Studying Geography

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Studying Geography

Post by muleroid » Thu Apr 09, 2009 10:40 pm

It seems to me that Geography seems to be one of the trickier subjects to master, seeing as how there's a wide range of things that can be asked in a geography tossup. I've tried reading National Geographic, looking at maps, and just reading encyclopedia entries on random things; but it seems as if the geography canon is intertwined so that all a question about the Black Sea would include clues about the Sea of Azov and various other things.

That being said, what can be done to garner a reasonably encompassing breadth of geography knowledge?
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Ugly » Wed Apr 22, 2009 10:34 pm

Studying for the Geography Bee in middle school has proved quite useful for my quiz bowl knowledge. If you want some good references, try some country guides like "From Afghanistan to Zimbabwe." Atlases are good resources, along with anything published by National Geographic. The magazine itself, while fun to read, is not as useful as some of their other publications, like all the different atlases they make or the National Geographic Desk Reference. National Geographic also has some pretty good daily quizzes on their website.
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Rompimientos del Centauro » Wed Apr 22, 2009 11:01 pm

I'm not exactly the best source for this, but I find playing the Traveler IQ challenge is a fair way to get some geo, and all the variations on the game. Occasionally there are tidbits and facts at the bottom, those are interesting too.
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Nuclear Densometer Test » Sun May 03, 2009 9:55 pm

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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Jayhawk » Sun May 31, 2009 8:54 pm

Jamie has a good point. On my middle school and junior varsity team back when I lived in Illinois, I was the primary geography and history guy because I studied atlases, country guides, and National Geographic resources. It is pretty much all memorization, so testing yourself consistently during a single session until you know the material and quizzing yourself on it often is a good way to acquire and retain it.
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by muleroid » Mon Jun 01, 2009 8:08 pm

Thanks for the reply Andrew.

As a follow-up to your suggestion I'd like to ask how you sift through the information for various landforms, countries, etc in order to get to the information that'll be asked about most on Quiz Bowl? Or do you merely attempt to remember everything? I'm assuming that as you study more the information will start to connect to where you can develop an overall conceptual basis in the subject?

Also, I'd like to know more about how you go about using an atlas to study geography. Do you just look at the maps and memorize positions of things?
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Strongside » Mon Jun 01, 2009 9:34 pm

One suggestion I would have to getting better at geography is to look over the Geography Monstrosity Questions. They haven't been posted yet, but they will be soon.

As for getting better at geography. I would recommend memorizing as much information as you can. States, capitals, lakes, rivers, bodies of water, mountain ranges, deserts, cities, polities, islands, etc.

I am not the best geography player, but that's how I have gotten better at it. It is also important to understand how things relate to each other.
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by ClemsonQB » Mon Jun 01, 2009 9:53 pm

Strongside wrote:One suggestion I would have to getting better at geography is to look over the Geography Monstrosity Questions. They haven't been posted yet, but they will be soon.

As for getting better at geography. I would recommend memorizing as much information as you can. States, capitals, lakes, rivers, bodies of water, mountain ranges, deserts, cities, polities, islands, etc.

I am not the best geography player, but that's how I have gotten better at it. It is also important to understand how things relate to each other.
Excellent advice. However, if you look over the Geography Monstrosity questions, be careful about what you learn from it (because some of the material is pretty difficult, and wouldn't help you very much in hs).
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Tanay » Wed Jul 22, 2009 4:23 pm

Another useful way to study for geography is to look at travel resources, since they condense the information into stuff that's relevant and useful. The travel pages in newspapers (many of which are available online) will provide historical context as well. I also frequent MSN Travel for the interesting slideshows they put up (Greatest Natural Wonders, Most-Visited National Parks, etc) because their descriptions are concise and to the point. Watching a Rick Steves' travel show on any place in Europe WILL get you points.
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by ... and the chaos of Mexican modernity » Sat Jul 25, 2009 9:12 pm

Try sporcle.com for knowledge of capitals of every country, and other cities. As anti-quizbowl as it is, I can owe my knowledge of world capitals to it.
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Kwang the Ninja » Tue Dec 29, 2009 11:25 am

As far as non-QB resources go, the point-and-click map quizzes on http://www.ilike2learn.com is about as good as it gets. Also, if you have your own TriviaBot, you can set it to only read you geography. That's a great way to learn early clues for a lot of geography stuff.

EDIT: mispelled link
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Rufous-capped Thornbill » Tue Dec 29, 2009 1:10 pm

I don't know any tips per se, but I know from experience that a great deal of my geography knowledge comes from my study of history. A good overview of WWI, for example, would teach you about Galicia, Salonika and Bessarabia. The Italo-Turkish war about Cyrenaica. History has taught me more Geography than any effort I've ever made to study an atlas.
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Tanay » Tue Dec 29, 2009 2:50 pm

Inkana7 wrote:History has taught me more Geography than any effort I've ever made to study an atlas.
This is especially true because the reason something will show up as a geography clue in quiz bowl (at least at the high school level) is, many times, because it has served some historical significance that makes it relevant and askable. For example, the reason you are more likely to see a tossup on a place on the British Isles, than, say, on a place in Liechtenstein, is because the former would be more significant historically, since there's really not a clear-cut means of determining why the geographic location of one is more askable than that of the other.
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by ryandillon » Tue Dec 29, 2009 3:02 pm

The way I have learned literature is starting from the things that come up the most and just making my way deeper and deeper into the subject. Is there any way to know what countries/cities/mountains etc. come up the most?
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Tanay » Tue Dec 29, 2009 4:01 pm

NAQT's "You Gotta Know" section has lists on the most common deserts and Asian rivers that come up. That's something, I guess.

http://naqt.com/YouGottaKnow/
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Re: Studying Geography

Post by Terrible Shorts Depot » Tue Dec 29, 2009 5:05 pm

I find reading the newspaper to be very effective for the exact same reason that learning about history is.
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