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American Geography


Each student will complete an eight-page research paper on a selected geographic region of the United States.  Students will have the opportunity to make their own selection but must keep in mind that the region should be accessible for sources and field observations.  Consequently, it is best to select a county or municipality of which you are have familiar and can visit during the semester.  For each paper the students will have the opportunity to meet individually with the instructor for research advisement.  The topics for the paper are listed below.  The paper constitutes 40% of the final grade.  Due date is April 9.

The paper is graded on the following criteria:

  • Quality and citation of the sources: 20%
  • Ability to cover the suggested topics: 20%
  • Quality and readability of the narrative: 20%
  • Use of maps, charts, graphs, etc.: 20%
  • Incorporation of field observations: 20%

All papers must be written with the use of an accepted style manual (University of Chicago; APA; MLA).  These are available on the Corgan Library website.  Academic dishonesty in the research and content of the paper will be dealt with under the policy of the History Department.

Physical and Environmental Geography

  • Land formation and physiographic regions
  • Weather and climate
  • Land usage
  • Environmental issues
  • Field observations

Human Geography

  • Historical settlement patterns
  • Race and ethnicity
  • Religion
  • Politics
  • Economics

Field observations

The student will complete field observations in their selected area.  The observations may be made by automobile, bicycle, running, or walking.  With each method, be sure the safety concerns are addressed with each.  The student will develop a route within the selected area with a minimum of repeated areas.

  • Description of the physical geography and topography
  • Description of the human landscape
  • Description of the human activity
  • Notable physical and human landmarks
  • A map of the area with physical and human landmarks noted



Last Updated on April 20, 2019

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