The study of current world issues is emphasized in high school geography and there is the expectation that a citizen-based problem solving ability will be developed. The aim of this paper is to clarify the significance of the study of current world issues in high school geography. In order to accomplish this, firstly, the extent to which a geographical perspective, that is, `a geographical way of thinking,' is effective for problem solving and the limitations of this approach are examined. How to overcome these limitations is also discussed. Secondly, the effectiveness of social studies and development education in the context of lessons encouraging a problem solving approach is discussed. Finally, a new curriculum for studying the population problem is outlined. The following three advantages of the geographical point of view/way of thinking are indicated. Firstly, by changing the scale of analysis between worldwide, country or regional levels and analyzing the issues from a variety of aspects, the multifaceted nature of the issue is revealed. Secondly, by comparing the issues among regions, the elements of the problem that are unique to the area and those that are common to all regions is made clear. Thirdly, a geographical approach can also allow a grasp of regional change. The importance of international cooperation, north south issues, the necessity of establishing policies that reflect the situation of people at a state and regional level, effective value judgments and decision making are encouraged with a geographical approach . On the other hand, the paper also reveals a lack of the process of human awareness in the geographical point of view/way of thinking. If the process of human awareness is included in the lesson, the desires and viewpoints implicit in the problem can be compared with the students' own, allowing an examination of their own way of thinking. Following the above discussion, principles for a lesson plan studying current world issues in geography education are outlined. The feature of this plan is the integration of both a geographical approach and a process of human awareness. In this process of human awareness, students are able to discover similarities between their own culture and another's through a close subjective examination of the parties involved. Additionally, this approach ultimately encourages students to question their own way of living.