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Introduction to Geography, 8/e
Arthur Getis, San Diego State University
Judith Getis
Jerome D. Fellmann, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Population Geography


Web Page Questions:

Answer the following questions using the web pages listed in the chapter.
  1. Population Reference Bureau -
    When will India surpass China in total population? ________________________________________________
  2. Select the "US in the World" option. Find your state and its corresponding country.
    What are the common characteristics which link these two regions? __________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________



1. The population pyramid is used to provide a visual impression of the age and sex composition of a country's population. A country's population by age and sex cohorts is provided in the following table. In order to construct the population pyramid:
  1. Calculate the percentage of the total population for each sex and age cohort.
  2. Construct the population pyramid on the diagram provided.
  3. Referring to the population pyramids given in your text, which one resembles the constructed pyramid? ___________________________________________
  4. What is the total percentage of?
    • males? _______________
    • females? _______________
  5. What is the total percentage of dependents in the population? _______________
0 - 4 1,911,500   1,890,800  
5 - 9 1,884,900   1,884,900  
10 - 14 1,797,700   1,700,700  
15 - 19 1,913,300   1,813,700  
20 - 24 2,281,800   2,202,300  
25 - 29 2,395,900   2,343,700  
30 - 34 2,120,300   2,104,800  
35 - 39 1,896,000   1,893,900  
40 - 44 2,070,300   2,071,800  
45 - 49 1,758,400   1,760,800  
50 - 54 1,533,100   1,540,900  
55 - 59 1,445,000   1,474,900  
60 - 64 1,392,800   1,500,500  
65 - 69 1,291,000   1,502,500  
70 - 74 982,800   1,298,800  
75 - 79 727,000   1,136,200  
80+ 649,400   1,496,100  
  • Total males _________
  • Total females _________
  • Total population _________

<a onClick="'/olcweb/cgi/pluginpop.cgi?it=gif::Age Chart::/sites/dl/free/0072367229/9466/Image06_01.gif','popWin', 'width=448,height=505,resizable,scrollbars');" href="#"><img valign="absmiddle" height="16" width="16" border="0" src="/olcweb/styles/shared/linkicons/image.gif">Age Chart (186.0K)</a>Age Chart

2. Using Figure 6.17, Stages in the Demographic Transition, and the crude birth and death rates from the Appendix, place each of the following countries into its appropriate demographic stages.

RegionBirth RateDeath RateNatural IncreaseStage in Cycle
New Zealand     
Costa Rica     

3. Using the Appendix, for each of the following population characteristics, list the top five and bottom five ranking countries.

a. Natural Increase

b. Infant Mortality

c. Total Life Expectancy

d. Fertility Rates

Critical Thinking Questions

  1. Explain how population pyramids can be used to plan for the needs of a country's population 20-50 years into the future. Give an example using the need to provide a population with social services.
  2. Discuss the statement "Famine has always been a region's natural population control."
  3. Suppose that you are the head of a space exploration agency from a planet many light years from Earth. The long-range sensors on the probe you directed into the Earth's solar system has mapped the third planet from the sun using scanners sensitive enough to map Earth's surface features. Analyzing the data, you decide NOT to send a landing party to Earth. Why?
  4. In your capacity as a researcher for a consulting company, you have been given the task of suggesting ways to alleviate an overpopulation problem on an island in a developing country. Discuss in detail two research methods you would use to assess the situation on the island and two options you would present to your client to alleviate the situation. For each research method tell why you would select it and the type of information it would provide. For each option, tell why it is workable and within what approximate time frame (short term/medium term/long term) each one would have an effect.
  5. In your capacity as a researcher for a consulting company, you have been given the task of assessing whether an island of Indonesia is suitable for the relocation of 15,000 people. Discuss in detail two research methods you would use to gather information about the island and two environmental factors that must be taken into consideration as part of your assessment.