New AP: Human Geography, the ‘intro AP’


Andreas Combos, Copy Editor

The week before school started, students at Athens Drive received their class schedules. This year, a new class was seen on select schedules: Advanced Placement (AP) Human Geography, taught by Trena Kirby.

AP Human Geography deals with the patterns and processes that have shaped human understanding of the Earth’s surface. The class is not about maps, but about how humans use and change the surrounding world. This includes learning about methods and tools used by geographers, spacial concepts and landscape analysis. Kirby gave her insight on the class.

“If you put all of the social studies classes in a big circle, Human Geography connects them all,” said Kirby. “The class is focused around why people live where they live.”

AP Human Geography is new not only to the students at Athens Drive High School, but to Kirby as well. She looks forward to the school year with what this class has to offer for students seeking a challenge.

“It is a good class for students to get their feet wet in the AP level. It is definitely more work but worth it for the students [so they can] gain global understanding,” said Kirby.

With its AP title, Human Geography is a college level course. Like all AP classes, the class can provide two extra points on GPAs, depending on the final grade. The unique part about Human Geography is that it is the only AP class offered specifically to sophomores, something like an introductory AP class. However, juniors and seniors may enroll in the class as well.

Athens students may have had Kirby as their teacher before; she has and will continue to teach Civics and Economics. The former sophomore class is now being revamped and directed at seniors.

“[Human Geography] will be hard to teach at first because it is new to me,” Kirby said. “I am already enjoying it, though.”

Students were eager to give AP Human Geography a try, including Rosie Wilson, sophomore, who was both excited and interested about the class.

“We will get to learn not only about physical features of the world but what happens throughout them,” said Wilson. “I am looking forward to discovering what it is like for people in different geographic regions.”

Whether or not the class becomes a success, AP Human Geography offers something new and different for students wanting to challenge themselves and boost their GPA.