This competency includes about 30 multiple-choice questions which make up about 25% of the entire exam.
These questions test your knowledge of basic geography concepts, including physical, environmental, and human geography themes and elements.
Here are some concepts you should know.
The Apennine Mountains, or the “backbone of Italy,” are one of two major mountain ranges in Italy. The Apennine Mountains range north to south along the Italian peninsula. The range is approximately 20 miles wide at its narrowest and 120 miles wide at the center. Its highest peak is the “Great Rock of Italy,” or “Gran Sasso d’Italia,” at 9,554 ft. The eastern side of the range is very steep, while the western side is more rolling. Most early people settled along the western coast of Italy in one of three plains areas at the base of the Apennine Mountains:
- The Tuscan Plains were very fertile for farming.
- The Latium Plains, where Rome was located along with the hub of the Roman Empire’s trade business.
- The Campanian, where Italy’s best harbor was.
The Apennine Mountains also served as a natural barrier to protect against outside attacks. It made it difficult to cross from one side of the Italian peninsula to the other, which helped protect Ancient Rome.
Hinduism is a major religion that is practiced by approximately 15% of the world. Hinduism is practiced in greatest numbers in Asia, with India containing the most highly concentrated area of Hindus.
Hinduism began in India by the ancient people who settled around 1500 BCE. Unlike the other major world religions, Hinduism does not have a single founder. Hinduism is based on the Vedas, which are the sacred texts and teachings of the Aryans.
- Polytheistic, or a religion of many gods
- Led by priests who come from the Brahmin caste in temples all over the world
Hindus believe that:
- God is inside every being, not in a far away heaven
- Dharma is a person’s moral and religious duties
- Karma is how you get back what you give to the universe (what goes around comes around)
- An individual’s soul is “reborn” through reincarnation after death; what an individual returns as depends on the deeds from their prior life or karma
Alexander Von Humboldt
Alexander Von Humboldt (1769-1859) was a German scientist whose studies laid the groundwork for what is known today as biogeography.
Alexander Von Humboldt was born into a well-connected political family, but he chose to pursue his passion as a naturalist. Von Humboldt set out on a four month expedition throughout South America and discovered many different species of birds in the Amazon; he also discovered the Casiquiare Canal. He met many native tribes and documented all of his findings. His studies continued from South America, to Cuba, then to the United States.
Von Humboldt discovered, documented, and catalogued native species and features he observed throughout his expeditions, and due to this and the patterns he observed, he was the first to present the Pangea theory as it related to the Atlantic continents.
Von Humboldt’s work became the catalyst for the specific fields of geography and meteorology. Von Humboldt believed there was a connection between all fields of science, as well as nature, and was the first to study them together, rather than separate from one another.