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Unit 6 Review (Industry)

written by

Amanda DoAmaral

amanda doamaral

published on august 5, 2020

Last updated on August 3, 2020

Unit VI. Industrialization & Economic Development (13-17%)

In AP® Human Geography, unit 6 covers the development of industrialization and the economic development of states across the world. The following guide will be updated periodically with hyperlinks to excellent resources. As you are reviewing for this unit, focus on the key concepts!

You can request the full Ultimate Guide to AP Human Geography here.

Unit 6 Summary

⚡ Watch: AP Human Geography - Industrialization

The following summary is from AMSCO AP Human Geography:

The hearth of the Industrial Revolution was Great Britain in the 18th century. As people learned to use water power and coal energy to manufacture goods, they saw large increases in agricultural productivity, population, and wealth. Industrialization has diffused throughout the world, reshaping all aspects of life.

Since the start of the Industrial Revolution, people have developed statistical measures to describe changes in society. Some measure the total output of each country, the distribution of income, rates of childbirth, the number of people who can read, or rates of literacy, and the different opportunities available to males and females. Scholars such as W. W. Rostow and Immanuel Wallerstein used this information to create models or theories of spatial patterns of economic and social development in countries around the world.

The diffusion of industrialization generally increased trade and interdependence, which improved the standard of living for most people. But as jobs moved from one place to another place, some people lost their jobs and an international division of labor emerged. One cost was to the environment. In response to the depletion of natural resources, pollution, and the results of climate change, some people have advocated an evolved model that stresses sustainable development.

Unit 6 Essential Questions

  • How did the diffusion of industrialism affect people around the world?
  • How has growing economic interdependence changed spatial relationships among people in the world?
  • What does development mean, how can it be measured, and how can it be encouraged?

Models to Know from Unit 6

STUDY TIP: The models will appear all over the exam, in both multiple choice and FRQs. You should be able to identify each one from a description or image, apply them to examples, and use them in your writing. 

  1. Rostow’s Stages of Growth
  2. Wallerstein’s World Systems Theory
  3. Core Periphery Model
  4. Dependency Theory
  5. Weber’s Least Cost Theory

⚡ Watch: AP Human Geography - Economic Interdependence 

Past FRQs from Unit 6

STUDY TIP: Content from the this unit has appeared on the FRQs thirteen times since 2001. Take a look at these questions before you review the key concepts & vocabulary below to get a sense of how you will be assessed. Then, come back to these later and practice writing as many as you can!

2018 - Question 1: Gender Equality & Empowerment

2016 - Question 1: Development - Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary economic activities

2014 - Question 1: Compare Rostow & Wallerstein models of development

2013 - Question 1: Agglomeration industries: Silicon Valley

2011 - Question 3: Industrial Location: Auto Industry in the United States

2010 - Question 1: Weber's Least Cost Theory: Location of Ethanol Plants in the US

2008 - Question 3: Gender Development/Education

2007 - Question 2: International Division of Labor

2006 - Question 2: Location of Services: Call Centers

2004 - Question 1: Location of Industries: Maquiladora Plants in Mexico


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2003 - Question 1: Core-Periphery Model

2001 - Question 3: Rostow's Stages of Development

2008 - Question 1: Von Thunen Model/Burgess Concentric Zone Model Comparison (Agriculture/Industry)


*The following outline was adapted from the AP® Human Geography Course Description as published by College Board in 2015 found here. This outline reflects the most recent revisions to the course.

  1. Growth and diffusion of industrialization

    1. The changing roles of energy and technology

    2. Industrial Revolution

    3. Evolution of economic cores and peripheries

    4. Geographic critiques of models of economic localization (i.e. land rent, comparative costs of transportation), industrial location, economic development, and world systems

  2. Contemporary patterns and impacts of industrialization and development

    1. Spatial organization of the world economy

    2. Variations in levels of development
    3. Deindustrialization
    4. Pollution, health, and quality of life
    5. Industrialization, environmental change, and sustainability
    6. Local development initiatives; government policies

⚡ Watch: AP Human Geography - Industrial Revolution: Start, Growth, and Diffusion and Economic Sectors and Patterns


STUDY TIP: These are the concepts and vocabulary from unit 6 that most commonly appear on the exam. Create a quizlet deck to make sure you are familiar with these terms!

  • Agglomeration

  • Air pollution
  • Assembly line production/Fordism
  • Bid rent theory
  • Break-of-bulk point
  • Canadian industrial heartland
  • Carrier efficiency
  • Core-periphery model
  • Cultural convergence
  • Deglomeration
  • Deindustrialization
  • Dependency theory
  • Economic sectors
  • Economies of scale
  • Ecotourism
  • Energy consumption
  • Entrepôt
  • Export processing zone
  • Fixed costs
  • Footloose industry
  • Foreign direct investment
  • Four Tigers
  • Greenhouse effect
  • Gross domestic product (GDP)
  • Gross national product (GNP)
  • Growth poles
  • Heartland/rimland
  • Human Development Index
  • Industrial Revolution
  • Industrial location theory
  • Industrial regions (place, fuel source, characteristics)
  • Industrialization
  • Industry (receding, growing)
  • Infrastructure
  • International division of labor
  • Just in time delivery
  • Labor-intensive
  • Least-cost location
  • Major manufacturing regions
  • Manufacturing exports
  • Manufacturing/warehouse locations
  • Maquiladora
  • Multiplier effect
  • Neocolonialism
  • Outsourcing
  • Ozone depletion
  • Physical Quality of Life Index
  • Postindustrial
  • Purchasing power parity
  • Refrigeration
  • Resource crisis
  • Resource orientation
  • Special economic zones (China)
  • Specialized economic zones
  • Substitution principle
  • Technology gap
  • Technology transfer
  • Threshold/range
  • Time-space compression
  • Transnational corporation
  • Variable costs
  • Weight-gaining industry
  • Weight-losing industry
  • World Systems Theory
  • World cities
  • “Stages of Growth”model

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