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Course Learning Outcomes

In this course, you will learn about the world we live in—and, more importantly, learn about these “countries and kingdoms” that you might “be prepared in all things” (D&C 88:78–79):

In addition, I hope that you will finish this course with

In a more academic vein, when you successfully complete this course, you should be able to

  1. Indicate where almost all of the countries of the world are located.
  2. Explain the development and current activities of human societies at world, national, and local scales.
  3. Understand the basic interactions between the physical environment and human activity.
  4. Evaluate the core human and environmental processes which create the context for global issues.
  5. Recommend viable solutions to current world problems.

Course Materials

You will need these textbooks and other materials to complete this course:

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Course Structure

Each lesson in this course guides you through the material, letting you know which chapters to read in your textbook, which video clips to watch, which virtual lectures to view, and which assignments to complete for each lesson.

The virtual lectures include photographs, charts, maps, and other helpful material, along with my commentary. These are supplements to the material you have already read in the textbook—and you will need to know this information for the assignments and exams. I hope you’ll find the lectures enjoyable as well as informative!

Here is how I recommend you work through each lesson:

  1. Read the introductory material for each lesson, paying special attention to the learning outcomes.
  2. Read the textbook material and watch any associated videos.
  3. Watch the virtual lectures for the lesson. To read the notes for the lectures, click the “Notes” icon in the upper-left part of the screen. Click the Forward and Back buttons at the bottom center to go through the slides.
  4. Review the learning outcomes. Make sure that you can comfortably fulfill each one.
  5. Complete the assignments, based on your reading and viewing.
  6. Congratulate yourself on a job well done, and continue to the next lesson.


Map and Reading Quizzes

The map and reading quizzes list 10–15 places that you will need to label by name on the map. In addition to the basic map identification questions, the quizzes include 2–3 questions from the assigned chapter readings. For example, your textbook talks about fjords (a key term). A possible Europe reading/map quiz question might therefore say: “Label the country where flooded U-shaped valley inlets are dominant features along its western coastline.” The country this describes is Norway, so to answer the question you would label “Norway” on the map of Europe.

Your course materials include a set of .PDF practice maps:

You can also download copies of the maps from the “Geography: World Outline Maps” website and print them for practice.

Note: You will complete the Map Quizzes by dragging place names and labels into the correct position on an electronic map. Feel free to practice with printed maps if you would like to do it, but be prepared to actually submit the assignment online.

Atlas Exercises

The atlas assignments are based on your use of both the Goode’s Atlas and your textbook (the Asia assignment also uses selected web sites on the Internet). They include both computer-graded and instructor-graded questions. For many of the questions, you will need to analyze maps and then come up with what you think is the best answer.

Newspaper Project

Note: Successfully gathering the information for this project will take at least three months. You must plan to take at least that long to finish the course.

For this project, you will select one region of the world (United States and Canada, Europe, Russian Realm, Oceania, Latin America, sub-Saharan Africa, Middle East and North Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, East Asia, Central Asia) to follow throughout the course through daily readings of a major newspaper. You can subscribe to the newspaper or read it online.

I suggest these newspapers for their comprehensive international coverage:

You may also use your local newspaper (such as the Salt Lake Tribune or Deseret News in Utah) if you already have a subscription, but be sure that the paper covers international events adequately, especially in the area you’ve chosen to focus on.

As you read the newspaper, look for articles about your region that will help you answer the project questions:

The length of your answers will in part depend on what has happened in your region throughout the time you take the course. Some regions will have more action or newspaper coverage than others. However, your answer to each question should be one-half to one page, typed double-spaced in 11- or 12-point font. As you put together the project paper,

Note: You will submit your completed paper electronically. To make sure that I can open and read your paper, please save it as a Microsoft Word .DOC or .DOCX file.

Extra Credit

If you need a few extra points to make up for poor performance on quizzes, atlas exercises, or the midcourse exam, you can do one of these activities.

Your assignment is worth up to 10 points. Turn your extra-credit project in with your newspaper project at the end of the course, and I will add the points to your final course grade.

