Geography really is one of the most beneficial a levels to have, as you gain transferable skills which can be implemented into other subjects. Having a fully supportive teacher who goes above and beyond, along with engaging lessons and content, really has made this my favourite subject.

Rachel Macdonald

Rachel Macdonald

Course Description

Geography is the study of Earth’s landscapes, people, places and environment and therefore bridges the social sciences (Human Geography) with the natural sciences (Physical Geography).

A Level Geography will enable students to develop an understanding and knowledge of different geographical concepts. Geography is highly valued by universities and the discipline is referred to as a facilitating subject (Russell Group, 2011): one that gives A Level students the skills to succeed in Higher Education and the world of work.

Entry Requirements

Achieve 5 or more standard GCSE passes or higher (grade 4 or higher).

If a student is applying for a course in a subject that they have studied at GCSE it is expected that a student would have achieved at least a standard pass (grade 4) in this subject.

Course Content

Component 1 – Physical Geography
The Physical Geography component is made up of the following:

  • Section A – Water and carbon cycles
  • Section B – Coastal systems and landscapes
  • Section C – Hazards

Component 2 – Human Geography
The Human Geography component is made up of the following:

  • Section A – Global systems and global governance
  • Section B – Changing places
  • Section C – Contemporary urban environments

Component 3 – Geographical Investigation
Students complete an individual investigation which must include data collected in the field. The individual investigation must be based on a question or issue defined and developed by the student relating to any part of the specification content. The investigation will be approximately 3-4000 words in length and can focus on an individual student’s area of interest in Geography.

Assessment

Component 1 – Physical Geography
Written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes –
40% of A Level

Component 2 – Human Geography
Written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes –
40% of A Level

Component 3 – Geographical Investigation
Non-examined assessment –
20% of A Level

Future Opportunities

Geography is a sought-after subject amongst employers because it equips students with a wide range of different skills. As an A Level Geographer students will develop skills in numeracy, literacy and ICT as well as more subject-specific skills such as the use of maps and Geographical Information Systems. Geographers enter a wide range of careers including finance (accountancy, banking, management and consultancy), education, marketing, sales, advertising, law and social/health services.

In addition, many geographers choose degrees leading to careers directly related to the subject such as town planning, surveying and environmental management.