Syllabus
Introduction to Physical Geography

Syllabus Sections

Publish Date

05/19/2011 16:12:13

Introduction to Physical Geography

GEOG-1301

Summer 2011
06/30/2011 - 08/08/2011

Course Information

Section 006
Lecture
MTWTh 9:55AM - 11:50AM
CYP5 2229
Sheka Kamara
skamara@austincc.edu

Office Hours

No office hours have been entered for this term.

Course Requirements

 

ACC-CAMPUSES                        GEOGRAPHY SYLLABUS

SUMMER, 2011

 

HEADING

Course Name: Introduction to Physical Geography

Course #: Geography 1301 (Approved for major distribution - 3 credits)

Course Section: 30229

Synonym: 006

 

SUMMER, 2011, 6 Week Session: June 30 - August 8

Class Days: MTWTH  9:55 - 11:50 AM

Room #: CYP 5, 2229

Instructor: Dr. Sheka G. Kamara, Ph.D.

Office: CYP 5, Room 2204.1

Office Hours: M & W, 11:00 - 12:00 PM (or by appointment only)

Phone #: (512) 223-2007

Voice Mail #: 25804                                                                   

Email:skamara@austincc.edu or shekakamara@sbcglobal.net

 

REQUIRED TEXTS/MATERIALS

McKnight, Tom. L. and Darrell Hess (2010). Physical Geogrpahy: A Landscape Appreciation, 10th Edition. Pearson Prentice-Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey. (Required).

Veregin, Howard (2010). Goode’s World Atlas, 22nd Edition. Rand McNally. (Optional).

COURSE DESCRIPTION

This course introduces the student to a study that brings together and interrelates the significant elements of the physical environment of humans. The nature and characteristics of the physical environment and spatial distribution are discussed.

INSTRUCTIONAL METHODOLOGY

The standardized lecture format with lecture notes and other discussion topics, where applicable, furnished through blackboard technology, and notes on overhead transparencies based on the chapters in the text, will be utilized to enhance the learning process.

COURSE RATIONALE

Introduction to Physical Geography is designed to provide students with knowledge and understanding of the spatial distributions of the earth's physical attributes and the physical processes that led to their formation and distributions. It is hoped that this understanding will enable students to utilize the general geographic knowledge and skills acquired to help find solutions to some of the world's environmental problems and to apply the acquired geographic knowledge and skills to their everyday activities and chosen careers. They can also apply the course to acquiring an associate degree at Austin Community College, and to prepare them for success in upper division courses in geography at other institutions within and outside the state.

COMMON COURSE OBJECTIVES

By the end of this course it is hoped that the following objectives and those that may be deemed necessary by the instructor but not listed here would help the studen to:

  • Describe and understand what Geography and Physical Geography are.
  • Understand the physical principles and processes that control the general circulation and characteristics of the atmosphere and earth's climates, especially their development and spatial distribution.
  • Understand how humans have also contributed to the modification of the physical environment, especially the role of the human factor on climate change.
  • Understand the principles of geomorphology and the processes that shape the landscape.
  • Understand the spatial distribution and dynamics of organisms and their environments.
  • Understand the directional and locational systems used on the earth's surface and to use and analyze maps.

COURSE EVALUATION/GRADING SYSTEM

Students' grades for this course will be assessed cumulatively and will be based on the successful completion of the following course requirements in order to earn a complete letter grade.

  • Must attend classes regularly. A sign-up sheet at each class meeting will be used to monitor attendance. A perfect weekly attendance on Monday and Wednesday for the 6-week session is worth 20 points. A total of three absences for the semester and accompanied by a valid medical excuse will earn the student 15 points. Four or more absences will earn the student 0 points.
  • Must complete assigned readings before each class meeting.
  • Must take one in-class exercise/take home assignment.
  • Must complete one chapter review quizz comprised of multiple choice, true-false, and matching questions.
  • Must complete one midterm exam comprised of multiple choice, true-false, matching, and short essay-answer questions.
  • Must take a final comprehensive exam comprised of multiple choice, true-false, matching, and short essay-answer questions.

