Why study Geography? There has never been a better or more important time to study Geography. With growing interest in issues such as climate change, migration, environmental degradation and social cohesion, geography is one of the most relevant courses in education. Geographers are also highly employable.

Whatever your passion for the world – fascination with landscapes or concerns about inequality – geography will provide you with knowledge and transferable skills that will reward you personally and advance you professionally.

Geography will give you the knowledge and understanding of:

  • Why our human and physical environments and landscapes appear as they are, how they form and operate, and how they inter-relate at various scales
  • How and why patterns of human and physical features differ from place to place across the earth
  • Differences and inequalities within the human world; especially the economic, social and political causes of inequality and economic development
  • The importance of different spatial scales – global to local – and time scales for physical and human processes, together with their interactions and interdependence

Learning Sequence Overview

Key Stage 3

Year 6 to 7 Transition Stage

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Sequence of Learning KS3

The Geography courses at Key Stage 3 aims to prepare students for the GCSE course in Key Stage 4. At KS3 students study a variety of topics in physical and human geography. During the year, students will build on their geographical knowledge and develop their geographical skills. They will investigate a range of topics such as; Fantastic Places, Coastal Environments, Natural Hazards, Climate change and the impacts of humans on the earth, Rivers, Tourism, Africa, China and Extreme Weather.

They will develop their knowledge of locations, places, environments and processes, and of different scales including global; and of social, political and cultural contexts (know geographical material).  Students will gain understanding of the interactions between people and environments, change in places and processes over space and time, and the interrelationship between geographical phenomena at different scales and in different contexts (think like a geographer).  Students will develop and extend their competence in a range of skills including those used in fieldwork, in using maps and GIS and in researching secondary evidence, including digital sources; and develop their competence in applying sound enquiry and investigative approaches to questions and hypotheses (study like a geographer). They will apply geographical knowledge, understanding, skills and approaches appropriately and creatively to real world contexts, including fieldwork, and to contemporary situations and issues; and develop well-evidenced arguments drawing on their geographical knowledge and understanding (applying geography).

KS3 Intervention Programme

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How can parents/carers help?

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Key Stage 4

Sequence of Learning KS4

This exciting course is based on a balanced framework of physical and human geography. It allows students to investigate the link between the two themes, and approach and examine the battles between the man-made and natural worlds.

Students who complete the course will have the skills and experience to progress onto A-level and beyond.

 KS4 Intervention Programme

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GCSE Specification

 The subject content is split into four units: 3.1 Living with the physical environment, 3.2 Challenges in the human environment, 3.3 Geographical applications and 3.4 Geographical skills.

In units 3.1 and 3.2 the content is split into sections, with each section focusing on a particular geographical theme. Unit 3.3 sets out the requirements for fieldwork and issue evaluation. Unit 3.4 sets out the geographical skills that students are required to develop and demonstrate.

In the specification content, students are required to study case studies and examples. Case studies are broader in context and require greater breadth and depth of knowledge and understanding. Examples are more focused on a specific event or situation, are smaller in scale and do not cover the same degree of content

3.1 Living with the physical environment

This unit is concerned with the dynamic nature of physical processes and systems, and human interaction with them in a variety of places and at a range of scales.

The aims of this unit are to develop an understanding of the tectonic, geomorphological, biological and meteorological processes and features in different environments, and the need for management strategies governed by sustainability and consideration of the direct and indirect effects of human interaction with the Earth and the atmosphere.

3.2 Challenges in the human environment

This unit is concerned with human processes, systems and outcomes and how these change both spatially and temporally. They are studied in a variety of places and at a range of scales and must include places in various states of development, such as higher income countries (HICs), lower income countries (LICs) and newly emerging economies (NEEs).

The aims of this unit are to develop an understanding of the factors that produce a diverse variety of human environments; the dynamic nature of these environments that change over time and place; the need for sustainable management; and the areas of current and future challenge and opportunity for these environments.

3.3 Geographical applications

The Geographical applications unit is designed to be synoptic in that students will be required to draw together knowledge, understanding and skills from the full course of study. It is an opportunity for students to show their breadth of understanding and an evaluative appreciation of the interrelationships between different aspects of geographical study.

3.4 Geographical skills

Students are required to develop and demonstrate a range of geographical skills, including cartographic, graphical, numerical and statistical skills, throughout their study of the specification. Skills will be assessed in all three written exams. Ordnance Survey (OS) maps or other map extracts may be used in any of the three exams.

Paper 1 Living with the physical environment (35% of GCSE) 1 hour 30 minutes exam

  • Section A – The challenge of natural hazards
  • Section B – Living world
  • Section C – Physical Landscapes in the UK
  • Geographical Skills

Paper 2 Challenges in the Human (35% of GCSE) 1 hour 30 minutes exam

  • Section A – Urban Issues and challenges
  • Section B – The changing economic world
  • Section C – The challenge of resource management
  • Geographical Skills

Paper 3 Geographical Applications (30% of GCSE) 1 hour 15 minutes exam

  • Issue evaluation
  • Fieldwork
  • Geographical Skills

Extra Information

How can parents/carers help?

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