Texas World Geography
Don't mess with Texas…EOC.
"World geography!" You might say. "How exciting! It sounds…um, map-py. Are there maps? Maps!" We know the feeling. The world is a big, big place, and humans have come up with an equally overwhelming number of ways to understand it. Luckily, that's where Shmoop's guide to the Texas World Geography End-of-Course Assessment comes in. We cover everything from government to culture to economics to geography—and, yes, there are even a few maps thrown in.
What's Inside Shmoop's Online Texas EOC World Geography Prep
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Here, you'll find…
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STAAR-speak: "The student is expected to interpret maps to explain the division of land, including man-made and natural borders, into separate political units such as cities, states, or countries."
What this standard really wants you to know is how to read maps on the STAAR and use the how to make conclusions about how the land is organized.
Good thing you're already a pro.
If you've ever looked up a friend's address online for driving instructions, Googled how long it would take to get to the nearest shopping mall, or silently handed over your smartphone when your dad finally admits that you're about three states away from Mount Rushmore, you've read maps.
On the Texas World Geography EOC exam, one of the main concepts you'll need to know is the difference between man-made and natural boundaries. Man-made boundaries are divisions between states or countries that are determined by people. Something like the boundary between Arizona and New Mexico is man-made; you can tell because it's a perfectly straight line, which is a pretty general giveaway for a man-made boundary. Many states west of the Mississippi have man-made boundaries that were established before settlers arrived in the territories and made it difficult to draw straight lines.
Natural boundaries are based on geographic features like rivers or mountain ranges, which aren't quite as easy to move around. Unlike man-made boundaries, natural boundaries tend to be more irregular or jagged because they follow things like the flow of a river, which rarely runs in a perfectly straight line. (If you see one that does, call us.) The border between Texas and Mexico is a good example of this, since it lies right over the Rio Grande.