For general course information for IB geography students and Links for Global affairs course. Revision discussions for IB Diploma examinations can also be found here
The study of this theme is compulsory at both higher level and standard level.
Unlike any other population, humans are able to manipulate the environment to increase its carrying capacity. This interaction with the physical environment determines the availability of resources, especially food. This theme examines the nature of human populations and the human ability to exploit resources. Development is essentially a complex consequence of this exploitation and so it is appropriate that the three opics of population, resources and development are considered together.
The topics covered in this theme are all interrelated, and include areas of knowledge and geographical concepts which are also relevant to other themes. It is important that the common features between themes are noted and any interrelationships are emphasized. Students are expected to show an appreciation of the complexity of the geographical issues covered in this and the other themes.
There is a large amount of data available for some of the topics in this theme and students must be able to synthesize such data by establishing broad trends and identifying anomalies. In order to achieve this the use of both graphical and statistical techniques is essential.
This theme views a drainage basin as an open system with inputs, outputs and feedback which attempt to maintain a dynamic equilibrium, and then seeks to look at the basin's physical components and the ways these are managed by humans. The management of drainage basins deals with issues and strategies, supply and demand and, in a number of instances, international relations. The theme of river basin management has close links with other themes such as resources, hazards, ecosystems, political geography and perception of landscape. This theme requires students to demonstrate mapping and graphing skills and to use case studies wherever appropriate.
This theme stresses the idea that arid or semi-arid environments are not always remote areas of hazard and hardship. These environments should be seen as a setting for human activity and the range of opportunities and challenges they present should be understood. The theme covers the location of hot, arid environments; the geomorphic processes that operate in them; the landforms which result; and the climate, vegetation and soils of these areas. Central to this theme are the issues that arise from the interaction of people with the arid environment such as desertification, salinization, land-use conflicts and water management. Case studies should be used where appropriate.
This theme leads to an understanding of rural and urban environments, their location and characteristics, and the processes responsible for changes over time and space. It is concerned with the social, economic and environmental impacts, and the management implications of these impacts on the landscape.
The term globalization is often applied to the spread of economic, social and cultural ideas across the world, and the growing uniformity between different places that results from this spread. The consequence of globalization is a dilution of economic, social and cultural differences between places.
The concept of globalization generates debate at various levels. Some commentators see it as an agent of growing EMDC government and transnational corporate influence, while others go so far as to deny globalization actually occurs. Therefore, the concept is a contestable one.
Traditionally, a major focus of the study of geography has been describing, analysing and explaining the differences between places. As globalization works to reduce these differences, it becomes an important focus for study by geographers.
This theme examines the spatial aspects of globalization. A detailed study of tourism is used to illustrate globalization in practice.
- You are required to produce one piece of coursework (approximately 2500 words HL). T
hese will be internally assessed with the I.B. moderating each piece of coursework.
Information on how to write and organise your extended Essay