GEOGRAPHY PROJECT PLAN INSTRUCTIONS
The Geography Project Plan is a research paper and a capstone assignment whereby you will
apply geographic and research skills toward solving a real problem.
Choose a service project at an accessible location where you have an interest and passion for
making a difference. The project must be feasible in scale and scope for a student’s time and
budget. Choose a specific location rather than a grand scale project like ending world hunger.
Your plan must be 1,000–1,250 words, use Times New Roman 12-point font with 1-inch
margins, include a cover page, the required sections (shown below), a reference page, a map, and
a realistic budget. Cite at least five scholarly sources (other than Scripture, the textbook, and
Wikipedia) in current APA format.
The project can have an environmental focus, e.g., access to clean drinking water; preserving
natural habitats; reducing air and water pollution; or dealing with the aftermath of natural
disasters like floods, tsunamis, and earthquakes. Many students choose humanitarian projects
focused on health, education, and financial needs, e.g., educating illiterate populations; helping
start businesses; feeding the malnourished; or resourcing underserved schools, health clinics,
hospitals, or orphanages. Your project may be as simple as building a wheelchair ramp for your
neighbor or building a new playground at your church. The project may expand upon an existing
service, but you must identify what services currently exist and how the services may be
expanded based on your contribution. You must include realisitic materials, transportation, labor,
and other associated costs. For example, is there a need for additional homeless shelters? If
shelters exist, where are they located and what populations do they serve? Is there a need for
shelters to safely house families, or just women and children? How much would it cost to erect
and operate a homeless shelter for the number of clients that you are proposing?
Step 1: State the objective (what will be accomplished) and location of the project, e.g.,
“I will provide clean drinking water to the rural population in Nimba, Liberia by digging
three wells.” Then give a brief explanation based on your initial research for why this
project is needed.
Step 2: Research, analyze, and describe the problem through a geographic lens. Consider
the terms and concepts in the textbook and the five main themes of geography.
Step 3: Describe a feasible course of action to solve the problem. The paper must explain
the who, what, why, and where of this project. In the end, this paper is about the proposed
solution, or Project Plan.
Step 4: List and describe the detailed costs of the project (i.e. materials, transportation,
Step 5: Utilize and bold highlight at least five geographic terms from the text.
Step 6: Incorporate the five main themes of geography into their required section
Use the following 10 required main sections when writing your paper. You may include
subheadings as needed.
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II. General Overview and Rationale
III. Region Relevance
IV. Location Relevance
V. Place Relevance
VI. Movement Relevance
VII. Human-Environmental Interaction Relevance
HINT: The CIA World Factbook is a helpful place to begin when studying another country.
Start by describing and analyzing the significance of location. Is the problem unique to a specific
location or region? Why or why not? Describing the location of a low income rural town relative
to regions of industry or agriculture can be revealing. Is the location a conurbation, technopole,
forward capital, or primate city?
Follow with a regional analysis that might include physiography (climate, terrain, bodies of
water, flora and fauna), culture, population data (demographics), the economy, political
geography, urban development, industrialization, and agriculture. How would you characterize
the people, i.e., their culture, lifestyle and beliefs? How do language, gender, religion, and
cultural traditions and values affect the project? Are the people part of a shatterbelt? Think about
the sectors of the economy and development. Is the area you are addressing a periphery, semi-
periphery, or core state, and how does that help or hinder the solution to the problem? Are the
people subsistence farmers? Describe the population. Analyze the population distribution and
density. Is it a floating population? Look at demographics like the birth rate, infant mortality rate,
overall longevity, ratio of physicians to population, per capita income, average years of
education or illiteracy, and the dependency ratio. What do those statistics indicate regarding the
problem to be solved?
Movement, or connectivity, is often a key component in any geographic analysis. Will you move
people, goods, or information? How will you do that? What are the challenges of movement?
Can you hand out brochures or a Bible if the people receiving them are illiterate? Do they have
access to the internet? Is there adequate transportation infrastructure to move people and goods?
Are roads improved or unimproved? Is there access to public transportation? Analyze
physiography as it relates to movement. Think about transferability of goods, distance decay, or
the movement of people through immigration or emigration.
Study the cultural landscape and develop a sense of place. This can add insight to the culture and
the economy. Can the type of places of worship indicate cultural or ethnic diversity in a location?
Where is the nearest hospital or college? Do most people live in single-family homes, or do most
residents rent? Can the number of traffic lights in a town indicate size?
Consider the cause and effect of human interaction with the natural environment as it relates to
your project. It may be as simple as studying the general climate and the seasonal effect on
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activities and services. Do the people contend with devastating drought, earthquakes, tsunamis,
or hurricanes? Have people permanently altered the natural landscape through deforestation or
the construction of dams, levees, or canals?