Bài 13: Physical Geography (3)

Lesson 13: Physical Geography 3: Sub fields of physical geography

     Physical geography studies the spatial patterns of weather and climate, soils, vegetation, animals, water in all its forms, and landforms. Physical geography also examines the interrelationships of these phenomena to human activities. This sub-field of geography is academically known as the Human-Land Tradition. This area of geography has seen very keen interest and growth in the last few decades because of the acceleration of human induced environmental degradation. Thus, physical geography's scope is much broader than the simple spatial study of nature. It also involves the investigation of how humans are influencing nature.

     Academics studying physical geography and other related earth sciences are rarely generalists. Most are in fact highly specialized in their fields of knowledge and tend to focus themselves in one of the following well defined areas of understanding in physical geography:

- Geomorphology - studies the various landforms on the Earth's surface.
- Pedology - is concerned with the study of soils.
- Biogeography - is the science that investigates the spatial relationships of plants and animals.
- Hydrology - is interested in the study of water in all its forms.
- Meteorology - studies the circulation of the atmosphere over short time spans. 
- Climatology - studies the effects of weather on life and examines the circulation of the atmosphere over longer time spans.

     Other related disciplines are also included in physical geograpphy

- Geology - studies the form of the Earth's surface and subsurface, and the processes that create and modify it.
- Ecology - the scientific study of the interactions between organisms and their environment.
- Oceanography - the science that examines the biology, chemistry, physics, and geology of oceans.
- Cartography - the technique of making maps.
- Astronomy - the science that examines celestial bodies and the cosmos.

Table : Some of the phenomena studied in physical and human geography

 Physical Geography

 Human Geography

 Rocks and Minerals





 Economic Activities




 Recreational Activities




 Political Systems

 Rivers and Other Water Bodies

 Social Traditions


 Human Migration

 Climate and Weather

 Agricultural Systems


 Urban Systems


Space (n): the amount of an area, room, surface, etc., that is empty or available for use

Spatial (adj.) : of or relating to space and the relationship of objects within it

Pattern: a repeated form or design especially that is used to decorate something (see the below figures)

Fig. 1: pattern (in general)
ex: The shadows made a pattern of lines on the ground

Spatial pattern: a perceptual structure, placement or arrangement of objects on Earth. It also includes the space in between those objects. Patterns maybe recognised because of their arrangement; maybe in a line or by a clustering of points (kiểu/ mô hình phân bố không gian của các đối tượng trên bề mặt trái đất).

Fig. 2: spatial pattern from forms of dispersion to cluster

Relationship: the way in which two or more people, groups, countries, etc., talk to, behave toward, and deal with each other

     ex: The relationship between the two countries has improved.

Interrelationship (n): The way in which each of two or more things is related to the other or others

+ inter (prefix): between, among, together, involving two or more
+ the interrelationships of these phenomena to human activities

Phenomenon: something (such as an interesting fact or event) that can be observed and studied and that typically is unusual or difficult to understand or explain fully

+ Phenomena (n. pl)

     ex: natural phenomena like lightning and earthquakes

Sub-field: phân ngành

Acceleration: the act or process of moving faster or happening more quickly

     ex: The car delivers quick/rapid acceleration

     ex: There has been an acceleration in economic growth.
  Human induced environmental degradation : suy thoái môi trường gây ra do con người (nên hiểu và dịch: con người gây ra suy thoái môi trường)

Induce (v): to cause (someone or something) to do something
Influence (v): the power to change or affect someone or something, the power to cause changes without directly forcing them to happen

Landform: a natural feature (such as a mountain or valley) of the Earth's surface
      ex: landforms created by glaciers

Difference between weather and climate:

-Short time spans: trong khoảng thời gian ngắn (weather)
- longer time spans: trong khoảng thời gian dài hơn (climate)

Biên soạn: PBV

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