Exploring the Fields of Study Related to Geography
Geography is a broad field of science. It concerns with human, the Earth, and how the two interact with one another. Examinations can be done toward the things occurring in both larger scope of Earth as a planet and smaller, much more focused study of the people living on the planet itself. The presence of many varieties of subdivisions and branches of geography is a testament to how broad and large-scoped the discipline has been since its first inception. Not only that it has spawned numerous branches, fields of studies related to geography have also emerged over the years.
These related fields are based on the geographical principles but their focus study may deviate somewhat away from the traditional geography. Such related fields are:
1. Urban planning, regional planning, and spatial planning
The three subjects rely on geography to determine the best possible way to develop a space (or not to do so) to meet some criteria (preservation of heritage of both natural and built nature, economic opportunities, beauty, and safety). The development of rural areas, cities, and towns could also be categorized as applied geography.
2. Regional science
Regional science is a movement that Walter Isard led in the 1950s. The movement was intended as a way to revolutionize the traditional geography programs that were more descriptive. Regional science is a more quantitative and analytical approach toward geographical questions and problems. The discipline is made up of fields of study that has spatial dimension as its main focus, including environmental quality, landscape ecology, population distribution, human geography, transport and communication, urban and regional planning, location theory, resource management, and regional economics.
3. Interplanetary sciences
The Earth is the traditional object of study in geography. However, as our progress of knowledge has expanded toward the worlds beyond the Earth, the term can also be applied informally to studies of bodies of planets, both within the Solar System and beyond. In this case, geography deals with a system much larger than the Earth itself and in this sense, geography makes up part of cosmology and astronomy. The term for studies of planets other than the Earth would be planetary science. Alternative terms have also been coined such as areology for studies of the planet Mars. However, these alternative terms are still not widely used.
These three fields of study show just how massive and all-encompassing geography can be. It is so broad that it is flexible enough to be used outside of the Earth.