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Geography students will deal with a variety of topics throughout their studies. It is important to be able to draw links and distinctions within these topics and develop a thorough understanding of their significance in their respective local and broader contexts.

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Geography students will deal with a variety of topics throughout their studies. It is important to be able to draw links and distinctions within these topics and develop a thorough understanding of their significance in their respective local and broader contexts.

What is geography?

You probably associate geography with maps! And while the visual representation of place is critical in geography, there's a lot more to it than that.

Geography is a diverse field that can be defined as the study of the Earth’s landscapes, peoples, places, and environments.

Studying geography will provide you with a nuanced understanding of some of the world’s most pressing current issues, ranging from global warming to human rights and global political tensions.

Topics and learning goals of geography

The topics we cover on StudySmarter will provide you with a thorough understanding of the Earth and its anthropological features.

Here are the core geography topics offered on StudySmarter:

Dynamic landscapes

Through the study of dynamic landscapes, we can explore the various ways that tectonics affect the Earth’s physical and human systems. This involves understanding tectonic theory and how it explains landform formation, including tectonic hazards and their implications. Some of these implications include the causes and impact of natural disasters. We provide in-depth case studies for various natural hazards, their trends and patterns, as well as any possible mitigation and adaptation strategies.

Geography Revision and Notes Volcano StudySmarterMount Merapi, an active volcano located on the island of Java, Indonesia

Glaciated landscapes

This topic explores historical climate change and the reasons behind it, and how this may have affected glaciation. Then we look at glacial environments as a system of stores, inputs/outputs, and transfers, as well as specific glacial processes that explain why glacial landscapes are what they are. We also consider the significance of glacial environments for the biosphere and climate, as well as their effects on the local and global population and how human activities can alter these.

Geography Revision and Notes Glacier StudySmarterGlacier in Alaska


The topic of coasts explores why and how coastal landscapes are different and the importance of the underlying geology in these differences.

You will understand how waves, erosion, transportation, deposition, and sub-aerial processes help create the characteristic coastal landscape. We will then look at the coastal risk of sea-level changes, retreat, and flooding. Finally, we look at how coastlines can be managed through engineering approaches, the governance and management around this, and how it can lead to winners and losers.

Geography Revision and Notes Coast StudySmarterA coastal landscape


Globalisation is an increasingly relevant topic that explores the reasons behind our modern interconnected world. Topics related to globalisation explore how governments form various socioeconomic policies; Intergovernmental Organisations (IGOs) and Non-governmental Organisations (NGOs) and their roles in shaping the global landscape; and the significant impact of Transnational Corporations (TNCs) on globalisation. We will look at the implications of a globalised world in relation to population structures, culture, and development, as well as responses to the effects of globalisation.

Geography Revision and Notes Globalisation StudySmarterOur world is becoming increasingly interconnected through globalisation

Regenerating places

This topic looks at regeneration and the economy, focusing on case studies in the UK. It explores how certain types of economic activity alter the functions of particular areas and their collateral effects on people’s lived experiences and attachments. When we cover the fundamentals of a social environment, we will look at various approaches to regeneration, with a particular focus on evaluating the success of a regeneration project.

Diverse places

The topic of diverse places explores the nature and foundations of different areas, both in a global and more local context (such as the differences between nations and urban/rural divides within nations). In order to understand this, we explore the past and present causes for changes within areas as well as their effects on people. Social, economic, and environmental aspects are considered, and multiple case studies are used to better our understanding of the effects of these changes on an area’s socioeconomic environment.


This topic introduces the water cycle and the physical mechanisms behind the pattern of global water distribution. After understanding the processes, we look at their effects on different areas and their implications for the physical and human environment. There is a specific focus on the modern environment in relation to water security and the changing climate. The topic includes case studies that exemplify the world’s current water supplies and how they are managed.

Geography Revision and Notes Water Droplet StudySmarterWater droplet

Energy security

Comprehension of both energy security and the carbon cycle are especially important for understanding the world’s current physical and geo-political situation. You will learn about the mechanisms behind the carbon cycle and how it relates to energy supplies and climate change. We also look at the anthropological effects on the carbon cycle and energy supplies. This includes the implications of fossil fuel consumption, alternative energy sources, and the causes and results of the patterns in demand for resources.

Superpowers of the World

‘Superpowers of the world’ looks at the historical dominance of certain nations in the wider world, how current superpowers have changed, and the reasons behind this. We will evaluate the methods of deciding what a superpower is and how a nation could achieve this status. Once we have a firm understanding of what makes a superpower and how a nation becomes one, we will look at which nations could potentially become future superpowers and (by utilising case studies) evaluate the likelihood of various nations’ rise to power.

Health and human rights

Health and human rights is a varied topic that combines aspects of economics, politics, and sociology. We will look at how we can measure human development, the role of governments and IGOs in this development, and the degrees of their success in increasing development. We will focus greatly on ‘The Universal Declaration of Human Rights’ and the extent to which it is followed, why it is followed, and the reasons why it is sometimes disregarded. Various forms of interventions will be studied (such as military interventions or aid) in order to better understand global perspectives on health and human rights.


Migration focuses largely on the causes behind migrations and the formations of various identities and their implications for the wider socio-economic environment. We will explore the various approaches and responses to migration and their connection to identity, and how this could explain specific tensions and failed states.

How can StudySmarter support my geography studies?

On StudySmarter, you will have the opportunity to develop a thorough understanding of the content in geography as well as the necessary skills required to pass your exams and become an excellent geographer. Our platform is designed in a way such that you can approach each topic with your own learning strategy and at your own pace. Therefore, regardless of your level of understanding of the subject, you can expand your geographical knowledge and ace your next geography exam.

Geography Revision and Notes Earth Droplet StudySmarterEarth,

  • At StudySmarter, you will find summaries for all important topics for your education

  • Use exercises and flashcards on the StudySmarter App to further your knowledge.

  • Join study groups and wider learning communities.

  • Prepare for your next exam with the #1 learning app.

Learning goals of geography

Within StudySmarter, we will aim to help you develop an in-depth understanding of the specific topic within the school specification as well as how other topics directly link to the one at hand. We will also have certain dedicated articles to help you develop good exam techniques and tips on structuring your work. StudySmarter also provides resources such as summaries, key takeaways, and frequently asked questions for each article to help you reinforce your knowledge.

We divide geography topics into different levels of depth. The summary articles will hold brief but key background information of a given topic while further articles that are linked to summaries will provide in-depth and detailed information about specific topics.

FAQs about Geography

  1. What is geography?

  2. What is human geography?

  3. What is physical geography?

  4. What is abrasion in geography?

  5. What are the 5 types of geography?

Flashcards in Geography4765

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What are tectonic plates?

Tectonic plates are the sections of the lithosphere.

Tectonic hazards include

Volcanoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis.

Continental drift occurred after the breaking apart of _______.


In the mid-1900s, scientists mapping the locations of earthquake epicentres discovered the outlines of _______.

Tectonic plates.

'Seafloor spreading' refers to the process of magma flowing into a rift at a convergent plate boundary under the ocean.


The north and south magnetic poles reverse every once in a while. How is this reflected at divergent plate boundaries?

Magnetic grains in cooled magma on the seafloor switch polarity with distance from the plate boundary; this shows that seafloor spreading has happened.


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