Geography 203

GEOG 203

Catalog Entry

GEOG 203. Appalachian Geography. (SS)
Three hours lecture(3).

A regional geography of Appalachia, this course examines the spatial interactions of people and the environment within Appalachia in historical and current contexts.


Detailed Description of Content of Course

1.) Regional Characteristics
2.) Physical Geography

  • Physiographic Provinces
  • Precipitation and Temperature Patterns
  • Soils
  • Vertical Zonation of Vegetation
  • Resources: Renewable and Nonrenewable
  • Drainage Patterns
  • Place Names

3.) Historical Geography of Appalachia Settlement Patterns

  • Origins
  • Routes of Dispersal
  • Land Survey

4.) Population Growth and Characteristics

  • Historical
  • Current

5.) Infrastructure Development
6.) Economic Geography of Regional Development

  • Agriculture
  • Mining
  • Manufacturing
  • Tourism

7.) Environmental Problems


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

GEOG 203 uses lectures, seminars, quantitative exercises. Lectures use computer generated presentations. Quantitative and qualitative exercises may be used to impart knowledge of the cultural and physiographic region.

Informal writing exercises are used as a learning technique in which the student is encouraged to explore spatial/temporal interactions in Appalachia. Students will research and write a formal paper which will be presented to the class.

Video presentations are an integral part of this course and will utilize the collection of Appalachian films that are in the Media Services collection.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

  • Students will understand the concept of regional geography.
  • Students will be able to identify the physiographic provinces of Appalachia and explain the consequences of early settlement in each of these provinces.
  • Students will be able to interpret the role of the environment in Appalachia.
  • Students will develop an understanding of the reasons for the divergence of socioeconomic conditions in Appalachia from those of the nation.
  • Students will be able to contrast and compare Appalachia to the ;Old South, the nation, and developing nations.

Goals of General Education Program

  • Students will develop the ability to think critically and creatively about spatial relationships in the modern world and understand how these relationships have developed through time.
  • Students will be introduced to a variety of tools, methods and data used in geographic analysis.
  • Students will use Internet and other computer technologies to retrieve geographic data.
  • Students will acquire a geographic perspective, permitting them to identify cultural values and historic precedents that shape regional and international relationships both here and abroad.

Goals for Area 8. Social and Behavioral Sciences

  • Students will understand how geographers approach the study of a place and its peoples.
  • Students will know how to collect geographic data, analyze and present spatial information, and solve geographic problems related to people and their use of the lands they inhabit.
  • Students will acquire basic geographic knowledge and skills that they can apply in evaluating and interpreting their own culture region as well as those elsewhere in the world.
  • ·Students will understand cultural factors that through time have shaped spatial interactions.
  • Students will understand the diverse ways in which human relations have been structured across space, time and cultures.


Assessment Measures

Assessment measures will include some combination of the following: participation in class, writing exercises, oral discussions of readings, presentations, and testing that includes objective and/or essay questions on examinations. Tests are structured to demonstrate student mastery of the stated goals and objectives.

To assess the attainment of the broad general education goals, essay-type questions on exams, quantitative exercises, and term papers/projects require synthesis of a variety of information related to both the natural and social sciences and presentation of that data in well-conceived narratives and graphics.

To assess the attainment of specific Area 8 goals, students will be challenged in assignments and exams to demonstrate their skills in working with geographic data to interpret the ways human relations are structured across space, time and cultures.


Other Course Information




Date Action and Approved By
September 2005 Bernd H. Kuennecke