Why Study Geography?

Do you want to study a subject that is modern, stimulating, relevant to your life and practical? A subject in which you can achieve highly? If yes, then Geography is the subject for you! It is your world, so why not find out more about it?! Studying Geography will enable you to find out how the Earth works and the challenges we face in the 21st Century. Geography will give you a passport to understanding the world in which you live. You will get the opportunity to investigate a wide range of topics in this subject.

Note: Year 9 have already begun studying topics on this GCSE course and will continue to develop this into year 10.

Course Content & Development of Expertise

In Geography, you will be an active learner who will experience the subject in a variety of different ways, from constructing models to explain the formation of hurricanes to debating on whether the Malaysian Rainforest should be opened up to development. You will be expected to research information using a variety of different sources, make decisions on current and controversial issues and undertake two practical fieldwork enquiries. You will also learn to use information including maps and graphs.

You will study both Physical and Human Geography topics:

Living with the physical environment – Paper One

  • The challenge of natural hazards – volcanoes, earthquakes, weather hazards e.g. hurricanes, weather hazards in the UK, climate change
  • The living world – Ecosystems, tropical rainforests, cold environments
  • Physical landscapes in the UK – coastal landscapes and glaciated landscapes.

Challenges in the human environment – Paper Two

  • Urban issues and challenges – Studying city life in an NEE e.g. Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and in the UK e.g. Manchester, and also how cities can be sustainably developed.
  • The changing economic world – Studying development, population and the rising importance of NEE countries e.g. Nigeria. Studying the importance of the UK in the world economy.
  • The challenge of resource management – Studying the challenge of ensuring there is enough food, energy and water for the people of the world.

Geographical applications – Paper Three

  • Issue evaluation – A resource booklet is given before the exam to be studied and subsequently for students to answer questions about in the exam. This involves some statistical analysis using maths skills.
  • Fieldwork – Two compulsory fieldtrips are taken as there is a requirement for students to have conducted both physical and human fieldwork. These are currently to Cleveleys to study coastal management strategies (early in year 10) and to Salford Quays for Human Geography to study the urban regeneration which has happened to this former dockland to transform it into a media/cultural hub (later in year 10). The cost of these trips is low to cover coach transport only.

The skills you will learn are:

  • The ability to research and present information
  • The ability to use Graphs, Diagrams and Statistics to help analyse information
  • The opportunity to conduct practical fieldwork enquiries using the primary data collection skills.
  • The ability to work individually and collaboratively.
  • The ability to debate controversial and topical information

Career Pathways

Geography bridges the gap between the arts and the sciences and is particularly useful if you are thinking of a career in Retail, Business, Banking, Law, Politics, Accountancy, Marketing, Armed Forces, Media, Journalism, Relief/Aid Work, Travel and Tourism, Environmental Management, Surveying, Architecture, Police/Social Work, Education, Management, Land Management.

Qualification Information

Optional Subject

Qualification: GCSE Geography

Awarding Body: AQA

Entry Tiers: One Tier Grade 9-1

Assessment Structure

Paper 1: 35%: Living with the physical environment

Written paper, maximum 88 marks (35%).Topics examined at the end of Year 11. Duration of examination: 1 hour 30 minutes.

Paper 2: 35%: Challenges in the human environment

Written paper, maximum 88 marks (35%). Topics examined at the end of Year 11. Duration of examination: 1 hour 30 minutes.

Paper 3: 30%: Geographical applications

Written exam: maximum 76 marks. Topics examined at the end of Year 11. Duration of examination: 1 hour 15 minutes.

Geographical skills – will be examined in all three papers

Why Study History?

The best reason to study History is because you enjoy it! It’s fascinating! Imagine a subject that teaches you about the most exciting things that have ever happened. It is also essential to learn from the past in order not to repeat our mistakes. Imagine a world where another Hitler might be allowed to rise to power. Other great reasons to study History are that it is an academic subject with an established tradition, and that it is well-respected among employers and in higher education. History opens doors.

Course Content & Development of Expertise

In GCSE History you will learn about Crime and Punishment through the ages, from the days of the Anglo-Saxons to modern policing techniques, law enforcements and punishments.  You will also focus on Elizabethan England and the Spanish Armada, examine the rise of Hitler and the evil of the Nazi state and investigate the circumstances surrounding the Cold War stand-off between the USSR and the West. These topics have been selected for their accessibility, interest, and relevance to contemporary issues. An extended reading library is available on request in J7. This will allow students to read beyond the textbook and challenge themselves by augmenting their historical vocabulary.

