No coasting along

6th June 2008 at 01:00
The Intermediate 2 geography exam was "pretty fair" overall, but some questions were obscure, according to one teacher
The Intermediate 2 geography exam was "pretty fair" overall, but some questions were obscure, according to one teacher.

Question 1 asked pupils to identify the physical coastal features within two grid references on a map. But Fiona Stone, a geography teacher at Robert Gordon's College in Aberdeen, felt pupils would have struggled to see, within the second reference, which physical feature they were supposed to home in on. In addition, the piece of coastline - Lulworth Cove (pictured) - is unusual, she said, and contains quite different features from other bays.

"It was a difficult question for pupils sitting Intermediate 2 - Higher pupils would have struggled," she argued.

Ms Stone also disliked a question on urban geography that asked pupils to describe ways city authorities in developed countries, where there had been outward migration, were encouraging people to move back.

"The question was not 'What are the reasons for counter-urbanisation?' but 'Describe ways city authorities are encouraging people to move back'. For one thing, I wouldn't have dreamt of teaching that and, for another, you would be hard-pressed to find five marks."

The Higher paper was "predictably fair", said Val Vannet, principal teacher of geography at Dundee High. The only challenge, she felt, was time. "They always have a problem getting through the paper and, this year, it was more so," she said.

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