If you enjoyed Geography at GCSE, it’s a good indication that you will find geography interesting at A level. Much of the A level links directly to GCSE study areas and enables students to expand and develop their existing skills, knowledge and understanding.
From September 2016 the new linear Edexcel A level will enable students to evaluate contemporary geographical questions and issues such as the causes of globalisation, responses to hazards, water insecurity and climate change. Assessment consists of three externally-examined papers and one coursework component. In 2013 the Edexcel B linear GCSE course was introduced exploring both new and traditional areas of physical and human geography. In addition practical elements of the course include a decision-making skills exercise and the fieldwork-based controlled assessment.
A key element of both specifications is the interrelationship between people and their environments and an understanding of the opportunities, problems and conflicts that result. These are examined using exciting and stimulating contemporary case studies.
Fieldwork is undertaken in partnership with the Field Studies Council at Epping Forest Field Centre, Juniper Hall Field Centre and London East Field Centre. Visiting speakers and local visits are also arranged as part of a varied learning programme.
The Brampton course is taught by highly experienced A level Geography teachers. Results in the department have been strong over the years – 92% of our students in the last 2 years have gained A* – B grades, with students progressing to read Geography at the University of Cambridge, Durham University, King’s College, London and University College London.
Lucy Wood is a highly experienced teacher of A level Geography. She taught at the La SWAP consortium of schools and at Fortismere before coming to Brampton and is also an A level examiner for the Edexcel board.
Dominique studied Geography (BA) at Leeds University and then gained her PGCE at Middlesex University. She has taught Geography at Mill Hill County High School for six years as well privately tutoring the subject throughout this time. When she is not teaching she is looking after her two energetic young girls who keep her very busy and when she can, she likes to go to Stamford Bridge on a Saturday afternoon to support Chelsea Football Club.
I was disillusioned with regards to my future after receiving poor grades at both AS and A-level at my previous school. I felt they were not a fair reflection on my potential and was disappointed with the way my school had handled my education in 6th form.
The results I had gained would have meant that I could only attend universities that were of a reasonably low standard and for a while I persuaded myself that, with all my friends moving onto university, I should simply follow even it if meant going to an undesirable university.
However after lengthy discussions with my parents, I soon began to realise that this was not the right decision to take and therefore decided to look at various 6th form colleges within my area. There were various colleges that I looked at yet few seemed to meet my needs and were at times unhelpful. However I eventually came across Brampton College. I attended a lengthy interview with the headmaster in which I explained the difficult situation that I was in and I was simply astonished by the willingness that the school displayed in offering to help me. My parents were also taken aback by the college’s setup and I knew Brampton was the place for me to achieve my desired goals.
Brampton College immediately presented me with a revolutionary style to learning. This ranged from the constant attention given to each student both in and out of class to weekly tests set in exam style conditions. This was so helpful as you gained a personal relationship with each of your teachers in your small classes and felt comfortable to ask any question you my have regarding your subject, rather than shying away as one may do if put into large, over-powering classes as experienced in other schools. The small class sizes also meant that your weaknesses in subjects were immediately identified and could be corrected as soon as possible. I remember gaining more and more confidence every time I walked into class of which was a new feeling entirely for me as my previous school often did not have the time required to give you the attention that Brampton could.
The college offered a friendly environment which I still believe is unrivalled by any other college or school, by the way you were allowed to call teachers via their first names, making you feel mature and almost on a level platform. Despite the work-load, there were various outlets of stress for students such as after-school football, where I gained many good friends.
When exam day came I was nervous but not petrified like the majority of students around the country would have been because I knew Brampton had prepared for every possibility that the exams might throw at me and by this time examination conditions were second nature.
When results day came, I went down to the college and was delighted to find that I attained 3 A’s at A-level of which I had even received 100% in one of my modules, proving the quality of preparation I received. I was over the moon with my results and I am now at University of Manchester in second year, studying Geography. On reflection, I am extremely happy with my decision to re-take my A-levels at Brampton and remain eternally grateful for the opportunity they have given me as it now seems I have a bright future ahead.”