2014-2015 Undergraduate Catalog

Geography

Chairperson: Dr. Samuel Thompson
Office: Tillman Hall 312
Telephone: (309) 298-1648; Fax: (309) 298-3003
E-mail: geography@wiu.edu
Website: wiu.edu/geography

Faculty: Buker, Choi, Deng, George, Greene, Herman, Kang, Liang, Merrett, Romano, Sutton, Thompson.

Geography is the study of the place in the same sense that history is the study of time: it is concerned with interpreting and explaining the occurrence, distribution, and interrelationships of the physical and human patterns that may be discerned on the earth’s surface. These constantly changing physical and human landscapes challenge the geographer to provide continuing interpretation of the world from the spatial point of view. Since geographers study patterns of physical and cultural phenomena, geography might be viewed as a bridge between the social and natural sciences. Geographers may specialize in the study of cultural or physical phenomena or may combine both within a specific region, such as Latin America or Europe. An increasing number of students specialize in the application of certain skills to the solution of problems. These skills include computer cartography, remote sensing, and geographic information systems.

Meteorology is the study of the physical characteristics of the lower atmosphere and the processes that are responsible for generating the weather. Students who complete the major are exposed to concepts, methodologies, and practical applications related to both weather analysis and forecasting. Meteorology students learn how to forecast weather and use specialized equipment including instruments and reporting techniques associated with weather observations, weather radar, and remotely-sensed information. Upon graduation, students are qualified for employment with the National Weather Service.

Career opportunities are found in both public and private sectors, as well as in teaching. Among government agencies employing geographers or meteorologists are the Defense Mapping Agency, Environmental Protection Agency, Central Intelligence Agency, Bureau of the Census, National Weather Service, Army Corps of Engineers, and state, regional, and local planning agencies. Private employers include economic and environmental consulting firms, mapping and aerial survey companies, meteorological and climatological consulting firms, and environmental engineering firms.

GradTrac is available to Geography and Meteorology majors. See more information about GradTrac.

Honors Curriculum—Academically qualified students in this department are welcome to complete an honors curriculum in University Honors, Upper Division Honors, or Lower Division Honors. All Honors students must complete the one-hour honors colloquium (G H 299). Lower Division Honors includes General Honors coursework. Upper Division Honors includes honors work in the major. University Honors combines Upper and Lower Division Honors. For more information about honors curricula see the Centennial Honors College page of the catalog or visit the Centennial Honors College website at wiu.edu/Honors.

Degree Programs

Bachelor of Science—Geography

All students seeking the Bachelor of Science in Geography must complete I, II, III, IV, and V below, and the foreign language/global issues requirement for the major#. The minimum semester hour requirement for the baccalaureate degree is 120 s.h.

  1. University General Education and College of Arts and Sciences Curriculum Requirements: 55 s.h.
  2. Core Courses: 16 s.h.
    GEOG 100 or 110, 120, 121, 208, 405†
  3. Directed Electives
    1. One additional course from the Theory and Methodology group: 3 s.h.
    2. One course from the Regional program group: 3 s.h.
    3. Three courses from the Systematic—Physical program group and one course from the Systematic—Cultural group
      OR
      Three courses from the Systematic—Cultural group and one course from the Systematic—Physical group: 11–12 s.h.
  4. Any Minor: 16–24 s.h.
  5. Open Electives: 7–16 s.h.

Note: Students interested in Meteorology should see the Meteorology advisor about additional courses.

#The foreign language/global issues graduation requirement may be fulfilled by successfully completing one of the following: 1) an intermediate foreign language requirement; 2) a General Education global issues course; 3) any major’s discipline-specific global issues course; or 4) an approved Study Abroad program.

†GEOG 405 fulfills the Writing Instruction in the Discipline (WID) graduation requirement.

Bachelor of Science—Meteorology

All students seeking the Bachelor of Science in Meteorology must complete I, II, III, IV, and V below, and the foreign language/global issues requirement for the major#. The minimum semester hour requirement for the baccalaureate degree is 120 s.h.

  1. University General Education and College of Arts and Sciences Curriculum Requirements (including MATH 133, MATH 134, and PHYS 211): 55 s.h.
  2. Core Courses: 30 s.h.
    GEOG 120, 301, 322, 327, 329, 333, 405†, 422, 429, 432
  3. Directed Electives: 5–6 s.h.
    1. Choose one from: GEOG 300, 403, 425: 3 s.h.
    2. Choose one from: GEOG 220, 300, 403, 425, 430, 497: 2–3 s.h.
  4. Other Required Courses: 14–15 s.h.
    1. MATH 231, MATH 333, and PHYS 212: 11 s.h.
    2. Select one from: CHEM 201, GEOL 115, GEOL 380, or PHYS 354: 3–4 s.h.
  5. Any Minor: 16–24 s.h.