These requirements are worth 350 points and are distributed as follows.

  • A perfect  attendance is worth 20 points
  • The in-class exercise/take home assignment is worth 20 points
  • The quiz is worth 50 points.
  • The midterm exam is worth 100 points
  • The final comprehensive exam is worth 160 points.

The course requirements are summed up as follows.

Attendance                                    =                                       20 points

In-class exercise                         =                                        20 points

Quizz                                              =                                         50 points

Midterm Exam                              =                                       100 points

Final Exam                                    =                                       160 points

Total                                               =                                        350 points

GRADING SYSTEM

There will be no extra credit and a student is allowed one week to make-up for a missed exercise, a quiz, or an exam.The grading system is as follows

90 - 100 (%) 315 - 350 points = A grade

80 - 89 (%)   280 - 312 points = B grade

70 - 79 (%)   245 - 279 points = C grade

60 - 69 (%)   210 - 242 points = D grade

  0 - 59 (%)        0 - 207 points = F grade

COURSE POLICIES

Students enrolled in this course are responsible for upholding the following course policies.

Class Attendance:

Students are encouraged to attend classes regularly in order to earn all the 20 points for a perfect attendance for the 6-week summer session. Regular and punctual class attendance is expected of all students

Withdrawal Policy

Withdrawal from the class is the student's personal responsibility. Students who wish to withdraw from a class must follow the procedures and deadlines established by the admission's office. For example, each semester has dates students can either "drop" or "withdraw" from a course. The college does not place any limits on the number of courses a student can drop. However, state law limits the number of course withdrawals but with some exceptions and exemptions. Students are reminded that droping or withdrawing from a course may affect financial aid, veterans' benefits, international student status, or academic standing. Students are therefore advised to consult with their instructors or advisors or counselors before making a change on their schedules.

Incomplete Grade

A student can only be given an "I" grade for this couse if he/she has completed all the other course requirements but misses the final exam due to circumstances beyond that student's control. Students are further reminded that "I" grades are discretionary and must be made before the end of the fall semester.

Scholarstic Dishonesty

Students in this course are further reminded about the following statement on scholastic dishonesty. "Acts prohibited by the college for which discipline may be administered include scholastic dishonesty, including but not limited to cheating, on an exam or quiz, plagiarizing, and unauthorized collaboration with one another in preparing outside work. Academic work submitted by students shall be the result of theit thought, research, or self-expression. Academic work is defined as, but not limited to tests, quizzes, whether taken electronically or on paper, projects, either individual or group; classroom presentations, and homework." Any student that commits any of the acts specified above will be liable to disciplinary action that may include, but not limited to, getting an "F" grade for the course.

Students with Special Needs

Each ACC campus offers support services for students with documented physical or psychological disabilities. Students with disabilities or special needs must request reasonable accommodations through the office for Students with Disabilities on the campus where they expect to take the majority of their classes. Students are emcouraged to do this three weeks before the start of the semester.

Academic Freedom

"Each student is strongly encouraged to participate in class discussions. In any classroom situation that includes discussion and critical thinking, there are bound to be many view points. Students may not only disagree with each other at times, but the students and instructor may also find that they have disparate views on sensitive and volatile topics. It is hoped that these differences will enhance class discussion and create an atmosphere wherein students and instructor alike, will be encouraged to think and learn. Therefore, be assured that your grades will not be affected by any beliefs or ideas expressed in class or in assignments. Rather, we will all respect the views of others when expressed in classroom discussions."

