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Edexcel Geography AS Level

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    Hello, I'm currently in Year 12, doing four AS levels. I'm taking three of them to A2 next year, and currently thinking about doing an AS level in Geography, partly to satisfy my interest and partly to boost my chances of getting into university a little bit...

    Anyway, I'm just wondering if anyone who's done Geography AS on Edexcel can tell me what they thought of it? How hard/easy did you find it? Does a lot of work need to be put in before the exam remembering things?

    Trouble is, if it's going to be a lot of work I may choose not to do it as that might affect how well I do in my A2s!

    Any help appreciated, thank you!
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    well I do AQA A level Geography, and it isn't too bad, as long as you are taught it well and learn your case studies. compared to biology and maths, it is certainly easier!!
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    (Original post by Arcanen)
    Hello, I'm currently in Year 12, doing four AS levels. I'm taking three of them to A2 next year, and currently thinking about doing an AS level in Geography, partly to satisfy my interest and partly to boost my chances of getting into university a little bit...

    Anyway, I'm just wondering if anyone who's done Geography AS on Edexcel can tell me what they thought of it? How hard/easy did you find it? Does a lot of work need to be put in before the exam remembering things?

    Trouble is, if it's going to be a lot of work I may choose not to do it as that might affect how well I do in my A2s!

    Any help appreciated, thank you!
    Firstly, if you're after the physical geography stuff, the Edexcel specification won't be for you :/ Nearly all of the spec focuses on human geography, e.g. right now i'm doing rebranding places and globalisation (migration, population growth and such). The other two topics I did were coastal areas (stuff like reason for their popularity, threats, management) and hazards (there is an element of physical geography here, but not really much).

    Secondly, the exam consists of two papers; one is your usual theory based paper. and the other is what they call the 'fieldwork and research' paper. Basically the latter involves one question where you have to explain how you could investigate such and such (using your own experiences), one data response question and the other a theoretical and case study based answer.

    Now for what I thought of it :P

    I wouldn't consider it to be too hard, the details of the case studies may be tedious to learn, but the ideas themselves are very easy to grasp. If you're good at remembering little details in case studies and have common sense, you'll find it, dare I say it, quite easy.

    I can't say I really enjoy the course though. The hazards and globalisation stuff can be quite interesting actually, but I find the fieldwork and research paper really really boring. I don't feel i'm really learning anything in those lessons :/

    If you have any other questions, feel free to ask me
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    I'm doing that at the moment and i love it. It's mainly human geography based but it's not too difficult, in fact i've found that it's quite repetative at times. If you enjoy geography then you'll find it very interesting so i think it's well worth giving it a go. As long as you're keen and are prepared to do a fair bit of research in response to case studies you'll be fine. Be prepared to write a lot of essays though!
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    (Original post by JRGC)
    Firstly, if you're after the physical geography stuff, the Edexcel specification won't be for you :/ Nearly all of the spec focuses on human geography, e.g. right now i'm doing rebranding places and globalisation (migration, population growth and such). The other two topics I did were coastal areas (stuff like reason for their popularity, threats, management) and hazards (there is an element of physical geography here, but not really much).

    Secondly, the exam consists of two papers; one is your usual theory based paper. and the other is what they call the 'fieldwork and research' paper. Basically the latter involves one question where you have to explain how you could investigate such and such (using your own experiences), one data response question and the other a theoretical and case study based answer.

    Now for what I thought of it :P

    I wouldn't consider it to be too hard, the details of the case studies may be tedious to learn, but the ideas themselves are very easy to grasp. If you're good at remembering little details in case studies and have common sense, you'll find it, dare I say it, quite easy.

    I can't say I really enjoy the course though. The hazards and globalisation stuff can be quite interesting actually, but I find the fieldwork and research paper really really boring. I don't feel i'm really learning anything in those lessons :/

    If you have any other questions, feel free to ask me
    Totally agree on the fieldwork and research paper. Being a consistent A student, I got a D in my mock of this paper. Most of the stuff is just so trivial you don't think to put it down. I find it a lot harder than the first paper mostly because the mark scheme asks for such random things!

    Any tips on doing better in the second paper because I'm currently bricking it about this exam!
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    (Original post by strawberryjellybaby)
    Totally agree on the fieldwork and research paper. Being a consistent A student, I got a D in my mock of this paper. Most of the stuff is just so trivial you don't think to put it down. I find it a lot harder than the first paper mostly because the mark scheme asks for such random things!

    Any tips on doing better in the second paper because I'm currently bricking it about this exam!
    I have no idea what genius thought of the whole fieldwork and research paper anyway... wouldn't a coursework project 'teach' us the same skills and ideas?!?! Anyway, moaning won't get me anywhere! :P

    I think the main thing that I've been told to do is to learn sources for secondary data, like website addresses or names of databases of information, so that you can quote them in the exam for examples. Make sure you clearly relate the relevance of each method to the aim of the investigation in the question (that way the examiner can give you marks easily). As long as your reasoning is sound, pretty much anything goes.