#The foreign language/global issues graduation requirement may be fulfilled by successfully completing one of the following: 1) an intermediate foreign language requirement; 2) a General Education global issues course; 3) any major’s discipline-specific global issues course; or 4) an approved Study Abroad program.

†GEOG 405 fulfills the Writing Instruction in the Discipline (WID) graduation requirement.

Minors

Minor in Geography (Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts): 19 s.h.
  1. Any three courses selected from GEOG 100, 110, 120, 121
  2. Upper division electives to be approved by the advisor
Minor in Geographic Information Systems: 18 s.h.
  1. GEOG 208, 308, 408, and 409; and one of the following courses: DS 203, GEOG 301, LEJA 303, PSY 223, SOC 232, STAT 171: 15 s.h.
  2. Complete 3 s.h. from the following courses: AGTM 461, ARTS 314, CS 114, CS 214, GEOG 401, GEOG 403, GEOG 499 if the special topic is GIS related, MATH 341, MATH 383, MATH 481, STAT 276, STAT 471, STAT 474, STAT 478: 3 s.h.
Minor in Meteorology: 18–19 s.h.
  1. GEOG 120, 322, 327, 422: 13 s.h.
  2. Choose two of the following: GEOG 220, 300, 329, 333, 337, 403, 425, 429, 430, 432: 5–6 s.h.

Course Descriptions

GEOGRAPHY (GEOG)
(Introductory)

100 Introduction to Human Geography. (3) (General Education/Social Sciences) (Global Issues) Analysis of the spatial patterns of population, population trends, human migrations, ecological processes, and the impact of people on the natural environment. IAI: S4 900N.

108 Digital Earth. (4) (General Education/Natural Sciences) An introduction to various applications of mapping and navigational technology (Google Earth, photography, GIS, and GPS) used in daily life. This course involves student presentations and projects focused on basic principles and applications of this technology.

110 World Regional Geography. (3) (General Education/Social Sciences or Multicultural Studies) (Global Issues) A survey of the world’s regions emphasizing the spatial arrangements of resources, population, institutions, economic activities, and cultural landscapes, and their significance for distinctive regional problems. IAI: S4 900N.

120 Introduction to Weather and Climate. (4) (General Education/Natural Sciences) Concepts and processes that govern weather and climate systems: solar energy distribution and seasons, world climates, temperature, humidity, wind and force balances, clouds and precipitation, stability, fronts, cyclones, and severe weather (including tornadoes, hurricanes, etc.). Laboratory. IAI: P1 905L.

121 Planet Earth: Surface Processes and Interactions. (4) (General Education/Natural Sciences) The interplay between landforms, soils, water, climate, and life forms (including humans) on Earth’s surface, and how these interact to shape the surface of Planet Earth. It also covers the distribution of landforms in the U.S. and other countries. Laboratory. IAI: P1 905L.

182 (Cross-listed with PHYS 182) Integrated Science II. (4) (General Education/Natural Sciences) A laboratory course in interdisciplinary science with an emphasis on the Earth’s place in the physical universe. Topics address the nature of matter and energy and their impact on the Earth’s weather and climate. (Integrated Science I is BIOL/GEOL 181) Not open to students with credit in PHYS 182. Prerequisite: MATH 100. 3 hrs. lect.; 2 hrs. lab.

(Theory and Methodology)

208 Cartographic Design for GIS. (3) An introduction to basic cartographic principles and design techniques necessary for Geographic Information System (GIS) map production. 2 hrs. lect.; 2 hrs. lab.

209 GIS Data Acquisition. (3) This course covers principles of geospatial data concepts. These concepts include field and office data collection using applications of GPS and common GIS software, digitizing, and coordinate geometry (COGO). This course also includes internet download techniques and basic map making. 2 hrs. lect.; 2 hrs. lab.

301 Introduction to Quantitative Geography. (3) Principles of quantitative analysis and their application to geographical problems. Prerequisite: two courses in Geography, MATH 128 or high school algebra, or consent of instructor.

303 Introduction to Remote Sensing. (3) This course introduces the fundamental principles of remote sensing and basic applications of remotely-sensed data in the evaluation of geographical problems. Prerequisites: GEOG 120 and 121; or GEOL 110 and 112; or a lab sequence in Biology or Physics; or consent of instructor.

