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Key terms for use in Unit 2 of APHG, population. combines Rubenstein & Fouberg

Age cohort

A group of people with a similar age.

Agricultural density

The ratio of the number of farmers to the total amount of land suitable for agriculture.

Agricultural revolution

The time when human beings first domesticated plants and animals and on longer relied entirely on hunting and gathering.


Concerned with limiting population growth.


Concerned with promoting population growth.

Arithmetic density

The total number of people divided by the total land area.Population Density


A complete enumeration of a population.


Deliberate prevention of conception or impregnation.

Crude death rate (CDR)

The total number of deaths in a year for every 1,000 people alive in the society.

Crude birth rate (CBR)

The total number of live births in a year for every 1,000 people alive in the society.

Demographic transition

The process of change in a society's population from a condition of high crude birth and death rates and low rate of natural increase to a condition of low crude birth and death rates, low rate of natural increase, and a higher total population.


The scientific study of population characteristics.

Dependency ratio

The number of people under the age of 15 and over age 64, compares to the number of people active in the labor force.

Doubling time

The amount of years needed to double a population, assuming a constant rate of natural increase.


The portion of Earth's surface occupied by permanent human settlement.


The uninhabited or uninhabitable area of the world.

Epidemiologic transition

Distinctive causes of death in each stage of the demographic transition.


Branch of medical science concerned with the incidence, distribution, and control of diseases that affect large numbers of people.

Industrial Revolution

A series of improvements in industrial technology that transformed the process of manufacturing goods.

Infant mortality rate (IMR)

The total number of deaths in a year among infants under one year old for every 1,000 live births in a society.

Life expectancy

The average number of years an individual can be expected to live, given current social, economic, and medical conditions. Life expectancy at birth is the average number of years a newborn infant can expect to live.

Medical revolution

Medical technology invented in Europe and North America that is diffused to the poorer countries of Latin America, Asia, and Africa. Improved medical practices have eliminated many of the traditional causes of death in poorer countries and enabled more people to live longer and healthier lives.

Natural increase rate (NIR/RNI)

The percentage growth of a population in a year, computed as the crude birth rate minus the crude death rate.


The number of a people in an area exceeds the capacity of the environment to support life at a decent standard of living.


Disease that occurs over a wide geographic area and affects a very high proportion of the population.

Physiological density

The number of people per unit of area of arable land, which is land suitable for agriculture.

Population agglomeration

A cluster of people living in the same area. Population clustering.

Population pyramid

A bar graph representing the distribution of population by age and sex.

Replacement fertility

The total fertility rate at which women would have only enough children to replace themselves and their partner.

Sex ratio

The number of males per 100 females in the population.

Total fertility rate (TFR)

The average number of children a women will have throughout her childbearing years.

Zero population growth (ZPG)

A decline of the total fertility rate to the point where the natural increase rate equals zero.

population distribution

Variation of population density over a particular geographic area. For example, a country has a high population density in its urban areas and a much lower population density in rural areas.

stationary population level

The level at which a national population ceases to grow

population composition

The structure of a population in terms of age, sex and other properties such as marital status and education

newborn mortality rate

The number of infants who die within the first month of life per 1000 live births.

child mortality rate

A figure that describes the number of children that die between the first and fifth years of their lives in a given population.

expansive population policies

Government policies that encourage large families and raise the rate of population growth.

eugenic population policies

Those encouraging certain groups to have children, while inhibiting the rates of reproduction of those said to have less favorable traits. e.g. race, ethnicity. intelligence.

restrictive population policies

Government policies designed to reduce the rate of natural increase. e.g.: China's "one child" policy.

one-child policy

Official policy launched by China in 1979 to induce married couples to have only one child in an effort to control population growth.

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