Global Citizenship & Environmental Studies

Geography Assignment Write-up dates:

National 5: week beginning 6th March

Higher: week beginning 20th March.



Mrs. Matheson -Teacher
Miss. Forbes – Teacher
Mr Stewart –Teacher

Which two subjects do we offer? – geography & environmental science


We study Geography because it helps us to become active and informed citizens who are able to critically compare way in which different societies and cultures interact with, manage and, sometimes misuse the environment within which they live. A variety of themes and case studies will be used to illustrate Scottish, European and worldwide environments and the range of human interactions

Environmental Science        click here for department page

Our courses aim to develop learners’ interest and enthusiasm for environmental science in a range of contexts, as well as their investigative and experimental skills. Environmental science takes a problem solving approach to attempt to develop solutions that prevent or reverse environmental deterioration and aim for sustainable practices.

Students will have opportunities to investigate local environments such as the Water of Leith and Arthur’s Seat and study topics such as climate change, fracking, the hydroWOL dipping 2gen economy and the reintroduction of species such as beaver to Scotland.

Our courses

BGE geography

S1 – An introduction to skills, using maps for an emergency, climate zones, Scotland, Japan

S2 – Water & Wealth, Climate Change, On the Move, Crime

S3 will teach about geography mainly through coverage of level 3 & 4 experiences and outcomes. Knowledge & skills will be developed to prepare for National 4 & 5 work and some aspects of these courses will begin.

  • Morocco: a developing nation’s response to climatic change

Causes of major climatic change and evidence of a range of reactions to environmental change.
The consequence for governments and individuals in the decision-making process and the consequence on lifestyle and economy at the micro- and macro-scale.
Evaluation of local regional and global strategies to slow or reverse the impact of environmental change

  • Resources and Sustainability – “Water Wars”

An analysis of the differing demands for water and the geopolitical implications for peace and world security.  An examination of government policies in balancing the need for resources with international relationships. The economics of resource management under pressure.
Case studies include the Colorado River basin & the Nile.  As part of this course students will learn about the processes and features of a river system.

  • Urban Geography: Stories of the City

Based on geographic enquiry of our own city, Edinburgh, including local fieldwork, this is an examination of the variety of urban areas in terms of quality of lifestyle and cityscape. An assessment of the impact of human activity on the built environment, using individual profiles to examine assumptions about the quality and nature of Urban Scotland. This unit will include the acquisition of skills in social science research methods using primary and secondary data and GIS techniques.
Political influence on lifestyle and choice will be examined and different levels of empowerment    in deciding environmental quality will be evaluated.

Possible Learner Pathways after S3

Learner Journeys from Broad General Education through the Senior Phase.

National 5, 4 or 3 Geography or Environmental Science in S4

Followed by Higher Geography or Higher Environmental Science then Advanced Higher Geography

National 5 Geography

Entry requirements—All S2 pupils are welcome to take this course.

Course Content: Physical Glacial and coastal landscapes, weather

HumanUrban (Glasgow and Mumbai case studies), Rural, Population.

Global IssuesNatural Hazards (earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes) Diseases.

Assessment: Question paper (60 marks) Assignment (20 marks)

Higher Geography

Entry requirements—Geography National 5 Pass, Nat 5 Environmental Science

The Higher course deals with contemporary issues, through which the student will investigate elements of the environment and study how we respond to our surroundings and over time change them.

Course content:

Physical Environments– Atmosphere, Lithosphere, Hydrosphere, Biosphere

Human EnvironmentsPopulation, Rural, Urban

Global Issues- Climate change, River Basin Management

There is also a question on the application of geographical skills which involves the use of Ordnance Survey maps.

Assessment: Question paper (60 marks). Assignment assessment (30 marks)

Assignment Students will demonstrate skills, knowledge and understanding within the context of a geographical topic or issue.

Advanced Higher Geography

Entry requirements—Higher Geography, Higher Environmental Science

The Advanced Higher qualification in Geography gives learners an in-depth understanding of complex ideas about how the world works. It also gives them the chance to carry out their own research, with an emphasis on fieldwork.

Course content:

Geographical Skills— graphical and cartographic techniques, statistical data analysis. Geographical Issues— learners will develop critical thinking and the ability to evaluate sources and viewpoints on current geographical issues.
Learners will also produce a study based on their own research.

Assessment: Question paper (30%), Geographical study (40%), Geographical Issues essay (30%)


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Geography Field Trip 2014


The Department is committed to allowing its candidates the opportunity to exercise theoretical concepts through the practical approach of field study. Senior School field study courses have included residential sessions in Spain and Scotland.

SQA subject pages



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