WEEKLY COURSE SCHEDULE/CALENDER

Week        Date                                            Subject/Topic                                                   Reading/Lecture    

1.               7/04 - 7/08                                 Introduction: Basic Geographic                      McKnight/Hess Chs. 1,2,3

                                                                      Concepts. Structure and Composition

                                                                       of the Earth's Atmosphere. Class Video.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

2.                7/11 - 7/15                                Insolation and Temperature                             McKnight/Hess, Chs.4,5,6       

                                                                     Air Pressure and Winds; Atmospheric

                                                                     Moisture; Holiday - 7/04 - College Closed

                                                                     In-Class Exercise 

                                                                                                                           

3.                 7/18 - 7/22                             Cyclonic Storms and Air Masses.                          "                "         Chs.7,8,13,14

                                                                    Classification of Climates. Introduction to

                                                                    Geomorphology; Internal Processes; QUIZZ 

                                                      

4.                 7/25 - 7/29                             Weathering and Mass Wasting                                 "                "       Chs.15, 16

                                                                    Fluvial Processes and Landforms; MIDTERM

                                                                    EXAM.                               

 

5.                 8/01 - 8/05                             Solution Processes and Karst Topography               "                 "      Chs. 17,18,19

                                                                      Arid Erosion and Landforms

6.                8/08 - 8/12                               Final!   Final!   Final

                                                                       

N.B.   This schedule is provisional and liable to some modification in order to accommodate extended lectures and incidental college closures and lecture cancellations.    

           

                                                          

                                                                     

                             

                                                                

 

INSTRUCTIONAL METHODOLOGY

The standardized lecture format with notes on overhead transparencies and based on the chapters in the text, and general class discussions will be utilized to enhance the learning process.

Introduction to Cultural Geography is designed to provide students with knowledge and understanding of the spatial distributions of cultures and the processes that led to these distributions. It is hoped that this understanding will allow students to apply general geographic knowledge and skills to their everyday activities and chosen careers, to apply the course towards an associate degree at Austin Community College, and to prepare them for success in upper division courses in geography at other institutions within and outside the state.

By the end of this course it is hoped that the student will be able to:

  •           Understand what Geography and Cultural Geography are.

 

  •           Understand the importance of geographic tools and philosophy.

 

  •           Understand the geographic themes of location, place, and movement.

 

  •           Understand the basics of the human-environment interaction process and its consequences.

 

COURSE EVALUATION/GRADING SYSTEM

Students’ grades for the course will be assessed cumulatively and will be based on the successful completion of the following course requirements in order to earn a complete letter grade.

  •           Must attend classes regularly.

 

  •           Must complete assigned readings before each class meeting.

 

  •           Must complete three chapter review quizzes comprised of multiple choices, true-false, and matching questions.

 

  •           Must complete two midterm exams comprised of multiple choices, true-false, matching, and short essay-answer questions.

 

  •           Must take a final comprehensive exam also comprised of multiple choices, true-false, matching, and short essay-answer questions.

 

 

            These requirements are worth 530 points and are distributed as follows.

            Students’ attendance, which will be monitored by a sign-up sheet at each class meeting, is worth 20 points for the entire 16-week fall semester session. A point will be deducted from a student’s attendance record each time he/she is absent from class.

 

  •           Each quiz is worth 50 points.

 

  •           Each midterm exam is worth 100 points.

 

  •           The final comprehensive exam is worth 160 points

 

The course requirements are summed up as follows.

Attendance                             =                                  20 points

Quizzes (3)                              =                                150 points

Midterm Exams (2)                 =                                200 points

Final Exam                              =                                160 points

Total                                        =                                530 points

 

GRADING SYSTEM

There will be no extra credit and a student is allowed one week to make-upfor a missed exercise quiz, or exam. But the earlier it is done, the better. The grading system is as follows.

90 -100 (%) 477 - 530 points = A grade

80 - 89 (%)  424 - 476points = B grade

70 - 79 (%)  371 - 423 points = C grade

60 - 69 (%)  318 - 370 points = D grade

  0 - 59 (%)      0 - 317 points = F grade

 

COURSE POLICIES

Students enrolled in this course are responsible for upholding the following course policies.

 

Class Attendance

Students are encouraged to attend classes regularly in order to earn all the 20 points for a perfect attendance for the 16-week fall session.

 

Withdrawal Policy

Withdrawal from the class is the student’s personal responsibility. Students who wish to withdraw from a class must follow the procedures and deadlines established by the admission’s office.

