Geography of Europe

Geography of Europe

Geography 336

Geography of Europe

Instructor: Irene NaesseSpring 2008

Office Hours: W 6:00 – 6:50 pm H 412

Office Location:H429EW 7:00 – 9:45



Course Description

Where is Europe? What is it like there? Why is it that way? Geographers cannot agree on whether Europe is a continent or a region. Europeans cannot agree on who is European and who is non-European. Yet everyone can agree that of the earth’s population’s, it is the European’s who have had the greatest impact on modern global economy and culture. Throughout this course, we will be examining the physical and human processes that contributed to the formation of Europe as a geographic entity, the issues facing this region today and in the future.

Required Text: “The European Culture Area” (2002) 4th edition (ISBN: 0-7425-1628-8)

by T. Jordan-Bychkov and B.Bychkova Jordan

Atlas: Nystrom Desk Atlas, Goode’s Atlas, or National Geographic College Atlas

Course Requirements:

 Regular Attendance and Class Participation (includes discussion and taking lecture notes)

Refer to the catalog for school attendance policy and student code of conduct

 Completion of 2 Exams

 Completion of 1 Final Project

 Reading Assigned text chapters and supplemental articles

 Completion of Map & Homework Assignments

Examinations:Exams will cover material from lectures, textbook, homework, and readings. Exams will be essay

and shortanswer format.

Final Project:Students will be completing a research project on an European indigenous ethnic group. See

final projecthandout for more details. Absolutely no late projects will be accepted regardless

of circumstances.

Map Assignments: Students will be completing map assignments focusing on Europe’scultural and physical


Grading Policy: The final grade will be based on the percentage of total number points earned by each student.

AssignmentPoints Possible Total Points @ % of Grade

2 Exams10020063%

Map Assignments 20 20 6%

Research Paper 757523%

Presentation 25 25 8%


Grading Scale: The grading scale for this course is based on the percentage of each student’s total number of

points accumulated divided by total number of points assigned for the semester. The percentage scale

for points earned is as follows:

A100% - 90 %(Outstanding performance)

B 89% - 80%(Above average performance)

C 79% - 70%(Average performance / meets expectations)

D 69% - 60%(Below average performance; passing)

F 59%(Failure)

Class Policies and Information:

 All assignments must be typed, double-spaced, 10-12 point font with standard margins (.5 to 1 inch) unless

otherwise instructed.

  • Assignments turned in handwritten will be returned to the student with a “zero” score.
  • Points will be deducted for assignments turned in that do not conform to the above format.

No make-up exams will be given except in the case of extreme and unforeseeable emergencies that must

be verified either by death certificate/funeral notice/doctor’s note, etc.. Students must inform the

instructor as soon as possible if they will be missing an exam. In these cases exams will be taken at an

appointed time prior to the student returning to class.

 Late work will NOT be accepted. If you will be missing class, turn in assignments to my office or mail box

before class.

 Students with learning disabilities are required by law to inform the instructor if they require special assistance

for note-taking and examinations.

 Students are expected to attend class regularly. Excessive absences will result in a lower grade and the

instructor may drop you from the class. If you do miss class, you are responsible for getting the class

notes from another student, finding out what announcements were made and what assignments are

due. You are also responsible for turning in any assignments that were due to my office or mailbox.

 It is the student’s obligation to file the appropriate paperwork to drop the course. Students must drop within

the first two weeks of class, otherwise they will need to complete a Withdrawal Request form and get

permission from the instructor and department chair.

 Students who wish to takes notes on a laptop during class must do the following:

  • Assigned seat at the front of the class for monitoring
  • Forfeit the use of the laptop if caught playing games, checking email, etc. during class time

 Students who wish to record the lecture must first ask permission from the instructor and sign an agreement

on the appropriate use of recorded intellectual property.

 Behavior that is disruptive to the instructor and other students will not be tolerated. This includes but is not

limited to the following:

  • Cell phones and pagers ringing during class.
  • Text messaging - Do not have your cell phone on your desk or hand at any time during class!
  • Tardiness and stepping outside during class
  • Talking while the instructor or other students are talking
  • Sleeping or working on assignments for other classes

 Plagiarism is taking credit for someone else’s words or ideas. All work must be properly cited from the text or

othersources. There are no group projects in this course and students are expected to turn in

assignmentsusing individual ideas, analysis and words. Anyone caught plagiarizing will fail the

assignment regardless of extent (one sentence or entire paper).

Tentative Geography of Europe Lecture and Reading Schedule

Week / Topic / Readings / Assignment Due
Jan 23 / Where is Europe? / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 1
Jan 30 / Physical Geography / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 2
Feb 6 / Human Settlement
Language Distribution / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 5
Olson “Who are the Europeans?”
Jordan & Bychova Ch. 4 / Map Assignment
Feb 13 / Religion
Empires & Nation States / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 3
Jordan & Bychova Ch. 7 (190-218)
Feb 20 / Agriculture & Industrialization / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 11
Jordan & Bychova Ch. 9
Feb 27 / Urban Development / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 8
Mar 5 / European Union / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 7 (218-228)
Mar 19 / Population & Demographics / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 6 / Abstract Proposal
Mar 26 / Ethnic Minorities / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 7 (185-190)
Apr 2 / Spring Break!
Apr 9 / Current Issues / Jordan & Bychova Ch. 1
Apr 16 / TBD
Apr 23 / Presentations 1 (Lottery) / Papers Due
Apr 30 / Presentations 2
May 7 / Future Issues

Geography 336Final Project:Indigenous European Ethnic Minorities

In addition to it’s 34 nations, Europe is home to almost the same number of indigenous ethnic minorities. The current geographical distribution of indigenous ethnic minorities is the result of a number of historical and geographic processes, including:

  • Migration and settlement patterns
  • Empire expansion and decline or conquest
  • Changing political boundaries
  • Forced migration

The purpose of this project is to use geography as a tool for analyzing the different dimensions of ethnic minorities in Europe. Consider the following issues:

Where are they from? How did they become an ethnic minority?

How are they culturally different from the dominant culture?

What are the expressions of cultural identity for the ethnic group?

Have they assimilated into the dominant culture? How was this accomplished?

Do they have any longstanding or current grievances or issues with the government or dominant culture? Why or why not?

Are there militant or political movements to secure autonomy or independence?

What contributions has the ethnic minority made to the dominant culture or nation?

What type of representations of the minority or dominant culture do you find?


1.Using the text and websites listed, select an indigenous ethnic minority within a European nation and start your research.

2.Turn in an abstract proposal of your paper including the following:

Working Title

Abstract – paragraph summary of your paper’s main points and conclusion

Working Bibliography – list of sources (journals, books, news articles, etc.)

** Citations need to be in Chicago Style

3.Write a 7-10 page paper summarizing your research. Please remember that this is a geography paper, not a history paper, so keep your focus on the people, place and geographical concepts related to the class.

4.Prepare a 15 minute presentationon the main points of your research to be presented to the class. Presentation dates and times will be assigned by lottery.

European Minority Information

(maps of Europe)