Issues in Canadian Geography (CGC 1D)

Course Overview

Course Title: Issues in Canadian Geography, Grade 9
Course Code: CGC 1D
Grade: 9
Course Type: Academic
Credit Value: 1.0
Prerequisite: None required
Department: Social Studies and Humanities
Tuition Fee (CAD): $529

This course examines interrelationships within and between Canada’s natural and human systems and how these systems interconnect with those in other parts of the world. Students will explore environmental, economic, and social geographic issues relating to topics such as transportation options, energy choices, and urban development. Students will apply the concepts of geographic thinking and the geographic inquiry process, including spatial technologies, to investigate various geographic issues and to develop possible approaches for making Canada a more sustainable place in which to live.

Overall Curriculum Expectations

By the end of the course, students will gain proficiency in the following areas:

Geographical Inquiry and Skill Development
  • Geographic Inquiry: use the geographic inquiry process and the concepts of geographic thinking when investigating issues relating to Canadian geography;
  • Developing Transferable Skills: apply in everyday contexts skills, including spatial technology skills, developed through the investigation of Canadian geography, and identify some careers in which a background in geography might be an asset

Interactions in the Physical Environment
  • The Physical Environment and Human Activities: analyse various interactions between physical processes, phenomena, and events and human activities in Canada
  • Interrelationships between Physical Systems, Processes, and Events: analyse characteristics of various physical processes, phenomena, and events affecting Canada and their interrelationship with global physical systems
  • The Characteristics of Canada’s Natural Environment: describe various characteristics of the natural environment and the spatial distribution of physical features in Canada, and explain the role of physical processes, phenomena, and events in shaping them

Managing Canada’s Resources and Industries
  • The Sustainability of Resources: analyse impacts of resource policy, resource management, and consumer choices on resource sustainability in Canada
  • The Development of Resources: analyse issues related to the distribution, availability, and development of natural resources in Canada from a geographic perspective
  •  Industries and Economic Development: assess the relative importance of different industrial sectors to the Canadian economy and Canada’s place in the global economy, and analyse factors that influence the location of industries in these sectors
Changing Populations
  • Population Issues: analyse selected national and global population issues and their implications for Canada
  • Immigration and Cultural Diversity: describe the diversity of Canada’s population, and assess some social, economic, political, and environmental implications of immigration and diversity for Canada
  •  Demographic Patterns and Trends: analyse patterns of population settlement and various demographic characteristics of the Canadian population
Livable Communities
  • The Sustainability of Human Systems: analyse issues relating to the sustainability of human systems in Canada
  • Impacts of Urban Growth: analyse impacts of urban growth in Canada
  • Characteristics of Land Use in Canada: analyse characteristics of land use in various Canadian communities, and explain how some factors influence land-use patterns.

Unit Overview

Unit 1: Introduction to Canadian Geography
Your experience with grade 7 and 8 Social Studies will put you in a great place to begin studying Issues in Canadian Geography and in particular this first unit. Here you will begin your transformation into a geographer, but first you must learn how geographers think!
10 hours
Unit 2: Interactions in the Physical Environment
Many people think of the physical environment when they think of geography. They think of mountains, rivers, glaciers, climate, weather, vegetation and soil. But it is more than that! In addition, we need to know how these elements interact with each other, and how they impact the lives of the people who live in that natural environment!
15 hours
Unit 3: Managing Canada’s Resources and Industries
How different are your “needs” from your “wants”? This is a good question to consider as we move into a unit that is devoted to our natural resources and the industries that utilize them. It may sound cliché, but we cannot survive without clean water and food. We cannot enjoy our Canadian lifestyle without vast energy resources. Many of our resources are not renewable; once we use them they are gone for the foreseeable future. It is also true that our resources are one of the most powerful ways we are connected to other parts of the world, either by buying consumer goods or by selling raw natural resources. Let’s get started by looking at one of your “wants.”
25 hours
Unit 4: Changing Populations
In this unit, you will explore demographics. This branch of geography is the study of changing human populations. You will learn what data a demographer needs in order to understand the patterns and trends of a given population. Armed with this data, public and private organizations can plan for a sustainable future. You will be introduced to three issues that can be seen on both the global and national stages. Canada faces challenges in providing seniors, aboriginals, immigrants, and refugees with the kind of quality of life Canada is known for. How will you recommend we should proceed to resolve these issues?
20 hours
Unit 5: Livable Communities
Canada is a great country! But could it be even better? Could we grow our cities in a way that is more sustainable? More liveable? Are there other communities in Canada that we can learn from? In this last unit, you will consider how “greening” our communities might be the way to sustainability and liveability for more Canadians!
25 hours
Unit 6: Culminating Activity
Throughout the course, you have been busy collecting newspaper articles and completing issue analysis frameworks. The final unit will complete the course and it consists of three parts:
– Part 1: Issue Analysis
– Part 2: Annotated G.I.S. Map of Canadian Issues
– Part 3: Research Paper: Canada’s Most Vital Issue
15 hours
Total Hours110 hours
Teaching and Learning Strategies

