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Aims & Philosophy of the Geography Department

We believe that the study of Geography enables girls to be better prepared as future world citizens. The Geography department aims to give students an informed appreciation for the ever-changing world in which they are growing up, and in which they will live and work as adults. We believe that Geography can excite our curiosity and strengthen our understanding of many contemporary issues. Through the study of global challenges such as climate change, water conflicts, food security and biodiversity we can become more knowledgeable and this knowledge then empowers us to be able to think through problems, make decisions and find solutions.

Fostering an awareness and empathy towards other societies, in their many cultural and environmental settings, is an essential theme in Geography. In order to achieve this understanding, we aim to identify the values and attitudes which influence lifestyles and changes in such societies. Furthermore it is necessary to appreciate that all people depend absolutely upon the atmosphere, soils, water and the “web of life” for their existence and that attempts to intervene in natural environments have to take full account of the processes at work. The concept of sustainable development is crucial in this respect.

Overview of Key Stage 5 Curriculum

At A Level, girls learn the value of geography both in its own right and as an excellent subject to bridge Arts & Sciences, as a number of universities accept Geography A level as a science subject.

The A Level course aims to develop an understanding and knowledge of physical, human and environmental processes and how these change over time. Both at AS and A2 Level students explore the meaning, causes and impacts of a number of headline global issues.

The AS course covers the themes of globalisation and the world at risk; additionally, there is a strong theoretical field work component which nurtures project planning skills.

At A2 level a broad range of topics are covered, including the energy crisis, water conflict, biodiversity loss, development gap, superpowers and technofix. These are all studied at a global scale with a strong synoptic overview of issues, players and solutions. This allows the girls to understand issues across the physical and human world, the importance of scale and connectedness and how to appreciate variety and difference.

What makes the department unique from those at other schools?

The Geography department at QM is a robust and active area of school. Across all school years, the department works diligently to maintain an active schedule of field work trips to locations both local and further afield to encourage the girls to further develop their understanding and skills sets related to the subject.

The department also maintains a twitter account, @QMGeography.

To learn about the Geography Department
curriculum in other Key Stages please choose a link