The disciplines, Geography and Geology often sound similar, as they both studies the Earth, however, the subject matter of both the two are completely different. As the former is concerned with the Earth, its environment and inhabitants, the latter talks about the Earth and its history.
Geology is nothing but Geoscience, i.e. the science which is concerned with the physical structure, substance, evolution and dynamics of the Earth. It also studies those processes which resulted in its structure. For this purpose, the rocks are surveyed, to disclose the Earth’s history.
In contrast, Geography is the science which gives you the description of the Earth, as the home of inhabitants. Its subject matter of study is landscapes, properties, places, living organisms, environment and phenomena of the Earth which vary over space. Now, let’s take a look at the article given below, which talks about the difference between geography and geology in detail.
Content: Geography Vs Geology
|Basis for Comparison||Geography||Geology|
|Meaning||Geography studies different places, and relationship amidst living beings and their surroundings.||Geology is the Earth Science, whose subject matter of study is the solid Earth, i.e. the land directly underneath our feet.|
|What is it?||A science which deals with the description of areal differentiation of the surface of Earth.||A scientific discipline which studies the Earth and its past and anticipates future implications.|
|Discusses||How human culture influences the natural environment? How different regions have an impact on the people living there?||How the Earth is made? What it is composed of? How did it transform over the years?|
|Subject Matter||It records the area of land forms, length of mountain ranges and coastal lines, forms of water sources and its location, human activities, etc.||It researches about the surface of land, rocks and its types, energy sources and its sustainability, climatic changes, the impact of development on the environment, etc.|
Definition of Geography
Geography is the field of study which is concerned with the physical properties of the Earth, its places, spaces, environment and human activity, which influences and is influenced by it. The essence of Geography is the study of various places, biophysical processes and its characteristics, distribution of population across space, the relationship between living organisms and their environment.
A Greek polymath Eratosthenes coined the word geography for the very first time. The word is originated from two Greek terms ‘geo’ and ‘graphos’ which means Earth and description respectively. It seeks to find out the cause and effect relationship amidst any two phenomena.
There are two branches of geography, given hereunder:
- Human Geography: As the name signifies, human geography is one that is concerned with the study of humans, i.e. people, their culture, economies, communities and interaction with the natural environment. The main sub-branches of human geography are social geography, population and settlement geography, economic geography, historical geography, political geography.
- Physical Geography: In physical geography, the processes and patterns of the natural environment are discussed, i.e. dynamics of landforms and the environment, spatial distribution, characteristics of flora and fauna, etc. Geomorphology, Climatology, Hydrology, Soil Geography are its main sub-branches.
Definition of Geology
Geology can be defined as that multi-disciplinary science which studies the Earth, i.e. the physical substance or material that constitutes the mother Earth. It also describes the composition and components of those materials, the processes which formed the material and the structure, the water flowing over the surface and present underground.
In addition to the above, Geology encompasses the research of those organisms that live on the planet and that lived earlier. It also surveys, how the Earth’s compositions, processes and organisms have undergone change, with the passage of time and predicts the changes that will take place in the future.
The solid characteristics of any planet or satellite are also the subject matter of Geology. It has certain tools which ascertain the ages of the rocks located in a specific region and also explains the history of those rocks. It provides the history of the Earth with adequate facts and proofs, by supplying the pieces of evidence of Plate Tectonics, the evolution of life and the past climate. Basically there are two branches of Geology:
- Physical Geology: It is all about the analysis of physical characteristics of the Earth and the processes which determined its final structure. In this type of Geology, the geologists study rocks, volcanoes, mountains, oceans, seas, etc.
- Historical Geology: It is mainly concerned with the history of Earth since it came into being. The Geologists also studies the history of life that existed and is in existence on the planet now.
Key Differences Between Geography and Geology
Upcoming points will discuss the differences between geography and geology:
- In Geology, the Earth’s physical structure and material are studied, i.e. its interior and exterior surface. Along with that it also studies, how the Earth has come up and the ensuing processes of the material. On the other hand, Geography is a science which focuses on different environments and places of Earth’s surface and their interaction with human society.
- Geography is nothing but a science which accounts for the areal differentiation of the Earth’s surface, such as the cropping pattern varies from one region to another. However, the difference in the cropping technique, as a phenomenon, mainly depends on the soil, climate, the investment made, market demand etc.
Conversely, Geology is a multi-disciplinary science which studies about the Earth, its origin, present scenario and future implications.
- Geography describes the way in which human culture influences the natural environment and also the way in which various regions have an impact on the people living there. As against, Geology talks about the composition, structure, material and processes of the Earth and the changes that took place over time.
- Geography keeps a record of area of landforms, length of mountain ranges and coastal line, flora and fauna, vegetation, culture, forms of water sources and its location, human activities, etc. In contrast, Geology is all about the landscapes, rocks and its types and layers of rocks, energy sources and sustainability, climatic changes, the impact of development on the environment, etc.
The study of Geology is important to make new researches about the Earth’s history and evolution and gather more knowledge about the world that surrounds us. On the other hand, the study of Geography will help in knowing about different places, spaces, and the relationship between inhabitants and the environment in a particular area.