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Understanding the science of place and space. Knowing how to ask and discover where things are located on the surface of the earth, why they are located where they are, how places differ from one another, and how people interact with the environment.

  • Subject-specific Geographic Knowledge
    • Human–Environment Interaction: Know and apply geographic information about relationships between nature and society (e.g., pollution from industrial development, economic effects of drought)
    • Regional Geography: Know and apply knowledge of the physical and human geography of a specific country or world region
    • Physical Geography: Know and apply geographic information about the processes that shape physical landscapes; weather, climate and atmospheric processes; ecosystems and ecological processes; and natural hazards
    • Cultural Geography: Know and apply geographic information about culture and cultural processes, including religion, language, ethnicity, diffusion, meaning of landscapes, cultural significance of place
  • Geographic Skills
    • Geographic Information Systems (GIS): Use GIS to acquire, manage, display, and analyze spatial data in digital form
    • Cartography: Producing, creating, and designing paper or digital maps
    • Field Methods: Use interviews, questionnaires, observations, photography, maps, GPS, GIS, and other techniques to measure geographic information in the field
    • Spatial Statistics: Use quantitative methods to process spatial data for the purpose of making calculations, models, and inferences about space, spatial patterns, and spatial relationships
  • Geographic Perspectives
    • Spatial Thinking: Identify, explain, and find meaning in spatial patterns and relationships, such as site conditions, how places are similar and different, the influence of a land feature on its neighbors, the nature of transitions between places, how places are linked at local, regional, and/or global scales
    • Global Perspective: Possess and apply knowledge of how people, places, and regions are linked by global networks and processes (e.g., globalization, international trade, immigration, Internet technology, global climate system)
    • Interdisciplinary Perspective: Draw on and synthesize the information, concepts, and methods of the natural and social sciences for geographic research and applications