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Geography A level at St Charles Catholic Sixth Form College

Course description

Throughout the course you will be exploring a wide range of key issues that have a direct and very real effect on the contemporary world. You will develop your knowledge of both physical and human factors, learning how they interrelate and shape the world we live in. Lessons are centred on developing your independent research skills and encourage you to enhance higher level learning by applying your knowledge to real world challenges which include areas such as natural disaster management, climate change and global migration and many others. Your classwork learning will be supported by work in the field with visits to investigate aspects such as river flooding, urban rebranding and sustainable technological development. In the second year we run an overseas trip to explore volcanic and tectonic activity in Sicily.  At the end of the course you will be able to identify the causes of the major geographical challenges that we currently face, explaining the wider impacts they could cause at both local and global levels, as well as analysing solutions for future management.

Course content

Year 1 (Dynamic Landscapes / Dynamic Places)

  • Topic 1: Tectonic Processes and Hazards
  • Topic 2: Coastal Landscapes and Change
  • Topic 3: Globalisation
  • Topic 4: Regenerating Places

Year 2 (Physical Systems and Sustainability / Human Systems and Geopolitics)

  • Topic 5: The Water Cycle and Water Insecurity
  • Topic 6: The Carbon Cycle and Energy Security
  • Topic 7: Superpowers
  • Topic 8: Migration, Identity and Sovereignty

Synoptic investigation of a contemporary geographical issue

Coursework: A level Independent Investigation / Fieldwork

Entry requirements

Minimum 6 GCSEs at grade A*- C (including English Language) for A Level study programmes

Although it is not necessary to have an A-C grade at Geography GCSE it would clearly be advantageous to have prior knowledge of the subject. The course also requires students to have a good grasp of English, Mathematics and IT skills in order to analyse and present data, so it would be desirable to have had some prior knowledge of these subjects as well.


Tutors will monitor your progress throughout the course using a range of internal assessment methods. These will include:

  • Homework essays / reports
  • Group presentations
  • Skills tests
  • Timed exam questions
  • High grade (A/B) extension work

In each of these your tutor will assess your levels of understanding and advise you on areas for further development. Your final grade will be assessed and determined by external examination at the end of the two year linear course.  Three 2 hour 15 min papers (Total 80%) & a fieldwork investigation coursework (Total 20%)

Financial information

Most of the field trips are organized and run by the department and will be accessible via public transport, so costs will be minimal. We also plan to run a residential overseas trip for A2 students to Sicily. We estimate that this trip will cost approximately £350 (paid for by participating students).

Future opportunities

The Geography course will enhance your skills which will be directly transferable to a wide range of careers. These include independent research and the application of your findings in different formats such as reports and presentations. You will also develop and apply your numerical analytical skills and have the opportunity to use Geographical Information Systems software to display your findings. Geography ‘A’ level is recognized by the Russell Group and is a valuable qualification when applying for a range of degree level courses at leading Universities. Many of our students go on to attain places on Geography or related degree courses at Higher Education. A degree in Geography can lead to a wide range of career opportunities such as the management of the physical environment (river and coastal management; disaster risk management), urban planning and development, overseas aid agencies, local and national Government related work (and many more!!).

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St Charles Catholic Sixth Form College directly.

Last updated date: 12 October 2016
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