Why choose Geology?

You may choose to study Geology because you are interested in earthquakes and volcanoes and want to know why they occur in some places and not others. You may like dinosaurs and fossils and want to know more about past life on Earth. You may be fascinated by crystals, minerals and rocks and would like to learn to identify your specimens. Whatever your reason, you will be choosing a subject that is new and very different from the others you will be studying.

Why choose Geology?

The Natural History Museum in London to see the Dinosaur displays and the Earth Galleries, complete with earthquake simulator

  • Local field excursions to investigate the geology of the Malvern Hills and South Wales coast
  • An essential week-long field trip to the Isle of Arran for second year exam preparation

Teaching and Learning Styles

  • Conventional lessons, often group and whole class practical sessions, using the department’s extensive collection of rocks, minerals and fossils
  • Presentations and field-based classes/coursework
  • Lab-based practical work that contributes to the practical endorsement component of the course, and the practical exam at the end of the second year


The A Level is assessed by three written examinations. As a science subject, students are required to develop a range of geological techniques and skills for their practical endorsement. This will be in addition to the grade gained on the examination papers. These practical skills will also be examined with questions that will relate directly to experiments and fieldwork undertaken throughout the course.

Progression Opportunities

There are fantastic opportunities in the geological world at the moment, with shortages in hydrogeology and hazard management. As a science A Level, Geology is useful for anyone considering a degree course in the Geosciences (including Oceanography), as well as Archaeological, Biological, Chemical, Environmental and Physical Science disciplines. Traditional careers for geologists are in the oil and mining industries. More recently, opportunities have broadened to include civil engineering and tunnelling, environmental conservation and climate change, hazard management for volcanoes and earthquakes.

profile student

Kacper Starczewski

Geology - Blessed Edward Oldcorne Catholic College
My interest in Geology was sparked by my childhood passion and dream, Palaeontology, so I felt like taking this subject was a must as it would give me a taste of what’s to come at my future University study. Geology is a fantastic blend of Biology and Chemistry which I both take; Biology complements the entire evolutionary aspect and Chemistry supports all the chemical processes. Last but not least, there are the field trips such as the one to the Isle of Arran, which was a brilliant opportunity for me to explore Britain’s geological history through faults, fossils, caves and interpreting rocks. Geology truly paints a picture of the earth’s beauty and complexity. After College, I intend to study Palaeontology and Evolution at one of the top universities.

Course Specifics / Entry Requirements

Qualification NameMaths GCSE Req.English GCSE Req.Other Req.Desirable QualificationsSkills & Attributes Required for SuccessGuidance on Costs or Commitments
Geology5GCSE in a Science at Grade 6 or above.Interest in ‘the great outdoors’Compulsory residential trip to Arran: approx £450 in Year 2

Related Courses / Activities