# Unit Methods of Geographic Inquiry

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```					Unit 1: Methods of
Geographic Inquiry
A geographer’s basic tools!
Maps and Globes
   Introductory Video
   http://videos.howstuffworks.com/hs
w/8402-basics-of-geography-ii-
maps-and-globes-video.htm
Map Projections
•   Because the earth is a sphere, the only true
way to represent the earth is with a ball or
sphere. To fully represent the earth,
geographers and scientists alike have created
the globe.

•   Imagine yourself as a tourist in New York City.
Wouldn’t it be difficult to walk around 45th Street
with a globe in your back pocket?

•   Therefore, geographers created maps!
Map Projections
•   When features of a globe (or the earth) are
transferred to a flat surface, ie: a piece of
paper of computer monitor, a map
projection is created.

•   There are several ways to transfer the 3-
Dimensional shapes to a 2-Dimensional
surface
Map Projections
•   When a map projection is created, however,
there is distortion that occurs

•   Distortion occurs in the shape and size of the
natural features

•   Because we are transferring the natural features
to a 2D surface, we have to stretch or compress
some of those natural features.
Types of Map Projections

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Types of Map Projections

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Types of Map Projections

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Types of Map Projections
   Interrupted Projection: There are many different types of
interrupted projection maps. These types of maps try to
depict the continents as accurately as possible by
leaving blank space in the less important areas of the
map, such as in the oceans.

QuickTime™ and a
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Types of Map Projections
•   The most commonly used map is the
Mercator Map
•   developed by Gerardus Mercator, a
Flemish mapmaker, in 1569

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Map Projection

Take the oranges on the
right. If we were to draw
a triangle on the oranges
and then peel the
orange. From the peels
we would then flatten
them as best as
possible. What would
the triangle look like?
Mercator Map Projection
   In the Mercator Map Projection
• angles are preserved
• distances away from the equator become
progressively distorted.
• South America (land mass) is actually nine
times as big as Greenland
• But how does South America compare to
Greenland on the Mercator Map?
Mercator Map Projection

QuickTime™ and a
TIFF (Uncompressed) decompressor
are neede d to see this picture.
Mercator Map Projection
   The Mercator projection is called Conformal. A projection
is conformal if the angles in the original features are
preserved.
   Over small areas the shapes of objects will be
preserved.
   A line drawn with constant orientation (e.g. with respect
to north) will be straight on a conformal projection (a
thumb line).
   Parallels and meridians cross each other at right angles
(note: not all projections with this appearance are
conformal).
   Generally, areas near margins have a larger scale than
areas near the center (i.e. Greenland in Mercator
projection).
Mercator Map Projection
•   The Mercator map has always been a poor
projection for a world map.
•   Because it was based on a rectangular grid, the
average person found it easy to read and found
it useful for wall maps, atlas maps, and maps in
books.
•   It became the standard map projection in the
mental map of most westerners.
•   The argument for using the Mercator projection
was the "advantage for colonial powers" by
making Europe look a lot larger than it actually is
on the globe.
Mercator Map Projection Video
•   Lets take a look at how Mercator made his
maps

•   http://videos.howstuffworks.com/hsw/8607
-geography-basics-methods-for-making-
maps-video.htm#
Maps:
A geographer’s best friend!
Maps
   What is a map?
• A map is a drawing or image of the earth’s
surface drawn on a flat surface.
• Maps use symbols and colours to represent
the features of an area
• A map can be hand drawn or computer drawn
• http://videos.howstuffworks.com/hsw/17320-
geography-basics-maps-video.htm
Map of Canada
Creating Maps
   All maps should be drawn for a purpose,
such as:
• to provide direction from A to B or to
• provide information on a specific topic.
   Specifics for topics can include:
• Listing capital cities of provinces/territories
• Describing the amount of rainfall in different parts of the
country
Rainfall Map of the United States of
America
Creating Maps
   Great care should be taken when creating
a map.
• Maps should be drawn neatly and it is best to
draw lightly in pencil and then to go over in ink
when necessary.
Creating Maps
•   When placing text on maps, it is best to
print the words.

•   When using colour, it is very important that
you chose the correct colour to show
different features.
Features of Maps - Colours
   On Maps, the colours chosen are very
important! Generally:
•   roads and trails are brown
•   parks are green
•   water ways (lakes and rivers) are blue
•   roads are usually black
•   highways are usually red or orange
•   text such as city labels are in black
Features of a Map - Elements
•   When creating a map, there are some features
that must be included on all maps.

•   What do you see on the following map?
Map of Ontario
Features of a Map
   Title
• Provides a clear description of:
    the area the map it is representing and
    what information is presented (Example: Road
Map of Ontario).
    tell the reader what the map is used for.
• The title should be short and descriptive.
• Should be placed in an appropriate location
(top and centre).
• Should be neat and printed in dark ink.
Features of a Map
   Border
• All of the information and features the
map is showing should be contained
within the border.
• Should be drawn neatly with a ruler in
dark ink.
Features of a Map
   North Arrow
• Provides the reader a reference as per the
direction on the map.

• Should be drawn neatly with a ruler in dark ink
within the border.
Features of a Map
   Source
• The author of a map is called a cartographer.

• The person/people/company or organization
that created the map should be provided.
Features of a Map
   Date
• The date when the map was produced should
be displayed.
Features of a Map
   Scale
• The scale provides the map reader with a
method of measuring distances on the map
with actual distances in real life.
Features of a Map
   Legend
• The legend provides the map reader with an
understanding of the various symbols that are
used on the map.

• The symbols chosen should accurately reflect
the feature that is being represented.
Types of Maps
   There are several types of maps. Each show
different information. The type of map a reader
uses depends on what information he/she is
trying to gather

   Generally speaking, map are categorized into
three categories:
1.   General Purpose Maps
2.   Topographic Maps
3.   Thematic Maps
Types of Maps
1.     General Purpose

• Provides many types of information on one
map.
• Most atlases, wall maps and road maps fall
into this category.
• Provides a broad understanding of the
location and features of an area.
General Purpose Maps
Types of Maps
2. Topographic Maps

• Uses symbols to show a variety of features on the
earth’s surface.
• They are used to examine a small area of the earths
surface in great detail.
• Include contour lines to show the shape and elevation
of an area.
• Lines that are close together indicate steep terrain,
and lines that are far apart indicate flat terrain.
Topographic Map
Types of Maps
3. Thematic Maps

• Provide very specific information about a place on
one particular topic.
• Because only one topic is presented, these maps are
relatively easy to read and understand.
• May include
   Climatic, Resource, Economic or Political information.
Types of Thematic Maps
   Climate maps
• Give general information about the climate; temperature and
precipitation (rain and snow) of a region.
• Cartographers, or mapmakers, use colors to show different
climate or precipitation zones

   Economic maps
• Cartographers use symbols to show the locations of economic
activity
• For example, symbols (shovels) on a map of Ontario tell you
where mining occurs.
Types of Maps
   Political maps
• Do not show physical features.
• Instead, they indicate state and national boundaries and capital
and major cities.
• A capital city is usually marked with a star within a circle.

   Resource maps
• Feature the type of natural resources or economic activity that
dominates an area.
• For example a map showing the different type of trees in
Northern Ontario
Thematic Map
Homework
• Textbook - page 26 #1, 2,5, 6, 7, 8, 11

• Lab Assignment Sheet - handout

Due Date: Thursday, February 24, 2011

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 views: 28 posted: 7/18/2011 language: English pages: 45