Why study A Level Geography?
Geography is relevant to the world we live in and it tackles issues that affect us. It helps us under-stand different cultures, develops sensitivity and tolerance, helps promote environmental responsibility and helps us make sense of a highly interconnected world. It leads to a better understanding of the concept of place and its important in our world and will help develop your ‘Geographical Intelligence’, which is your ability to link together different areas of study, to understand the concept of scale and to apply a high degree of critical analysis to what you read, hear and see.
How will I be assessed?
You will be assessed at the end of the two year course in two examinations (see below). These will both be 2½ hour papers and the question types will be multiple-choice, short answer, levels of response and extended prose. These two papers are worth 40% each. The final element is an independent study carried out during the course which is around 3,000 – 4,000 words. This must be based on a question defined by the student relating to any part of the specification content.
Students will need to attain at least a Grade 5, although a 6 is strongly recommended, at GCSE in Geography and at least a Grade 5 in English, Mathematics and Science, due to the nature of the A Level course which requires high level literacy and statistical skills. In addition, students will need to have an Attainment 8 average score of over 5.0. If students have not taken GCSE Geography, then an Attainment 8 average score of 7.0 or above is necessary and suitability must be discussed with the Head of Department on a case by case basis.
What skills will I gain from studying Geography?
The study of Geography will help you develop a wide variety of basic skills including communication both written, verbal and using ICT to make presentations. Numeracy is an integral component of Geographical skills along with graphicacy (drawing and interpreting maps and diagrams). You will also collect primary data in the field, problem solve, use geographical information systems. In addition, you will collect, interpret and present a wide variety of data throughout the duration of the course.
Where can Geography lead?
As a bridge subject between the arts and the sciences, Geography can lead in a variety of different employment directions, including administrative and public services eg Development Control & Planning. Management and Journalism are also popular uses of Geography. Meteorology, Environmental or Waste Management are other potential careers utilising Geography.
It is now compulsory for students to undertake four days of fieldwork at A Level. We will complete this by carrying out a four-day residential course (based on previous years, the cost of this has been roughly £320). This will cover the Human and Physical aspects of the course but also allow students the opportunity to collect their data for their independent field study.
What will I study?
Physical Geography Paper
Section A: Water and Carbon Cycles
Section B: Glacial Environments
Section C: Hazards
Human Geography Paper
Section A: Global Systems and Global Governance
Section B: Changing Places
Section C: Contemporary Urban Environments
Students complete an individual investigation which must include data collected in the field.