AQA Geography GCE Specification

Specification for May/June 2010 AQA Geography GCE exam

  • Created by: cam
  • Created on: 30-04-10 19:48

Rivers Floods and Management

  • The drainage basin hydrological cycle: the water balance.
  • Factors affecting river discharge: the storm hydrograph.
  • The long profile – changing processes: types of erosion, transportation and deposition, types of load, the Hjulstrom curve.
  • Valley profiles – long profile and changing cross profile downstream, graded profile, potential and kinetic energy.
  • Changing channel characteristics – cross profile, wetted perimeter, hydraulic radius, roughness, efficiency and links to velocity and discharge.
  • Landforms of fluvial erosion and deposition – potholes, rapids, waterfalls, meanders, braiding, levees, flood plains and deltas.
  • Process and impact of rejuvenation – knick points, waterfalls, river terraces and incised meanders.
  • Physical and human causes of flooding – location of areas of high risk in a more developed and a less developed country case study, magnitude, frequency (risk) analysis.
  • Impact of flooding – two case studies of recent events should be undertaken from contrasting areas of the world.
  • Flood management strategies – to include hard engineering – dams, straightening, building up of levees, diversion spillways, and soft engineering – forecasts and warnings, land use management on floodplain, wetland and river bank conservation and river restoration.
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Cold Environments

  • The global distribution of cold environments – polar (land and marine based), alpine, glacial and periglacial.
  • Glaciers as systems – glacial budgets. Ice movement – types of flow: internal deformation, rotational, compressional, extensional and basal sliding; warm and cold based glaciers.
  • Glacial processes and landscape development.Weathering in cold environments – frost shattering.
  • Erosional landforms – corries, arêtes, pyramidal peaks, glacial troughs and associated features. Depositional landforms – types of moraine and drumlins.
  • Fluvioglacial processes – the role of meltwater erosion and deposition. Fluvioglacial landforms – meltwater channels, kames, eskers and outwash plains.
  • Periglacial processes – nivation, permafrost formation, frost heave, solifluction. Periglacial landforms – nivation hollows, ice wedges, patterned ground, pingos and solifluction lobes.
  • Exploitation and development in tundra areas and the Southern Ocean. Traditional economies of an indigenous population and recent changes/ adaptations. Early resource exploitation by newcomers – whaling and/or sealing. More recent development – oil in Alaska, fishing, tourism. The concept of fragile environments. The potential for sustainable development.
  • The future of Antarctica – to consider the contemporary issues of conservation, protection, development and sustainability in a wilderness are
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Population Change

  • Population indicators – vital rates (birth rate, death rate, fertility rate, infant mortality rate, changes over time, life expectancy, migration rate and population density) for countries at different stages of development.
  • Population change: the demographic transition model (5 stages), its validity and applicability in countries at different stages of development.
  • Population structures at different stages of the demographic transition. The impact of migration in population structure. The implications of different structures for the balance between population and resources.
  • Social, economic and political implications of population change. Attempts to manage population change to achieve sustainable development with reference to case studies of countries at different stages of development.
  • The way population change and migration affects the character of rural and urban areas.
  • Settlement case studies – comparing two (or more) of the following areas – an inner city area, a suburban area, an area of rural/urban fringe and an area of rural settlement. To include reference to characteristics such as: housing, ethnicity, age structure, wealth and employment and the provision of services.
  • The implications of the above for social welfare.
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Health Issues

  • Global patterns of health, morbidity and mortality: health in world affairs.
  • The study of one infectious disease (eg malaria, HIV/Aids), its global distribution and its impact on health, economic development and lifestyle.
  • The study of one ‘disease of affluence’ (eg coronary disease, cancer), its global distribution and its impact on health, economic development and lifestyle.
  • Food and health – malnutrition, periodic famine, obesity. Contrasting health care approaches in countries at different stages of development.
  • Health matters in a globalising world economy –transnational corporations and pharmaceutical research, production and distribution; tobacco transnationals.
  • Regional variations in health and morbidity in the UK.
  • Factors affecting regional variations in health and morbidity – age structure, income and occupation type, education, environment and pollution.
  • Age, gender, wealth and their influence on access to facilities for exercise, health care and good nutrition.
  • A local case study on the implications of the above for the provision of health care systems.
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