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US History Terms

United States History Terms for STAAR Test

TermDefinition
Demand the quantities of a good or service that consumers are willing and able to buy at various prices during a given period of time
Democracy a system of government in which political control is exercised by all the people, either directly or through their elected representatives.
Desertification the spread of desert conditions in arid and semiarid regions resulting from a combination of climatic changes and increasing human pressures such as overgrazing, removal of vegetation, and cultivation of marginal land.
Dictatorship a system of government in which those who rule usually acquire and maintain authority by force and cannot be held responsible to the will of the people.
Diffusion the spread of people, ideas, technology, and products among places
Direct Democracy a democratic system of government in which the people exercise political control and participate directly indecision making
Direction Indicator an element of a map used to show direction, usually labeling north and frequently all cardinal directions
Discrimination unfair treatment of a person or group based on a variety of prejudices
Division of Labor the separation of the total work required to produce a good or service into individual interrelated tasks
Due Process of Law The right of every citizen to be protected against arbitrary action by the government.
Earth-Sun Relationship The position of the earth relative to the sun that helps to determine day and night,seasons, & time zones.
Economic Growth An increase in an economy's ability to produce goods and services over time.
Entrepreneur An individual who organizes the use of productive resources to produce goods and services
Entrepreneurship The organization of productive resources by a person willing to take risks to start a business
Ex Post Facto Law A legislative act that retroactively makes an act a crime,makes crime more serious,makes criminal punishment more severe or changes the trial rules to make conviction easier
Federalism A form of political organization in which governmental power is divided between a central government and territorial subdivisions-under US Constitution, between national and state governments
Flow Resource A resource that is neither renewable or non-renewable, but must be used when or where it occurs ex: running water, wind, sunlight
Globalization The act,process, or policy of making something worldwide in scope or application
Goods Objects that are capable of satisfying people's wants
Graphic Organizers Written or pictorial representations used to organize information ex:flow charts, webs , Venn diagrams, T-charts
Gross Domestic Product The value of all final goods and services produced within a country's borders in a given year
Habeas Corpus (writ of) A court order demanding that the individual in custody be brought into the court and shown the cause of the detention; guaranteed by the US constitution & can be suspended only in cases of rebellion or invasion
Human Characteristic/Feature An aspect of a place or a quality of the Earth's surface constructed by people including cities,parks,buildings & roads
Human Resource A productive resource consisting of the talents and skills of human beings that contribute to the production of goods and services
Imperialism A policy used by strong countries to gain social,political, & economic control over foreign territories
Initiative A petition process by which a certain percentage of voters(electors) can put a proposed constitutional amendment or statute on the ballot for popular approval or rejection or submit a proposed statute to a legislative assembly for approval
Institutionalized Discrimination Unfair treatment of a group based on prejudice & carried out by governments,organizations,& companies that limit freedoms in political,economic,social,cultural, or any other field of public life
Product Something produced by human or mechanical effort or by a natural process
Production The act of combining resources,human resources,capital goods, & entrepreneurship to make goods and services
Productive Capacity The maximum output that an economy can produce without big increases in inflation
Productive Resources The resources used to make goods and services (natural resources,human resources,capital goods)
Progressive Tax A tax for which the percentage of income paid in taxes increases as income increases
Proportional Tax A tax for which the percentage of income paid in taxes remains the same for all income levels.
Public Sector The part of the economy that involves the transactions of government
Pull Factor A social, political,economic, or environmental attraction of a new area that drew people away from their previous location
Push Factor A social, political, economic, or environmental force that drove people from their previous location to a search for a new one
Racism The belief that members of one's own race are superior physically,mentally,culturally, and morally to members of other races
Referendum Process of measure passed by a legislature is submitted(referral)to voters for final approval or rejection or petition process by which a certain percentage of electors can order recently passed legislation be submitted to voters for approval or rejection
Region An area with one or more common characteristics or features, which give it a measure of homogeneity & make it different from surrounding areas
