Geography

Staffing

The department is staffed by two experienced and highly qualified specialist teachers.

In 2017, at GCSE we achieved 94% A*-C with 53% A*/A. At A Level we had 100% A*-C for the second year running.

Courses

Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3 students have two lessons of Geography each week (50 mins x 2). The curriculum aims to build basic geographical skills using map and numerical skills. We introduce independent research, develop their use of ICT and try to focus on literacy in Year 7.

In Year 8 students should be able to describe and explain processes with the use of geographical terminology. They will also incorporate case study details to enhance written work. In year 9 they begin learning the GCSE content, whilst building analysis and evaluation skills in their work. By the end of Key Stage 3 they should be able to synthesise their learning, identify the interconnections, and have a broader understanding of the world around them.

GCSE

GCSE students follow the AQA Geography 8035 9-1 GCSE (to be examined for the first time in 2018). Topics include hazards (weather and tectonic), ecosystems (rainforest and desert), river and coastal landscapes in the UK, urban challenges in Nigeria and the UK, sustainable development, economic development in the UK and Nigeria, resource management and food conflict. There are compulsory fieldtrips for GCSE students to the Stratford Olympic Park and Epping Forest.

GCSE Assessment break down

Unit Title

Method of Assessment Topics Covered Weighting

Paper 1:

Living with the physical environment

Exam

(1 hour 30 min)

Natural hazards: Tectonics, Weather & Climate Change.

Ecosystems: Tropical Rainforests & Hot Deserts.

Physical Landscapes in the UK:

Coastal Landscapes, River Landscapes

35% of GCSE

1hr 30 mins

85 marks +3 SPG

Paper 2:

Challenges in the human environment

Exam

(1 hour 30 min)

The Global Pattern of Urban Change: Urban Growth in Nigeria, Urban Challenges in the UK, Sustainable Development of Urban Areas.

Economic Development and Quality of Life: Reducing the Development Gap, Economic Development in Nigeria, Economic Development in the UK.

Global Resource management: Resources in the UK, Food

35% of GCSE

1hr 30 mins

85 marks +3 SPG

Paper 3:

Geographical applications

Exam

(1 hour 15 min)

Issue Evaluation (Pre-release analysis received 12 weeks before exam)

Fieldwork and Geographical Enquiry (inc. map skills, graph skills, data analysis)

30% of GCSE

1hr 15 mins

70 marks + 6 SPG

A Level

At A Level, the AQA syllabus is taught over 2 years. Topics include water and carbon cycles, coastal systems and landscapes, hazards, global systems and global governance, changing places and population and the environment. A fieldwork project, based on water and carbon cycles is carried out at the end of Year 12 (worth 30%).

Unit Title

Method of Assessment Topics Covered Weighting
Unit 1:

Physical Geography

Exam

(2hours 30mins)

Multiple choice, short answer, levels of response and extended prose

A: Water and Carbon Cycles (answer all qus 36 marks)

B: Coastal systems and landscapes (answer qu 3. worth 36 marks)

C: Hazards (answer qu 5. worth 48 marks)

40% of A Level

120 marks

Unit 2:

Human Geography

Exam

(2hours 30mins)

Multiple choice, short answer, levels of response and extended prose

A: Global systems and global governance (answer all qus 36 marks)

B: Changing places (answer all qus 36 marks)

C: Population and the Environment (answer qu. 4 worth 48 marks)

40% of A Level

120 marks

Unit 3:

Geography Fieldwork Investigation

Coursework

3000-4000 words

Marked by teachers, moderated by AQA

Individual investigation based on primary data collection on water and carbon cycles in Malham Tarn, North Yorkshire. 20% of A Level

60 marks

Assessment

Assessment is an important part of learning in geography. Small assessments are carried out regularly, with a bigger assessment every half term to monitor understanding of content. These are marked using approximate percentages. Formal assessments include, end of topic tests, homework projects, group presentations and formal examinations. Key Stage 3 percentages are recorded at the front of their exercise books.

GCSE assessment mainly focuses on examination practise; varying between timed questions, homework tasks and open book activities. Year 9 assessments are in line with the GCSE specification and will be graded 1-9.

Extra-Curricular

It is important that Geography students are keeping up to date on the news and what is happening around them. We would advise students keep update on the BBC, Al Jazeera and The Guardian websites/ channels. Unreported World (25 minute documentaries on Channel 4/ 4oD) are extremely insightful. The BBC Bitesize Geography website is also useful for both KS3 and GCSE students. For further reading please see me Miss Grewal who is happy to loan further reading books upon request.