Career Pathways

Employers consider History to be one of the best subjects to demonstrate a potential candidate’s ability in critical thinking and argumentation. It is a subject that opens doors everywhere but is particularly well suited to the law, education and journalism.

Qualification Information

Optional Subject

Qualification: GCSE History

Awarding Body: Pearson Edecxel

Entry Tiers: One Tier

Assessment Structure

PAPER 1: Thematic Study and Historic Environment

Option 11: Crime and Punishment Through Time, c.1000-present

30% of total marks 1 hour 15 minutes

PAPER 2: Period Study and British Depth Study

This paper is divided into 2 sections:

Section A: Option 27: Superpower relations and the Cold War, 1941-91

Section B: Option B4: Early Elizabethan England, 1558-88

40% of total marks 1 hour 45 minutes

PAPER 3: Modern Depth Study

Option 31: Weimar and Nazi Germany, 1918-39

30% of total marks 1 hour 20 minutes

Why Study Religious Studies?

We live in a world of different belief systems and values. This subject looks at fundamental questions about life, death and the purpose of our existence. It examines issues facing people in all parts of the world and helps you understand your own personal beliefs and how you might be able to influence events. You will investigate arguments about God and whether we should allow euthanasia and abortion, what happens when we die and views on evil and suffering. The course will be enjoyable and is highly relevant to any chosen career; it allows you to participate in some soul searching of your own.

Course Content & Development of Expertise

The course is about Religion and Ethics in Christianity and Religion, Peace and Conflict in Islam. You will study topics such as Christian beliefs, marriage and family, living the religious life, crime and punishment, peace and conflict and matters of life and death (abortion, euthanasia etc.) All will be studied in relation to Christian and Muslim beliefs and practice. A wide range of different types of teaching and learning styles, including research activities and group work are used. Religious Studies will help develop your key skills in decision making, investigation, reflective thinking, working with others and problem solving. It will also give you skills in making decisions about moral problems and help you to become sure about your own beliefs and explain them clearly to others. It is not about making you religious, it is about enabling you to think for yourself about religious and moral issues.

There will be extra sessions for eligible students to enable them to gain the best Grade they can. We have a varied programme of Religious Educational experiences provided within and beyond the school environment.

Career Pathways

A GCSE in Religious Studies is a stepping stone to a wide range of careers and future opportunities e.g.

  • Teacher
  • Journalist
  • Medical Careers
  • Social Worker

Religious Studies is a way of broadening your understanding of the world and people. You will have to meet people from a huge range of cultural backgrounds”.

The skills you develop will support you in further employment. A good Grade at GCSE will help you progress to an AS/A Level in Religious Studies. GCSE Religious Studies also prepares you to work and deal with people of different cultures and beliefs, which can be very useful for careers such as the Police, Medicine, Law, Government, Management, Armed Forces, Counselling, Therapy and Nursing.

Qualification Information

Optional Subject

Qualification: GCSE Religious Studies

Awarding Body: Pearson Edecxel

Entry Tiers: One Tier

Assessment Structure

For the full course, two examinations will be taken at the end of Year 11. Each will be worth 50% of the final result and last 1 hour and 45 minutes.

You will follow the Pearson Edexcel Specification B ‘Beliefs in Action’ – Area of Study 1 – Religion and Ethics based on a study of Christianity. Including the following topics:

  • Matters of Life & Death e.g. abortion, euthanasia
  • Christian Beliefs e.g. creation theories, the problem of evil
  • Marriage & the Family e.g. Christian marriage, divorce, contraception
  • Living the Christian Life e.g. prayer, charity and pilgrimage

You will also follow Pearson Specification B ‘Beliefs in Action’ – Area of Study 2 – Religion, Peace and Conflict based on a study of Islam. Including the following topics:

  • Muslim Beliefs e.g. Allah, evil & suffering
  • Peace and Conflict e.g. war, weapons
  • Crime and Punishment e.g. death sentence, drugs.
  • Living the Muslim Life e.g. the Five Pillars of Islam