    Also making sure the response is personal to things you've done; if you haven't done them, make them up.

    For example the question may ask about techniques used to see the impact of tourism in a coastal area, you could say 'a good idea would be to do a litter survey, for example as I have done at Brighton (generic I know, but hey, there's no time to think of something unique when you only have 1 hour to do 6 questions and barely enough time to even think about the answers themselves - back to moaning :/) where I found that the beach had much more litter than those I compared it to using Blueflag.org.uk.

    I know that seems really trivial, but this is basically what I did for my mock and I got an A on the paper.

    For the data response question, as long as the points you make are relevant I wouldn't worry too much; once again pretty much anything that is sensible goes.

    With regards to the other question which is based on the stuff in the textbook, the key thing is case studies. Yes I know we all hate learning them, especially all those dates/figures, but they really are what you need to refer to when answering the question.

    The mark scheme is not strictly followed, it just common responses that would score marks. So don't worry too much, its all about your reasoning and how you use examples to show your points.

    I hope that's useful, if there are any other questions you have, feel free to ask.
    Now I need to go and start learning those blooming case studies! :P
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    Im currently revising for this exam, does anyone have any past papers or anything for it? I can't find anything anywhere
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    (Original post by Daaanz)
    Im currently revising for this exam, does anyone have any past papers or anything for it? I can't find anything anywhere
    There aren't that many because it's such a new spec. Urm I'd say try and get them off of your teachers, that's your best bet. I think there are about two sets (that aren't password secured) on the Edexcel website.
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    (Original post by JRGC)
    Firstly, if you're after the physical geography stuff, the Edexcel specification won't be for you :/ Nearly all of the spec focuses on human geography, e.g. right now i'm doing rebranding places and globalisation (migration, population growth and such). The other two topics I did were coastal areas (stuff like reason for their popularity, threats, management) and hazards (there is an element of physical geography here, but not really much).

    Secondly, the exam consists of two papers; one is your usual theory based paper. and the other is what they call the 'fieldwork and research' paper. Basically the latter involves one question where you have to explain how you could investigate such and such (using your own experiences), one data response question and the other a theoretical and case study based answer.

    Now for what I thought of it :P

    I wouldn't consider it to be too hard, the details of the case studies may be tedious to learn, but the ideas themselves are very easy to grasp. If you're good at remembering little details in case studies and have common sense, you'll find it, dare I say it, quite easy.

    I can't say I really enjoy the course though. The hazards and globalisation stuff can be quite interesting actually, but I find the fieldwork and research paper really really boring. I don't feel i'm really learning anything in those lessons :/

    If you have any other questions, feel free to ask me
    God, THIS! I couldn't have put it better myself! I LOVE physical Geography and do Geology as well and the amount of physical stuff on this spec is awful for it. One of my friends who goes to a different sixth form to me does the AQA one and it sounds so much better. =/ Plus we have like 85753745 more case studies to learn than what they do.

    So yeah, if you like physical geography and your sixth form or whatever offers it on Edexcel, perhaps give it careful consideration.
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    (Original post by SketchyStuff)
    God, THIS! I couldn't have put it better myself! I LOVE physical Geography and do Geology as well and the amount of physical stuff on this spec is awful for it. One of my friends who goes to a different sixth form to me does the AQA one and it sounds so much better. =/ Plus we have like 85753745 more case studies to learn than what they do.

    So yeah, if you like physical geography and your sixth form or whatever offers it on Edexcel, perhaps give it careful consideration.
    Argh I feel the same - I really would like at least half Physical stuff! I'm thinking of a Geophysics degree, so that's kinda why I took Geography in the first place! I just can't get my head around the million and one dates and figures i'm meant to remember :/

    The AQA spec does look better; one of my teachers wants to change, but the head of department isn't having any of it it! Although there does seem to be more to learn, the stuff is conceptual (like formations of....) instead of dates of volcanic eruptions and numbers of illegal immigrants.
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    I do AS Geography. It's the most boring, depressing subject I have. It's not incredibly hard, most of it is just learning case studies.
    However, from my experience I haven't had a single geography teacher that has actually got me more interested in the subject.
    My GCSE Geography teacher was so useless that I bunked off the last month off lessons and taught myself and got an A. I chose it as an AS hoping for a more useful teacher - I was disappointed.

    If you just want it to pursue an interest, you can learn by studying in your own time.
    If you want/need it acadamically as a qualification, do the AS.
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    Thanks very much for all the replies guys! They've been very useful. The Edexcel spec doesn't sound thrilling, and as I mainly only wanted to do it because of my interest I'm thinking I probably won't bother...

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