You should have a minimum of 2 grade Bs and 4 grade Cs at GCSE which must include English at grade C (grade 4), Maths at grade C (grade 4) and Science at grade C (grade 4). A grade B in Geography or History or Religious Studies is also required.
One or two years.
What will I study?
Year 1 AS level Geography
The AQA specification is followed at York College. There are 3 main components to the AS course: Water and Carbon Cycles, Contemporary Urban Environments and Changing Places.
In addition, Geographical Skills are taught throughout the year and there is a compulsory field trip to Cranedale Field Studies Centre in the Yorkshire Wolds for 3 days and 2 nights. The fieldwork is an essential part of the course and will be tested by exam and in a coursework dissertation. Additional non-residential fieldwork is usually carried out at Askham Bog, Knavesmire Wood, Harehills and Alwoodley. A day trip to University of Leeds School of Geography, incorporating lectures, GIS sessions and a campus tour is also offered to those considering studying Geography at University.
Year 2 A Level Geography
In Year 2 the three additional teaching components are Global systems and global governance, Hot desert environments and their margins and hazards OR Ecosystems under stress. In addition, students will carry out fieldwork and write a 3000 word dissertation for the Geographical Investigation.
How will I be assessed?
AS Level assessment
Paper 1: Physical geography and people and the environment (1hr 30 mins) (80marks)
Section A: Water and carbon cycles (multi-choice, 8/9 markers, 18 marker, 40 marks total)
Section B: Contemporary urban environments (4-6 markers, 18 marker, 40 marks total)
Paper 2: Human geography and geography fieldwork investigation (1hr 30 mins) (80 marks)
Section A: Changing Places (multi-choice, 8/9 markers, 18 marker, 40 marks total)
Section B: Geographical fieldwork investigation and geographical skills (4-9 markers, 40 marks total)
A Level assessment
Paper 1: Physical Geography (2hrs 30mins) (96 marks)
Section A: Water and carbon cycles (multi-choice, 6-9 markers, 27 marks total)
Section B: Hot desert environments and their margins (multi-choice, 6-9 markers, 27 marks total)
Section C: Ecosystems under stress OR Hazards (3-9 markers, 30 marker, 42 marks total)
Paper 2: Human Geography (2hrs 30mins) (96 marks)
Section A: Global systems and global governance (multi-choice, 6-9 markers, 27 marks total)
Section B: Changing places (multi-choice, 6-9 markers, 27 marks total)
Section C: Contemporary urban environments (3-9 markers, 30 marker, 42 marks total)
Component 3: Geographical Investigation (48 marks)
Good course combinations
Geography works well with both Sciences and Humanities.
What can I do next?
There are many job opportunities for students who have taken courses in Geography, and employers welcome the wide range of skills covered. You might be surprised just how many geography-related jobs there are! If you are considering university, then you will find that Geography has a good reputation with admissions tutors. Geography sits comfortably with both the sciences and humanities, and as such has a wide appeal. Past students have gone on to study Physical Geography, Human Geography, Environmental Management and Environmental Science.
‘Geography is not only 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.’
Former president of The Royal Geographical Society, traveller, actor, director and Python