Why choose Geology?

Discover past environments and their impact on Britain's present environment and economic resources.

A level Geology will give you an understanding of how the Earth has been formed, why volcanoes and earthquakes occur where they do and how resources have been created over geological time and can be developed for our benefit.

Geology01Geology is the scientific study of the Earth, its origin, its structure and the processes responsible for the formation of rocks. It is also a subject with economic and environmental concerns because of human use of geological resources for water supply, metals, energy and the construction industry. Sociologically it can be an important tool in forensic science.

“I love studying Geology because it covers such a wide range of different topics and you learn so many new skills, from sand sieving to measuring dip and strike.”


GeologyThere is a great variety of rock types in Britain, which helps explain the remarkable variety of landscapes and it is impossible to travel very far without crossing a geological boundary. Evidence of how the Earth (and Britain) has evolved is also in these rocks!

Geology is of interest to anyone who is interested in the environment as it is today as well as concentrating on how to interpret ancient environments by analysing the fossil and rock record. It records the evolution of life and past climates on the planet and helps us to understand earthquakes and volcanic eruptions that we need to be able to manage if life is to be safe and comfortable.


What you can go on to do after Hills Road

Geology has a direct significance if you wish to have a career in resource management or development, civil engineering, environmental engineering, forensic science, mining or volcanology. It is extremely useful if you wish to develop an interest or take a degree in oceanography, archaeology, geography, environmental science, or geophysics.

Both practical skills examinations are based partly on fieldwork, which is therefore a compulsory element of A level Geology. Currently, the first year field trip is to the Isle of Arran and to Dorset in the second year.

More information about Geology at Hills Road

The Geology A level OCR specification details...

Entry Requirements

GCSE grade 6 or B in Mathematics and at least one of Biology/Chemistry/Physics.

Awarding Body


Units of Study

Year 12

Geology - Unit 1

Global tectonics
The study of the structure, and composition of the Earth. This topic provides an insight into plate tectonics, continental drift, geological structures and earthquakes. Meteorites and planetary geology are also included.

Geology - Unit 2

Rocks – processes and products
Understanding the formation of the three main rock groups in the rock cycle; igneous & volcanic, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks. This topic includes volcanoes and their hazards.

Geology - Unit 3

Practical skills in geology I
An introduction to the skills required by a geologist. This include a residential fieldtrip to the Isle of Arran, Scotland

Year 13

Geology - Unit 4

Environmental geology
The application of geology to the Earth’s physical resources; oil & gas, coal, geothermal energy &water supply, and engineering geology.

Geology - Unit 5

Evolution of life, earth and climate
This topic is based on the evidence of the Earth’s evolutions based on the fossil record. Topics include; the causes of mass extinctions, past climate change and the evolution of life on Earth.

Geology - Unit 6

Practical skills in geology II
This unit builds on Year 12 knowledge and includes a residential fieldtrip to the Jurassic coast of Dorset.