Geography International GCSE

An illustration of planet Earth as a globe

Geography is a vast and fascinating subject, and our distance learning IGCSE course provides a great overview of its two main branches: physical geography and human geography. Covering areas including weather, climate, plate tectonics and cartography, as well as social issues such as food supply, world population and economic development, our home study IGCSE is essential for anyone wishing to study geography at a higher level and provides a fascinating insight into the relationship between humankind and the planet we inhabit. Full details of the course can be found below.

Would you prefer to pay for your course by instalments? Please see the ‘How to enrol’ section below for details of our low cost, interest free finance available.

Are you intending to take your exams next summer? Please refer to our information on fast tracking and studying your course within one year.



Entry requirements

No previous knowledge is required for this course.


This course follows specification 0460 from the awarding organisation CIE. Full details of the specification can be obtained from CIE's website.

Hours of study

As a guideline, you should allow for between 120 and 150 hours' study time, plus additional time for completing assignments. You will have tutor support for a period of up to 18 months from the date of enrolment.

Exams and assessment

Three exams:

  • 1 hour 45 minutes, 45% of marks
  • 1 hour 30 minutes, 27.5% of marks
  • 1 hour 30 minutes, 27.5% of marks

Non-exam assessment (NEA):

  • None

All exams must be taken in the same session.

NEC's tutor-marked assignments:

  • 1 introductory assignment
  • 15 assignments


Additional information

Your course is delivered online through learn@nec, so it’s important that you have access to a computer and the internet. We recommend that your computer is using one of the following operating systems and browsers to improve your experience of using learn@nec:

Operating systems:

  • Windows 7 or later
  • Mac OSX 10.7 or later
  • Google Chrome OS
  • Android 4.4 or later, using the Chrome browser
  • iOS 6 or later, using the Safari browser


  • Google Chrome (latest version)
  • Mozilla Firefox (latest version)
  • Safari 6 or later
  • Internet Explorer 10 or later (excluding IE11)

learn@nec may work on other operating systems and browsers with some restrictions. You can see full details of the system requirements by clicking here.

How to enrol

How to enrol
There are several ways to enrol with NEC:

  • Click the ‘Enrol now’ button above
  • Telephone us on 0800 389 2839 or +44(0)1223 400200 and speak to our course advice team
  • Ask us to send you an enrolment form which you can complete and return by post.

How can you pay?
It’s your choice: you can pay in full at the point of enrolment, or spread the cost with our finance offer. To pay in instalments, you will need to enrol by telephone.

Representative example:

Course fee:  
Amount of credit:  
Monthly payment:  
Duration of agreement:  
Total repayable:  
Rate of interest:  
0% APR representative.  
  6 months

The National Extension College (NEC) is the trading name of the Open School Trust, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (register number 676788). Finance is provided through the Deko platform by a number of lenders. You will be offered the best rate available based on your credit history and the lenders’ credit decision policies.

Deko is a trading name of Pay4Later Ltd who act as a credit intermediary. They are registered in England and Wales (company number 06447333) and authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (register number 728646). For more information please go to or visit

Module 1: Population and settlement

  • World population growth
  • Factors influencing natural change
  • Population structure
  • Global patterns of population change
  • Population distribution and density
  • Migration
  • Population and resources
  • The distribution and location of settlements
  • Settlement function
  • Urbanisation
  • Urban land use
  • Problems of urban growth
  • Environmental problems caused by urban growth

Module 2: The natural environment

  • Why does the earth's crust move?
  • Earthquakes
  • Volcanoes
  • Rocks and weathering
  • Rivers
  • Coastal processes and landforms
  • Weather
  • Climate
  • Ecosystems
  • Human use of ecosystems
  • Climatic hazards

Module 3: Economic development and the use of resources

  • Agricultural systems
  • Food shortages
  • Industry and employment
  • Contrasting industries
  • Leisure activities and tourism
  • Energy resources: demand and supply
  • Climate change
  • Alternative energy resources
  • Water resources
  • Economic development: risks and benefits
Including area code and country code (if outside of UK)

IGCSE Geography Course Sample

Thank you for your interest in this course.

Please fill out your details below, and you will receive an email containing a link to download the course sample.

What our students say...

Home study student Alice Neal completed four GCSEs and IGCSEs, including geography, with NEC, and said she enjoyed the versatility of distance learning as a method of study. “I liked the flexibility to study at my own pace so that I could do my GCSEs in a year,” she said. Alice achieved an A* and three As.