AP Human Geography
Unit 3 – Study Questions
1. Define culture. Provide some examples explaining the processes of cultural
2. Describe how a cultural landscape can also be a symbolic landscape. Explain
how such landscapes relate to popular and folk culture.
3. Provide some examples of how culture and environment interact. Assess some
of the positive and negative aspects of that interaction.
4. Explain how culture helps shape the characteristics of a region.
5. Define the six components of culture.
6. How have do cultural regions change over time?
7. Why is it important to study cultural hearths? Discuss the innovations of each
8. Identify the cultural realms.
9. Describe the cultural hearths of folk housing in America. Discuss the types
of houses within each region.
10. Differentiate between the various types of fences.
11. Explain the differences between expansion and relocation diffusion.
12. What processes cause culture to change?
13. How does distance decay affect cultural change? Explain the differences between
the various types of barriers.
14. Describe the structure of culture. What happens if one of the structures of
15. What is the process by which one classifies a language?
16. What is a standard language? What is the difference between a standard language
and an official language?
17. What effect does isolation have on languages?
18. Explain the importance of linguistic geography. What tools do linguists use
to piece together the puzzle of languages worldwide?
19. Discuss the theories of language diffusion in regards to the Indo-European
20. How does Renfrew carry one of these theories farther?
21. Discuss the controversies surrounding the diffusion of languages in the Americas.
22. Explain the diffusion of the Austronesian language family. How did migration
effect the distribution of these languages?
23. How did English spread so far? Why do so many countries use it, either as
an official language or as a second language?
24. Discuss the process of creolization. You need examples
25. Why do some countries choose to declare an official language? What are the
risks a country faces when it makes such a decision?
26. What does the study of toponymy reveal about past and current cultures of
a place? What can we learn from two part place names?
27. Why have some countries changed their place names? What are some examples
of place name changes?
28. What is the purpose of a lingua franca? How does it reflect the current pattern
in the world?
29. Identify major world language families and their geographic distribution.
30. Provide examples to explain the differences between universalizing/global
and ethnic/regional religions.
31. What is the source area of Christianity? Explain its diffusion.
32. What is the source area of Islam? Explain its diffusion.
33. What is the source area of Buddhism? Explain its diffusion.
34. What is the source area of Hinduism? Judaism? Sikhism? Bahaism?
35. What is secularization? What factors might play a role in the rise of secularism?
36. Discuss the relationship between fundamentalism and secularism.
37. Describe how religions shape the cultural landscape.
38. Describe the distribution of the major religions. Why is Judaism an interesting
study in the distribution of religious distribution?
39. Where are tribal religions located? What is threatening their existence?
40. What problems arise from interfaith boundaries? Include some examples.
41. Why do intrafaith boundaries cause less trouble? Examples of where trouble
42. Where is the most contested religious site in the world located? Why are there
so many conflicts over this particular site?
43. What factors cause transformations in religion?
44. Also, what factors cause the blending or forming of syncretic religions?