Digital Mapping – Lab 1 – Conceptual Overview


Name_______________                                                       Section #_____


Instructions:  READ and REVIEW the following documents covered in class and/or posted on Blackboard Week #1 Folder under Course Notes & Materials Tab:

  • Conceptual Overview
  • The 18 National Standards Geographic Education
  • NCGE Statement on National Educational Technology Plan to Promote Geo-Literacy
  • National Geographic Cartography Guide


EXPLORE the following links to the digital mapping web sites below and EXAMINE the diverse array of maps in each, select at least 2 map sites (or multiple maps) to write about for this assignment and COMPLETE the questions below.  Consider your maps and questions in reference to your READINGS.


Deliverables:  Complete questions in this document. Answer with at least the specified number of sentences; shorter or incomplete answers will lose points.


Rename this document section00#_ lastname_firstname_lab01.doc with your name and submit via blackboard or email according to Instructor’s instruction.


Links to maps:


Smithsonian Maps:
From Houston Chronicle:


From NY Times


From Philla GeoHistory:


URL Links to the maps you choose:







  1. Why did you select your maps? Specifically, what is it about the maps that was of interest to you:  the map design, the phenomena being displayed, the information & knowledge you learned from the data…?  (3-4 sentences)

I chose both the maps due to the ease of their use and simple user friendly design. NY Times has mapped the demographic data of the 2010 census. Philageohistory is the map of different addresses in Philadelphia. The information in both the maps is concise and easily understood.




  1. Are your maps more reference maps or thematic maps? Why do you think so?  (2 sentences)

Both the maps that I chose are thematic in my opinion. Both are based on specific topics i.e. one is based on 2010 census while other is based on addresses in Philadelphia.



  1. Are your maps more static maps or dynamic maps? Why do you think so?  (2 sentences)

In my opinion both of the maps are static maps as they are based on already fed data which needs human intervention to upgrade them with new information if available.



  1. Do your maps display all of the DOGSTAILS components listed in the National Geographic Cartographic Guide? What is missing? (It’s an acronym; look at the Guide to see what the letters stand for.)

D: Both the maps have the dates they were made available. Both maps may consist old data so I am not so confident about their reliability.

O: Both maps do not specify any orientation.

G: Both the maps do not show a grid.

S: Both maps lack a map scale.

T: Both maps use a title.

A: Both maps have their author information.

I: Both maps lack alphabetical listing of places.

L: The map by NY Times has a Legend section while the Philadelphia mad does not have it.

S: NY Times map has incorporated the situation property while the Philadelphia mad did not use it.


  1. Would you guess that the creation of the maps involved more of an Objective approach or a Subjective approach? Why do you think so?  (2 sentences)

Both the maps are based on objective information. Both maps have information specific to a single topic.



  1. Were they created through Quantitative Methods or Qualitative Methods? Why do you think so? (2 sentences)

Both of the maps are created by quantitative methods as they are based on facts and not subjective information.



  1. How do the maps that you selected relate to either the Social Sciences or the Humanities (or both)? (2 sentences)

NY Times 2010 map is closely related to both social sciences and humanities as it gives us information about the demographics of different people. This could help researchers draw inferences for different social and humanitarian purposes.

The Philadephia map is more concerned with social science as it gives information about the location of different addresses. This could be used to find population density etc.


  1. How do the maps that you selected illustrate the DEFINTION of HUMAN GEGRAPHY geography put forth in the Conceptual Overview outline?

(2 sentences)

Both these maps provide information about the physical existence of human beings on different geographical locations. Both of these maps can be used to study human population at different geographical locations and their relationships.


  1. Do your maps fall distinctly under any of the sub-disciplines of human (population, economics, politics, urban, culture geography) or physical geography (geomorphology, climatology, biogeography, pedology, and natural resources) or both? (2 sentences)

Both of the maps fall under human population sub-discipline in my opinion. Both are related to the geolocation of people.



  • How do your maps and the information they convey exemplify the fundamental components of site and situation? (2 sentences)

Both maps provide us information about the existence of people in different locations/cities. One map is about the ethnical composition of different locations while the other is about the existence of human addresses in a specific city i.e. Philadelphia.



  1. Are the maps more descriptive or explanatory? (2 sentences)

Both of these maps are based on objective data. In my opinion both are descriptive.



  1. Which of the ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS and corresponding STANDARDS of Geographic Literacy do your maps represent? (Identify at least tw0 essential elements and two corresponding standards of geographical education.)
  2. These maps represent “places and regions” as their essential elements that corresponds to the standard of physical and human characteristics of places.
  3. These maps also represent the “use of geography” that corresponds to how present can be interpreted and future be planed.


  1. Did Geospatial Technology play a role in your maps’ creation? How so or not so? (2 sentences)

I think that geospatial technology is not incorporated in my maps. These maps does not study the surface of the earth or any other geological phenomenon.