Chapterwise Important Topics in Geography for UPSC MAINS Optional

Paper I Section A
Geomorphology

  • Geographical Cycle of Erosion (Davis)
  • Geographical Cycle of Erosion (Penck)
  • Isostasy
  • Continental drift Theory
  • Plate Tectonics
  • Polycyclic landforms (Short Note)
  • Volcanoes (Short Note)
  • Earthquakes (Short Note - Also discuss P, S & L waves)
  • Endogenetic & Exogenetic forces & the landforms produced
  • Geosynclines (short Note)
  • Earth's Interior & Seismic Studies
  • Recent Views on Mountain Building
  • Tsunamis
  • Applied Geomorphology (Short Note)
  • Denudation Chronology & Erosional Surfaces
  • Slope Development
  • Geomagnetism
  • Channel Morphology


Climatology

  • Origin, movement & characteristics of airmasses
  • Tropical Cyclone
  • Temperate Cyclone
  • Difference between Tropical & Temperate Cyclone
  • Monsoon
  • Tricellular model of circulation
  • Koppen Classification & its drawbacks (For India refer Sheet 3)
  • Thornthwaite (1948 scheme) - (For India refer Sheet 3)
  • Trewartha's Classification - (For India refer Sheet 3 in excel)
  • Jet Streams (Short Note)
  • Structure & Composition of Earth's Atmosphere
  • Temperature Inversion (Short Note)
  • Global Warming & its effects at different places
  • Hydrological cycle (Short Note)
  • Types & Distribution of Precipitation
  • Atmospheric Stability & Instability
  • Applied Climatology
  • Urban Climate
  • Global Climate Change. Role & response of man
  • Heat Budget of the Earth


Oceanography

  • Coral Reefs - theories of coral reef formation
  • Coral Bleaching
  • Ocean Currents in the Atlantic
  • Cursory Look at currents of Pacific & Indian Ocean
  • Ocean Deposits (Terrigenous & Pelagic deposits)
  • Temperature distribution in Oceans (Short Note)
  • Salinity
  • Law of the Sea (Short Note)
  • Marine Pollution
  • Waves
  • Tides
  • Marine Resources - Biotic, Mineral & Energy

 Biogeography

  • Soil & Its Introduction (Esp Factors Forming Soil Profile)
  • Soil Profile & Its Genesis
  • Old System of Soil Classification
  • New System of Classification
  • Major biotic regions of the world & basis for division
  • Social Forestry (Short Note)
  • Agro Forestry (Short Note)
  • Soil Erosion
  • Soil Conservation
  • Soil Degradation (Include Salinity, waterlogging, desertification etc)
  • Wildlife (Short Note)
  • Major Gene Pool Centers

Environmental Geography

  • Ecosystem - Concept, components & functioning (Most Imp)
  • Biodiversity (short note)
  • Environmental Pollution (Including Ozone Depletion)
  • Environment Pollution (Water, Solid, Radioactive, Noise)
  • Environmental Degradation
  • Environment Policy & Legislation
  • Influence of Man on Ecology & Environment


Paper I Section B
Perspectives in Human Geography

  • Quantitative Revolution in geography
  • Radical Approach
  • Humanistic Approach
  • Welfare Approach (short note)
  • Behavioural approach
  • Determinism (including Neo-determinism)
  • Possibilism
  • Areal Differentiation (short note)
  • Regional Synthesis (short Note)
  • Cultural Regions of the world (short Note)


Economic Geography

  • World agriculture - Typology of agricultural regions (Whittlesey)
  • Limits to growth 7 (Short Note)
  • Dryland Farming (short note - Give Global Perspective in Paper I)
  • Land Capability (short note - Give Global Perspective)
  • Resource conservation & Management


Population & Settlement Geography

  • Causes & Consequence of Migration (Dig on Page 52 -
  • Ensemble)
  • Internal Structure of cities
  • Primate City (Short Note)
  • Rank Size Rule (Short Note)
  • Rural Urban Fringe (Short Note)
  • Concept of optimum population (Short Note)
  • Sphere of Urban Influence & Its delimitation
  • Satellite Town (Short Note)


Regional Planning

  • Concept of a region & types of region & Methods of
  • Regionalization
  • Regional Imbalance & how to correct it. (Global not Indian)
  • Sustainable development
  • Growth Centre & growth poles.


Models, Theories &
Laws in Human Geo

  • System Analysis in human geography
  • Malthusian, Marxian & Demographic transition theory
  • Central Place theory of Christaller
  • Losch's Central Place Theory
  • Von Thunen Model of agricultural location
  • Weber's Model of Industrial Location
  • Rostov's model of stages of growth
  • Heartland Concept (Diagram Must)
  • Rimland Concept (Diagram Must)
  • Frontiers & Boundaries
  • Laws of International Boundaries