Geography will help students to be curious and enthusiastic about the ever changing World we live in.  It will equip students with knowledge and understanding of human and physical processes and how they interact.  Students will develop a range of skills and will be encouraged to think critically about the issues facing the planet at a variety of scales and how they can develop sustainably.

Why it is important to study Geography?

Geography is a topical subject, bridging the arts and sciences. It helps students understand the social, economic and physical forces and processes affecting the Earth and provides knowledge about diverse places, people, resources, and natural and human environments.  A wide range of transferrable skills are developed in Geography through classroom teaching and fieldwork opportunities.

What do we study in Geography?

Year 7

Restless Earth – Examining plate tectonics, the characteristics of plate boundaries, the creation of volcanoes and the effects of their eruptions, the causes and the effects of earthquakes, and the effects and responses to tsunamis.

Iceland – Geological processes that influence cold landscapes, landforms created by glaciers, how we adapt to cold environments and how landscapes are managed to respond to climate change.

Developing Map Skills – Developing key geographical skills from mapping, grid referencing, climate graph construction, contour lines and choropleth maps. Designed to prepare learners for fieldwork and presentation of data.

Weather – Examining how the difference between weather and climate and how weather is measured. Investigating the physical and human factors that change climate and how we are responding to extreme weather events.

Year 8

Coasts – Processes that affect the geology of our coastline, the landforms that are created and how we are managing our coasts to prevent erosion.

Money – Examines the causes of national and international differences in wealth, how population structure impacts upon the wealth and development of places, the impacts of the changing nature of industry on people’s lives.

Ecosystems – Characteristics of a desert and rainforest, how animals and plants adapt to these biomes, the effects of human interaction with these ecosystems (deforestation and desertification) and how rainforests and deserts are being managed.

Africa – Explores how physical landscapes are created, how people manage their environments and why people’s lives are so unequal.

Year 9

Development – Exploring the nature and reasons for different levels of development across the globe. To examine how different countries are linked together and how these relationships between countries result in different levels of development

Hydrology – Examines the different processes that result in the different landforms along the course of a river. Flooding is an increasing risk when we consider the impacts of the actions of people.

Climate Change – The causes and consequences of climate change at a regional, national and global scale.

Asia – Locational factors that affect Asia’s growth, how political and social issues have contributed to Asia’s development, how Asia is managing the increasing demand for sustainability.

Year 10 and 11

Specification: Edexcel Geography A

Three written examinations.

Paper 1 lasts 1 hour and 30 minutes, it is worth 37.5% of the qualification and has 94 marks.  It includes the following units:-

  • The Changing Landscape of the UK –The UK’s main rock types will be identified, the role of geology and tectonic processes in forming distinctive landscapes and how human activity changes these landscapes will be examined. Physical processes shaping rivers and coasts, the effects of the UK’s weather and climate on these landscapes and how our coasts and rivers can be managed will be explored.
  • Weather hazards and Climate Change – How and why climate varies across the globe, the human and physical causes and the impacts of climate change on both the UK and the rest of the World will be discussed. The climate of the UK, why it varies regionally and why it has changed over time will be examined.  The formation and impacts of tropical storms, the causes and effects of drought and the responses to these extreme weather events will be investigated in areas at different levels of development.
  • Ecosystems, Biodiversity and Management – The role of climate in influencing the ecosystems of the World, the importance of the biosphere to people, what the ecosystems of the UK are (including marine ecosystems) and what they are like will be researched. Tropical rainforests and temperate deciduous woodlands will be investigated in terms of their key features, adaptations, interactions and interdependence, the threats to these biomes and sustainable management of them.

Paper 2 lasts 1 hour and 30 minutes, it is worth 37.5% of the qualification and has 94 marks.  It includes the following units:-

  • Changing Cities – Factors causing and affecting the rate of urbanisation in emerging, developing and developed countries will be researched.  The site, connectivity and structure of Birmingham and Mexico City, the effects of national and international migration on these cities, the issues created by their growth and the management of them to improve sustainability and quality of life will be contrasted.
  • Global Development – Measures of development, causes of the development gap globally and in the UK, consequences of uneven development and strategies both top down and bottom up to reduce the development gap will be examined. India is the main case study in this unit.  How India’s location, the interaction of social, economic and demographic factors and the role of geopolitics and technology on its level of development will be investigated together with the impacts of rapid development on the people and environment.
  • Resource Management (Energy option): – The classification of natural resources, resource distribution globally and in the UK and the patterns of food, energy and water consumption will be studied.  Non-renewable and renewable energy developments, changes in demand and supply in the last 100 years and the views of stakeholders (individuals, organisations and governments) will be researched.  The impacts of energy use on people and the environment, the role of new technologies such as fracking to manage resources and sustainable strategies in China and Germany will be examined. 

Paper 3 lasts 1 hour and 30 minutes, it is worth 25% of the qualification and has 64 marks. It includes the following units:

  • Geographical Investigations, Fieldwork: Section A will focus on a physical investigation (river study at Carding Mill Valley) and section B will focus on a human investigation (urban area study at Birmingham city centre).  Questions can be asked on any aspect of the investigation, for example, planning the investigation, the enquiry questions, data collection both primary and secondary, presentation techniques, data analysis, how physical and human processes interact, conclusions and the overall evaluation of the study.
  • Geographical Investigations, UK Challenges. Questions will be asked on one of the 4 topics below:

The UK’s resource consumption and environmental sustainability challenge. This topic explores the changes in the UK population over the next 50 years and its impact on resource consumption and the pressure it places on ecosystems.  A range of options for national sustainable transport schemes in the UK are also examined.

The UK settlement, population and economic challenges. The ‘two-speed economy’, the development of greenfield site and redevelopment of brownfield sites, and patterns in migration and the views of different stakeholders are explored.

The UK’s landscape challenges. Approaches to conservation and development of UK National Parks and managing river and coastal UK flood risk are studied. The UK’s climate change challenges.  Uncertainties about how global climate change will impact on the UK’s future climate. Impacts of climate change and responses to it at a local and national scale are investigated.

Useful Links

Advanced Level Geography

Take what you think Geography is and think again. This course looks at the issues that affect our lives, and the lives of other people around the world, on a daily basis? We ask poignant questions. Why are some people much less healthy than others? Why are houses being built in completely unsuitable places? Why is the world heating up at an unprecedented rate?

If you have an opinion and want to understand the answers to these fundamental questions, and many more, then this is the subject for you.

Are you up for the challenge?

Please contact us at if you should need to speak to the Faculty Leader or to get a message to your child’s Geography teacher.