AP Human Geography Quiz

Getting ready for the AP Human Geography exam? Try your hand at some practice questions!

Question 1
If a student is unable to avoid the ecological fallacy when studying geography, he or she might:
A: assume climates and ecosystems do not change over time.
B. assume that observations made at one level of scale are true for another level of scale
C. believe the environment dictates how a society develops
D. argue that slash-and-burn agriculture has a low impact on pollution
E. argue that regions rich in natural resources have comparatively advanced economies

B: The ecological fallacy is a failure in reasoning that occurs when an observation at one scale is applied to another scale. An example would be assuming that the food preferences of a classroom of students are the same food preferences held by the entire school, or by the surrounding town. (B) is correct. The remaining answer choices, (A), (C), (D), and (E), are all factually incorrect, but they are not examples of the ecological fallacy. (Also, note that the ecological part of the term does not mean it is related to ecology.)

Question 2
Islam’s spread to parts of East Africa and Southeast Asia via trade networks is an example of what two types of cultural diffusion?
A. Relocation and hierarchical diffusion
B. Relocation and contagious diffusion
C. Hierarchical and contagious diffusion
D. Relocation and stimulus diffusion
E. Contagious and stimulus diffusion

B: Islam’s spread via trade networks is an example of relocation and contagious diffusion, as Muslim traders traveled to new locations and spread their religion person-to- person; (B) is correct. Their religion mainly spread by word of mouth, not by the popular appeal of merchants or by any other form of hierarchical diffusion; thus, (A) and (C) are incorrect. Islam as a religion was not majorly changed by those who adopted it in East Africa and Southeast Asia, so it would be inaccurate to label it stimulus diffusion; thus, (D) and (E) are incorrect.

Question 3
What is the primary advantage of Namibia’s prorupted shape?
A. A more compacted state
B. Control over different nationalities within the borders
C. Access to more raw materials and trade routes
D. Greater economic autonomy from colonizers
E. Improved transportation throughout the country

C: Proruptions are extended landmasses that project outward from a country’s mainland. Namibia’s prorupted strip in the Northeast provides it with access to the Zambezi River, facilitating the country’s access to natural resources and trade. Proruptions in other countries typically serve similar purposes. (C) is correct. Because proruptions are extensions of land, countries with such shapes are less compact, which tends to make transportation within the country more challenging. Thus, (A) and (E) are incorrect. The prorupted shape in Namibia’s case is not about controlling its citizens; (B) is incorrect. Namibia is an independent state, not a colony, so (D) is also incorrect.

Question 4
Which of the following statements describes why double-cropping or even triple-cropping is important?
A. It allows subsistence farmers to receive more income from selling their products.
B. It provides consumers with more choices of foods to eat.
C. It allows farmers the freedom to rotate crops without harming the soil.
D. It allows farmers to meet the demands of ever-increasing populations.
E. It gives producers the profit margins to meet the demands of investors.

D: By double- or triple-cropping, farmers can double or triple their profits by replanting the same type of crop multiple times within a single growing season. How- ever, more importantly, the increased production from growing two or three crops per year can support more people. Because of this practice, the world will see less famine. Thus, (D) is correct. Subsistence farmers grow only enough food to feed themselves and their family, leaving little surplus for trade to others; (A) is incorrect. Double- and triple-cropping merely grows more of the same crop type. So, consumers would simply have more of one type of food; (B) is incorrect. Crop rotation involves different types of crops being cycled through a single field, not more of the same type of crop; (C) is incorrect. While double- and triple-cropping can help commercial farmers meet business demands, it is also practiced by family farmers without investors; (E) is incorrect.

Question 5
Which of the following statements describes a major difference between U.S. and European cities?
A. U.S. cities have zones that are often intermixed, with commercial establishments and residences in the same building.
B. Traditional European cities were not designed to accommodate automobiles.
C. U.S. cities have a dendritic street pattern, whereas European cities have a grid street pattern.
D. European cities were constructed in accordance with religious beliefs.
E. Skyscrapers in U.S. cities are located far from the center of the city.

B: Traditional European cities were built long before the invention of the automobile, resulting in streets that are difficult for modern driving; (B) is correct. European cities often intermix zones, while structures in the United States are often zoned for a single use, eliminating (A). (C) is incorrect since European cities have a dendritic street pattern, while U.S. cities usually have a grid street pattern. Islamic cities, not European cities, are built to reflect religious beliefs, making (D) incorrect. U.S. cities have skyscrapers that are located in the central business district; (E) is incorrect.

Question 6
Which of the following describes a problem with the concentric zone model?
A. It was modeled on Chicago, which never had concentric zones.
B. Most cities today are no longer organized by clear zones.
C. Wealthy residents actually prefer to live far from the central business district.
D. It applies well to European cities but not other cities.
E. It incorporates globalization too heavily.

B: The concentric zone model suggests that there are five concentric zones in a city: the central business district, a transition zone, working-class residences, middle-class residences, and commuter residences. However, this model is generally considered outdated, as cities today have expanded in ways that cannot be categorized by simple concentric zones; (B) is correct. This model was based on Chicago of the early 1900s because the city had concentric zones at the time, eliminating (A). (C) is incorrect because this fact is not at odds with the model, which suggests that upper classes live farther from the central business district because they can afford to com- mute into the city to work. In European cities, the wealthy live close to the central business district, which does not fit the concentric zone model; (D) is incorrect. This model of development applies to a single city, not businesses or organizations that begin operating on a global scale, eliminating (E).