Exam Board: AQA

Entry Requirements: 6+ in Geography, or if not studied at GCSE 6+ in English Literature.


Course description:

In the first year of study, this specification will enable candidates to develop an understanding of, and an insight into, systems in physical geography and the concept of place in human geography:

  • Component 1: Physical geography and people and the environment. This unit uses a systems approach to the study of water and carbon cycles with opportunities to exercise and develop geographical skills, including geospatial mapping. Hazards form the content of the people and the environment section of this paper. By exploring the origin and nature of these hazards and the various ways in which people respond to them, students are able to engage with many dimensions of the relationships between people and the environments they occupy.

  • Component 2: Human geography and geography fieldwork investigation.  This unit examines people’s engagement with places, their experience of them and the qualities they ascribe to them. It covers the nature and importance of places, changing places – in terms of relationships, connections, meaning and representation.  Geography fieldwork skills will be tested within this unit and forms a compulsory aspect of the course.

This will then be assessed at the end of the first year with all student sitting the AS exam.

In the second year of study, candidates develop the physical and human geography studied in Year 12, considering physical processes and concepts in human geography in greater depth and recognising the values and limitations of the application of systems theory. There are two teacher-led units which are:

·         Component 1 Physical geography: This component will test your understanding of water and carbon cycles, glacial systems and landscapes and hazards.

·         Component 2 Human geography: This unit examines global systems and global governance, changing places and resource security.

·         Component 3 Geography fieldwork investigation: Students complete an individual investigation which much include data collected in the field. The investigation is based on a question or issue defined and developed by the student relating to any part of the specification content.

At the end of the second year, all students will sit examinations for component 1 and component 2 and submit their individual fieldwork investigation.  All exams involve the study of data and extended writing.


Why you should consider this course:

Geography is a richly diverse and comprehensive subject that provides us with an understanding of our changing and interconnected world. It involves the study of physical environments and resources; cultures, economies and societies; people and places; and global development and citizenship. As an academic subject, it is valued by universities and a very broad range of employers in part because it provides a context for looking at contemporary issues from a wide perspective. These issues affect us all at work and in our daily lives and help inform the decisions that will shape our future. In addition, a study of geography develops many relevant and transferable skills directly related to a wide range of careers.  Additionally, the subject:

  • Stimulates an interest in places, people and the environment.

  • Helps young people make sense of a complex and dynamically changing world and how society, the economy and environment combine to bring about change.

  • Explains where places are, how places and landscapes are formed, how people and their environment interact.

  • Explores how a diverse range of economies, societies and environments are interconnected.

  • Examines natural resources and their sustainable use.

Geography is important for further study and careers: the Russell Group of Universities, recognise A Level geography as one of the key ‘facilitating’ subjects for entry to degree level study. Geography graduates have highly valued, transferable skills, equipping them for a range of careers.


Contact Name: Mr E Jolly