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GEOGRPH-105 - California Geography - Jeremy Patrich

Course:California Geography
Professor:Jeremy Patrich
  • Online
  • Hybrid
  • InPerson
Course Length:
  • Applies to All Course Lengths


profile photo of Jeremy Patrich

Hello! My name is Jeremy Patrich, and I will be your instructor this term! The College of the Canyons and I am excited that you chose this course, and I am looking forward to getting to know you during the semester. Whether this course is on-line, hybrid or in-person, we will have lots of interaction via the pre-recorded chapter summaries and YouTube lectures, discussion boards, weekly announcements, emails, and even social networking! Remember, that regardless of the semester length, it will be the same amount of content and work, in other words, this means that there are the same number of assignments and reading in a 4-week course as there is in a 16-week course.

It is my goal for you to accomplish your academic goals, and I will provide you with a variety of resources including videos, podcasts, practice tests, study guides, and even extra credit to help you succeed. Do not hesitate to email me with any questions- and I look forward to sharing my course with you.

Living in California, understanding its geography is really an important part of understanding the culture. Some topics covered are:

  • Geology
  • Weather
  • Water Resources
  • Pop Culture (Disney!!)
  • Urban Landscapes
  • Architecture and more!


This video introduces the content and instructor for this course. We will also discuss how to navigate through Canvas (for those taking this online).

Course Description

Explores California’s physical features, such as its mountains, valleys, deserts, and coastline, and the ways in which these features and regions have influenced the human and physical landscape. Topics include California's weather & climate, natural resources, native vegetation & flora, cultural landscapes, ethnic diversity, agricultural & urban regions, water resources, and California’s economy. Field trips may be required

What to Expect in this Course

California Geography is a three unit course, that is packed with a ton of fun and interactive experiences.  I teach using modules because I like seeing content and assignment chunked together. I have outlined below an average weeks' workload, so you may have a better idea as to what to expect workwise. I also like to unlock several modules at a time to provide students the opportunity to work ahead. 

Geography 105 | Week 12 Overview.

This week we begin looking at California's population and migration, in which I have provided a lecture on major events in California's population growth, as well as a few short clips from PBS that help paint a picture of immigration, diversity, and the 'Shades of LA'. We all certainly understand the phrase that Los Angeles is a melting pot... but what does that look like? Where do we see diversity beyond people? We observe it in food, architecture, art, dance, and sports! One last thing to think of... what about you? What brought you or your family to California?

Lastly, as you work through this week’s modules, here is what you have due:

  • One module quiz (5-questions & untimed)
  • One discussion board with at least two peer responses
  • One module assignment (500-word written response) 
  • Two short readings
  • Three short lecture videos

Types of Assessments

Assignments & Grades

Regardless of the length of the term, each module will be structured the same way; with a discussion board, a module assignment (or short written response) and a 5- question module quiz. Depending on the length of the term, it is possible that students may have to complete two or even three modules per week- so be sure to keep an eye on that!

Each of these components will be graded separately, and your total grade for the course will be determined by a combined grade-point total being weighed as indicated below:

  • The BIG Exam: (10%). Exams are a mixture of multiple-choice, true/false, and short-answer responses. Exams will be open notes, and the content will be pulled from previously completed work. Due to the length of certain intersessions, it is possible that there may be only one cumulative Final Exam. Due to time constraints, big exams may not be submitted late, under any circumstance, so be sure to complete these exams within the 7-day window, and be sure to communicate with me if something comes up.
  • Assignments: (40%). As stated earlier, the assignments for this course include 5-question quizzes to short written responses. Please take note of the Canvas Calendar to make sure you are on top of your assignments, as this tool will help you plan your successes for the week! Another great way for students to balance their workload and to avoid late work is to work ahead!
  • Online Discussion Boards: (30%). Discussion boards are a forum for students to discuss with each other their observations and interpretations on a provided topic or video. Each forum assignment is a two-part assignment – it consists of an initial post (worth 6 points) and a follow-up post (worth 2 points each). Each discussion will have a rubric and set of guidelines to encourage students, and further breakdown the grading rubric. Although it will be mentioned in the discussion rubrics, students can earn extra credit on every discussion board, by simply engaging in conversation with your discussions, and responding to more than the required two initial posts! Students will earn 1 point for every additional response, (up to 2 points per discussion).
  • John Steinbeck Term Paper: (20%). Each student will be selecting one of John Steinbeck's shorter California-based stories to write a book review on. More details are found within the first module on Canvas! 

Final Grade Calculations

  • A: 100%-89.6%
  • B: 89.5%-79.6%
  • C: 79.5%-69.6%
  • D: 69.5%-59.6%
  • F: 59.5-Below

Textbook Information

This course is ZTC (Zero Text Cost), the free text is integrated into the Canvas modules

Other Relevant Course Information

Waitlists: I will do my best to accommodate all students on the waitlist. I will provide permissions to those on the waitlist first, so keep an eye on your Canyons email account. 

Additional Resources


This course can be accessed on the first day of class via Canvas at Log into Canvas using your CanyonsID single sign-on:

  • CanyonsID Username is your COC student email address (Ex:
  • CanyonsID Password is your COC student email password

Please visit the Get to Know Your Online Classroom page for help logging into Canvas and for tips on using Canvas and Zoom. Canvas Chat Support is also available 24/7 for any Canvas related issues.

Online Education

Check out the Online Education website for more information on a variety of topics that can help you be a successful online student such as: exam proctoring, learning styles, computer skills, and tips for student success. If this is your first online course, feel free to take our online learning readiness assessment to assess your skills.

The Learning Center (TLC)

The TLC provides FREE online tutoring resources to COC students!

Academic Accommodation Center (AAC)

College of the Canyons AAC provides educational services and access for eligible students with documented disabilities who intend to pursue coursework at COC. A variety of programs and services are available which afford eligible students with disabilities the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of the college programs and activities through appropriate and reasonable accommodations. For more information on their services visit the Academic Accomodation Center website.

Online Counseling

The Counseling Department offers appointments online. You can schedule an appointment by visiting the Online Counseling website. Counselors can help you map out a plan to reach your educational goals as well as advise you on course selection and registration.

Management of Stress and Mental Health

Often the pressure on our students is very strong, involving academic commitments, relationships, outside jobs and family pressure to name a few. The staff and faculty of College of the Canyons are here to see you succeed academically and care about your emotional and physical health. You can learn more about the broad range of confidential student services, including counseling and mental health services available on campus by visiting the Student Health & Wellness Center in the Student Services Building (across from the bookstore). The phone number is 661-362-3259 that you can call 24/7. You can also e mail for an appointment at At the Canyon Country Campus the Health Center will be in the new Student Services Building.

Also, the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline number is now 988. All students at COC are encouraged to enter that phone number in their cells. You can call it when you, or someone you know, is having thoughts of suicide or is in severe distress.

You can also now use the Crisis Text Line: Just text "Courage" to 741741. Someone will get back to you immediately. Its free, 24/7, and confidential.

Veterans Resource Center

The College of the Canyons Veterans Resource Center is a department within the Student Services Division at the college, created to help veterans and veteran dependents with applying to College of the Canyons, enrolling in classes, and requesting VA Education or Vocational Benefits. For more information please visit the Veterans Resource Center website, email or phone (661) 362-3469.


The Library provides live online and in-person research help, access to a full range of e-resources and physical materials that support the curriculum, individual and group study areas, and much more!

Last updated: 05/03/2024 Sub#: 850