‘We live on an amazing planet of breath-taking beauty and complexity. Through geology we can study its form and processes, its past and predict its future. In a world where Earth Scientists are becoming more and more sought after, with Climate Change, the drive to find more and more resources for our industrialised society, Geology offers tremendous opportunities for its students.’

Special Features

There will be a variety of learning experiences including:

  • Fieldwork – locally plus a residential trips as Geology is a field science.
  • Laboratory practical activities
  • Working with geological models and maps
  • Scientific investigation & enquiry
  • Interaction with the internet
  • Group discussions
  • Presentations
  • Understanding of global issues affecting planet earth.


You will need at least 5 A*-C GCSEs to get into the Sixth Form, but you MUST have a Grade C or higher in either the Separate Sciences or Core and Additional Science to gain entry to this course. Previous knowledge of the subject will be useful but not essential as a fresh start will be made.


AS is a one year course that covers the first four modules, whereas A-Level is a two year course that covers all seven modules.


Module Title Mode of Assessment Brief Outline of Module
1 Development of Practical Skills in Geology

AS: 1 x 2.5 hour written exam.


Paper: Topics 1 to 4.

120 marks. 100% of AS.


A-Level: 3 x written exams.

Covering topics 1 to 7.


Paper 1: 110 marks.

2 hours 15 minutes.

41% of A-Level


Paper 2: 100 marks.

2 hours 15 minutes.

37% of A-Level


Paper 3: 60 marks

1 hour 30 minutes

22% of A-Level

This module covers the practical skills that are required within Geology, through practical work and examination.
2 Foundations in Geology This module will cover how to identify and understand the basic building blocks of all rocks, minerals, and give you an understanding of common fossils through geological time.
3 Global Tectonics This module helps explain the formation of our planet and how it it is now constructed of different interacting layers. You will also look at how processes deep inside the planet cause the surface to move creating the different features that we see.
4 Interpreting the Past This module will look at the importance of reading rocks types and structures found in them to understand what the environment was like millions of years ago, as well as the importance of dating geological events.
5 Petrology and Economic Geology This module looks at petrology, which is the study of rocks, and highlights the economic aspect of the subject looking at how mining is carried out.
6 Geohazards This module looks at the dangers posed by geological hazard such as earthquakes and landslides, and how geologists work to make living on this active planet more safe.
7 Basin Analysis This module looks at palaeontology in more detail and how it can be used to help study the evolution of life and the major extinction events that have occurred. You will also study the extraction of gas and oil from basin deposits.
Practical Endorsement (A-Level Only) Internal assessment of required practicals linked to the course content, which are carried out and written as lab reports. The practical endorsement is a separate certificate that demonstrates a competency in the practical skills developed during the course. It does not contribute towards the final grade.