Geography: High School: 9th and 10th Grade Quiz - Geographical Information Systems (Questions)

This Geography quiz is called 'Geographical Information Systems' and it has been written by teachers to help you if you are studying the subject at high school. Playing educational quizzes is a user-friendly way to learn if you are in the 9th or 10th grade - aged 14 to 16.

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During your studies of high school geography, you will have used a variety of Geographical Information Systems (GIS for short). For the exams, you are required to be able to use and demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the use of new technologies, including GIS, to assist geographical investigation. That's a bit of a mouthful, but remember, satellite navigation and online mapping services are examples of GIS - all you need to do is to think about the things you can do with them and the data they can supply you in order to pick up some marks.

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Before computers, information systems for geographers were limited to paper maps, tables, lists and atlases, and showed information about human and physical geography. The information they supplied could be years out of date by the time you were using it, which limited their usefulness apart from classroom use to teach students the techniques needed to analyze and interpret the geographical data. It was very time consuming.

A modern geographical information system links hardware (computers), software (computer programs) and data, and enables geographers to capture, analyze and display virtually any form of geographic information in helpful ways. It can produce maps and map overlays (for example like showing the parish boundaries of villages or areas of cell phone coverage as well as reports, graphs and charts to display the data in an easy-to-understand form to answer questions about different locations. Data capture by professional geographers can be used to update the data so that you have the very latest information.

In a GIS, lots of different information about places is stored in a database or on a spreadsheet. You can use a variety of tools to display the information on a map. The software adds layers representing different geographical features such as roads or buildings, and data sets such as census data, crime statistics or even pet ownership. You end up with a 'stack' of layers, each of which can be turned on or off and analyzed to understand the relationships between them. As well as answering the question 'where' it can help to answer others like 'what if ...', 'why' and 'how does ...'. This makes it a powerful tool for businesses too as they can add customer data and improve their marketing and sales.

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1. GIS stands for ...
[ ] Geodesic Information Series
[ ] Geodesic Information System
[ ] Geographical Information System
[ ] Geographical Information Satellite
2. A GIS can be used for ...
[ ] analysing geographical information
[ ] capturing geographical information
[ ] displaying geographical information
[ ] All of the above
3. The data for a GIS is usually stored in ...
[ ] a rich text file
[ ] a cupboard
[ ] a database
[ ] a cardboard box
4. How is the data displayed on a map by a GIS?
[ ] Using a pencil
[ ] As a single image
[ ] As a series of layers
[ ] As numbers
5. Which of the following is not an essential part of a GIS?
[ ] A smartphone
[ ] Computer hardware
[ ] A digital map
[ ] A geographical database
6. A GIS reveals ...
[ ] relationships between data sets
[ ] patterns in data sets
[ ] trends in data sets
[ ] All of the above
7. Which of the following is not a use of a GIS?
[ ] Construction and urban design
[ ] Navigating using a map and compass
[ ] Crime and surveillance
[ ] GPS mapping
8. Which of the following is not an advantage of using a GIS?
[ ] It is faster than traditional analysis methods
[ ] It does not work during a power cut
[ ] It can include a lot of data on one map
[ ] It improves communication
9. Which of the following data would you be least likely to obtain from a GIS?
[ ] The area of a parish
[ ] The population of a village
[ ] The services available in a town
[ ] The names and addresses of all the vicars in Cambridgeshire
10. There is a lot of geographical data contained in an atlas so why would you use a GIS instead?
[ ] To save having to have somewhere to keep an atlas
[ ] It takes up more room
[ ] The pages of the atlas could get accidentally ripped and lost
[ ] It is easier to add more data to maps
Geography: High School: 9th and 10th Grade Quiz - Geographical Information Systems (Answers)
1. GIS stands for ...
[ ] Geodesic Information Series
[ ] Geodesic Information System
[x] Geographical Information System
[ ] Geographical Information Satellite
You will also see it written as 'geographic information system'
2. A GIS can be used for ...
[ ] analysing geographical information
[ ] capturing geographical information
[ ] displaying geographical information
[x] All of the above
It is also used for managing geographical data too
3. The data for a GIS is usually stored in ...
[ ] a rich text file
[ ] a cupboard
[x] a database
[ ] a cardboard box
Different systems can use different files but data is usually stored in databases or spreadsheets
4. How is the data displayed on a map by a GIS?
[ ] Using a pencil
[ ] As a single image
[x] As a series of layers
[ ] As numbers
The different layers can be switched on and off to help the user to spot patterns
5. Which of the following is not an essential part of a GIS?
[x] A smartphone
[ ] Computer hardware
[ ] A digital map
[ ] A geographical database
You could access and use a GIS via a smartphone but it is not essential. Whatever you use to access the GIS, you need the software to link the database information to the map
6. A GIS reveals ...
[ ] relationships between data sets
[ ] patterns in data sets
[ ] trends in data sets
[x] All of the above
A GIS is a powerful set of computerized tools that enables the user to view, understand, question, interpret, and visualize data in many ways
7. Which of the following is not a use of a GIS?
[ ] Construction and urban design
[x] Navigating using a map and compass
[ ] Crime and surveillance
[ ] GPS mapping
Navigating using a map and compass does not involve a computer, software or digital map
8. Which of the following is not an advantage of using a GIS?
[ ] It is faster than traditional analysis methods
[x] It does not work during a power cut
[ ] It can include a lot of data on one map
[ ] It improves communication
A GIS contains many different ways to present the data and can present complex information in a visual and easy-to-understand way
9. Which of the following data would you be least likely to obtain from a GIS?
[ ] The area of a parish
[ ] The population of a village
[ ] The services available in a town
[x] The names and addresses of all the vicars in Cambridgeshire
A GIS contains geographical data. Some of this will be relevant to human geography but will not identify individual people other than perhaps the owners of local businesses when the data was collected
10. There is a lot of geographical data contained in an atlas so why would you use a GIS instead?
[ ] To save having to have somewhere to keep an atlas
[ ] It takes up more room
[ ] The pages of the atlas could get accidentally ripped and lost
[x] It is easier to add more data to maps
In an atlas, each map contains only a limited amount of data, it is not easy for you to add or remove other data but with a GIS it is usually as simple as making a few clicks with a mouse (or taps on a screen). But that's only one advantage, for the exam, make sure you know some others too