measures of development
  • Extent that changes in economic development have contributed to gender parity
  • Theories of economic and social development
  • Causes and geographic consequences of trade, deindustrialization, and growing interdependence in the world economy
  • Sustainability principles in relation to industrialization and spatial development

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