Geography

Four circular pictures of different types of geography

The mission of the College of Alameda Geography Department is to help our diverse student community to understand the natural and cultural environments of the region and around the world, to be critical consumers of environmental advocacy and to appreciate the beauty and wonder of the planet and its diversity.

We offer flexible curriculum that assists you in reaching your goals of professional and academic success, including the attainment of academic degrees at both the community college level and the baccalaureate level through transfer credit. Topics of study offered at the college include physical geography, the study of weather, climate, and landforms, and cultural geography, the study of humanity’s relationship with the Earth, such as migration patterns, the spread of agriculture and industrial development, and how we use resources. Majoring in geography at a higher level institution will prepare you for careers such as environmental conservation, surveying, development, land and water management, and town planning.

What is Geography?
Humans have long pondered their place in the natural world, recognizing both the challenges and opportunities afforded them by the environment and, more recently, the effects of human activities in modifying that environment. This interplay of natural systems and human societies is the subject of the field of geography. Physical geography focuses primarily on the operation of earth’s systems upon which humans depend; cultural geography examines how humans live on the earth: how we modify the landscape, organize space, move about, use resources, and create the economies that sustain us.

Skills learned in the study of geography are useful in many rewarding career paths. Urban planners design livable environments in the city; environmental managers, employed by government agencies and
private industry, work to conserve our natural resources; hydrologists manage increasingly scarce water resources; cartographers produce maps for both public and private employers; academic geographers teach at all levels in our educational system; geographic information system (GIS) specialists provide their technical expertise to assist in the planning of structures and projects; foresters, many employed by the National Forest Service or the US Department of Agriculture, manage millions of acres of precious woodlands; park rangers in state and national parks help to maintain the health and beauty of these places and share their knowledge through public information programs.

“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.” – John Muir 1869

The College of Alameda Geography program recognizes this and takes an integrated, system-based approach to the study of natural processes, sometimes called earth system science. This stress upon the interactions of various components of our system is especially valuable in today’s rapidly changing environment.

To find your textbook: Go to http://efollett.com/.

  1. Scroll to “Search for a school,” and enter “College of Alameda.”
  2. Go to the “Books” drop-down menu, and select “Textbooks.”
  3. Enter the course and section numbers.

GEOG 1 Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Patterns on Earth.  Analyze factors related to a site’s location to explain climate, oceanic and atmospheric circulation, volcanism and tectonic features of the area.

  2. Environmental Change.  Analyze and discuss causes and effects of major contemporary environmental changes involving climate, atmospheric composition, and biota.

  3. Data Representation. Analyze and discuss data presented in standard charts, maps, and diagrams.

  4. Scientific Evidence.  Describe and analyze major debates in the history of evolving human knowledge of Earth systems. Think critically about the nature of evidence in science and inferences that can be drawn from it.

GEOG 1L Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Patterns on Earth.  Analyze factors related to a site’s location to explain climate, oceanic and atmospheric circulation, volcanism and tectonic features of the area.
  2. Environmental Change.  Analyze and discuss causes and effects of major contemporary environmental changes involving climate, atmospheric composition, and biota.

  3. Data Representation. Analyze and discuss data presented in standard charts, maps, and diagrams.

GEOG 2 Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Humans as geographical agents.  Understand the relevance of human culture and institutions in shaping the landscape.
  2. Spatial aspects of Culture.  Discuss the history and diffusion modes of such cultural features as religion, language, and material culture.
  3. Geographic view of the world. Through the methods of cultural geography, analyze geographic factors involved in current events and cultural trends.
  4. Civic Responsibility.  Critique public policy and defend political views based on an understanding of geographic factors.

Student learning outcomes from Taskstream.  8/18/15.