Enthusiastic teachers and instructors bring unique teaching and assessment methods to the classroom because students learn best when they are engaged in a range of different learning techniques. The activities allow students to apply learned concepts to current world social, economic, and environmental issues which impact daily life. Opportunities to relate knowledge and skills to these wider contexts will motivate students to learn in a meaningful way and to become life-long learners. Instructors also inspire students to become successful problem solvers by investigating, providing alternative reasoning and solutions to problems as well as dedicating time and energy to the tasks at hand.

Effective instructional techniques utilize students’ existing knowledge and by capturing their interest and engaging in meaningful participation. Students will be engaged when they are able to see the correlation between the learned concepts and their ability to apply them to the world around them and in real-life situations. Students will have the chance to learn using a wide range of methods which include self-learning, cooperative learning as well as learning through teacher guidance as well has hands-on experiences. The methods and strategies teachers implement will be tailored to the learning requirements and the individual needs of the students. Teachers will achieve effective instruction in an online environment by using videos, interactive animations and virtual labs and discussion forums and video conferencing/live chat.

Individualized Accommodations for Students

Our methodology for student assessment follows the Growing Success Assessment, Evaluation and Reporting in Ontario Schools First Edition, Covering Grades 1 to 12 (2010) manual published by the Ontario Ministry of Education. Assessment is the process of gathering information that accurately reflects how well a student is achieving the curriculum expectations in a subject or course. Assessment tools are designed to improve student learning which includes descriptive feedback, coaching, observations and self-assessments. In addition, student can be independent and set individual goals, monitor progress against these goals, determine next steps and reflect on their thinking and learning.

For a student with special education needs who requires modified or alternative expectations, assessment and evaluation of his or her achievement will be based on the modified curriculum expectations or alternative expectations outlined in the student’s Individual Education Plan (IEP). Accommodations required to facilitate the student’s learning may be identified by the teacher, however recommendations from a School Board generated in the form of an Individual Education Plan (IEP) should be used, if available. 


For a student with special education needs who requires “accommodations only”, as described in his or her IEP, assessment and evaluation of achievement will be based on the appropriate subject/ grade/course curriculum expectations and the achievement levels outlined in the curriculum documents.

A student’s Individual Education Plan (IEP) describes his or her educational program and any accommodations that may be required. The IEP specifies whether the student requires:
accommodations only; or
modified learning expectations, with the possibility of accommodations;

Assessment accommodations are changes in procedures that enable the student to demonstrate his
or her learning. These may include:
visual supports to clarify verbal instructions, assistive devices, or some form of human support;
alternative methods for the student to demonstrate his or her achievement of expectations (e.g., allowing the student to take tests orally) or the allowance of extra time to complete the assessment;
alternative settings that may be more suitable for the student to demonstrate his or her learning.

If accommodations are required to assess and evaluate student learning, the strategies to be used are outlined in the student’s IEP.
For further details about the different types of accommodations, modified learning expectation and alternative programs please refer to Growing Success Assessment, Evaluation and Reporting in Ontario Schools First Edition, Covering Grades 1 to 12 (2010)

Materials Required

Standard Computer Requirements for all courses:
-Processor speed of 2 GHz or faster
-Memory of 4 GB RAM or greater
-A high speed internet connection with a connection speed of 10 MB/s or better.
-Monitor and video card with 1024×768 or greater resolution
-Keyboard and Mouse is recommended
-Speakers/Headphones