Skip Navigation
search: People Opens New Window | Departments Opens New Window | Penn State Opens New Window | Web Opens New Window
Penn State mark
Penn State mark
University Bulletin
Undergraduate Degree Programs

These course descriptions are not being updated as of August 1, 2016. Current course descriptions are maintained in LionPATH.

Geography (GEOG)

GEOG 160 (GS) Mapping Our Changing World (3) Fundamental concepts of GIS, cartography, remote sensing, and GPS in the context of environmental and social problems.

GEOG 160 Mapping Our Changing World (3)

(BA) This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements.

Mapping involves producing and using geographic data. Geographic data specify the locations and characteristics of people, the objects people create, and the various phenomena of the natural environment with which people interact. Geographic data are produced by several methods, including land surveying, aerial photography and photogrammetry, satellite remote sensing and positioning systems, and social surveys such as those conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau. Geographic information systems (GIS) and related technologies are used to turn data into maps, tables, and other kinds of information people need to make informed decisions. In a rapidly changing world, detailed, up-to-date geographic data are indispensable for governance, for commerce, and for research intended to improve our understanding of social and environmental systems. GEOG 160 helps students begin to develop the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that constitute geographic information literacy - the ability to "recognize when information is needed and ... to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information" (ALA 1989). Geographic information science (GIScience) is a research enterprise concerned with the design, development, and use of geographic information technologies to help institutions and individuals not only respond to, but ideally to predict, environmental and social change. GEOG 160 is an introduction to GIScience that provides students with the technical and contextual knowledge they need to become knowledgeable consumers of geographic data and information produced by government agencies, industry, and popular media. The course is intended to be of value not only to future specialists in the geographic information enterprise, but also to every student who is concerned with social and environmental research and policy-making. Like other information technologies, GIS is evolving rapidly. People who work with GIS understand that learning is a way of life, not just a prelude to a career. With this in mind, GEOG 160 aims not only to help students learn about geography and GIS, but also to develop the disposition to become effective lifelong learners.

General Education: GS
Diversity: None
Bachelor of Arts: Social and Behavioral Science
Effective: Spring 2007

Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.


Look up course abbreviations

Course descriptions are stored in LionPATH, the University-wide student information system. Please visit the LionPATH Course Catalog to access current course descriptions. At that point, you will be leaving the University Bulletin website.

Skip Popular Searches
  1. Bachelor of Arts Degree Requirements
  2. General Education: United States Cultures and International Cultures
  3. Course Index
  4. Graduate Degree Programs Bulletin
  5. General Education: Arts
  6. General Education: Humanities
  7. General Education: Health and Physical Activity
  8. General Education: Natural Sciences
  9. General Education: Social and Behavioral Sciences
  10. General Education: Writing/Speaking