2.1 Core Theme Population, Resources and Development

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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.


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