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Geology (AS / A Level) at Middlesbrough College

Course description

AS Unit 1 Global Tectonics This unit explores the evolution of the Earth's structure and the evidence behind it; earthquakes, continental drift, plate tectonics, sea floor spreading, geological structures. You will examine the geological hazards presented by earthquakes and volcanoes, looking at how they can be identified and predicted thus allowing us to manage risks and minimise damage and loss of life. Plate tectonics theory is used to make sense of these hazards as well as explain the present pattern of continents, oceans and mountain chains. Unit 2 Rocks - Processes and Products This unit investigates the rock cycle, the different classifications of rock and igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic processes. The rock cycle and the processes involved in the formation of igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks are explored and you will learn how to unravel the Earth's history by using this evidence to reconstruct past conditions and events. Unit 3 Practical Skills The coursework unit invites students to use practical geological skills through individual, timed and assessed classroom and fieldwork tasks. Both practical and written skills are developed, using scientific investigation to observe, measure and record geological data. Work is carried out individually, in pairs and in groups both in class and in the field, including research, written reports, the processing of data using software applications, the interpretation of geological information and use of geological maps and diagrams. A2 - The Second Year The A2 modules build on and extend the work of the AS course and again there are three units: Unit 4 Palaeontology You will study a range of fossil groups and their use as indicators of evolution, past environmental conditions, and as a means of dating and correlating rocks Unit 5 Economic, Engineering Geology Looks at the area that geologists contribute in engineering, mining, quarrying and exploration. Unit 6 Geological Skills Based on interpretation and application of geological knowledge. It is taught using a combination of theory, practical and fieldwork and is strongly hands-on in approach. You will continue to develop a range of skills both written and practical, carrying out scientific investigation, observing, measuring and recording geological data.

Entry requirements

Five or more GCSE's at grade C or above. Also subject to QCA score. If you do not have a Grade A to C in English and/or Maths, you will be required to continue studying these subjects as part of your Study Programme.


Assessment is through a combination of examinations at the end of each unit and coursework.

Future opportunities

Geology is highly relevant to many subjects and after studying Geology not only do you have an option of continuing the subject into a degree at University but degrees in: - Hazard Management. - Applied Geology. - Engineering. - Geophysics. - Exploration Geology. ...are also examples of degrees that Geology A Level could lead on to. Skills acquired through studying Geology could equally support a degree in Archaeology, Geography and Marine Biology. A graduate of any of these degrees with experience in geology would be highly eligible in careers in their specific fields, be it Oceanography or Engineering. The College Careers Service is available to all our students. We can help you when deciding which course or option you wish to take. During your course we ensure you develop employability skills and gain relevant experience. We provide information, advice and support when completing your course and progressing to work or going into higher education. When applying for University we can provide support with the UCAS application and Student Finance.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Middlesbrough College directly.

Last updated date: 11 April 2016
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