A Level Geography students enjoyed fieldwork trips to the Dorset coast and Buckinghamshire

27 May 2021

The A Level Geography students set off on fieldwork trips to Dorset and Buckinghamshire to complete their coastal landscapes systems coursework and to embark on two days of human geography fieldwork.

The group travelled along the Dorset coast visiting sites at Highcliffe, Barton on Sea and Hurst Spit which are all experiencing rapid rates of erosion exacerbated by rising sea levels. Guided by Barry Cullimore of Geofieldwork, the girls learned about sampling strategies, statistical techniques and secondary data sources.

In Amersham, the girls completed two days of human geography fieldwork – the first day was spent in a village location, Great Missenden and the second day was spent on urban regeneration methodologies in High Wycombe.

Lower Sixth Geography student, Thea said, “On the Physical Geography fieldwork day, it was so interesting to hear from our guide, Barry about all the erosion on the coastline at Milford on Sea and we got to see first-hand the coastal defence systems and how erosion is managed on the south coast. We spent the second half of the day measuring the beach profile and rocks to see the impact of longshore drift. It was a really insightful day and I have been inspired to do my NEA on coastal erosion.”

Lower Sixth Geography student, Indi said, “We started both of the Human Geography fieldwork days in the classroom to complete an iconological content analysis and to pre-plan the qualitative and quantitative data methods we were going to use. Once out on the field trip, we compared and contrasted the regeneration in High Wycombe (the Eden Shopping Centre) to Desborough High Street. We looked at the physical sites, counted the number of people that walked past within a certain time period, the economic functions of the places and their cultural landscapes. I particularly enjoyed these activities, and it has inspired me to do my NEA based on a Human Geography topic.”

Head of Geography, Miss Kathryn Rawlinson said,

The aim of the fieldwork trips was to give the girls lots of experience of geographical fieldwork methodologies and to introduce different types of data collection strategies which they will then be able to incorporate into their own research projects (for the Non-Exam Assessment). By practising these methods in the field, the girls learn what works and what doesn’t. They also become better at anticipating the limitations that these methods might have. My thanks to Geofieldwork for all their help in organising such comprehensive and well managed fieldwork trips.

Find out more about Geography at Downe House here

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