Regressive Tax A tax for which the percentage of income paid in taxes decreases as income increases
Relative Location The location of a place in relation to other places ex: northwest, downstream
Reliability The degree to which something is trustworthy or is suitable to be depended upon
Renewable Resource A natural resource that can be regenerated if used carefully ex:fish,timber
Representative Democracy (Republic) A democratic system of government in which the people exercise political control 7 participate through elected representatives responsible for promoting the common value
Responsibilities The conditions or tasks for which a person is accountable or answerable
Rights Just claims that belong to a person by law, nature, or tradition
Scale The relationship or ratio between a linear measurement on a map and the corresponding distance on the Earth's surface
Scarcity The lack of sufficient resources to produce all the goods and services that people desire.
Secondary Source An account of an event by someone who was not present at the event.
Services Actions that are capable of satisfying people's wants
Specialization The concentration of production on fewer kinds of goods and services than are consumed.
Standard of Living A person's or group's level of material well-being, as measured by education,housing,health care, and nutrition.
Supply The quantities of a good and service that producers are willing and able to provide at various prices during a given time period.
Territory An area of land; the land and waters under the jurisdiction of a state, nation, or sovereign.
Thematic Map A portrayal on a flat surface of geographic topic ex:migration routes resource locations population densities
Theocracy A system of government headed by one or more religious leaders who claim to rule by divine authority.
Trade-off The sacrifice of one option for another when a decision is made.
Traditional Economy An economic decision in which decisions on production and consumption are based upon customs, beliefs, rituals, and habits.
Want A psychological or physical desire that can be fulfilled through the consumption of goods and services.
Absolute Location The location of a point on the earth's surface which can be expressed by a grid reference ex: latitude and longitude
Absolute Monarchy A system of government headed by a monarch as the only source of power controlling all functions of the state.
Artifact A material object of a culture such as a tool, an article of clothing, or a prepared tool.
B.C.E. Before the Common Era (also referred to as B.C.)
Barter The trade of goods and services for other goods and services without the use of money.
Benefit That which is received as an improvement or an advantage as a result of a decision
Bicameral Composed of two legislative chambers
Bill of Attainder A legislative act that inflicts punishment upon a person or group without a judicial trial.
C.E. In the Common Era (also referred to as A.D.)
Capital Good A productive resource consisting of human-made materials needed to produce goods and services; capital goods include buildings, machinery, equipment and tools.
Cardinal Directions The four main points of the compass (north,east, south, west)
Circular Flow Model A diagram that shows the flow of economic activity among sectors of the economy.
Colonialism A system where one country extends its control over foreign dependencies , especially for economic benefit.
Command Economy An economic system in which all decisions on production & consumption are made by the central government.
Comparative Advantage The ability to produce goods or services at lower opportunity cost than any other individuals or countries.
Compass Rose An element of a map used to show direction, usually showing cardinal directions and frequently intermediate directions.
Constitutional Monarchy A system of government headed by a monarch whose powers are delineated in the fundamental law of the state.
Consumer A person whose wants are satisfied by using goods and services.
Consumer Price Index A number used to measure changes in the cost of a standard group of goods and services bought by a typical urban consumer.
Consumption The purchase and/or use of goods and services.
Coordinate On of a set of numbers that determines the location of a point in a space.
Cost An alternate given up as the result of a decision.
Country A unit of political space, the entire land area of a nation or state.
Credibility The quality or state of offering reasonable grounds for being believed.
Cultural Institution An established custom, practice, or relationship of importance in a society.
Cultural Perspective The complex set of meanings,attitudes, values, & ideas belonging to a cultural group.
Cultural Practice A pattern of behavior accepted by a society.
Cultural Product A tangible (ex: painting, cathedral,mosque, piece of literature,chopsticks)or intangible (ex: tale, dance, sacred ritual, system of education) aspect produced by a cultural group
Culture Learned behavior of a group of people, which includes their belief systems & languages;their social relationships,their institutions & organizations, & their material goods such as food,clothing,buildings,tools and machines.
Deforestation The destruction and removal of forest & its undergrowth by natural or human forces.
Created by: Donna Sue Perkins Donna Sue Perkins on 2014-03-27



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