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Year 11 Geography Field Visit

1 On Wednesday 25 April, Year 11 geography students went to Ilkley to complete the field work element of their GCSE course. The day was structured for students to complete two investigations (human and physical geography) in preparation for the geographical skills exam.

The physical investigation was conducted on Ilkley Moor, and centred around the Bradshaw model. This is a geographical theory of how different characteristics of a river changes from the source to the mouth. The river to be studied by students was named Spicey Gill. Three locations were visited during this session, with a particular focus being placed on data collection and evaluating the validity of the methods used. Students also had an opportunity to apply their classroom knowledge to the differing locations, by identifying features in the landscape and the processes involved.

Student engagement for the physical geography element was excellent, with well annotated booklets and good participation in question and answer sessions.

The human investigation was based in the town centre of Ilkley. For this session students had to investigate and establish the function of Ilkley as a settlement. This study linked to the settlement hierarchy model. The geographical theory suggests that the larger the settlement, the greater the number of functions, or services. However, there are anomalies, such as tourist towns and commuter towns. A range of primary data collection methods were used to see if Ilkley was a settlement hierarchy anomaly town. These included a questionnaire and traffic count, along with analysing the use of land with the completion of a ‘ricepots’ survey.

Participation and application during this session was, again, excellent. When interviewing members of the public, students were polite and courteous, and represented the school in an excellent manner.

Overall, the geography department reflected on a successful trip, with students having been given the opportunity to practice and develop their geographical skills in the field in preparation for their forthcoming exams. Staff would like to take this opportunity to thank all colleagues who provided support, both on the visit and in school, and wish students the best of luck with their exams.

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