The meaning of Geography
- Scientific study of the earth as a home of man.
- Study of interrelationship on natural and human phenomena on the earth’s surface.
- The surroundings
- All external conditions surrounding an organism which has influence over its behaviour.
Environment can be divided into two:
- The Physical Environment
- Natural physical conditions of weather, climate, vegetation, animals, soil, landforms and drainage.
- The Human Environment
- Human activities such as farming, forestry, mining, tourism, settlement, transportation, trade and industry.
Branches of Geography
Deals with the study of natural physical environment of human kind.
The areas covered include:
- Geology-study of the origin, structure and composition of the earth. It includes study of rocks.
- Geomorphology- the study of internal and external land forming processes and landforms.
- Climatology- the study of climate and weather
- Pedology- the study of soils
- Biogeography – the study of soils, vegetation and animals.
- Hydrology- the study of water bodies
- Spatial geography-study of space
Human and Economic Geography
Study of people and their activities on the earth’s surface.
The areas covered include:
- Wildlife and tourism
- Energy etc.
A smaller branch which equips the learner with practical skills that enhance their understanding and interpretation of human and physical geographical information.
The areas are:
- Statistical methods
- Map work
- Field work
- Photograph work
Importance of Studying Geography
- Facilitates good relationship among nations by studying geography of other regions of the world.
- it’s a career subject in that it enables one to go for advanced studies in specialised fields e.g. geography teachers, meteorology, surveying etc.
- Enables us to appreciate other people’s way of life by learning economic activities of different communities within our country and other parts of the world.
- Enables us to conserve our environment when we learn negative and positive effects of human activities on the environment.
- Enables us to conserve our resources when we learn wise use of resources in conservation and management of resources e.g. wildlife, forests, energy, etc.
- Inculcates in us virtues of cooperation and patience as we work in groups.
- Makes us to appreciate manual work as we are involved in practical geography which may lead to self employment.
- Promotion of industry such as tourism by guiding tourists to places of interest by using maps, calculations of distances etc.
Relationship between Geography and Other Subjects
- Mathematics-mathematical techniques are used in drawing graphs and pie charts and mathematical formulae are used in geography to calculate distances, areas, population density, population densities, etc.
- History-history uses geographical tools like maps, charts and graphs to show where past events took place e.g. the movement of people in the past.
- Biology-Geography explains the distribution of organisms and factors influencing their distribution on the earth’s surface.
- Physics-geography uses physics principles and formulae to calculate and describe aspects such as magnetic field, gravity, vibrations of the earth etc.
- Chemistry-geography applies chemistry in studying chemical composition and chemical changes which take place in soils and rocks.
- Agriculture-geography studies farming systems, their distribution and factors affecting farming activities.
- Meteorology-geography uses meteorological information in the study of weather and in classifying climatic regions and mapping them.
- Geology-geography studies rocks.