AS and A2 Geology

Geology is the branch of science concerned with the structure, evolution and dynamics of the Earth and with the exploitation of its mineral and energy resources. The programme provides a means of broadening a student’s other science courses or enhancing the study of humanities.

Course Structure – AS

  • Foundation Geology: matter, energy, time and change
  • Investigative Geology: field, laboratory and geological mapwork
  • Geology and the Human Environment: natural hazards, human hazards, engineering geology


3 written examination papers in the summer of Year 12. No coursework in Year 12.

Course Structure – A2

Interpreting the Geological Record: rock forming processes, rock deformation, past life and climates, geological map interpretation
Geological Investigations: field and laboratory work leading to centre-assessed component
Geological Themes: the geology of the lithosphere, quarternary geology


Coursework (30% of A2). 2 written examination papers in the summer of Year 13.

How Is Geology Taught?

Geology is a practical subject and a proportion of the lessons take place in a science laboratory where students will have the opportunity to examine and test a wide range of rock and fossil specimens. Text books, video footage and ICT resources are also used to develop the theoretical understanding of the subject. Fieldwork is also an important part of the course. In Year 12 students spend a day using the Earth Science laboratory at Leeds University. There is also a two day visit to uncover the geology of the Ingleton area. Four days in Northumberland in July provide the basis for coursework at A2 level.

Useful Links

The British Geological Survey
The United States Geological Survey

For more information contact Mr Edwards at St. Aidan’s