Geography

Head of Geography: Mrs K Knight, BA (Hons) Oxford Brookes University (on maternity leave)

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Head of Geography (maternity cover): Miss B Eveleigh, BA (Hons) MA (Education) Exeter

Geography Teacher: Mr G Cromb, BSc (Hons) London

KS3

To quote the Department for Education (2013), “a high-quality geography education should inspire in pupils a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives”. In addition to increasing their knowledge of place and understanding of the key processes which have shaped Planet Earth, pupils will  deepen their knowledge and understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes, the formation and utilisation by humans of landscapes and environments and how the Earth’s features at different scales are shaped, interconnected and change over time.

The subject content at Key Stage 3 is flexible and reflects the requirements of the 2013 National Curriculum. The Programme of Study is currently being reviewed and updated to take into account the requirements of the 2013 National Curriculum.

The core topics currently studied at Key Stage 3 are as follows:

Year 7
Unit 1: It’s your planet – the main objective is to create a sound understanding of the origins of Earth and how life has developed on our planet. An understanding of how Earth was formed and how life has developed is fundamental to pupils’ appreciation of the processes that shape our planet today.
Unit 2: Maps and mapping – the main objective is to ensure pupils understand why we use maps and to develop core skills in constructing and interpreting maps. A range of fundamental map skills will be taught and practiced during the completion of this unit such as the ability to give and use grid references accurately, and the ability to give and follow directions.
Unit 3: About the UK – the main objective is to increase knowledge and understanding of the human and physical geography of the UK. This unit serves as an introduction to a number of other topics within Geography at Key Stage 3, such as population, migration, weather and economic activities.

Year 8
Unit 1: Our restless planet – the main objective is to ensure pupils understand how and why tectonic activity impacts upon the natural environment and human activity. This unit explores the Earth’s internal structure and processes and how they cause the tectonic processes that create the tectonic landforms we see today. The influence of different types of tectonic activity on the human environment will be assessed.
Unit 2: Population – the main objective is to ensure pupils understand how and why population has changed through time and space. This unit explores topics such as why population density varies, why population growth tends to be higher in poorer countries and how and why life expectancy is changing.
Unit 3: To be decided once newly released resources have been perused.

Year 9
Unit 1: The geography of crime – this social geography topic explores the nature of crime, spatial variations in crime and reasons for them, how crime can be reduced and/or prevented and the link between drugs and crime.
Unit 2: It’s your planet (see Year 7 Programme of Study above) – this new topic will be taught in Year 9 as pupils did not study it in Year 7.
Unit 3: The challenge of natural hazards – in order to ease the transition from Key Stage 3 to Key Stage 4 for those continuing with Geography the first GCSE topic will be introduced. Pupils will focus on how and why natural hazards such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tropical storms pose major risks to people and property.

GCSE

You will study geography within a balanced framework of physical and human themes and investigate the link between themes studied. You will travel the world from the classroom, exploring case studies in the United Kingdom, newly emerging economies and lower income countries. Topics of study include climate change, poverty, deprivation, global shifts in economic power and the challenge of sustainable resource use.
You will be encouraged to understand your role in society by considering different viewpoints, values and attitudes. Upon completion of this two-year course, you will have the skills and experience to progress to A Level and beyond.

Course Content

This qualification is linear. Linear means that you will sit all the exams at the end of the course.
Unit 1: Living with the physical environment
Section A: The challenge of natural hazards
Section B: Physical landscapes in the UK
Section C: The living world
Unit 2: Challenges in the human environment
Section A: Urban issues and challenges
Section B: The changing economic world
Section C: The challenge of resource management
Unit 3: Geographical applications
Section A: Issue evaluation
Section B: Fieldwork
Section C: Geographical skills

Assessment
Unit 1: Written exam: 1 hour 30 minutes (35% )
Unit 2: Written exam: 1 hour 30 minutes (35%
Unit 3: Written exam: 1 hour (30% )

Find out more

A Level

In Geography we focus on knowing how and why, in addition to knowing what, and the enquiry-based approach offers opportunities to develop skills so highly valued by universities, which is why it is designated a facilitating subject.

An A Level in Geography, because of its focus on the interaction between people and the planet on which we live, is relevant to a wide range of career paths such as law, advertising and environmental management.

Content
Students will sit all their examinations and submit all their non-examination assessment at the end of the course.
Physical Geography – Water and carbon cycles; Hot desert environments and their margins; Coastal systems and landscapes; Hazards; Ecosystems under stress; Cold
environments.
Human Geography – Global systems and governance; Changing places; Contemporary urban environments; Population and the environment; Resource security.
Geography Fieldwork Investigation – Fieldwork and Investigation requirements.
Geographical skills – Geographical skills checklist.

Assessment
AS Component 1: Physical Geography and People and the environment:
Written examination: 1½ hours, 50% of the AS
AS Component 2: Human Geography and Geography fieldwork investigation:
Written examination: 1½ hours, 50% of the AS
A2 Component 1: Physical Geography:
Written examination: 2½ hours, 40%
A2 Component 2: Human Geography:
Written examination: 2½ hours, 40% of the A Level
A2 Component 3: Geographical investigation
An individual investigation which must include data collected in the field. It is marked by teachers and externally moderated:
Written examination: 2½ hours, 20% of the A Level.