308 Introduction to GIS. (3) A foundation course dealing with fundamental raster and vector Geographic Information System (GIS) concepts and the creation, collection, and conversion of spatial data for GIS visualization and analysis. Prerequisite: GEOG 208. 2 hrs. lect.; 2 hrs. lab.

401 Air Photo Interpretation. (3) Introduction to the techniques of interpreting features on the Earth’s surface and to the use of digital photogrammetric techniques to extract digital terrain information from aerial photographs. Laboratory. Prerequisite: GEOG 303 or consent of instructor.

403 Advanced Remote Sensing. (3) Digital image processing techniques for thematic information extraction from remotely-sensed data for environmental applications. Laboratory. Prerequisites: GEOG 303 or consent of instructor.

405 Senior Thesis Capstone Course. (2) Writing Instruction in the Disciplines (WID) course. Prerequisites: ENG 280, Geography or Meteorology major, and senior status.

406 Spatial Statistics in GIS. (3) Introduction to statistical approaches in GIS to measure geographic distributions, identify geographic patterns and spatial clusters, and analyze geographic relationships. Prerequisites: GEOG 301 and 308; or consent of instructor.

408 Environmental Geographic Information Science. (3) Emphasis upon raster and 3D modeling based upon continuous data. Laboratory exercises focus on typical environmental problems solved with GIS. Topics include the integration of thematic data and concepts when appropriate for the solution of environmental problems. Prerequisites: GEOG 308; and GEOG 301 or STAT 171 or equivalent.

409 Thematic Geographic Information Science. (3) Emphasis upon GIS modeling based upon coordinatebased spatial data. Integration of raster-based GIS data and concepts when appropriate to the solution of vector-based problems. Laboratory. Prerequisites: GEOG 308; and GEOG 301 or STAT 171 or equivalent.

459 (Cross-listed with BIOL 459) Biogeography. (3) Study of the geographical distributions of organisms, the evolutionary and ecological processes underlying the patterns of distribution, and the role of biogeography in biological conservation. Not open to students with credit in BIOL 459. Prerequisites: BOT 200 (C grade or better) and ZOOL 200 (C grade or better), or permission of instructor.

(Systematic—Physical)

220 Severe and Unusual Weather. (2) Study of severe weather causes and impacts on local communities. Apply current technologies and data sources to analyze winter weather events (blizzards, ice storms, etc.) and warm season events (thunderstorms, tornadoes, hail, lightning, floods, hurricanes). Prerequisite: GEOG 120.

300 Principles of Meteorological Instruments. (3) A survey of the instruments and reporting techniques associated with standard weather observations, leading to the ability to identify meteorological phenomena and report their occurrences in an understandable format. Prerequisites: GEOG 120 and MATH 133.

322 Synoptic Meteorology I. (3) Study of large-scale (synoptic) atmospheric circulations and the relationship between upper air circulation, vertical motion, and surface development, particularly cyclogenesis. Emphasis on weather analysis through observational data and computer models. Prerequisite: GEOG 120. 325 Astronomy. (3) Descriptive astronomy. Prerequisite: GEOG 120.

327 Environmental Climatology. (3) This course deals with the mechanisms of heat flow, radiation exchanges, and water vapor flux and with the effects of climate on organisms, ecosystems, and human societies as well as changes in global environment. Prerequisite: GEOG 120 or consent of instructor.

329 Dynamic Meteorology I. (3) Examination of atmospheric thermodynamics and cloud processes, including hydrostatic equilibrium, equation of state, atmospheric moisture, adiabatic processes, the use of thermodynamic charts, precipitation development, and lightning mechanisms. Prerequisites: GEOG 322 and MATH 134.

333 Meteorological Data Analysis. (3) Various meteorological data analysis software packages will be used to enhance synoptic/dynamics concepts learned in concurrent courses. These tools will be used to produce and present an analysis of a meteorological case study. Prerequisite or Corequisite: GEOG 322 or consent of instructor.

337 Understanding Climate Change. (3) This course introduces basic physical principles underlying climate change, time scales of climate change, the nature and the role of technology and computer models in the context of climate change research, and social and political dimensions of climate change. Prerequisite: GEOG 120 or consent of instructor.

422 Synoptic Meteorology II. (3) Quantitative treatment of dynamical and thermodynamical processes involved in synoptic meteorology. Evolution of fronts and cyclones, isentropic analysis, vertical cross sections, interpretation of satellite imagery and numerical model data, all in the context of theory and case studies. Prerequisite: GEOG 322 and MATH 133.

425 Satellite and Radar Meteorology. (3) The theoretical principles and application of satellites and radar in synoptic meteorology and climatology. Applications of satellite and radar imageries include clouds, wind, atmospheric water vapor precipitation, and storm prediction. The course includes operational procedures fundamental to weather radar. Prerequisite: GEOG 322 or permission of instructor.

