This course introduces students to the principles of physical geography. Students examine the processes of Earth’s physical environment as well as the human-environment interaction. Topics include plate tectonics, the rock cycle, landscape building, water resources, the relationship between the Earth and Sun, the elements of weather and climate, vegetation and soils, types and uses of maps, and human interaction with the environment.
This undergraduate course is 5 weeks.
Attendance and participation are mandatory in all university courses, and specific requirements may differ by course. If attendance requirements are not met, a student may be removed from the course. Please review the Course Attendance Policy, Tuition Refund Policy and all University Policies in the Catalog for more information.
Topics and Objectives
Geography and Global Energy
- Apply basic geographic grids and mapping tools.
- Analyze the relationship between the Earth and the sun.
- Compare the properties of atmospheric layers.
The Earth’s Climate
- Explain how atmospheric properties affect air pressure, air flow, seasonal change, and cloud formation.
- Describe how weather patterns evolve.
- Compare ancient and modern theories of climate change.
Soils and Earth’s Internal Processes
- Describe the composition, formation, and uses of soils.
- Describe the properties of the Earth’s core, mantle, and crust.
- Explain the relationship between the rock cycle and plate tectonics.
Weathering, Water, and Glaciers
- Compare the effects of mechanical and chemical weathering on rocks.
- Explain the hydrologic cycle.
- Explain how human water use affects surface-water and groundwater processes.
- Analyze how global climate change affects glacier morphology.
Arid Landscapes, Coastlines, and Environmental Change
- Analyze the surficial processes that affect arid landscapes.
- Analyze the surficial processes that affect coastline formation.
- Analyze the relationship between humans and physical geography.
The University of Phoenix reserves the right to modify courses.
While widely available, not all programs are available in all locations or in both online and on-campus formats. More information about eligibility requirements, policies, and procedures can be found in the catalog.
Transferability of credit is at the discretion of the receiving institution. It is the student’s responsibility to confirm whether or not credits earned at University of Phoenix will be accepted by another institution of the student’s choice.