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Photographs by Igor Kovalenko, MyShot; Poras Chaudhary, MyShot; and Ana Encinas, MyShot

The Advanced Placement Human Geography (APHG) course introduces students to the systematic study of patterns and processes that have shaped human understanding, use, and alteration of Earth's surface. Students employ spatial concepts and landscape analysis to examine human social organization and its environmental consequences. They also learn about the methods and tools geographers use in their science and practice. It is an excellent course for preparing students to become geo-literate youth and adults.

On this page, selected resources from the National Geographic Education website are organized under topic headings used to teach the course. Resources include instructional content for teachers; career profiles, news articles, and encyclopedic entries for student reading, as well as teacher background reading; and multimedia, which includes maps, photos, and videos contextualized with rich information for use in the course. As an instructor, you may find the need to scale the content up or down for higher or lower level learning, depending on your students.

Geography: Its Nature and Perspectives

Geography: Its Nature and Perspectives

In this topic, key geographic concepts are first introduced including location, space, place, scale, pattern, regionalization, and globalization. Students learn how to use and interpret maps and to understand the role of mental mapping. Find Activities, Multimedia, and Reference materials for teaching this topic.

Population

Population

This topic explores how the human population is organized geographically and helps students make sense of cultural, political, economic, and urban systems. Find Activities, Multimedia, and Reference materials for teaching this topic.

Cultural Patterns and Processes

Cultural Patterns and Processes

This topic explores the components and regional variations of cultural patterns and processes that are critical to human geography. Students will learn how geographers assess the spatial and place dimensions of cultural groups as defined by language, religion, race, ethnicity, and gender, in the present as well as the past. Find Activities, Multimedia, and Reference materials for teaching this topic.

Political Organization of Space

Political Organization of Space

This section of the course introduces students to the nature and significance of the political organization of territory at different scales. Students learn that political patterns reflect ideas about how Earth’s surface should be organized and affect a wide range of activities and understandings. Find Activities, Multimedia, and Reference materials for teaching this topic.

Agriculture and Rural Land Use

Agriculture and Rural Land Use

This topic explores four themes: the origin and spread of agriculture; the characteristics of the world’s agricultural regions; reasons why these regions function the way they do; and the impact of agricultural change on the quality of life and the environment. Find Activities, Multimedia, and Reference materials for teaching this topic.

Industrialization and Economic Development

Industrialization and Economic Development

In this topic, students learn about the geographic elements of industrialization and development and the spatial character of economic activity influenced by the interaction of several factors, including natural resources, culture, politics, and history in specific places. Find Activities, Multimedia, and Reference materials for teaching this topic.

Cities and Urban Land Use

Cities and Urban Land Use

This topic explores systems of cities, focusing on where cities are located and why they are there, as well as the political, economic, and cultural functions of cities, and other urban issues. Find Activities, Multimedia, and Reference materials for teaching this topic.

Media Credits

The audio, illustrations, photos, and videos are credited beneath the media asset, except for promotional images, which generally link to another page that contains the media credit. The Rights Holder for media is the person or group credited.

Educator Reviewers

Michelle Crane, M.S., Teacher Consultant, Texas Alliance for Geographic Education
Rebecca Haapanen, AP Human Geography Teacher, Warren Township High School, Gurnee, Illinois
Susan H. Hardwick, Professor of Geography & Co-Director, Graduate Program in Geographic Education, University of Oregon; Past President, National Council for Geographic Education
Michal LeVasseur, Ph.D., National Geographic Alliance Network Liaison

Producer

Sean P. O'Connor, National Geographic Society

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