AQA Certificate

Field-course options tailored for the AQA Certificate in Geography:

Section

Topic

Fieldwork

Unit 1 Dynamic Physical World

Ecosystems and Global Environments
We are able to lead fieldwork on the ecology and management of a variety of habitats including woodland, moorland, colliery spoil, sand dunes and freshwater.
River Processes and Pressures
RIVER STUDY -An investigation into downstream changes in river channel processes and characteristics on an upland river. This study also investigates the landforms and the processes affecting them at different points along the course. A detailed study of meanders is also possible.
HYDROLOGY & FLOOD MANAGEMENT -Either Brecon, Monmouth or Hereford may be used as an example of flooding and flood defence schemes. To help in the understanding of the fluvial processes involved in flooding and its prevention, this may be coupled with measurements of a natural river channel.
Coastal Processes and Pressures
COASTAL PROCESSES & MANAGEMENT -An investigation into the processes and resulting landforms on the Glamorgan Heritage Coast. This is a coastline which is affected by both cliff retreat and localised flooding/storm damage. Students are also introduced to the current defences at the site and encouraged to evaluate their suitability in the short and long-term.
CONFLICTS ON THE COAST & SAND DUNE MANAGEMENT -Alternatively fieldwork may focus on the impact of visitors on Kenfig National Nature Reserve. The fieldwork can be coupled with a talk by a warden at Kenfig National Nature Reserve, dealing with conflicts and threats on the coast (both from recreation and economic development) along with management issues.

Unit 2 Global Human Issues

Contemporary Issues in Urban Settlements
URBAN STUDIES -the local towns offer an ideal opportunity to study environmental quality, land-use zones, change and planning issues, using transect to characterise the nature of the urban area.
URBAN REGENERATION -Cardiff Bay -This study investigates the major regeneration project that has transformed the former Cardiff Docklands, an area that had for many years experienced socio-economic decline and environmental degradation. How successful has the project been and what challenges still remain?
FRESHWATER POLLUTION -studying the impact of urban areas, including industrial zones, on water quality in the local river, using biological and physical indicators.
Contemporary Issues in Tourism
INVESTIGATING GLOBAL TOURISM -This study may include:
–  An investigation of footpath erosion and trampling on Pen-y-Fan, the highest mountain in South Wales, and how the site has been managed to minimise the impacts.
– A visit to the Mountain Centre (one of the National Park visitor centres), including a talk from a warden.
– A visit to Llangorse Lake (and village), which is a ‘honey-pot’ in the Brecon Beacons National Park, as well as a SAC. Here we look at the conflict between visitors and conservation.
– Heritage Tourism in the Blaenafon Landscape (a World Heritage Site)
– Coastal Tourism in South Wales.