Human Geography

GPHY 101/3.0

The fundamentals of human geography including the meanings of place, the impacts of globalization, multiculturalism, population change and movement, environmental history and politics, cultural geography, issues of uneven resource distribution, the role of colonialism in the modern shape of the world, agricultural geography, and urban geography. 

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this course students will be able to:

  •  Explore the concepts of place, location and space to understand the relationships between these concepts.
  • Take a place and space based approach to social problems widely considered important.
  • Identify the causes of some of the fundamental inequalities that shape our world (e.g. distribution of resources, migration controls, unfavourable trade arrangements, etc.)  to explain their impact on our world at multiple scales
  • Link the concept of place, location, and space to some of the inequalities that shape our world
  • Explore the relationship of this inequality to larger social forces and your own daily decisions.


  • Energy, the economy and the environment
  • Food security and diversity
  • Cities and social division
  • Health, equity and the distribution of resources
  • Mining, manufacturing and agricultural production in Canada
  • International division of labour
  • Population movement, diaspora and immigration
  • Place attachment and community building


This course takes a spatial approach to social problems widely considered important including energy, economy, the environment, urbanism, social division, public space, racism, geopolitics, migration. Probably the two largest problems faced by the world today are environmental degradation and regional, national and global inequality. Taking a spatial approach to these problems grounds and focuses them on the human and human-non-human relationships that shape the problems, making them at once more real and more personal to you. In this class you will discover that these very large issues are personal in another way: what you do matters. You make the world. In the way we move from place to place, in the way we heat our homes, in the way we choose to communicate with each other and consume, for example, we have an impact on the environment and on other people both near and far from us. Living responsibly is, in part being aware of our choices and their impacts. But of course, it is not quite that simple: the world has been made and unmade and is being made and unmade by you and others all the time. In this class we will work to understand the forces that make the world we live in and remake by our actions. In this course, through the relatively simple concepts of location and distance and the much more freighted concepts of space and especially place we will consider how economic development, city design, geopolitics and geo-commerce, policies on migration and population movement shape a landscape of inequality and desire.


Winter 2017
Course Dates: 
Jan 9 - Apr 7, 2017
Exam Dates: 


Reading an academic article5%
Distinguishing different kinds of sources on a theme5%
Group: Putting together and evaluating multiple sources of different kinds5%
Writing a thesis statement5%
Writing an annotated bibliography in support of the thesis5%
Doing a peer review on your peers’ thesis statement5%
Doing a peer review on your peers’ annotated bibliography5%
Doing a peer review on your peers’ Final Poster5%
Final Poster40%
Online Midterm20%

There will be no final exam for this course.

**Evaluation Subject to Change**



Time Commitment

Students can expect to spend approximately 10 - 15 hours a week in assignments and meetings for GHPY 101. This course will be structured around 12 meetings, two major assignments (one team based and one individual) and a series of small hand-in tasks due either before or after each class that are designed to keep you on track.

Course Resources


SOLUS is Queen’s Student On-Line University System. You’ll have access to a SOLUS account once you become a Queen’s student. You’ll use SOLUS to register for courses, add and drop courses, update your contact information, view financial and academic information, and pay your tuition.

About OnQ

OnQ is Queen's online learning platform. You'll log into Moodle to access your course. All materials related to your course—notes, readings, videos, recordings, discussion forums, assignments, quizzes, groupwork, tutorials, and help—will be on the OnQ site.

About Credit Units

Queen’s courses are weighted in credit units. A typical one-term course is worth 3.0 units, and a typical two-term course is worth 6.0 units. You combine these units to create your degree. A general (three-year) BA or BSc requires a total of 90 credit units.

Computer Requirements

To take an online course, you’ll need a high speed internet connection as well as a microphone and speakers to be able to watch videos, hear sounds, and participate in interactive online activities. A webcam is recommended but not necessary.

System Requirements:

  • Laptop or Desktop computer purchased within the last 5 years. (mobile devices are not supported)
  • Windows Vista SP2/Mac OSX 10.9 or higher
  • Up to date versions of Firefox, Internet Explorer or Safari. Please note that Google Chrome is not recommended for use in our courses.
  • Most recent version of Adobe Reader and Adobe Flash

 See also Getting Started.


The deadlines for new applications to Queen’s Arts and Science Online courses are in our Upcoming Application Dates section.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees vary depending when you start, your year, faculty, and program. Fees for 2016-17 first-year Distance Career Arts & Science Canadian students are as follows: for a 3.0-unit course, $648.40; for a 6.0-unit course, $1296.80. See also Tuition and Fees.

Grading Scheme

The information below is intended for undergraduate students in the Faculty of Arts and Science. Academic Regulations in other Faculties may differ.

Letter Grade Grade Point

GPA Calculators
Have your SOLUS grade report handy and then follow the link to the Arts and Science GPA calculators.

How does this affect my academics?
See the GPA and Academic Standing page.

Follow the link above for an explanation of how the GPA system affects such things as the Dean’s Honour List, requirements to graduate, and academic progression.

Frequently Asked Questions on the Grading Scheme
Please follow this link to the FAQ's

Campus Bookstore

All textbooks can be purchased at Queen’s Campus Bookstore.

Non-Queen’s Students

All Queen’s Arts and Science Online courses are open to students at other universities. Before applying as a visiting student, request a Letter of Permission from your home university that states that you have permission to take the course and apply it to your degree. See also Apply.

Academic Integrity

Please see Queen’s policy statement on academic integrity for information on how to complete an online course honestly.