AP Human Geography Practice Test: Nature & Perspectives

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Question 1
Every map projection has some degree of distortion because

A
cartography is an imprecise science
B
meridians run parallel to each other
C
maps vary by scale but globes do not
D
a three-dimensional object, such as a globe, cannot be projected in two dimensions without distortion
E
the technology required to display a map without distortion does not yet exist
Question 1 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). Answers (A) and (B) are incorrect because cartography is a precise science and meridians are not parallel. Therefore, those answers would be wrong no matter what the question is. Likewise, (C) is wrong because globes can be drawn at multiple scales just like maps. Answer (E) is plausible, but even if the technology did exist, here would be some degree of distortion because of (D) — it is impossible to project a three-dimensional object on a flat surface without distortion.
Question 2

The map above represents what kind of projection?

A
Azimuthal
B
Gall-Peters
C
Goode homosline
D
Mercator
E
Robinson
Question 2 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (E). This is simply a recall question.
Question 3
A department store that uses customer zip codes to map sales data most likely uses

A
GIS
B
GPS
C
remote sensing
D
topographic analysis
E
toponym analysis
Question 3 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (A). Geographic Information Systems capture, store, query, and display geographic information. GPS is used in navigational devices. Remote sensing is used in satellite photography. Topographical analysis relates to elevation, and toponym analysis is the analysis of place names.
Question 4
Which of the following is an example of maps at different scales?

A
Maps drawn before and after federal surveying
B
Maps drawn by hand and maps drawn using a computer
C
Maps drawn by two different people from two different perspectives
D
Maps of cancer deaths at both the county and state level
E
Maps of the United States showing the voting patterns of men and maps of the United States showing the voting patterns of women
Question 4 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). It is the only choice that involves maps at more than one level. Think of maps at different scales as zooming in and zooming out.
Question 5
Characteristics of site include all of the following EXCEPT

A
latitude and longitude
B
relative location
C
the township and range system
D
unique cultural characteristics
E
unique physical characteristics
Question 5 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (B). Site involves unique characteristics. Relative location, by definition, is not unique because it is location based on surrounding places.
Question 6
Characteristics of situation include all the following EXCEPT

A
absolute location
B
common cultural and physical characteristics
C
node and distance decay
D
relative location
E
region
Question 6 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (A). Situation involves common characteristics (B, C, & E) and is synonymous with relative location (D). Absolute location is the opposite of relative location and is, therefore, the correct answer.
Question 7
Regionalization is to geography as

A
quantitative analysis is to economics
B
periodization is to history
C
writing is to literature
D
voting is to political science
E
socialization is to psychology
Question 7 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (B). Geographers group places by region. While answers (C), (D), and (E) are important parts of their fields, they do not involve categorization. Answer (A) is plausible, but economics can be qualitative as well as quantitative. Answer (B) is the best answer because historians categorize events by time period.
Question 8
Which of the following is NOT a characteristic of the cultural landscape?

A
The design and use of buildings in an urban community
B
The diffusion of folk and popular culture
C
Human migratory patterns
D
Patterns of physical geography
E
Transportation systems
Question 8 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). The cultural landscape refers to the activities of humans imposed on the landscape. All options relate to that definition except patterns of physical geography, which makes it the correct answer.
Question 9
Cultural ecology studies the

A
conservation of natural resources
B
diffusion of popular culture
C
hierarchical nature of folk and popular culture
D
interactions between language, religion, and ethnicity
E
relationship between human beings and their physical environments
Question 9 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (E). This is simply a recall question.
Question 10
Someone who believes in possibilism is most likely to reject

A
cultural dissonance
B
cultural relativism
C
environmental determinism
D
globalization of cultural
E
hierarchical diffusion
Question 10 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (C). The theory of environmental determinism says that human actions are influenced by their environments, but possibilism says that human activity may be partly influenced by geography, most human activities are determined by social conditions and the people themselves. The other answers have nothing to do with the question.
Question 11
Diffusion of American slang from large cities to medium cities to small towns represents

A
contagious diffusion
B
economic diffusion
C
hierarchical diffusion
D
relocation diffusion
E
stimulus diffusion
Question 11 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (C). In arranging settlements from big cities to small towns, a hierarchy is established and the pattern of diffusion follows that hierarchy.
Question 12
Europeans imported porcelain from China in the fourteenth century. It was so popular that Europeans began to use materials similar to porcelain to manufacture their own porcelain-like ceramic goods. The importation of the porcelain represents _____________ diffusion. The creation of a new ceramic industry represents _____________ diffusion.

A
contagious; hierarchical
B
hierarchical; stimulus
C
relocation; contagious
D
relocation; stimulus
E
stimulus; contagious
Question 12 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). Relocation diffusion involves human movement. This narrows the correct answer down to (C) or (D). Stimulus diffusion occurs when one phenomenon causes a related phenomenon to diffuse, as in the second part of the scenario. The correct answer is, therefore, (D). Contagious diffusion (C) occurs in multiple places, simultaneously without an obvious pattern.
Question 13
Unlike other regions, formal regions must have

A
borders
B
a hearth or node
C
a hinterland
D
internal uniformity
E
political characteristics
Question 13 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (A). This answer is simply a definition. Answers (B) and (C) relate to functional regions. Answer (D) is wrong because all regions have some degree of uniformity or else they would not be regions. Answer (E) is wrong because, while all political regions are formal regions, not all formal regions are political regions.
Question 14
Which of the following are true of time zones?

I.     Time zones were established in the United States for railroad travel.

II.    Most time zones are about 30 degrees wide.

III.   People traveling from east to west may find themselves arriving “earlier” at their destination than when they left.

IV.   The People’s Republic of China has only one time zone.

A
I, II
B
I, IV
C
I, II, III
D
I, III, IV
E
II, III, IV
Question 14 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (D). This question involves some recall of knowledge or simple mathematics. There are 360 degrees in the globe. Dividing that number by 24 hours yields 24 time zones of 15 degrees each. Number II is, therefore, a false statement. Knowing that falsehood allows one to eliminate (A), (C), and (E). Numbers I and IV must, therefore, be true, which means one must know that III is true if one is to arrive at the proper conclusion that (D) is correct.
Question 15
Globalization has

A
integrated economies and cultures
B
integrated economies but not cultures
C
increased economic differences between places
D
increased regional specialization of production
E
helped maintain local traditions
Question 15 Explanation: 
The correct answer is (A). Everything else is factually untrue, and (D) and (E) are the opposite of globalization.
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