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Geography staff


“The study of geography is about more than just memorizing places on a map. It’s about understanding the complexity of our world, appreciating the diversity of cultures that exists across continents. And in the end, it’s about using all that knowledge to help bridge divides and bring people together.”

– Barack Obama

KS3 Overview

In Geography you will study a wide range of Physical and Human topics that will enhance your understanding of the world that you live in. You will learn how geographical processes create distinctive human and physical landscapes and develop the skills needed to question, assess and analyse the impacts that humans have on these landscapes and impacts that these landscapes have on humans.

Key Skills

In Geography you will develop a wide range of skills that will enable you to think like a geographer. You will learn to describe and explain the formation of natural features found in rivers and along our coastline, as well as tectonic processes such as the causes of earthquakes. You will analyse the impacts of natural hazards on people in a range of global locations and evaluate the responses to specific events that have caused devastation to communities around the world. You will be encouraged to develop your skills in assessing the causes and effects of man-made environmental disasters and what the possible solutions to them could be.

KS3 Topics

At Key Stage 3 students are taught one major unit a term, each unit is broken down into key questions that will be assessed throughout the year.

Year 7

What is Geography and how do we read maps?

  • What is a continent?
  • What is Europe?
  • What is the UK?
  • How do we read maps?


  • What is the difference between weather and climate?
  • How do we measure weather?
  • What is a microclimate?
  • What weather is extreme weather?


  • What is a census?
  • How does population grow?
  • What are sparse and dense population?
  • Why do people migrate?

Year 8


  • What is an ecosystem?
  • Where are the world’s major ecosystems and why?
  • What are tropical rainforests like?
  • What are the threats to tropical rainforests?
  • What are deserts like?
  • What is desertification?

Development and globalisation

  • What is development and why do we measure it?
  • How does war affect development?
  • What is Fairtrade?
  • What is globalisation?
  • Is globalisation good?

Urban areas

  • What are rural and urban areas?
  • Why do settlements have different shapes?
  • What are the challenges faced by people in urban areas?
  • How do we map crime?

Year 9

Earthquakes and Volcanoes

  • What is a natural hazard?
  • What is plate tectonic theory?
  • What is an earthquake?
  • How can the impact of earthquakes be reduced?
  • Why do volcanoes erupt?
  • Can volcanic eruptions be predicted?


  • What are the different types of industry?
  • What are TNCs?
  • Is Apple good?
  • What is tourism?

Rivers and Coasts

  • What are the features and processes in rivers?
  • Why do rivers flood?
  • What are the features and processes along the coast?
  • How is erosion causing problems along the coast?
KS4 Overview

At KS4 the students follow the AQA GCSE Geography Syllabus which builds on the skills that have been developed at KS3. The course is divided into two main themes, Living with the physical world and Challenges of the human environment, each of which is divided into three sections and examined with two 1½hr papers. Fieldwork is carried out in York and assessed in a third exam of 1¼ hrs titled Geographical Applications

The breakdown of the course is:

Paper 1 Living with the physical environment

3 sections

Exam 1.5hrs

35% of total GCSE

Natural Hazards which includes the study of tectonic theory, case study of two earthquakes, formation and case study of tropical storms and causes, effects and mitigation of climate change.

Ecosystems which includes identifying characteristics of major world biomes and detailed study of tropical rainforests and hot deserts.

UK landscapes which includes an overview of UK highlands and rivers, coastal processes, landforms and the impact of coastal erosion and river processes and landforms and the management of flooding.

Paper 2 Challenges of the human environment

3 sections

Exam 1.5hrs

35% of total GCSE

Urban issues and challenges which includes the causes and effects of global urbanisation, in depth study of a Rio de Janiero and Leeds as well as the study of the characteristics of sustainable cities.

Changing economic world which includes how to measure development, describing and explaining the global development gap and strategies to reduce it, impacts of tourism on low income countries, case study of a TNC in an LIC or NEE and the changing UK economy.

Challenge of resource management which includes issues around the supply and demand of managing water, food and energy both globally and nationally.

Paper 3 Geographical applications

2 sections

Exam 1.5hrs

30% of total GCSE

Section 1

Issue evaluation this includes questions based around a pre released information booklet and a decision making question.

Section 2

Fieldwork this includes questions based on the student’s fieldwork and unseen field work.

Exam board

KS4 study AQA GCSE Geography (8035). You can see the course specification here.

Revision materials

All students are given a York High School revision booklet that covers all the topics and case studies that we study.

Exam papers and other revision materials such as mind maps can be found on the L drive here L:FOUNDATIONGEOGRAPHYYear 11 Revision materials

Students have the option to purchase a revision guide for £2.50.

Useful websites for revision:

BBC bitesize 

The Student Room is a forum where students can ask questions and access revision materials 

You tube is an excellent resource for Geographical videos that can support learning, here are some links to useful videos for each topic.

Paper 1

Section A

Section B

Section C

Paper 2

Section A

Section B

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