Head of Geography: Miss M McCardle
The Geography Department occupies the upper floor of a new teaching block. All the rooms benefit from air conditioning and include the latest interactive whiteboards. One of the teaching rooms includes 24 PCs used for research and independent project work in addition to the MacBooks that all students have. The department has a separate Sixth Form study room which contains its own research centre, photocopying and satellite TV. We also have our own weather station that constantly records a vast array of meterological data. This also has a live feed into one of the classrooms for instant access throughout the day.
The department aims to provide all students at Kent College with a valuable insight into the physical and human environments in which they live and an understanding of how these are changing. It is our aim that this experience of Geography should be enjoyable and challenging for all our students. A particular concern of the department is that the geographical education that the students receive at Kent College is topical whenever possible. The work of the department is enhanced and supported by the use of the MacBook
s. This enables us to provide the very latest software and resources in the subject alongside one of the most recently released GIS (Geographical Information Systems). Our students not only gain an excellent grounding in Geography but are exposed to the latest technology in the subject as well.
Freed from some of the restrictions of the National Curriculum we take the opportunity to use as many current events as possible to support the work in Geography. Newspapers, television documentaries, geographical publications and the internet are all used to allow students to extend their knowledge and understanding of the world in which they live and the events both natural and human which shape it. Students are encouraged to bring in material on geographical issues which can then form the basis of investigations in class. Whenever possible the department will take students out into the grounds of the school for practical exercises or up to the school farm to conduct research and land use exercises there.
Fieldwork is an aspect of the subject which the department has worked hard to develop and is planning to expand over the coming years. We provide two residential fieldtrips in the sixth form, one for AS studies and one for A2. We use specialist field centres in a variety of locations. At GCSE all students complete fieldwork along the North Kent coast assessing coastal management issues. At Key Stage 3 we are investigating the possibility of a residential trip to support the local fieldwork already conducted. These trips provide a less formal environment where much of the teaching and learning in the different courses is achieved. We ensure a balance of hard work and fun on the trips seeking opportunities to build in extra activities such as caving whenever it is possible and safe to do so. Recent developments include a trip to Iceland during the February half term and a visit to the Olympic sites in the summer term.
Exam Boards and Results
We follow the OCR GCSE Specification B.
At A Level we follow OCR Specification A.
The department has current experience in examining both A Level and GCSE exams. Our results have been very impressive in recent years with value added figures well above the national average and many of our students pursuing university courses in Geography related subjects.