38:169 How Earth Works
Note: This course does not count toward a geography major or minor and cannot be used as a prerequisite for upper level courses in geography or other areas. Students who are considering a degree in geography or a related field should take 38:170 Introduction to Physical Geography; which includes a required laboratory component.
Instructors: Lecture, Dr. Dion J. Wiseman – Laboratory, Ms. Wenonah van Heyst
Office: Brodie Room 4-07
Office Hrs: Monday, Wednesday, Friday; 11 – 12 PM
Christopherson, et al. (2016) Geosystems, 4th Canadian ed.: Pearson
Physical Geography is the study of the physical components and processes operating within Earth’s atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere, and biosphere. This course will introduce basic geographic concepts and examine a variety of these systems in a spatial context. Topics discussed include coordinate systems, maps, and map projections; remote sensing, GIS, and GPS technology; solar energy and radiation balances; weather and climate; volcanism, earthquakes, and plate tectonics; weathering and mass movements; fluvial, eolian, coastal, and glacial landforms and processes; soils; ecosystems; and biomes.
|1||Basic Geographic Concepts, Location, Coordinate Systems, and Maps||1|
|2||Earth Sun Relations, Solar Energy, and Seasons||2|
|3||The Atmosphere and Energy Balances||3 & 4|
|4||Global Temperature, Atmospheric Circulation, and Climate Systems||5, 6 & 10|
|Test I||Date TBD|
|5||Water in the Atmosphere, Earth’s Surface, and Subsurface||7 & 9|
|6||Earth’s Internal Structure and Plate Tectonics, Earthquakes, and Volcanism||12 & 13|
|Test II||Date TBD|
|7||Weathering and Mass Movements||14|
|8||Fluvial Processes and Landforms||15|
|9||Glacial Processes and Landforms||17|
|10||Soil Genesis and Classification||18|
|Term Test I||25%||> 90%||A+||70 – 72%||B-|
|Term Test II||25%||85 – 89%||A||67 – 69%||C+|
|Final Exam||25%||80 – 84%||A-||63 – 66%||C|
|Wiki Assignment‡||25%||77 – 79%||B+||60 – 62%||C-|
|73 – 76%||B||50 – 59%||D|
|Book Review 5%*||Why Geography Matters 2%*||< 50%||F|
‡ Wiki Assignment: This is a required assignment in which you will create a Wiki style entry describing five selected topics covered in this course for any place of your choice. Your best strategy is to work on this project over the entire term; the deadline is the last day of the semester. Please submit a hard-copy of your final assignment in class on or before Wednesday, December 6th.
* Optional Extra Credit Assignments: A book review OR contribution to “Why Geography Matters” may be submitted at any time before the last day of class for extra credit.