What is Geography?
Geography is a demanding, yet exciting subject dealing with matters that concern each and every one of us. Are you concerned about current topics in the news such as: Climate change, Hazards and Immigration?
It will involve you understanding the relationship between people, places and the environment. Geography has the advantage of being a science and an art. It raises concerns, which might be considered part of social sciences, yet it has a scientific slant. Field investigations are an essential part of the course.
This Guardian article explains the importance of an A level in Geography: Guardian Article
Is Geography suitable for me?
The subject is suitable for someone who has a genuine interest in global issues at all levels from local to international. You need to have a willingness to understand how the natural world ‘works’ and what part we, as individuals, play in this global closed system!
Below are some students’ comments on the course:
"I love geography because we can change the world for the good." Amy Wood
"Geography is everything that matters." Katie Whicher
"Where would we be without Geography?" Tom Cox
How will I learn?
Staff support your quest to learn at every stage.
The course is carefully structured and with time you will be given more responsibility for managing your learning. There is every opportunity for students to develop the topics in great depth. In Physical Geography there is a great deal to understand which will require taking notes and writing essays. There will be a need to interpret maps and data.
In Human Geography there will be learning through discussions, topics to explore and classroom presentations to prepare. You will be expected to play your part by working 4/5 hours per week outside of classroom teaching, ready to contribute to classroom discussions. IT research and wider reading is a large part of this course and we are fortunate to have superb facilities to allow for this.
4 days of fieldwork are compulsory for the new specification.
There will be several visits to investigate classroom theory, comparing with reality. A visit to Hayling Island and another one to East London will encourage you to set yourself realistic goals for successful enquiries for your own chosen areas of study in your own independent investigation.
There will be a residential trip to a Field Study Council Centre in Bets –Y-Coed, North Wales or Juniper Hall in the Surrey Hills. This enables students to carry out a detailed, evaluative investigation which can be used in their independent write up.
Possible cross College trips to China are also possible.
How will I be assessed?
2016 is a year of exciting change for A level geography as the new specification begins. Assessment details are TBC.
The course is now linear with final exams at the end of the 2 year period and a fieldwork project taught over the 2 years.
Topics to be taught (a brief outline as OFQUAL need to accredit):
- Landscape Systems: Coastal or Glaciated (TBC)
- Changing Spaces; Making Places
- Geographical Debates: Hazardous Earth
- Earth’s Life support Systems: Water and Carbon Cycles
- Global Connections:
- Geographical Debates: Exploring Oceans, Disease Dilemmas. Future of Food (TBC)
You will have 3 examinations at the end of the 2 year period:
Independent Investigative Geography (course work) based on the topics will have 20% weighting of the final mark.
Many geographers study geography or related subjects at university. It is also a subject accepted to gain entry into the world of business, science, and technology and beyond! Geography opens up a wide range of job opportunities, e.g. travel writer, diplomat, disaster manager, regional developer, surveyor, civil engineer, etc. We have students who have progressed to Oxbridge, studied Geography to doctorate level and enjoyed Earth Sciences courses. The Royal geographical Society provides further information.
Students studying a 3 or 4 A level programme should normally have achieved an average GCSE point score of 5.5 or above and at least a grade C in Maths and/or English (unless specified otherwise). Students with a point score between 4.5 – 5.5 will normally take a mixture of Subsidiary Diplomas and A levels. You can check your likely GCSE point score by going to 'Choosing the Right Course' on the website and entering your predicted grades.
We would expect students to have taken either Geography or another humanity at GCSE Level.
All students will be expected to provide their own textbook, stationery, computer disks and calculators (where appropriate). Any further costs are outlined below:
Essential: textbook and course booklets £50 over the 2 year period
Day field trips to East London and Hayling: £20
Proposed Residential Field Trips (approximate): Field study council residential trip to North Wales or Juniper Hall: £295
Various day trip to conferences in London: £25, excluding travel.
If the costs of equipment, materials and trips may cause you financial hardship, you may wish to read through details of our financial support scheme on our website.
- Sixth Form Course: