Friday, March 04, 2005

Getting Down to Business - Geography

March is here, only seven weeks until the fswe! I'm going to have to lay off blogging the current events for a while and focus solely on the exam please bear with me.

The JK (Job Knowledge) section of the exam will try to assess your geographical aptitude. Most people find that their strengths and weaknesses are easily demarcated along continental lines, making it relatively easy to prepare for this portion of the exam.

There are hundreds of sites that can offer a great deal of assistance, so don't feel limited by the links here - these are sites that I thought would be of the greatest benefit to myself.

1:) Primary Sources - Designerz is geared more toward finetuning your specific knowledge about individual countries, by linking you directly to information-specific sites within and concerning each locale. Have you forgotten the Administrative Regions in Russia? The structure of Indonesian government? Need to reread the Constitution of Namibia? The links all start here.

2:) Extensive Country Overviews - For information-intensive study, the CIA World Factbook and the U.S. Department of State both have exhaustive background notes on most, if not all countries and their "land, people, history, government, political conditions, economy, and foreign relations" etc. It's also possible to receive this same information via email as it is updated through one of the State's Mailing Lists. Look for one called 'DOSBACK'.

3:) Quick Country Overviews - Travel Document Systems (TDS) gives the quick and dirty lowdown on each country, short multi-paragraph blurbs on a country's people, geography, history, culture, economy and government. It's sorted by continent and I love it! On the other hand, if you prefer to start with regional maps and 'drill down' to country specifics, then will be worth a look.

4:) Test Yourself! - Test your knowledge in a variety of ways with Sheppard Software and/or Geoquiz, both of which essentially only test country names and map placement.

5:) Review, Review - Print out detailed maps at Xpeditions or also at Lastly, don't forget to brush up on the World Capitals.