Geography is a successful and thriving department with a varied curriculum. The Department was again awarded the ‘Secondary Geography Quality Mark’ by the Geographical Association in 2013. All the teaching staff have an excellent knowledge of the subject and lessons are taught in well resourced classrooms. The curriculum is supported by a varied fieldwork programme; including visits to Walton on the Naze, Hadleigh Castle to experience ‘geocaching’, and Hanningfield Reservoir.

Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3, students study a variety of topics and gain knowledge, skills and understanding over the three years. In Year 7, students make connections and examine their personal geographies. They also study deserts as an example of a difficult environment and the management of future flood risks. In Year 8, students learn about globalisation and the chocolate industry, they investigate the tropical rainforest ecosystem, coastal processes and study Kenya as an LEDC. In Year 9, topics are more enquiry-based and students investigate why so many people died in the Haiti earthquake. They also learn about the problems and benefits of the tourist industry. At the end of Year 9, students get the opportunity to study the geography of extreme sports like white water rafting and surfing.

Key Stage 4

Geography is a popular optional subject at GCSE and students follow the Edexcel B syllabus. Students complete four units over two years.

Unit 1 - Dynamic Planet

Students study: Restless Earth, Changing Climate, Battle for the Biosphere, Water World, Coastal Change and Conflict and Oceans on the Edge.

Unit 2 - People and Planet

Students study: Population Dynamics, Consuming Resources, Globalisation, Development Dilemmas, Changing Economy of the UK and Challenges of the Urban World.

Unit 3 - Making Geographical Decisions

This unit will assess students’ ability to make decisions about geographical issues and justify them. Students will answer questions based on a resource booklet they receive in the exam. Previous issues have included the London 2012 Olympics and rural development issues in Uganda.

Unit 4 - Geographical Research

This unit consists of: a fieldwork investigation and report. Students carry out fieldwork at Walton on the Naze into coastal erosion and management. They write a fieldwork report in controlled classroom conditions.


Exam board

Exam code



Edexcel B


Year 10

Term 1

Restless Earth

Population Dynamics

Changing Climate

Consuming resources

Term 2

Water World

Development Dilemmas

Battle for the Biosphere

Term 3


Coastal Change & Conflict

Year 11

Term 1

Controlled Assessment


Changing economy of the UK

Term 2

Oceans on the edge

Challenges of an Urban World

Link to specification:

Key Stage 5

A Level

Geography is a popular subject. Students follow the Edexcel syllabus.

AS Level

Students study two units. Both units are assessed through examination at the end of Year 12.

Unit 1 - Global Challenges

The Global Challenges unit poses questions which seek to explore the meaning, causes and impact of a number of headline global issues. It gives students the opportunity to evaluate existing attempts to manage the problems they bring and the challenges faced to find solutions for the 21s t century. Whilst its scale is global, it is important that students can relate to their own situations, becoming aware that they too can have a say in and play a part in, meeting these global challenges.

Unit 2 - Geographical Investigations

The Geographical Investigations unit is investigative in nature and students undertake a variety of fieldwork tasks and activities. It consists of two units:

  • Extreme Weather - With its increasing ferocity and frequency, extreme weather fascinates some people and threatens many others.
  • Rebranding Places - Focusing on how we need to re-image and regenerate rural, urban and coastal places, using appropriate strategies and how success might be judged.

A2 Level

Students study two units. Both units are assessed through two examinations at the end of Year 13.

Unit 3 - Contested Planet

Contested Planet is about the use and management of resources. There are six topics areas:

  • Energy security
  • Water conflicts
  • Biodiversity under threat
  • Superpower geographies
  • Bridging the development gap
  • The technological fix?
  • Unit 4 geographical research

Unit 4 - Natural Hazards

The research themes include the causes and management of earthquake, volcanic and tsunami hazards.