How can we help?

You can also find more resources in our Help Center.

65 terms

AP World Geography Vocabulary

STUDY
PLAY
location
the position of something on the earth's surface
space
the physical gap or distance between two objects
scale
the relationship between the size of an object or distance between objects on a map and the size of the actual object or distance on the earth's surface
place
a specific point on earth with human and physical characteristics that distinguish it from other points
pattern
the arrangement of objects on earth's surface in relationship to one another
regionalization
the organization of earth's surface into distinct areas that are viewed as different from other areas
globalization
the expansion of economic, political and cultural activities to the point that they reach and have impact on many areas of the world
spatial organization
the location of places,people,and events, and the connections among places and landscapes
landscapes
The overall appearance of an area that is shaped by both human and natural influences
why of where
Explanations for why a spatial pattern occurs
cartography
the art and science of mapmaking
human geography
concentrates on patterns of human activity and on their relationships with the environment.
physical geography
the study of physical features of the earth's surface
spatial perspective
framework that notices patterns of both natural and human environments, distributions of people, and locations of all kinds of objects
absolute location
exact location of a place on the earth described by global coordinates
meridian
an imaginary great circle on the surface of the earth passing through the north and south poles at right angles to the equator
longitude
The numbering system used to indicate the location of meridians drawn on a globe and measuring distance east and west of the prime meridian (0°).
prime meridian
The meridian, designated at 0° longitude, which passes through the Royal Observatory at Greenwich, England.
parallels
lines of latitude
equator
an imaginary line around the Earth forming the great circle that is equidistant from the north and south poles
latitude
distance north or south of the Equator, measured in degrees
relative location
the regional position or situation of a place relative to the position of other places
distortion
a change in the shape, size, or position of a place when it is shown on a map.
projection
The system used to transfer locations from Earth's surface to a flat map.
Mercator projection
a map projection of the earth onto a cylinder
Pro- shows true direction
Con - things on poles appear bigger than they really are
Robinson projection
Projection that attempts to balance several possible projection errors. It does not maintain completely accurate area, shape, distance, or direction, but it minimizes errors in each.
Peters Projection
Shows the correct areas of landmasses and oceans, directions are accurate, but it is distorts Africa and South America
contour map
a map having contour lines through points of equal elevation - shows topography
topography
the natural land surface
contours
Lines on a map that indicate the height above sea level
Counter lines
The farther apart the lines the gentler the slop.
time zone
any of the 24 regions of the globe (loosely divided by longitude) throughout which the same standard time is used
local time
The actual time in a given location based upon the Sun's position at the Midheaven (noon) of the place. Abbreviated LMT; also called True Local Time (TLT).
Greenwich Mean Time
standard time at the prime meridian
daylight savings time
Setting of cloaks ahead by one hour to provide more daylight at the end of the day during late spring, summer, and early fall.
International Date Line
an imaginary line on the surface of the earth following (approximately) the 180th meridian that shows where the date changes
solar time
Time based on calculations of the sun's passage across the sky
toponyms
the name given to a portion of Earth's surface
physical site characteristics
climate, topography, soil, water sources, vegetation, and elevation
linear pattern
straight pattern, ex. houses along a street
centralized pattern
clustered or concentrated at a certain place
random pattern
no specific distribution or logic behind its arrangement
rectilinear (grid) pattern
checkerboard rural pattern that reflects rectangular system of land survey - looks like grid
formal region
An area within which everyone shares in common one or more distinctive characteristics.
functional (nodal) regions
Regions that can be defined around a certain point or node;
periphery
functional regions margins
core
center of functional region
perceptual (vernacular) regions
no formal boundries/ an area that people believe exists as part of their cultural identity ex: "The South"
space-time compression
describes the changes that rapid connections among places and regions have brought
multi-national corporations
company that has centers of operation in many parts of the globe
GIS
A computer system that stores, organizes, analyzes, and displays geographic data. Geographic Information System
GPS
a navigational system involving satellites and computers that can determine the latitude and longitude of a receiver on Earth by computing the time difference for signals from different satellites to reach the receiver; Global Positioning System
US Census Bureau
government program that surveys the population every ten years in order to aid official plans and fund certain programs (ex: school construction, transportation systems, police/fire services, public housing, etc)
Eratosthenes
Greek mathematician and astronomer who estimated the circumference of the earth and the distances to the moon and sun (276-194 BC)
Ptolemy
Greek geographer-astronomer and author of (Guide to Geography) which included maps containing a grid system of latitude and longitude also recalculated the circumference of the earth to be much smaller. Lived 500 years before Eratosthenes.
Idrisi
An 11th century Arab geographer that worked for the king of Sicily to collect geographical information into a remarkably accurate representation of the world. Under his direction, an academy of geographers gathered maps and went out on their own scientific expeditions.
George Perkins Marsh
Publishes Man and Nature later titled The Earth as Modified by Human Nature, first analysis on humans impact on the earth, First environmentalist and "fountain head" of conservation
Carl Sauer
Geographer from the University of California at Bed defined the concept of cultural landscape as the fundamental un graphical analysis. This landscape results from interaction betwee and the physical environment. Sauer argued that virtually no land escaped alteration by human activities.
cultural landscapes
product of interactions between humans and their environments
environmental geography
The intersection between human and physical geography, which explores the spatial impacts humans have on the physical environment and vice versa.
circular pattern
locations are clustered and concentrated around a particular place
Hecataeus
lived in the late 6th and 5th centuries B.C.E, created a map that was accurate around Greece but other areas were much more vague.
Immanuel Kant
German philosopher and geographer identified geography as the study of interrelated spatial patterns.
site
the physical and human-transformed characteristics of a place
situation
the location of a place relative to other places