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Annual Conference Programme

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University of Surrey – Monday 14–Wednesday 16 April 2014

Every year the GA Annual Conference features more than a hundred sessions including hands-on workshops, academic lectures, field visits, informal 'teacher-to-teacher' sessions and lively debates.

This year the main programme took place on Tuesday 15 and Wednesday 16 April with the free Public Lecture, 'Association at Work' events and Awards Ceremonies taking place on Monday 14 April.

Please note that the programme is subject to change.

Full Conference programme (560k)

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Monday programme at a glance (172k)

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Tuesday programme at a glance (625k)

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Wednesday programme at a glance (451k)

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Programme updates

Workshop 33 Rescheduled - now Tuesday, 13.50-14.40 in place of Workshop 14
Literacy: the writing is on the wall

Gary Dawson, Teacher of Geography, Rugeley Academies, Staffordshire

Lecture 7 Cancelled
I am a GEOGRAPHER! Reclaiming the holism of geography

Dr Simon Carr, Senior Lecturer in Geography, Queen Mary, University of London

Workshop 14 Cancelled
AFL and the geography classroom

Caroline Martingell, Geography Teacher

Lecture 17 – new programme addition
Reforming A level geography for 2016

Dr Alastair Owens, Reader in Geography, Queen Mary, University of London
The A level content advisory board for geography (ALCAB), led by the university sector, has been tasked with creating a new set of criteria for A level geography. This is a unique opportunity to hear directly from a member of the board on its progress to date, and to input into the reform process. Come along and be part of the debate that will determine the shape and content of A levels over the next few years.

Lecture 8 Change to title and description
Shifting superpowers? Global geopolitics update
Bob Digby, GA Past President 2012–13, former teacher and currently an author and trainer
In the time since the current A level geography specifications were written, the global power balance has shifted, with questions over the balance of power between the USA, China, India and Russia. This session will outline some of these shifts and pose questions about the world's future economic power blocs.

Lecture 17 Cancelled
Crossing boundaries? Historical geographies of the black presence in Britain – at home, at work and in the archive
Dr Caroline Bressey, Lecturer, University College London

Lecture 3 New presenter
Challenges of asylum, refugees and migrants in Wales

Now presented by: Dr Jonathan Darling, Lecturer in Human Geography, University of Manchester

Primary curriculum support

A programme of workshops and lectures designed by specialists to guide primary teachers through the requirements of the new national curriculum.

The programme has been put together by primary members of the DfE/National College for Teaching and Leadership Geography Expert Group and members of the GA’s Early Years and Primary Phase Committee.

Global Learning Pathway

A programme of sessions linked to the Global Learning Programme that will raise awareness of issues such as poverty, development, social justice, migration and diversity.

The GLP pathway will extend delegates’ subject knowledge and promote their thinking about developing pupils' understanding of global issues, particularly through enquiry and critical thinking. It will also provide information and support for teachers about different ways to engage with the GLP.

The Global Learning Programme is a significant project funded by UK Government to promote awareness and understanding of global issues from KS2 to KS3.

Future Geographers programme

We offer a free programme for students aged 14–18 to enthuse them about geography and to enable them to think beyond school.

We invited teachers to bring up to six students along to the GA Annual Conference, where they'll take part in their own programme of sessions.

It's an informal day and students can dress casually. We ask that you bring and supervise your students throughout, but that doesn't mean you can't go to your own lectures and workshops. You just need to know where your students are and take full responsibility for them. You'll also need to be covered throughout by your own school insurance and should risk assess the event as though it were a usual school trip.

Refreshments are provided free of charge, but we do ask that students either bring along a packed lunch or purchase food from the various outlets located around the campus.

Future Geographers Programme (222k)

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The Rex Walford Memorial Lecture

The GA is proud to sponsor the annual Rex Walford Memorial Lecture. It is aimed at trainee teachers and NQTs, taking its cue from Rex's remarkable contribution to geography education in the UK. This year's lecture was presented by Mary Biddulph, Lecturer in Geography Education at the University of Nottingham on ' Building bridges: what is a progressive knowledge-led curriculum?'.

We hope the annual Rex Walford Memorial Lecture will inspire you and remind us all what can be achieved through innovative and imaginative geography teaching.

The Rex Walford Memorial Lecture is designed for new teachers but is of course open to all.

Session Descriptions

These are innovative, 20-minute sessions offering you a unique opportunity for professional conversation about what you do best. Places will be limited and available on a first come, first served basis.

A workshop is a 50-minute session that will include interactions and discussion between participants and the facilitator, practical activities with a resource or stimulus, and a clear sense of purpose and outcomes enabling participants to leave with practical materials for classroom use. Places will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.

Reporting Research

These sessions focus and report on recent research into geographical education. There will be papers on different types of research, for example action research into teachers' own practice, ethnographic classroom research or research into particular aspects of curriculum or assessment.


A lecture will normally include a 40-minute presentation, and ten minutes for questions. The lectures are all clearly defined by phase and title.

Lecture Plus

These are 25-minute lectures, presented by leading geographers, followed by discussions on classroom implications, applications and possibilities.


The Forum will look at current, and possibly controversial issues. Invited panelists will be asked to talk for no more than ten minutes on the theme from their point of view and a strong Chair will ensure times are kept to! Discussion will be opened to the floor giving the audience a chance to make short, sharp points or ask questions of the panel. At the end of the discussion period each panelist will be asked to make a short 'round up' comment.

Key for GA Committees and Special Interest Groups

EYPPC - Early Years & Primary Phase Committee
SPC - Secondary Phase Committee
P16HEPC - Post-16 & HE Phase Committee
AESIG - Assessment & Examinations Special Interest Group
ICTSIG - ICT Special Interest Group
ISSIG - Independent Schools Special Interest Group
ISIG - International Special Interest Group
FOLSIG - Fieldwork and Outdoor Learning Special Interest Group
PGSIG - Physical Geography Special Interest Group
SCSIG - Sustainability and Citizenship Special Interest Group
TESIG - Teacher Education Special Interest Group
WSIG - Welsh Special Interest Group

Official 2014 Conference Sponsors

Visit the AQA website
Visit the OCR website
Visit the Pearson website
Visit the WJEC website

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The Summer 2014 issue of Primary Geography focuses on 'Cor!' geography, celebrating geography's unique ability to link with every subject in the curriculum and combine this with the subject's awe and wonder

The focus of this issue is 'health geography'. Besides the focus articles it includes many articles that will be useful to teachers planning a new key stage 3 for the autumn.

The Summer 2014 issue of Geography

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