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Course Title :GCSE Geography
Examination Board / Web address :WJEC
Qualification :GCSE
Grade Range :A* – G

Aims of the course

The course seeks to give students a broad and balanced knowledge of both physical and human topics. Within the physical part the features and processes of many of the world’s natural environments and the mechanisms that operate to create these featured are discovered. Within the human part the way that human society is progressing and the many challenges and issues facing human inhabitation of the planet in the near future are explored.

What will I study? – Course Outline

In year 10 and 11 two units are studied:

  1. Unit One has two sections, Changing Physical and Human Landscapes which is made up of traditional Physical and Human Geography topics and an Options section which will study either Coastal Hazards and Management or Tectonic Landscapes and Hazards.
  2. Unit Two has two sections also. The first is Weather, Climate and Ecosystems and Development and Resource Issues and the second is an Options unit which will study either Social Development Issues or Environmental Challenges.

There are also two fieldwork enquiries to be undertaken during the course based on topics which are supplied by the WJEC and chosen by the school.

One task will concern fieldwork methodology and the other geographical concepts.

Both tasks will concern areas of study the student is familiar with from lesson and fieldwork experiences.

How will I learn? What skills will I acquire?

Classroom based study forms a large part of the course but in geography you are as likely to be making river models out of sand and sculpting a floodplain and delta as you are writing notes!

Do not be surprised in the tectonics unit if you find yourself simulating an earthquake or testing a laser pen prediction technique!

We use models of renewable energy sources, play ‘population top trumps’ and ‘name the company’ and do many more interesting and enjoyable activities.

You can also get muddy and dirty (if you want!) on outdoor fieldtrips and active visits to places we will study.

Geographers need to interpret data, gather information, sort fact from fiction, make sustainable choices and look far into the future.

Strong in values and skills, geography is the key to the future – your future, their future, our future.

Prepare to be amazed!

How will I be assessed?

The course is set over two years with two final examinations at the end of the course.

The first examination covers the topics studied in Unit One and is worth 40% of the final GCSE grade.

The second examination covers the topics studied in Unit Two and is worth a further 40% of the final GCSE grade.

The remaining 20% is gained through the submission of the two fieldwork enquiries. The tasks are internally marked and sent for moderation.

Progression following this course. What’s next?

GCSE study leads ultimately to AS and A level study but many other subjects benefit from a good base of knowledge in geography.

Progression further to study geography or geographically based enquiry at university or college such as environmental and climate science, marine biogeography, town and city planning and geology are popular routes with students.

Future career opportunities

Statistics show that compared with many other subjects, geographers are the most employable with transferable skills that employers actively look for.

Some jobs make direct use of students’ geographical understanding while others use the broad base of knowledge that geographers develop.

The place that geography occupies between the arts and the sciences gives geographers unique talents that are keenly desired by industry, services and managerial sectors.

All employers find a good geographer invaluable!

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