 

Incomplete Grade

A student can only be given an “I” grade for this course if he/she has completed all the other course requirements but misses the final comprehensive exam due to circumstances beyond that student’s control. Students are further reminded that “I” grades are discretionary and must be made up before the end of the spring semester.

 

Scholastic Dishonesty

Students in this course are further reminded about the following statement on scholastic dishonesty. “Acts prohibited by the college for which discipline may be administered include scholastic dishonesty, including but not limited to cheating, on an exam or quiz, plagiarizing, and unauthorized collaboration with one another in preparing outside work. Academic work submitted by students shall be the result of their thought, research, or self-expression. Academic work is defined as, but not limited to tests, quizzes, whether taken electronically or on paper, projects, either individual or group; classroom presentations, and homework.”

Any student that commits any of the acts specified above will be liable to disciplinary action that may include, but not limited to, getting an “F” grade for the course.

 

Students with Special Needs

“Each ACC campus offers support services for students with documented physical or psychological disabilities. Students with disabilities or special needs must request reasonable accommodations through the office for Students with Disabilitieson the campus where they expect to take the majority of their classes. Students are encouraged to do this three weeks before the start of the semester.”

 

Academic Freedom

“Each student is strongly encouraged to participate in class discussions. In any classroom situation that includes discussion and critical thinking, there are bound to be many view points. Students may not only disagree with each other at times, but the students and instructor may also find that they have disparate views on sensitive and volatile topics. It is hoped that these differences will enhance class discussion and create an atmosphere wherein students and instructor alike, will be encouraged to think and learn. Therefore, be assured that your grades will not be affected by any beliefs or ideas expressed in class or in assignments. Rather, we will all respect the views of others when expressed in classroom discussions.”

 

WEEKLY COURSE SCHEDULE/CALENDER

 

Week  Date                                        Subject/Topic                         Reading/Lecture

 1.         1/20 - 1/23                               Introduction: Thinking Geographically.

                                                                Geographic Concepts. Rubenstein: Ch. 1        

2.           1/26 – 1/30                              World Population Dynamics:              “       Ch. 2

                                                                Growth and Distribution.

 3.         2/2 - 2/6                                   Migration and Migration Patterns       “        Ch. 3

First Class Video - Concept of

Relative Location

 4.         2/9 - 2/13                                 Folk and Popular Culture:       “         Ch. 4

                                                               Origins and Distribution.

First Chapter Review Quiz

 5.         2/16 - 2/20                               The Geography of Language              “         Ch. 5

Second Class Video - Population

 6.         2/23 - 2/27                               The Geography of Religion                “         Ch. 6

 7.         3/2 - 3/6                                   Ethnicity and Ethnic Conflicts           “         Ch. 7

                                                                               First Midterm Exam

 8.         3/9 - 3/13                                 Political Geography                            “    

                                                               SPRING BREAK!    SPRING BREAK!    3/16 – 3/2

9.         3/23 - 3/27                               Political Geography                            “         Ch. 8

                                                              Class Video - One World One Economy

10.       3/30 - 4/3                                 Economic Geography                                     “         Ch. 9

                                                                Second Quiz

11.       4/6 - 4/10                                 Economic Activity:          “         Ch. 10

                                                              Agriculture and Agricultural Systems

12.       4/13 - 4/17                               Economic Activity:      “         Ch. 11

                                                               Industries andTheories of Industrial Location.

                                                                 Third Quiz

13.       4/20 - 4/24                               Economic Activity: Services               “   Ch.12  

14.       4/27 - 5/1                                 Urban Geography:        “         Ch. 13  

                                                              Urbanization and Urban Patterns

                                                                 Second Midterm Exam        

15.       5/4 - 5/8                                   Global Resource Use and Management                  “         Ch. 14

16.       5/11 - 5/15                               Revision! Revision!    Final Exam!

Final Exam!

 

N.B.    This weekly schedule is provisional and liable to some modifications in order to accommodate extended lectures and incidental college closures and lecture cancellations.