St Peter's 13-18
The world is changing. From global climate change to local planning issues, a knowledge of how different parts of the environment are related is fundamental to understanding life in the world today.
Pupils begin to appreciate the relevance of Geography through the use of practical field work, the introduction of GIS (Geographical Information Systems) and project based activity, as well as more traditional classroom-based learning with a strong emphasis on ICT.
We follow the CEI IGCSE Geography syllabus. This specification is designed to develop a 'sense of place' by looking at the world around us on a local, regional and global scale.
We study a range of natural and man-made environments, examining some of the processes which have affected their development. We also look at the ways in which environments offer opportunities and challenges and work to gain a deeper insight into different communities and cultures.
The course helps students to develop life-long skills including the ability to use and understand data, to make judgements and decisions, to communicate clearly and to have an appreciation of the need for a sustainable future.
The syllabus is divided into three themes:
Theme 1: Population and Settlement – the challenges facing our peoples and cities in the 21st century.
Theme 2: The Natural Environment – understanding the changing nature of rivers, coasts, weather, climate, volcanoes and earthquakes and the challenges of living in a world that can be wild and unpredictable.
Theme 3: Economic Development – the challenges of resource management and securing a fair and sustainable quality of life for all people on our planet.
Each theme is illustrated with case study examples from across the globe.
Students are assessed in three ways, two examinations in the summer of the 5th form year and one piece of coursework during the Christmas term of the 5th form. The coursework element is an investigation into a local, contemporary issue and is based on fieldwork carried out as a group.
We follow the AQA A-level course. At A level, students further develop their knowledge of places, processes and environments in both physical and human geography. We work to develop a deeper understanding of some of the complex issues facing the world today, including inequality, identity, globalisation, inter-dependence, mitigation, adaptation, sustainability and the threat of tipping points.
The course is divided into six themes:
1. Water and carbon cycles
2. Coastal systems and landscapes
4. Global systems and global governance
5. Changing places
6. Contemporary urban environments
Through the course, we develop students' ability to handle and analyse quantitative and qualitative data and enable them to grow as critical and reflective learners, able to articulate opinions, suggest new ideas and provide evidence to support arguments.
Field work forms a key part of the scheme of work. We undertake two day trips, examining the character and identity of our local urban environment and how it is changing. We also undertake an three day residential trip at the end of the lower sixth year, staying at the Cranedale Centre in North Yorkshire. Here we visit the local coastal environment, compare the hydrology of two neighbouring river catchments and consider the changing nature of urban areas. Students also undertake a day of data collection at the start of the upper sixth year for their NEA investigation. This is an independent project on a theme of the student's choosing. Students are guided through the process with by whole class learning and the experience gained in the earlier fieldwork tasks.
Students are assessed through two examination papers at the end of the two year course in addition to their personal investigation (NEA), which accounts for 20% of their mark.
At St Peter's we have our own weather station, which constantly collects data on meteorological conditions.
After St Peter’s
The study of Geography is multi-disciplinary and offers a firm grounding in subjects ranging from Geoscience and Earth Science to environmental management and pollution and waste control, encompassing sociology and ecology. Geography can also play an instrumental role in the study of politics, law, archaeology, anthropology and business.
Skills in data collection and data analysis as well as GIS are increasingly sought after by employers in the environmental sector.
Featured St Peter's Geography News
Sixth Form Geography pupils have been exploring York and the Yorkshire coastline this term to collect data for an investigation they have designed.