St John Plessington Catholic College


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Head of International Studies 

Mr J McFadden 

Head of Department:

Miss A Varley 




GCSE in Geography 

Programme of study

Geography develops your knowledge and understanding of the world in which you live today. Topics are 

chosen from a range of physical and human options explored through relevant case studies in your own world and the fast changing world around you. Geography encourages you to ask questions about the world you  live in, process ideas and evaluate key global issues. Pupils of Geography are given the opportunity to develop opinions, assess the reliability of evidence and communicate ideas and information in a variety of formats. 

You will have numerous opportunities to take part in extra-curricular activities within the subject, focusing on fieldwork and geographical skills. The department presently leads field trips in the local area. This permits you  to carry out primary data collection and experience elements of core Geography in a real world setting. 

How is the course structured? 

You will take three examination papers at the end of Year 11. These are outlined below: 

Component one: Living with the physical environment. The topics for this paper are: 

  • The challenge of natural hazards
  • The living world
  • Physical landscapes in the UK

Component two: Challenges in the human environment. The topics for this paper are: 

  • Urban issues and challenges
  • The changing economic world
  • The challenges of resource management

Component Three: Geographical application. The topics for this paper are: 

  • Issue evaluation (Pre-release resource booklet available 12 weeks before paper 3)
  • FieldworkGeographical skills are embedded into each topic and continually practised throughout the GCSE course. 

How will my work be assessed? 

Component One: One exam worth 35% of the qualification available – 1hour 30 minutes.

Component Two: One exam worth 35% of the qualification available – 1 hour 30 minutes.

Component Three: One exam worth 30% of the qualification available – 1 hour 15 minutes. 

What can these qualifications lead to? 

Geography develops skills in literacy, numeracy, ICT, problem solving, teamwork and thinking skills. You can go on to study Geography at A Level and beyond. 

In addition, the subject equips you with important skills that are transferable in the ever-changing and competitive workplace. You develop the ability to think analytically, gather relevant information, evaluate facts and apply your own point of view. Future careers can include a wide range of sectors including scientific research, health care, social work, accountancy, retail, teaching, business and finance,journalism, marketing/ sales and advertising, as well as town planning and the travel and tourism industry. The opportunities are endless.