Course aims

This course will develop your understanding of physical and human geography, challenge your perceptions and stimulate your investigative and analytical skills. The course topics reflect key issues in the world today.

Entry requirements

You will require a grade 6 in English, 6 in a Humanities subject and 5 in Mathematics in addition to the general entry requirements. 

Course content

Physical Geography

  • Water and carbon cycles: the dynamic and cyclical relationships associated with water and carbon
  • Hot desert environments and their margins: the characteristics of drylands occurring at all latitudes
  • Coastal systems and landscapes: how the interaction of winds, waves currents and sediments develop the dynamic environments of the coastal zone
  • Hazards: focuses on the lithosphere and the atmosphere which present hazards to human populations
  • Ecosystems under stress: focuses on the nature and functioning of ecosystems and their relationship with human activities
  • Cold environments: the distinctive physical processes and landscapes associated with cold environments and the challenges and opportunities they present for human development.

Human Geography

  • Global systems and global governance: the process of globalisation and the governance of different parts of the planet including Antarctica
  • Places: the experience and characteristics of specific places and people’s engagement with them
  • Contemporary urban environments: focuses on how urban areas grow, change and why they present significant environmental and social challenges for human populations
  • Population and the environment: explores the relationship between population, economic development, the role of the natural environment and the population’s health and wellbeing
  • Resource security: the exploitation and development of unevenly distributed resources of water and energy.

Geographical investigation (20% of final grade)

You are required to undertake an independent fieldwork investigation in relation to processes in both physical and human geography. This will be assessed as a written fieldwork report. Your geographical skills in using statistical tests, maps, presenting and interpreting data in a variety of graphical forms will also be developed.

Course assessment

Written examinations and coursework.


Dudley Sixth provides textbooks and equipment for fieldwork. Compulsory attendance on fieldwork is required with a contribution from the learner (financial assistance may be available from Dudley Sixth).


Higher Education to study earth sciences, teaching or surveying. Employment with environmental agencies and conservation bodies.