Geography Questions and Answers

Start Your Free Trial

What is the importance and definition of a map?

Expert Answers info

Kale Emmerich eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2019

write1,138 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Business

A map is any sort of plot or guide that is used for direction. In cartography, a map is a geological display of the layout of a region that is used for guidance and direction. There are brain maps and cardiovascular maps that outline the layout of different systems in the body, and there are stellar maps that show the location and movement of the stars and planets in the heavens.

A map is important because it is used to predict and figure out where things are located. A map is also necessary in order to establish a path, either for traveling somewhere (geographically) or for following something through a region (such as following the flow of blood through certain blood vessels).

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

pohnpei397 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write35,413 answers

starTop subjects are History, Literature, and Social Sciences

A map is any sort of an organized representation of a given physical space.  Maps typically try to show relevant aspects of the actual physical space that they represent on a much smaller scale.  Maps can show a variety of things.  Maps can show where streets run in a city.  They can show where certain physical features such as mountains and rivers are.  They can show what areas of the world make up the territories of the various countries. 

Maps are very important because of the information that they can impart to us.  For example, a road map is very important for a person who is trying to travel in an unfamiliar place.  The road map can help that person know where they are going and plan out alternate routes to get to that destination.  As another example, a topographical map can show a civil engineer where the best place to put a road would be.  The engineer can look at the map and see what route would be easiest to build.  At the same time, though, that engineer might want to look at another map that shows land ownership.  The engineer might have to consider both the topography and who owns the land when considering where to put the road.  Basically, anyone who wants to be able to look at the ways in which various things are spread out across a given physical area can benefit from using a map.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial