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Geography (A-level)Apply Now »

Note - you only need to make one application for A-levels. You can specify the additional A-Levels you wish to study when you fill out the application form

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Level: 3

Location: Joseph Wright Centre

Years: 2

Adult Loan Amount: 2225.00****

Interview: Y

Course Summary

The A-level Geography course encourages learners to apply geographical knowledge, theory and skills to the world around them. In turn this will enable learners to develop a critical understanding of the world’s people, places and environments in the 21st century. Learners should be able to develop both knowledge and understanding of contemporary geographical concepts together with transferable skills that will enable them to progress to higher education and a range of employment opportunities.

Entry requirements

You will need at least five GCSEs at grade 4 (C) or above, including English Language at grade 5 (C/B) and Maths at grade 4 (C).

A GCSE in Geography is not a pre-requisite. However, if you have studied it, a grade 5 (C/B) is required.

A recent school report will be required which demonstrates a committed attitude to learning.

It is assumed that students enrol on a two-year A-level programme of study consisting of three or more subjects. However, students will be expected to demonstrate a committed attitude to learning and make positive progress in their first year of study.

Course Content

Component 1: Changing Landscapes and Changing Places

Coastal or glacial landscapes, rural-urban continuum, deindustrialisation, the decline of the high street and rise of internet shopping, the rebranding of places, segregation and inequality in towns and cities.

Component 2: Global Systems and Global Governance

Water and carbon cycles, carbon storage in different ecosystems, globalisation, economic migration, movement of refugees, sovereignty of ocean resources and managing ocean environments.

Component 3: Contemporary Themes in Geography

Volcanic and seismic events, hazard management, hazard perception and vulnerability, ecosystems, weather and climate, and development in an African context.

Component 4: Independent Investigation (coursework)

The independent investigation must be based on a question or issue defined and developed by you individually, and must relate to the specification content.

How will I be assessed?

Component 1: Changing Landscapes and Changing Places

Written examination: 2 hours 15 minutes - 30% of qualification.

Component 2: Global Systems and Global Governance

Written examination: 2 hours 15 minutes - 30% of qualification.

Component 3: Contemporary Themes in Geography

Written examination: 2 hours - 20% of qualification.

Component 4: Independent Investigation (coursework)

Non-exam assessment: 3000 to 4000 words - 20% of qualification.

Are there any additional costs or specialist equipment required?


What can I do after this course?

Further study 

You can progress to university study in fields such as:

  • Geography
  • Humanities
  • Geology
  • Environmental Management
  • Sociology
  • Marine Biology
  • Geographical Information Systems


This A-level is valuable for careers in areas such as:

  • Social work
  • Town planning
  • Surveying
  • Environmental protection/conservation
  • Law
  • GIS analysis
  • Teaching

Apply Now »

Note - you only need to make one application for A-levels. You can specify the additional A-Levels you wish to study when you fill out the application form

Did you find the course information on this page useful?


This course is run at the Joseph Wright Centre

About Joseph Wright Centre »

Emily Gray

Emily Gray

Peak Award Winner Emily now studying for master’s in Australia

Former Peak Award winner Emily Gray was motivated to achieve “more than she ever thought she was capable of” while studying for A levels at Derby College.  
And, since leaving Joseph Wright Centre 10 years ago, she has quite literally gone a long way – to university in Melbourne, Australia, to take a Master of Education degree in Applied Behaviour Analysis.    
Now 27, Emily received a Peak Award for Academic Studies after performing well in her sociology, history and psychology A levels and EPQ, the Extended Project Qualification.  
While on her psychology degree course at the University of Leeds, Emily embarked on a study year at Monash University in Melbourne.    
And, since graduating, she has taught English in Peru, volunteered and worked in Sri Lanka and travelled in Australia before settling in Melbourne with her partner.    
Currently studying for her master’s at Monash University, Emily also works as a site manager at a centre-based intervention service based on the principles of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) for pre-school aged children on the autism spectrum.     She ultimately wants to become a clinical psychologist or clinical director of an agency providing ABA.    
Commenting on her Peak Award in 2009, Emily added that it was “really unexpected and a huge honour.” She included the award in her CV and found it was “something she was able to talk about in interviews.”            

My lecturers were fantastic!  They were really passionate about their subject, particularly psychology lecturer Glyn Pickering, who motivated me and pushed me to achieve more than I thought I was capable of.

I also got great support at Derby College in applying for university and higher education. I was able to go on a residential trip to experience Oxford University, and received specialist and individual help with my application, personal statement and interview preparation.


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