426 (Cross-listed with BIOL 426) Conservation and Management of Natural Resources. (3) Problems in the conservation and management of natural resources including soil, water, rangeland, forest, wildlife, air, and energy resources. Special attention to resource problems of the United States. Not open to students with credit in BIOL 426. Prerequisites: GEOG 120 and 121, or consent of instructor.

428 Geography of Soils. (3) Distribution of soils and their regional aspects. The relationship of different kinds of soils to other environmental conditions, both natural and human. Prerequisite: GEOG 120 or AGRN 278, or consent of instructor.

429 Dynamic Meteorology II. (3) Examination of atmospheric fluid motion, including atmospheric kinematics, real and apparent forces, geostrophic and gradient winds, thermal winds, vorticity, quasigeostrophy, and their application to numerical weather prediction. Prerequisites: GEOG 322, 329, 301; and MATH 231.

430 Natural Hazards. (3) Examination of the causes, development, and impact of different natural hazards around the world. Hazards range from volcanoes and earthquakes to hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, and fires. Understanding community responses to particular disasters, including planning, first responses, and lessons learned.

432 Physical Meteorology. (3) Examination of atmospheric radiation and chemistry, including optical effects, acoustical phenomena, tropospheric and stratospheric chemical processes, and how these disciplines combine to determine Earth’s radiative equilibrium. Prerequisite: GEOG 322 and MATH 133, or permission of instructor.

(Systematic—Cultural)

251 Principles of Urban and Regional Planning. (3) Examines contemporary planning processes with an emphasis upon utopian planning precedents, frameworks and mechanisms for planning, and comprehensive planning and implementation.

341 Economic Geography. (3) The production and distribution of the world’s commodities and their regional aspects. The reproductive, extractive, and manufacturing industries and their natural and cultural relationships. Prerequisite: GEOG 100 or consent of instructor.

352 Planning Applications. (3) Introduces basic applications of urban and regional planning processes to understand land development, including the use of GIS analysis, zoning, form-based coding, and future land use planning. It involves research projects to understand these processes. Prerequisites: GEOG 251 and 308, or consent of instructor.

443 Population Geography. (3) Description and spatial analysis of population data and of fertility, mortality, and migration of the human population. Some emphasis given to migration; some to the United States. Prerequisites: two courses in Geography or consent of instructor.

445 Urban Geography. (3) An analysis of the nature, distribution, and principal functions of urban settlements and supporting areas. Prerequisites: two courses in Geography or consent of instructor.

448 Introduction to Urban and Regional Planning. (3) An examination of contemporary planning processes. Emphasis upon utopian planning precedents, frameworks and mechanisms for planning, and comprehensive planning and implementation. Prerequisite: POLS 370, or its equivalent, or consent of instructor.

450 Weather in Our Daily Lives. (1) Workshop on the practical and scientific understanding of weather terminology and phenomena encountered in our daily lives. Weather map analysis and weather forecasting are emphasized. Not open to students with credit in GEOG 322. Prerequisite: elementary algebra or equivalent. Graded S/U only.

457 Historic Preservation Planning. (3) Explores the practice and regulation of historic preservation planning. Students will identify and interpret best practices for the preservation and interpretation of historic resources. Focus will be on U.S. resources with a brief introduction of international conservation practices. Prerequisites: GEOG 251 or consent of instructor.

(Regional)

466 (GEOG 466—Africa is cross-listed with AAS 466) World Regions. (3, repeatable for different regional subtitles to 9) (Global Issues) Analysis of the physical and cultural geography of a major world region chosen from the following: Latin America, Russia, Monsoon Asia, Europe, Africa, Middle America, South America, and Asia. Not open to students with credit for AAS 466. Prerequisite: two courses in Geography or consent of instructor.

(Individual Study Research)

495 Honors Thesis. (3) Prerequisite: permission of department chair.

497 Internship in Applied Geography. (1–3, repeatable to 3) Assignment as an undergraduate assistant in public, private, or university agencies engaged in planning, meteorology, environmental assessments, cartography, etc. Only 3 s.h. may be applied to minimum degree requirements. Prerequisite: permission of department chair. Graded S/U only.

498 Individualized Studies. (1–3) This course is available to students who are interested in the study of topics which are not currently a part of the curriculum. The students should consult their advisor or the department chair about the procedure which is to be followed. Prerequisite: permission of department chair.

499 Special Problems in Geography (Research). (1–6, repeatable to 6) Prerequisites: senior standing and consent of instructor.