"Geography is an earthly subject, but a heavenly science." -Edmund Burke
For an introduction to A level Geography click here
Geography is one of the most exciting and dynamic subjects that can be studied at Sixth Form. It encompasses both the human and physical world and will teach you the skills necessary to understand what is happening and why it is happening.
The Geography A Level studied at Radnor House is the AQA syllabus with which we have had great success in - not only inspiring students to consider the world in a different way from before they started the course but also in terms of academic achievement.
The topics covered are:
Water and carbon cycles (covered in Year 12)
Coastal systems and landscapes (covered in Year 12)
Hazards (started in Year 12 and completed in Year 13)
Changing Places (covered in Year 12)
Contemporary urban environments (started in Year 12 and completed in Year 13)
Global systems and global governance (covered in Year 13)
As part of the A Level, students will need to complete a Non-Examined Assessment (Coursework). This is a fantastic opportunity for students to research a topic they have found interesting from the course (as long as it is practical – unfortunately no trips into the middle of hurricanes!) and investigate it in more detail. The NEA makes up 20% of the final grade and is a great way for students to gain marks before the exam.
The assessment consists of two examinations and coursework. One examination is based on human geography (40%) and the other on physical geography (40%). Coursework accounts for 20% of the marks. There will be a range of formative assessments throughout their time in Key Stage 5 to help identify progress and areas for development.
As part of their Geographical course, students will undertake a minimum of 4 days of fieldwork during their two years. The first day is spent on a trip to Brick Lane, engaging in the real world with one of the important case studies in the Changing Places section. The second day is spent at Pevensey Bay, another important case study. The two remaining days are usually carried out at a location linked to the NEA topics that have been selected and therefore changes year on year depending on student choice.
At A-level, geography is a ‘facilitating subject’ and one of the choices most likely to secure you a place at a top university. Its combination of physical and social sciences, data skills and real world applications, makes geography a highly relevant subject to study and the perfect companion to any other humanities, arts or science subjects.
J SMITH, RGS-IBG DIRECTOR
Geography and Careers
As explained by a Guardian Article:
‘Geography is a subject for our times. It is inherently multidisciplinary in a world that increasingly values people who have the skills needed to work across the physical and social sciences. Geographers get to learn data analysis, and to read Robert Macfarlane. They learn geographic information systems. They can turn maps from a two-dimensional representation of a country’s physical contours into a tool that illustrates social attributes or attitudes: not just where people live, but how, what they think and how they vote. They learn about the physics of climate change, or the interaction of weather events and flood risk, or the way people’s behaviour is influenced by the space around them.
All these are not just intrinsically interesting and valuable. They also encourage ways of seeing and thinking that make geographers eminently employable.’
The range of jobs open to student who study Geography is long and diverse; from Climate Scientists to Management Consultants, from Environmental Lawyers to the Urban planners. In fact, it is in some ways easier to list jobs that wouldn’t be helped by Geography as it would be a very short list!
Geography and Reading
We believe that students should use what they have learnt in the classroom to help develop their interests outside the classroom and strongly suggest that students read around the subject as much as possible and in areas that interest them. This can be from the wildfires in Australia to how computer games can help us understand how diseases could spread. There is reading lists provided to help get started but students are encouraged to read about the topic in a way that develops their interest.