International Advanced Level Geography (2016)

Supporting success in Geography

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Our Edexcel International Advanced Level in Geography specification and support materials have been developed with the help of teachers, universities and subject expert groups.

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It contains interesting and engaging contemporary geographical content that allows you the flexibility to design programmes to suit your particular interests and needs, using a range of approaches. The specification also allows for a balance between students’ own particular physical, human and/or environmental global interests relevant to their lives and provides the knowledge, understanding and skills for further study at higher education or for employment.

We provide clear requirements for excellent and engaging fieldwork, as well as guidance on the geographical investigation process, enabling students to develop and demonstrate the required fieldwork skills.



International Advanced Level Geography (2016) Specification
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Qualification type:
International Advanced Level
Level 3
Specification codes:
International only
First teaching:
First assessment:

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Why choose this specification?

Designed for the global learner, this qualification includes specific international content, making it highly relevant to students across the world.

Created in consultation with world-leading Higher Education Institutions, this new qualification provides students with access to local and international universities. 

This qualification is 100% externally assessed and has a modular structure, with exams in January and June.

Resources and training programmes will be available to support you to deliver this new qualification with confidence from September 2016 onwards.

This qualification comprises of four units as follows: Units 1 and 2 (IAS) (may be awarded as a discrete qualification or contribute 50 per cent of the total International Advanced Level Marks) and Units 3 and 4 (IA2)

It is available for teaching in international centres only, and is assessed through a written exam instead of coursework.

Synoptic assessment

There is synoptic assessment designed to help students make links between different geographical ideas and concepts and show their accumulated knowledge and understanding of a topic or subject area. Paper 3, Section A contains synoptic assessment where students will use relevant knowledge and understanding from AS unit 1 and A2 unit 3 (topics A1 and A2) to answer the question.

IAL Geography topics at a glance

Assessment in

January and June

Unit 1. Global challenges

  • World at risk
  • Going global
Modular IAS 
(60% of IAS;
90 marks; 1h 45)
  • First assessment June 2017
  • First IAS award June 2017

Unit 2. Geographical investigations

  • Crowded coasts
  • Urban problems, Planning and Regeneration
Modular IAS 
(40% of IAS;
60 marks; 1h 30m)
  • First Assessment June 2017
  • First IAS award June 2017

Unit 3. Contested Planet

  • Atmosphere and Weather Systems
  • Biodiversity Under Threat
  • Energy Security or
  • Water Conflicts
  • Superpower Geographies or
  • Bridging the Development Gap
Modular IA2 
(60% of IA2;
90 marks; 2h)
  • First assessment January 2018
  • First IAL award June 2018

Unit 4. Researching Geography

One topic from:

  • Tectonic Activity and Hazards
  • Feeding the World’s People
  • Cultural Diversity: People and Landscapes
  • Human Health and Disease

Modular IA2 
(40% of IA2;
60 marks; 1h 30)

  • First assessment June 2018
  • First IAL award June 2018

This specification is available for teaching in international centres only, and is assessed through a written exam instead of coursework.

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Studying this specification

You’ll study the following Unit topics: Global Challenges, Geographical Investigations, Contested Planet and Researching Geography.

It will enable you to study you own particular physical, human and/or environmental global interests relevant to your life. 

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