Geography: High School: 9th and 10th Grade Quiz - Characterisation of Rural Areas (Questions)

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One of the key ideas in human geography that you must study in high school is the rural environment. In order to understand the pressures on ecosystems and human beings, it is important that you are aware of the main characteristics of rural areas, mainly those of the UK, including the resources they provide.

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You may well have seen diagrams showing the different types of rural area, starting with the urban area as the 'bullseye'. At the edge of any urban area there is the rural/urban fringe. This is characterized as being an area where housing and the countryside mingle together. In effect, you could travel along a road in this area and within a few minutes of going in one direction, you are in the countryside but a few minutes in the other direction, you are in town.

Surrounding this is the commuter belt. This is characterized by villages with expensive housing surrounded by farmland.

The commuter belt has good road and rail communications with the urban center that it serves making it straightforward to commute into work.

Further out, with cheaper housing and less well-developed road and rail communications, lie the accessible rural areas. The main characteristic of these areas is that they are predominantly agricultural. They are readily accessible by car and public transportation and therefore tourism and leisure play an important part in their economies too.

Finally, there are the remote rural areas. They are regarded as remote because of the lack of communications. These are the places where you are least likely to have a mobile telephone signal and you will find little or no public transportation. Farming is difficult and is usually limited to sheep or cattle. The villages are few and separated by longer distances and any urban areas are limited to small towns. Leisure and tourism play a part in the economy of remote rural areas.

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1. Which of the following best describes a rural area?
[ ] Farmland
[ ] An area of low population density
[ ] Housing is isolated or contained in villages and hamlets
[ ] All of the above
2. If you passed through a village with expensive houses and a train station, which type of rural area are you most likely to be in?
[ ] Rural/urban fringe
[ ] Commuter belt
[ ] Accessible
[ ] Remote
3. In an accessible rural area ...
[ ] farming is important to the economy
[ ] farming is not as important as heavy industry
[ ] housing is extremely expensive
[ ] there are a large number of primary routes and highways linking the settlements
4. In a rural/urban fringe ...
[ ] the most likely development is on brownfield sites
[ ] the most likely development is on greenfield sites
[ ] the most likely development is on greyfield sites
[ ] no new development is permitted
5. In which of the rural areas are you most likely not to have a cell phone signal?
[ ] Rural/urban fringe
[ ] Commuter belt
[ ] Accessible rural
[ ] Remote rural
6. In which of the following areas is tourism most likely to make a significant contribution to the local economy?
[ ] Rural/urban fringe
[ ] Commuter belt
[ ] Accessible rural
[ ] Remote rural
7. Which of the following statements is not true?
[ ] The population density is usually the lowest in remote rural areas
[ ] Farming and tourism is important to the economy of all rural areas
[ ] Commuter belts have good communications to urban centers
[ ] The main type of farming in remote rural areas is arable
8. Which of the following is not false?
[ ] Large numbers of people migrate from the urban/rural fringe to the commuter belt
[ ] The distance of the rural area from an urban center determines how it is classified
[ ] The population of rural areas is increasing
[ ] In order to avoid depopulation, rural areas need to develop sustainable businesses
9. Rural areas change over time. Three of the reasons are income from tourism, the profitability of farming and the development of new industries in the area. These are known as ...
[ ] economic factors
[ ] environmental factors
[ ] sociable factors
[ ] social factors
10. Which of the following has had a significant effect on primary employment in rural areas?
[ ] Mechanization of agriculture
[ ] Reduced need for food
[ ] Lack of a skilled workforce
[ ] New housing
Geography: High School: 9th and 10th Grade Quiz - Characterisation of Rural Areas (Answers)
1. Which of the following best describes a rural area?
[ ] Farmland
[ ] An area of low population density
[ ] Housing is isolated or contained in villages and hamlets
[x] All of the above
It is quite difficult to define a rural area in a few words as there are several different types, each with its own characteristics
2. If you passed through a village with expensive houses and a train station, which type of rural area are you most likely to be in?
[ ] Rural/urban fringe
[x] Commuter belt
[ ] Accessible
[ ] Remote
Good communications (e.g. rail link) and expensive housing stock are key characteristics of commuter belts
3. In an accessible rural area ...
[x] farming is important to the economy
[ ] farming is not as important as heavy industry
[ ] housing is extremely expensive
[ ] there are a large number of primary routes and highways linking the settlements
Primary routes and highways may cross the area but have not been built specifically to link settlements. This makes the rural area accessible
4. In a rural/urban fringe ...
[ ] the most likely development is on brownfield sites
[x] the most likely development is on greenfield sites
[ ] the most likely development is on greyfield sites
[ ] no new development is permitted
The area where no new development is permitted is green belt land. In practice, because of the need for new housing, some development does take place
5. In which of the rural areas are you most likely not to have a cell phone signal?
[ ] Rural/urban fringe
[ ] Commuter belt
[ ] Accessible rural
[x] Remote rural
There are places in all areas where you may not get a signal, however, because the population density of remote rural areas is the lowest in the country, cell phone operators do not believe it is economic to provide a service. Obtaining planning permission is difficult as the areas are often environmentally sensitive and transporting materials to a remote site is expensive
6. In which of the following areas is tourism most likely to make a significant contribution to the local economy?
[ ] Rural/urban fringe
[ ] Commuter belt
[x] Accessible rural
[ ] Remote rural
Accessible rural and remote rural both have the characteristics that attract tourists, however, remote rural areas usually have fewer places like camp sites, hotels and B&Bs where people can stay
7. Which of the following statements is not true?
[ ] The population density is usually the lowest in remote rural areas
[ ] Farming and tourism is important to the economy of all rural areas
[ ] Commuter belts have good communications to urban centers
[x] The main type of farming in remote rural areas is arable
In the UK, most of the remote rural areas are hilly or mountainous where arable farming is not possible
8. Which of the following is not false?
[ ] Large numbers of people migrate from the urban/rural fringe to the commuter belt
[ ] The distance of the rural area from an urban center determines how it is classified
[ ] The population of rural areas is increasing
[x] In order to avoid depopulation, rural areas need to develop sustainable businesses
The general trend for rural areas is towards depopulation because there is little or no local work for people
9. Rural areas change over time. Three of the reasons are income from tourism, the profitability of farming and the development of new industries in the area. These are known as ...
[x] economic factors
[ ] environmental factors
[ ] sociable factors
[ ] social factors
Economic factors have a significant influence on migration to urban centers
10. Which of the following has had a significant effect on primary employment in rural areas?
[x] Mechanization of agriculture
[ ] Reduced need for food
[ ] Lack of a skilled workforce
[ ] New housing
Mechanization of agriculture means that farms can be run using fewer people, reducing the availability of primary employment in rural areas