Head of Department

Dr S A H YoungBSc, MSc, PGCE, PhD

Overview

Geology is the scientific study of the history and structure of the Earth, looking at questions such as –

How was our planet formed?

What is the chemical and physical nature of our home world?

How has the Earth changed over time?

How can we make best use of its resources?

What processes are responsible for modern and ancient landscapes?

It should be stressed that this is a Science and that a degree of numeracy and analysis form a fundamental part of both the curriculum, and the assessment.  However, nothing that should deter anyone with a reasonable set of sciences at GCSE.

Lower School (IGCSE)

Geology is only available in the Sixth Form.

Upper School (AS and A Level)

The course follows the OCR AS specification – H014. Students follow the course over two years, in four lessons a week. This is usually in place of the EPQ. Occasionally the full A2 is available and has been taught successfully. 

The AS course is divided into four modules looking at practical skills; basic principles; tectonics and structural geology; and interpretation of the past.

Assessment is by a single two and a half hour paper.

There is also a compulsory field trip which normally takes place in May, when we usually go to Arran on the west coast of Scotland.

Who should study Geology?

The simple answer is, of course, everyone! However, as well as the obvious students with an interest in studying Earth Sciences at university, Geology makes an excellent support subject for anyone studying Geography, Chemistry or Physics. Universities also like to see it from those applying to read Archaeology.

Trips and events

Field trips are essential to enhancing student’s geological understanding of the world and play a large part in the departmental teaching. Along with regular UK field trips, the department is also involved in expeditions to destinations such as Iceland, Morocco and India.