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You will complete one midcourse exam and a final exam, each covering half of the course. The midcourse exam covers the material in lessons 1–6, while the final concentrates on lessons 7–12, with selected information from the first half of the course. The exams cover these elements of the course:

The exams include multiple choice, matching, identification, fill-in-the-blank, short answer, map, and essay questions based on information in the text and lectures.

As you study the material, it’s helpful to note specific examples of different concepts, because on the exam I ask you to define a term and then give an example or location that illustrates that term. Several of the fill-in-the-blank questions ask you to name the correct country where a specific event happened. I do not ask questions that require you to remember dates or specific numbers.

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Here is the point breakdown for the course assignments and exams:

Eight map quizzes (10–15 points each) 130 points
Six atlas exercises (10–20 points each) 95 points
Newspaper Project 60 points
Midcourse Exam 150 points
Final Exam 200 points
Total 635

Grade Breakdown

This is the grade breakdown by percentages:

Grade Percent
A 93% to 100%
A- 90% to 92%
B+ 87% to 89%
B 83% to 86%
B- 80% to 82%
C+ 77% to 79%
C 73% to 76%
C- 70% to 72%
D+ 67% to 69%
D 63% to 66%
D- 60% to 62%
E 0% to 59%

Image Attribution

A brief copyright note about the photographs and illustrations in the virtual lectures: Unless otherwise indicated, Professor Emmett himself took the photographs in the lesson lectures, and he holds the copyrights thereof. Most of the maps and graphs come from your textbook, and are used with permission of the publisher. Other materials are used by permission from their respective authors.

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Copyright Notice

The materials used in connection with this online course are only for the use of students enrolled in this course for purposes associated with this course and may not be retained or further disseminated. Any copying or further dissemination of these materials may be subject to applicable U.S. Copyright Laws. For questions or more information, please visit the BYU Copyright Licensing Office website.

“Members of the BYU community who willfully disregard this Copyright Policy or the BYU Copyright Guidelines place themselves individually at risk of legal action and may incur personal liability for their conduct. The unauthorized use or distribution of copyrighted material, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject individuals to civil and criminal liabilities, including actual and statutory damages, costs and fees of litigation, fines, and imprisonment

Violations of the Copyright Policy may result in university disciplinary action including termination of university enrollment or employment.” (Emphasis added. Excerpt taken from the BYU Copyright Policy)

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University Policy - Title IX Statement

Preventing & Responding to Sexual Misconduct

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Brigham Young University prohibits unlawful sex discrimination against any participant in its education programs or activities. The university also prohibits sexual harassment—including sexual violence—committed by or against students, university employees, and visitors to campus. As outlined in university policy, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking are considered forms of "Sexual Misconduct" prohibited by the university.

University policy requires all university employees in a teaching, managerial, or supervisory role to report all incidents of Sexual Misconduct that come to their attention in any way, including but not limited to face-to-face conversations, a written class assignment or paper, class discussion, email, text, or social media post. Incidents of Sexual Misconduct should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator at t9coordinator@byu.edu or (801) 422-8692. Reports may also be submitted through EthicsPoint at https://titleix.byu.edu/report or 1-888-238-1062 (24-hours a day).

BYU offers confidential resources for those affected by Sexual Misconduct, including the university’s Victim Advocate, as well as a number of non-confidential resources and services that may be helpful. Additional information about Title IX, the university’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, reporting requirements, and resources can be found at http://titleix.byu.edu or by contacting the university’s Title IX Coordinator.

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Accessibility Notice

BYU is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere which reasonably accommodates persons with disabilities who are otherwise qualified to participate in BYU's programs and activities. In this spirit, BYU Independent Study aspires to improve web accessibility for users. While not required by law, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Levels A and AA provide a wide range of helpful recommendations to make Web content more accessible. BYU Independent Study strives to apply WCAG 2.0 recommendations where feasible, but may deviate from any recommendations that would result in an undue hardship to BYU Independent Study or alterations to program and course content and objectives. If you have questions about accessibility, or if you need to report problems with any accessibility features please see our Accessibilities and Accommodations Web Page.

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