#12 General topics for preliminary examination - General and world geography
In this topic, we shall look into this amazing world and its geography. In 2017 and 2016 UPSC preliminary examinations only one question each was asked from this topic, however, in the years prior to that up to 13 questions (UPSC 2013) have been asked from this topic. Therefore we need to be well prepared. If we are to talk about this topic in one sentence, we can say that this is a topic that looks into everything we have previously seen in Indian Geography, from a global perspective.
Before we learn about the Earth, we need to look at the Universe of which the Earth is a part, its various parts, solar system, planets and satellites - the bigger and smaller among those, their specialties, etc., need to be studied in detail.
Statement 1 Outer layer of the sun is called the corona.
Statement 2 Distance between stars is measured in light years.
Statement 3 Hottest planet in the solar system is Venus.
1 only correct
2 only correct
1 and 3 correct
All are correct ( answer )
Black dwarf, photosphere, Neutron star, latitude, longitude, equinox, and other such terms and definitions must be learned. Similarly, the layers of the Earth namely, crust, mantle, core; minerals found on Earth, etc., need to be noted.
Match the following
Crust - up to 100 km
Core - 2900 km to 6400 km
Mantle - 100 km to 2900 km
Which is correctly matched?
1,2,3 ( answer )
None of the above
The main types or classes of rocks, namely, igneous, sedimentary, metamorphic, their modes of formation, places where they are found, their types and constituents, and similarly the main theories of landforms such as continental drift theory, seafloor spreading theory, plate tectonic theory, etc., need to be studied. All these form the foundation of our understanding of geography. Folding and its types, faulting and its types, weathering, and its types, etc., will also be useful in UPSC and TNPSC main examinations.
Mountains can be classified into the fold, block and volcanic mountains. Fold mountains can be further classified into 1. young fold - example Himalayas, Alps, Andes; 2. mature fold - example Appalachian, Cape mountain in South Africa; and 3. old fold - example Aravalli, Scottish mountains. Block mountains cause the formation of rift valleys because of the tensional force in them. Example - the Black Forest in Germany. Lastly, volcanic mountains are formed by lava deposits. Example - Hawaii mountains. As with mountains, study the various types and examples of plateaus, plains, islands, deserts, etc., also.
Statement I If annual rainfall is below 10 cm the place is called a desert
Statement II Kalahari desert in Africa is an example of a coastal desert.
Statement I is correct
Statement II is correct
Both are wrong
Both are correct ( answer )
Learning the concepts in general geography may be slightly difficult for some of us. Going forward, we will get used to them! If we study the terms and their associated concepts by relating them to each other, they will be deeply and beautifully embedded in our minds. We will meet in next topic.