Course Exam—GEOG/GLST 200

World Regional Geography

GEOG 200 / GLST 200 (World Regional Geography) is a three-credit junior-level Geography course that is designed to provide students with an introduction to the major modern geographical regions.  More specifically, this course examines Europe; Russia; North, Central, and South America; Sub-saharan Africa; North Africa and Southwest Asia; South Asia; East Asia; Southeast Asia; and the Austral, Pacific, and Polar regions.

Students should note that this is a cross listed course.  This means that this course is listed under two different disciplines (Global Studies and Geography).  GEOG 200 may not be taken for credit by students who have obtained credit for GLST 200 and vice versa.

This course is intended as a foundation course for students in Geography, Global Studies, and Environmental Studies programs, but it is also suitable for students with interest in studying the geographical regions of the planet or in acquiring better background understanding of contemporary world events.  It is designed for learners with little or no previous university experience.  There are no prerequisites for this course and there is a Challenge for Credit option if that is of interest to you.

World Regional Geography is made up of twelve units, three assignments worth fifteen percent each, one assignment weighing twenty percent, film reviews weighing five percent, a glossary exercise weighing five percent, and a final exam weighing twenty-five percent.  Throughout the twelve units, students will be guided through an analysis of the physical geography, links and barriers, demographic patterns, economic assets and liabilities, and human potentials and prospects of each region.  It also introduces the methods and perspectives of the discipline of geography, focusing on the relationships between human societies and their natural and built environments.  To receive credit for GEOG 200 / GLST 200, students must achieve a grade of at least fifty percent on the finale examination and achieve a minimum course composite grade of fifty percent.

Dakota Soares has been studying at Athabasca University for two years.  He is currently working towards a Bachelor of Science in Computing an Information Systems with a minor in Geoscience.  He started GEOG 200 in September of 2018 and finished the course this December.

Dakota explains GEOG 200 / GLST 200 as “an overview of world geography, with emphasis on how humans fit into the overall scheme of things.  The course splits the world into “realms” based on a variety of factors (some realm delineations may surprise you – as they did myself!).  within each realm, overviews of each country are given – along with vital statistics, and then defining features of the specific realm are presented (in the text, one chapter is devoted to the overviews, and another devoted to the features of the realm).”

He continues with providing some insight to the structure of the course, stating “There was a bit of work that had to be put into this course – I would not recommend the course if you are not interested in geography, as there are a lot of terms that need to be memorized! There were two video reviews, a glossary exercise, four essays, and a final exam.  The final exam is a paper exam because you do some map labeling.  The assignments were very straightforward, but if you do not like geography (or writing long essays), you may find it a bore – each essay was ten pages, so I have written over forty-five pages of material for this course alone.  The marker was not strict and was quite helpful.  I communicated with them on several occasions and received a timely reply.”

Dakota stated that the final exam was exceptionally easy for him; however, “it took a full three hours because you need to write everything by hand – my wrist was definitely aching by the end! You start out with a series of multiple-choice questions.  Then you move into a bunch of short answer questions.  There are also two maps you need to label.  Finally, you can pick one of four topics, and need to write an essay on the one you choose.  It is closed-book, so you cannot bring notes or the like into it.”

When asked if he enjoyed the course or not, Dakota replied “I honestly enjoyed the course and I would recommend the course if you like geography, mapping, and writing! It is an intro to world geography, so the wide breath of geopolitical and spatial differences throughout the planet made it impossible to dig deeply into certain areas – which is why I took this course (in order to get an overview of things before digging into specific regions and the like later in my degree).  The layout was easy to follow – the textbook is long, and I would recommend buying the physical textbook off Amazon (I found one used for about forty bucks).  The thing I disliked most was a sudden tutor change – however I had all but finished the course by then, so it did not cause a disruption in my grades.”

When asked if there were any helpful resources that he could recommend to students, he states “Getting the physical copy of the textbook was helpful.  Otherwise not much else is needed.  I would use an erasable pen in the exam – labeling can get tricky, and make sure to get a colour (say red) as they have you outlining some areas on the map.  You want to make sure your lines are drawn very clearly as some realm’s borders can get muddled in all the maps noise.”

Whether GEOG 200 / GLST 200 is a degree or program requirement of yours or the content discussed above is of interest to you, this course will provide you with an introduction to the major geographical regions of the modern world!