The relationship between distance on the ground and distance on the map is known as the scale of the map. Typically, scale is expressed as a ratio such as 1:50,000 or 1:10,000. If we take 1:50,000, this means that 1 centimetre on the map equals 50,000 centimetres (or 500 metres) on the ground.
Keeping this in consideration, how do you find the scale?
To find a scale factor between two similar figures, find two corresponding sides and write the ratio of the two sides. If you begin with the smaller figure, your scale factor will be less than one. If you begin with the larger figure, your scale factor will be greater than one.
How do you figure out the scale of a map?
Here are four simple steps you'll want to follow:
- Find a map of an area you want to use.
- Find both the actual and measured distances of two points on your map.
- Divide the actual distance by the measured distance on the map for your scale.
- Place your scale numbers on the map.