Geography: A-Level

Course Description
The new specification has been designed to increase the choice offered to teachers and students studying GCE Geography, allowing for specialisation and progression to higher education and employment. There will be natural progression from GCSE to GCE, ensuring that there is development of content. Students will be given the opportunity to develop fieldwork skills and study geographical issues and impacts.
 
The qualification allows for two pathways to A Level. This gives students the choice of being assessed on a fieldwork investigation of their choice and fieldwork skills by taking the Geography Fieldwork Investigation paper (Unit 4A) or by taking the Issue Evaluation Paper (Unit 4B).
Course Aims:
• To examine a wide range of contemporary issues affecting people and the world
• To provide students with an understanding of core geographical principles
Course Outline
The AS course has two main strands. The first is learning about and understanding a range of geographical features, landforms, places and issues; with particular focus on: Rivers, Floods and Management, Population Change, Energy Issues and Coastal Environments.                                                
The second is in the form of geographical investigations. Students will need a certain level of statistical ability and a scientific calculator. Students must undertake some fieldwork in order to take this exam, as they will also be asked about their personal investigation. There is fieldwork days during the year linked to each module.
The A2 course investigates the interaction between people and the environment through the coverage of the following topics: Plate Tectonics and associated hazards, Weather and Climate and their associated hazards, World Cities and Development and Globalisation. The second module provides students with the chance to analyse a range of data and make and justify some decisions based on a real world scenario; providing students with some useful skills for both university and employment. 
Unit 1 - Physical and Human Geography
The study of core geographical concepts along with contrasting themes of contemporary or environmental impact, management and sustainability. Candidates must study the core and then select one of the physical options and one of the human options.
 
Core physical section: Rivers, floods and management 
Core human section: Population change
Optional physical topics: Cold environments, Coastal environments, Hot desert environments 
Optional human topics: Food supply issues, Energy issues or Health issues and their margins
 
 
 
 
 
Unit 2 - Geographical Skills
A geographical skills paper based on the content of Unit 1.
Skills include: investigative, cartographic, graphical, ICT and statistical skills.
 
Unit 3 – Contemporary Geographical Issues
An issues-based approach to contemporary geographical themes. Candidates must select three topics: at least one from the physical options and at least one from the human options.
 
Optional physical topics: Plate tectonics and associated hazards, Weather and climate and associated hazards, Ecosystems: change and challenge
 
Optional Human topics: World cities, Development and globalisation, Contemporary conflicts and challenges
 
Unit 4A - Geography Fieldwork Investigation
This unit gives candidates the opportunity to extend an area of the subject content into a more detailed fieldwork study. Candidates analyse and evaluate their fieldwork in response to the questions set. In addition, candidates will be assessed on fieldwork skills.
 
Unit 4B - Geographical Issue Evaluation
This unit gives candidates the opportunity to use their skills of analysis, synthesis and evaluation. An advance information booklet is pre-released prior to the exam to facilitate candidates’ research into an area which extends from the specification content.
 
Course Assessment
 
Module 1 Physical & Human Geography 35%
Module 2 Geographical Skills 15% (fieldwork MUST be undertaken)
Module 3 Contemporary Geographical Issues 30%
Module 4 Geographical Issue Evaluation 20% (fieldwork MUST be undertaken)
 
Career Opportunities and Progression to University
 
You can progress to higher education courses such as honours degrees in Geography, or to degrees in related subjects such as Politics, English Literature, Economics or History; or to vocational qualifications such as a BTEC in Media (Journalism) or in Travel and Tourism.
An Advanced GCE in Geography will give you a number of skills relevant to many types of employment, such as the ability to seek information and to analyse it in order to identify facts and motives and to present information clearly for others to understand.