Geography fieldwork skills booklet

Does what it says on the... tin???

HideShow resource information
Preview of Geography fieldwork skills booklet

First 132 words of the document:

IGCSE Geography ­ Fieldwork manual
This document compliments fieldwork resources from other points in the IGCSE course, in
particular work carried out during and as a follow-up to the Lake District fieldtrip (River
Environments, Coastal Environments and Rural Environments & Ecosystems topics), and
also the Birmingham fieldtrip (Urban Environments topic)
**This document supersedes other fieldwork
documents issued at earlier points during the course**
Introduction 2
Summary of skills assessed 2
Understanding the process of fieldwork enquiry 3
River Environments topics 4
Coastal Environments topics 8
Ecosystems & Rural Environments topics 12
Urban Environments topics 17
Some example questions and advice 23
Appendix ­ Additional useful sources, including 25
Extracts from the IGCSE textbook CD relating to fieldwork techniques.

Other pages in this set

Page 2

Preview of page 2

Here's a taster:

Approximately one third of the marks in the IGCSE are awarded for demonstrating geographical skills. Some
of these relate to general geographical skills that you will have acquired and practice in routine geography
class work and home work, and some relate to specific fieldwork skills. The extract from the IGCSE
specification is indicated below.
Additional notes:
1. Graphic skills: This includes scatter graphs and trend lines; identifying correlations (you don't have
to use the term, but it is best to if relevant).
2.…read more

Page 3

Preview of page 3

Here's a taster:

A. Planning Section A (River Environments and Coastal
Locate the study area. Environments) fieldwork questions will ask you about
Decide on one or more aims or hypotheses these early stages of investigation, i.e. planning an
(linked to geographical theory) investigation, aims, organisation and data collection.
Decide on the number and type of data
(sampling methods)
Undertake risk assessment
B. Methods/ data collection
Describe and justify (explain) the primary
data collection methods
C. Presentation Section B (Ecosystems & Rural Environments and
Producing results diagrams (e.g.…read more

Page 4

Preview of page 4

Here's a taster:

There will be one fieldwork question worth 6 marks in both Rivers and Coasts questions.
River Environments topic
River Environments - Enquiry 1: Measuring channel features.
A. Planning
Choice of study area: e.g. River Glenderaterra, Cumbria (a safe, accessible upland river with several
tributaries. It should have every chance of demonstrating the theoretical/ expected changes to its channel
characteristics with distance downstream).
Hypotheses: (i) Channel width and depth, water width and depth, and water velocity increase with
distance downstream.…read more

Page 5

Preview of page 5

Here's a taster:

Water width and depth ­ In addition to the measurement of the `wet' width using a tape measure,
depth measurements were recorded at 10 equal intervals across the channel using a ruler. 10
measurements would give sufficient data to present as cross section diagrams.
Cross-sectional area = width x average depth
Water velocity ­ a device called a `hydro-prop' was used to record flow velocity just below the
surface of the stream (in the centre of the channel).…read more

Page 6

Preview of page 6

Here's a taster:

Health and safety requirements (e.g. safe access from surrounding land in to channel) dictate the
location of sites, to an extent, which is an inevitable limitation to how representative the data is.
An improvement to this enquiry would be to gain velocity measurements from different points
across the cross-section of the stream (e.g. 5 points), if time and technology permitted (however
the hydro-prop doesn't work in very low flow conditions, which are more likely away from the
centre of the stream).…read more

Page 7

Preview of page 7

Here's a taster:

At each site, a nitrate reading was taken by carefully dipping a nitrate-nitrogen test strip into the flowing
water near to the middle of the channel (where practically possible), allowing the colour to develop on the
strip and then comparing this to a colour key to give the nitrate reading.
Observations about turbidity (cloudiness caused by suspended particles) and odour, where relevant, could
be recorded at the same site as the nitrate-nitrogen recordings.
C.…read more

Page 8

Preview of page 8

Here's a taster:

Sampling methods ­ the number and type of data: (i) Beach profiles: Using measuring equipment
detailed below, groups were allocated different transects to measure the profile of (measure the length of
separate slope sections, and record the angles of those sections). Groups' transects were spaced equally
5 metres apart (=systematic sampling), the first group starting one metre from a groyne.…read more

Page 9

Preview of page 9

Here's a taster:

B. Methods/ data collection - see diagram and information in Appendix
Beach profiles: Starting at the sea wall, groups of approximately 4 people worked together using 2
ranging poles, a clinometer and a tape measure to measure the length and angle of individual `sections' of
slope. One person held a ranging pole vertically at the top of the slope, while a second person took a
ranging pole to the first `break of slope' (change in slope angle).…read more

Page 10

Preview of page 10

Here's a taster:

A. Planning
Choice of Study area: e.g. St Bees, Cumbria: an appropriate location as a retreating coastline (up to 2
metres retreat a year) which is presently managed via a combination of different hard and soft engineering
Hypothesis: Local residents believe that the coastline at St Bees should be protected from coastal
Risk assessment:
Risk factor: Management:
Adverse weather (e.g. heavy rain/ extreme cold). Appropriate clothing advised e.g. waterproofs to
ensure you don't get too cold (possible
hypothermia).…read more


No comments have yet been made

Similar Geography resources:

See all Geography resources »See all resources »