Exam Board Entry Requirements Subject Leader
Edexcel Grade 6 or above Mr N Wylie

The specification has been designed to allow geographers the flexibility to build programmes that suit their own particular interests and needs using a range of approaches. Those geographers with interests in distinct physical, human and environmental approaches will be able to use this specification, as will those with more integrated specialisms. Fieldwork and research skills are a key feature of the A level.

The Pearson Edexcel Level 3 Advanced GCE in geography consists of three externally examined papers and one coursework component.

 

Paper 1- Physical Geography

Content summary:

Written examination: 2 hours and 15 minutes

30% of the qualification

105 marks

Content overview

  • Area of study 1 Topic 1: Tectonic Processes and Hazards
  • Area of study 1 Topic 2: Landscape Systems, Processes and Change
  • Area of study 3 Topic 5: The Water Cycle and Water Insecurity
  • Area of study 3 Topic 6: The Carbon Cycle and Energy Security

 

 

Paper 2- Human Geography

Content summary:

Written examination: 2 hours and 15 minutes

30% of the qualification

105 marks

Content overview

  • Area of study 2 Topic 3: Globalisation
  • Area of study 2 Topic 4: Shaping Places
  • Area of study 4 Topic 7: Superpowers
  • Area of study 4 Topic 8: Migration, Identity and Sovereignty

 

Paper 3- Synoptic Exam

Content summary:

Written examination: 2 hours and 15 minutes

20% of the qualification

70 marks

Content overview

  • The specification contains three synoptic themes within the compulsory content areas:
  • Players
  • Attitudes and actions
  • Futures and uncertainties
  • The synoptic investigation will be based on a geographical issue within a place-based context that links to the three synoptic themes and is rooted in two or more of the compulsory content areas.

 

Paper 4- Coursework

Content summary:

20% of the qualification

70 marks

Content overview

  • The student defines a question or issue for investigation, relating to the compulsory or
  • optional content. The topic may relate to any aspect of geography contained within the specification
  • The student’s investigation will incorporate fieldwork data (collected individually or as part of a group) and own research and/or secondary data
  • The fieldwork which forms the focus and context of the individual investigation may be either human, physical or integrated physical-human
  • The investigation report will evidence independent analysis and evaluation of data, presentation of data findings and extended writing
  • Students will be expected to show evidence that they have used both quantitative and qualitative data to support their independent investigation as appropriate to the particular environment and/or location.

Assessment

Paper 1  Assessment overview

An externally-assessed written examination comprising four sections. Students answer all questions in Section A (Tectonic Processes and Hazards), Section C (The Water Cycle and Water Insecurity) D (The Carbon Cycle and Energy Security). Students answer either Question 2A (Glaciated Landscapes and Change) or Question 2B (Coastal Landscapes and Change) in Section B (Glaciated Landscapes and Change and Coastal Landscapes and Change).  The examination may include short open, open response and resource-linked questions. The examination includes 12-mark and 20-mark extended writing questions. Calculators may be used.

Paper 2  Assessment overview

An externally-assessed written examination comprising four sections. Students answer all questions in Section A (Globalisation) and C (Superpowers). Students answer one question from Section B (Regenerating Places and Diverse Places) and one question from Section D (Intervention; Migration, Identity and Sovereignty). The examination may include short open, open response and resource-linked questions. The examination includes 12-mark and 20-mark extended writing questions. Calculators may be used.

Paper 3  Assessment overview

An externally-assessed written examination comprising three sections. A resource booklet will contain information about the geographical issue. Students answer all questions in Section A, Section B and Section C.

Sections A, B and C all draw synoptically on knowledge and understanding from compulsory content drawn from different parts of the course. The examination may include short open, open response and resource-linked questions. The examination includes 8-mark, 18-mark and 24-mark extended writing questions. Calculators may be used.

Paper 4  Assessment overview

  • The investigation report is internally assessed and externally moderated.
  • The student will produce a written report of 3000–4000 words.

 

Field Trip (Compulsory)

A field trip is an important and integral part of this course. There is an expectation that students will participate. The location has yet to be confirmed.

Progression into Higher Education/Vocational Destinations

Geography graduates are employed in a wide range of sectors, including the public sector, education, commerce, industry, transport and tourism. Geography graduates have excellent transferable skills, which also attract employers from the business, law and finance sectors.

  • Employers include:
  • local government
  • the Civil Service
  • the armed forces
  • Ministry of Defence
  • police service
  • private companies
  • environmental consultancies
  • environmental protection agencies
  • utility companies
  • charities
  • information systems organisations