Geology A Level

Board: Eduqas – Syllabus:  A Level

About the subject

If you have a curiosity about how the Earth works, then Geology is the subject for you! It is the scientific study of the Earth and covers the most interesting topics from GCSE Physical Geography and Science, but takes them much, much further! The exciting topics include everything you want to know about the science of earthquakes, volcanoes, dinosaurs, plate tectonics, rocks and crystals! It also includes important career pathways such as the formation of natural resources and engineering geology.

The first year includes minerals, sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic rocks, faults and folds, as well as fossils. In the second year we cover evolution of life and the Earth, global tectonics, the geology of Britain, earth resources, geohazards and geological maps. The course includes 20 specified practicals, including microscope work, and four days mandatory fieldwork, so if you like being active, this is the course for you! Students may have the opportunity to visit Iceland, but local field trips are arranged for the practical endorsement.

The course is supported by a fantastic range of enrichment events, including guest speakers, workshops, trips and competitions, funded by the ‘Kirsty Brown Fund’.

Learning styles

Teaching includes a variety of styles and there are many amazing concepts to challenge you! Engaging and interactive theory lessons are backed up with stimulating practicals and students develop important skills,including using geological maps to draw cross-sections through the Earth. Independent learning using research on the internet plays a key part in the learning process. Practical work runs weekly, this involves studying hand specimens of rocks, minerals and fossils and undertaking tasks for the practical endorsement aspect of the course.

Weekly independent study develops key maths and geological skills, and in homework students develop a portfolio of studied rocks, geological structures and fossils. The regular independent study tasks help students develop research and time management skills. Homework, together with the practical work, enable students to build up a detailed record of all the specimens they have studied.

Subject Combinations and Progression

Good combinations would be Geography, Environmental Studies, Physics and Biology.  If students are intending to follow a career in Geology they should study 2 science courses.

Subject Modules and Assessment

There are three written exams all taken in June. These are Geological Investigations, Geological Principles and Processes, and Geological Applications

Entry requirements

GCSE Core and Additional Science grade 5 preferred with 5 in GCSE Maths preferred.