WHY CHOOSE GEOGRAPHY?
Geography is not only dynamic, up-to-date and relevant, it is one of the most exciting, adventurous and valuable subjects to study today. So many of the world’s current problems boil down to Geography and need the Geographers of the future to help us understand them. Global warming, sustainable food production, natural disasters such as earthquakes and tsunamis, the spread of disease, the reasons for migration and the future of energy resources are just some of the great challenges facing the next generation of Geographers.
A knowledge of Geography can enrich your life by stimulating your mind and as a subject possibly even encourages you to have the attitude to go out and see for yourself, rather than be told by others. Choosing Geography at A-Level can open the doors to a university degree, either specifically in Geography or by combining Geography with other A-Levels to gain a place on a degree programme in another subject. A-Level Geography is recognised for its academic ‘robustness’ and the Guardian newspaper’s view on Geography is that ‘it’s the must-have A-Level’ (August 2015). Regarding Geography the Guardian reports that ‘a star is born. Geography is soaring in popularity. According to the Royal Geographical Society, 13% more took the subject at A-Level this year than last, up to 37,100 – the biggest jump of any of the major subjects.’
Most importantly, it also helps people into the world of work. So many employers prize the knowledge and skills that studying Geography can provide, be it knowing how the world works, planning research and report writing, working in a team, using new technologies and communication skills – and much more. You will find Geographers working in a wide range of jobs, from cartography to planning, working in the environment to travel and tourism, or in international charities or retail. Studying Geography can help young people achieve careers that are professionally and financially rewarding and also enjoyable.
WHAT IS THE COURSE CONTENT?
At St. Lawrence College we study the Cambridge International AS and A Level for Geography. In the Lower Sixth the course encompasses both physical and human Geography. The physical focus is on hydrology and fluvial geomorphology, atmosphere and weather as well as rocks and weathering. This is accompanied by the human core topics of population, migration and settlement dynamics. The following year, in Upper Sixth, studies of coastal and hazardous environments are undertaken. Two human topics of environmental management and global interdependence complete the course. Fieldwork is an important aspect of the course that enhances understanding of the syllabus. Destinations in past years have included Zakynthos, Pireaus and Anavyssos.
HOW IS THE SUBJECT ASSESSED?
For the AS-Level there is one exam in mid-May to examine your knowledge and understanding of the syllabus. It is 100% of total marks at AS-Level and 50% of marks at A Level. Then at A-Level there are two exams (Advanced Physical Options and Advanced Human Options). Each comprise 25% of the final grade.
More information can be found on the school A Level blog at https://geographyalevelslc.com/