Rivers - Edexcel GCSE

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Lucinda Conder Geography Revision
Unit 2 ­ The Natural Environment
Section A ­ The Physical World - River Landscapes
River processes produce distinctive landforms
Definitions of watershed, confluence, tributary, source and mouth
Be able to label these features on a map, photograph or diagram
Understand the processes of weathering ­ physical, chemical and biological
Understand the processes of mass movement ­ soil creep and slumping
Understand the four processes of erosion ­ hydraulic action, corrosion, corrosion and
Be able to describe and explain how a river changes downstream (from upper, to middle, to
lower course), to include changes in width, depth, velocity, discharge and gradient
Describe and explain the formation (in a sequence and using process names) of the following
landforms. Be able to draw an annotated diagram of each. Also be able to recognise them on
o photographs and maps:
o Interlocking spurs
o Waterfalls
o Meanders, to include River cliffs and slip off slopes
o Oxbow lakes
o Floodplains and levees
Flooding and flood prevention
The physical and human causes of river flooding
The effects of river flooding on people and the environment
Reducing the effects of a river flood, through prediction, planning and prevention. Examples
are forecasting, building design, planning and education. A range of examples are needed.
Definitions of hard and soft engineering
Types of hard engineering, and the advantages and disadvantages of these techniques.
Including embankments, channelization, flood relief channels, dams.
Types of soft engineering, and the advantages and disadvantages of these techniques.
Including floodplain zoning, washlands, flood warning systems.
River management
A case study (Either the River Nene in Northampton or the River Wey in Guildford) that
describes and explains the management.

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Lucinda Conder Geography Revision
Drainage basin: An area drained by a river and its tributaries.
Watershed: The boundary of the drainage basin.
Confluence: Where a tributary meets the main river.
Source: Where the river starts (often found in upland areas)
Mouth: Where the river ends and meets the sea or a lake.
Tributaries: Smaller rivers or streams that lead into the main river.
Processes in the river valley
Weathering is the decomposition and disintegration of rock in situ.…read more

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Lucinda Conder Geography Revision
Traction ­ when large materials are dragged along the bed
Saltation ­ when smaller stones are bounced along the bed of the river
Suspension ­ fine material is carried by the water.
Solution ­ dissolved material is carried away
Deposition is when the river deposits its load in size order, starting with the heaver material which
requires more energy to transport. This can happen when velocity is lower and the river can't move
much material.…read more

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Lucinda Conder Geography Revision
Shallow water Hydraulic action
More friction Deeper water
The fastest flow (thalweg) is in the outside bend due to centrifugal force.
An Oxbow lake is formed when there is lots of erosion (hydraulic action and abrasion) causing the
river to break through the neck of a meander and depositing sand and silt to cut off a lake.
In the lower course the river is fast, wide and deep.…read more

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Lucinda Conder Geography Revision
Animal habitats effected ­ death of animals, trees have too much water
Shrewsbury ­ 2000 floods ­ The river Severn
Over the last 350 years there has been one major flood every 10 years, the first being in 1338.
Shrewsbury is located n the river Severn. There are lots of tributaries leading to a high drainage
density. And there is lots of impermeable rock leading to surface runoff. In 200 there was lots of
heavy rain (33ml).…read more

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Lucinda Conder Geography Revision
Floodplain zoning
o Education ­ Practical action & Flood forum
Teaching people about the risks
Modifying the event ­ means altering the river to reduce or prevent flooding.…read more

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Lucinda Conder Geography Revision…read more



this has helped me soooo much thx

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