Geology is a subject that brings Science and Physical Geography together to help us understand one of the most interesting subjects imaginable – the Earth we live on – and how it formed and developed over billions of years.

  • Course Type School Leaver
  • Subject Area Science
  • Qualification A Level 🧩
  • Study Mode: Full Time Only
  • Course Level Level 3
  • Location Maths and Science Centre
  • Course Length 2 years
100% Pass rate in 2019

This course can be combined with other A Level/BTEC Certificate courses to make a full programme.

You will study an AS Level in the first year of this course.

Geology is the study of the Earth – how it works and its 4.5 billion-year history. Geologists study some of society’s most important problems, such as energy, water, and mineral resources; the environment; climate change; and natural hazards like landslides, volcanoes, earthquakes, and floods. This subject is particularly useful for students who are interested in, or may wish to follow a career linked with, the physical environment. You will get the opportunity to study one of the most exciting subjects imaginable – the earth we live on.

This course is ideal if you enjoy applying scientific knowledge to the study of our planet. Geology involves elements of Physics, Chemistry and Biology and appeals to students who like a practical and problem solving approach to learning.

You will be taught through lectures, practical work, case studies and small group work and have access to our fully-equipped geology laboratory. During the course there will be on going assessment of your progress by tests, practical field and laboratory work and independent work. Formal assessment is by three examinations at the end of the second year and an internal assessment of practical competency.

What topics will I study?

A Level in Geology provides a comprehensive coverage of the knowledge and understanding required for the study of the earth, its structures, evolution and dynamics. The core aspects include:

  • Elements, minerals, rocks and natural resources
  • Surface and internal processes
  • Time and change
  • Earth structure and global tectonics
  • Rock forming processes
  • Rock deformation
  • Past life and past climates
  • Earth materials and natural resources.

There are five themes which integrate and develop the knowledge, understanding and skills acquired in the core aspects. These include:

  • Geohazards
  • Geological map applications
  • Quaternary geology
  • Geological evolution of Britain and of the lithosphere
  • Geology of the lithosphere

You will:

  • Learn about the formation and structure of our Earth
  • Study earthquakes and volcanoes and the hazards they can produce
  • Consider the evolution of life and climate
  • Understand how geology influences water supply, energy resources, construction materials and engineering
  • Go on trips to experience geology in the field and to acquire essential practical skills

AS/A Level Geography, Environmental Studies and Biology would complement this subject well.

Next steps: You could progress to a wide range of university courses in Geology and Geophysics. It also supports the physical aspects of a Geography degree. Or you could go on
to training and employment in fields such as geology, seismology, geoengineering, or resource exploration.

Entry Requirements

Standard entry requirements: Grade 4 in English and 4 in Maths. Plus, you will need six GCSEs at grade 4 or above including two Sciences.


You will have access a geology-specific lab with a wide range of rock samples and testing equipment and a learning resource centre. You will have access to new fully equipped laboratories and PCs as well as access to a learning centre. There is a cafe based in the new building.

Additional Costs

There are some costs of materials and resources.

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