Ethos and Overview

The Geography Department at The Taunton Academy aims to encourage students to grow and develop as individuals who will gain an understanding of and respect for the world around them in all its beauty and complexity. Students will begin to consider themselves as global citizens as they examine their place in the physical and human world, their values and responsibilities to others and the environment.

Through their studies students will have the opportunity to think, question and explore the many issues that affect the lives of people and the planet we live on now – in the past and in the future. As they grow in confidence, gaining skills, knowledge and a moral awareness, students will be encouraged to follow their own lines of enquiry, researching their own questions to gain a personal perspective and understanding of the world.

Key Stage 3

The Geography Department has used the National Curriculum guidance at Key Stage 3 to produce the programme of study shown below. These topics aim to incorporate a wide range of geographical knowledge for both human and physical geography, as well as skills which can be applied to many subjects and situations throughout their lives.

Please open the following link for more information: Expanded Timetable


Year 7 

4 lessons per fortnight

Year 8 

4 lessons per fortnight

Year 9 

5 lessons per fortnight

Autumn term. UK Plate Tectonics Development
Map Skills Urbanisation and Settlement Development continued / Economic Activity
Spring term. Rivers. Ecosystems Economic Activity
Population Weather and Climate


including, Bushfire, Tropical Storms, Drought, Earthquakes and Flooding

Summer term. Africa Asia Climate Change
Fieldwork study Coasts Natural Resources


In Years 10 and 11 students study for GCSE Geography with the AQA (Assessment and Qualifications Alliance) exam board.

Students in Years 10 and 11 will continue to study the current course consisting of two written exams, each of 1 hour 30mins duration and a piece of fieldwork which accounts for 25% of the total mark. The first exam is based on physical geography and the second on human geography.

However, students studying for GCSE Geography from 2016 will undertake a new style course. This will be assessed using three exams as follows:

Paper 1: 1hour 30 minutes.

Living with the physical environment

  •  Natural hazards
  •  The living world
  •  Physical landscapes in the UK
  •  Geographical skills.

Paper 2: 1 hour 30 minutes.

Challenges in the human environment

  •  Urban issues and challenges
  •  The changing economic world
  •  The challenges of resource management
  •  Geographical skills.

Paper 3: 1 hour 15 minutes.

Geographical applications

  •  Issue evaluation
  •  Fieldwork
  •  Geographical skills.

Whilst fieldwork will be undertaken, there is no requirement to produce an assessed piece of coursework based around this in the new course. Instead, knowledge of the techniques and issues of fieldwork will be tested in the third exam.