CCEA GCSE Geography Examination Tips

On Monday 4th April I attended a GCSE Geography support event for the CCEA Geography specification at William Parker School Daventry. This is the second of three posts on my notes from the event. Range

On Monday 4th April I attended a GCSE Geography support event for the CCEA Geography specification at William Parker School Daventry. This is the second of three posts on my notes from the event.

Range of Questions

  • A wide variety of different questions are used to enable learners to show their learning.
  • To support this a wide variety of resource material is used (tables, graphs, photographs, maps, and diagrams).

Different types of questions include:

  • Complete the diagram/ figure or paragraph – in the foundation tier a list of answers is often included.
  • Select the correct answers from the options given.
  • Putting statements in order – e.g. steps in a process, formation of a spit or waterfall.
  • Matching – terms and definitions; grid references and locations. For example matching types of aid and definitions.
  • Sorting and classifying – for example economical and definitions.
  • Definitions – state the meanings of geographical terms; all key words come from list of key geographical terms in specification.
  • Skills – students may be asked to plot or complete a graph (if a bar graph is given complete the chart including the shading).

Commonly used command Words

  • Complete
  • State
  • Describe
  • Explain
  • State fully
  • Suggest
  • Evaluate
  • Contrast
  • Describe and explain
  • State the meaning
  • Name

 

Skills

  • Extracting information from a table or graph.
  • Completing a graph or table.
  • Interpreting weather maps.
  • OS Map work skills (distance, direction, area, map interpretation)

Tips to Candidates

  • Take care that m = 1,000,000
  • There will be an OS Map every year; either in the physical exam or human exam; there will be some generic skills and some specifically related to human or physical topics.
  • Note use of emboldening in the examination; key terms and numbers (one reason, two causes).
  • Ensure that if the question asks for one reason, give detail of one reason, not a list of many.
  • The number of lines is relative to the number of marks, typically two lines per mark.
  • If the question uses sustainability, sustainability should be used in the answer; should mention economic and environment in the answer.
  • When answering questions underline or highlight command words in the question.
  • When asked to describe the changes/pattern from a resource candidates should quote figures in their answer; otherwise they won’t get full marks.
  • Case study answers should include a minimum of two facts/figures.
  • On the foundation tier across the paper ¾ marks come from naming the location of case studies.
  • Case studies need to be at the correct scale.
  • Some questions require reference to place but not necessary a full case study.

Key Points from the Chief Examiners Report

  • Candidates should respond directly to the question set, don’t put in a great deal of background detail.
  • Use geographical phrases and terminology.
  • Quote information from given resources when asked to describe a pattern or trend.
  • Specific facts from case studies are needed to access level 3 marks.