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Key Stage 3 Geography

Curriculum Content & Aims

The Geography curriculum aims to develop in students a passion for and interest in the world they live in.  In KS3 students learn about the UK and other major countries in the world. Through the curriculum students develop an understanding of the different processes that interact to create distinctive landscapes around the world. The curriculum also aims to build in students’ key geographical skills in map reading, analyses and interpretation of data.

Details of studies per year

In Year 7 students will cover a number of topics which include:

  • Map Skills:
    • Compass points and Scale
    • 4 and 6 figure grid references
    • Lines of longitude and latitude
    • Contour lines
    • Overall map reading activities
  • Rivers:
    • Drainage basins
    • Processes of erosion, transportation and deposition
    • River landforms
    • Why rivers flood
    • LIC and HIC comparisons
  • Africa:
    • Map work
    • Developmental contrasts
    • Focus in to Sudan and Ghana
    • Looking to the future
  • Weather and climate:
    • UK weather
    • Extreme weather
    • Different types of rain
    • Microclimates

In Year 8 students will cover a number of topics which include:

  • Water Works:
    • How much water do people consume
    • Rights to water
    • Life without water
    • Water conflict
  • Coasts:
    • Processes of erosion, transportation and deposition
    • Erosional and depositional landforms
    • Longshore drift
    • Holderness coastline
  • Who wants to live forever:
    • UK population
    • Life expectancy
    • Quality of life in different areas, countries
    • Ageing population
  • Energy and the environment:
    • Importance of Russia
    • Fossil fuels
    • Renewable energy
    • How to conserve energy


In Year 9 students will cover a number of topics which include:

  • Glaciation:
    • Where is the world’s ice
    • How glaciers change over time
    • Opportunities and hazards
    • Erosional and depositional landforms
  • Development:
    • Development indicators
    • How countries develop over time
    • Trade
  • Aspiring Asia:
    • Weather
    • Ecosystems in Asia
    • Why people visit the Ganges
    • Conflict
    • Is Russia in Asia
  • Population change:
    • Country comparisons
    • Population pyramids
    • China’s one child Policy
    • Ageing population
    • Migration

How are they assessed?

Across KS3, there is regular use of formative assessment and an end of unit summative assessment.


GCSE Geography


AQA (8035)

Who should study Geography?

Geography will inspire you to become a global citizen. By exploring your own place in the world, you will understand the different attitudes and values that people have towards the environment and to the sustainability of our planet.

The syllabus

We follow the AQA Specification for Geography. This builds upon what you have learnt in Years 7 – 9, and introduces some exciting new topics. The GCSE course is split into 3 Units:

Unit 1 – Physical Geography (90 minute exam, worth 35%)

You will study the following modules:

  • The challenge of natural hazards – Volcanoes, Earthquakes, Hurricanes and Climate Change
  • Physical landscapes in the UK – Coastal environments and River landscapes
  • The living world – Ecosystems, Tropical Rainforests and Hot Deserts

Unit 2 – Human Geography (90 minute exam, worth 35%)

You will study the following modules:

  • Urban Challenges – Population change, Demographic Transition Model, Sustainable development
  • The changing economic world– contrasts in development, factors affecting development, reducing global inequalities and the UK economy
  • The challenge of resource management – the global distribution of food, the changing demand and provision of food in the UK


Unit 3 – Geographical Applications (75 minute exam, worth 30%)

You will study the following modules:

  • Issue evaluation- Pre-released material become available 12 weeks before the exam date and studied in class debating a geographical issue
  • Fieldwork- Two enquiries will be carried out in contrasting environments showing both the physical and human geography. Students will be tested on the skills they used during the fieldwork in the exam.
  • Geographical skills- cartographic, graphical, numerical and statistical skills


What skills are involved in GCSE Geography?

GCSE Geography is a fantastic subject for developing a wide range of employable skills due to its combination of science, humanities and mathematics. Additional skills students develop include:

Geographic information systems Presentation skills Analysing photographs, Studying satellite images Drawing/ interpreting a variety of graphs
Description Explanation Decision making Enquiry Map reading


Where it leads

Students that have studied Geography are very attractive to employers. You will learn and develop a lot of different skills which will help you with any type of work, from being a Climate Scientist to an Accountant! In addition to this students will prepare themselves for Geography A Level which is considered one of only 8 facilitating subjects which are commonly required or preferred by universities.


  • Examples of careers with Geography include:
  • Meteorologist
  • Environmental Education Officer
  • Finance
  • Surveyor
  • Tourism Officer
  • United Nations Ambassador
  • Government Administrator
  • Cartographer
  • Doctor
  • Accountant
  • Chemist
  • Engineering
  • Lawyer
  • Charity work