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Geography at key stage 3 in Woodlands is designed to help pupils make sense of the world in which they live. Each pupil will begin to answer some of the questions which affect the world today as well as investigate the social, economic and physical forces & processes which shape the world.

They will develop a whole range of skills including: graphical, cartographical, literacy & numeracy, interpersonal (through debate and discussion), problem solving and decision-making skills. The course will allow the opportunity for personalised and independent learning, leading pupils to gain a clear overall view of the world where they will study some of the major issues faced by people in the first part of the 21st century.

They will be given opportunities to work in a variety of settings

including in small groups or individually. They will work both

within the classroom as well as outdoors around the school and

during fieldwork activities.


Throughout the study of the subject pupils will have opportunities

to develop skills in Locating & understanding places, environments,

processes and patterns. They will also use maps, photographs and

a variety of other sources of data to identify and analyse differences

between places and/or changes over time. They will learn to analyse

data by studying different types of graphs and charts which they will

sort, sequence, classify and rank in order allowing them to identify

trends and patterns.


Pupils will be given access to a wide range of Geographical sources

including maps, atlases, Google Earth, photographs the OS web site,

aerial photographs alongside a whole range of others to locate places

and to identify characteristics and patterns of different areas being

studied. Alongside this they will be given opportunities to create

their own sketch maps that locate places and features.  

They will answer questions by producing structured responses in extended writing tasks. They will research issues and be given opportunities to hold debates in class in order to develop communication skills and to demonstrate an understanding of different points of view.

Geography lessons will cover a range of topics which fall mainly under four main sections:

Image by Subhash Nusetti

Section 1 Physical environments:

  • Rivers: features, processes and flood risk

  • Coasts: features, processes and management

  • Earthquakes and volcanoes

  • features, processes and management

  • Tropical rainforests: features, processes and management

  • Weather patterns

Section 2 Human Environments

  • Population: structure, change and management

  • Settlements: characteristics, change and management

  • Cities: characteristics, change and management

  • Urban transport: journeys, flows and management

  • Work: characteristics and change

  • Leisure and Tourism

  • Industry: types, structures and change

Section 3 Global environments

  • Natural environment

  • Climate change

  • Energy sources and use

  • Water supply and use

  • Global tourism

  • Development and inequalities

  • Trade and Aid

  • Changing farming systems

  • Manufacturing, people and pollution


Section 4 Geographical skills & Case studies

  • Map skills

  • Study of UK

  • Study of India

  • Graph/statistical skills

  • Study of Country of choice

Image by Jeremy Bezanger

Geography A Level

Studying Geography at A Level at Woodlands allows students to gain a knowledge and understanding of physical and human processes through studying places and environments with an appreciation of the dynamic nature of geography. They will learn how places, environments and issues can change and how the human population engage and responds to this over space and time.

The course is designed to allow students to develop geographical skills including the use of different types of geographical information, including qualitative and quantitative data, primary and secondary data, images, factual text and discursive/creative material, digital data, numerical and spatial data and other forms of data, including crowd-sourced and 'big data'. They will learn how to collect, analyse and interpret such information, and demonstrate the ability to understand and apply suitable analytical approaches for the different information types. Then communicate and evaluate findings, draw well-evidenced conclusions informed by wider theory, and construct extended written argument about geographical matters.

They will also develop specific skills in the following areas:

Cartographic skills

  • Atlas maps.

  • Weather maps – including synoptic charts (if applicable).

  • Maps with located proportional symbols.

  • Maps showing movement – flow lines, desire lines and trip lines.

  • Maps showing spatial patterns – choropleth, isoline and dot maps.

Graphical skills

  • Line graphs – simple, comparative, compound and divergent.

  • Bar graphs – simple, comparative, compound and divergent.

  • Scatter graphs, and the use of best fit line.

  • Pie charts and proportional divided circles.

  • Triangular graphs.

  • Graphs with logarithmic scales.

  • Dispersion diagrams.

Statistical skills

  • Measures of central tendency – mean, mode, median.

  • Measures of dispersion – range, inter-quartile range and standard deviation.

  • Inferential and relational statistical techniques to include Spearman’s rank correlation and Chi-square test and the application of significance tests.

ICT skills

  • Use of remotely sensed data (as described above in Core skills).

  • Use of electronic databases.

  • Use of innovative sources of data such as crowd sourcing and ‘big data’.

  • Use of ICT to generate evidence of many of the skills provided above such as producing maps, graphs and statistical calculations.

The course is assessed through three components: Physical geography; Human geography and a Geography fieldwork investigation.

Component 1: Physical geography

This component is divided into:

Section A: Water and carbon cycles.


Section B: either Hot desert systems and landscapes or Coastal systems and landscapes or Glacial systems and landscapes.


Section C: either Hazards or Ecosystems under stress.


This component is assessed by a written exam lasting 2 hours 30 minutes and is worth 120 marks, contributing to 40% of the overall A-level mark.



Component 2: Human geography


This component is divided into:

Section A: Global systems and global governance.

Section B: Changing places.

Section C: either Contemporary urban environments or Population and the environment or Resource security.


This component is assessed by a written exam lasting 2 hours 30 minutes and is worth 120 marks, contributing 40% of the overall A-level mark.


Component 3: Geography fieldwork investigation


Students will complete an individual investigation which must include primary data collected in the field. The individual investigation will be based on a question or issue defined and developed by the student relating to any chosen part of the specification content.


This component is assessed by a 3000-4000 word written account of the investigation which is worth 60 marks and worth 20% of the overall A-level mark.

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