Geography research is divided into two major areas: physical geography (Earth's physical features and changes) and cultural geography (human activity and its interrelationships with the environment). Geography is an interdisciplinary field, combining elements of history, political science, and economics with environmental studies, geology, and technology.
For research on physical geography, primary sources, trade publications and government documents are excellent places to start. Historic maps and first-hand accounts of early explorers can be found in primary source databases. Government documents will also include current and historic maps and records, as well as environmental policies and landmark legislation from national and state governments.
For research on cultural geography, consider which disciplinary lens you will use: political science, sociology, psychology, education, and business journals contain scholarly articles that may be relevant to the topic you are researching.
Primary sources can be accessed in one of two ways: library databases and archives. Large publishing companies collect digitized primary sources and sell them as databases to libraries—the CSU-Pueblo Library subscribes to more than 20 of these. Archives are privately held collections, often at universities and museums. Many archives have digitized their collections and made them freely available online.
For help citing print maps, aerial imagery, globes, and geospatial data, visit: