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Progression and assessment in geography

Helping students make progress in geography is at the heart of good teaching, closely linked to the key responsibility of assessing students’ learning. Both are complex professional tasks, in which we need to apply our knowledge and understanding of:

  • the National Curriculum or GCSE/GCE specifications; their aims, purpose and content
  • progression and assessment and their relationship to planning, teaching, attainment and standards in geography.

This section provides subject specific guidance about how progression works in geography, support for setting up or reviewing a system for assessment, and developing good assessment practice.

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This GA guidance on progression and assessment supports schools in planning for progression, achievement and assessment in geography. It is based on a clear vision of what it means to make progress in geography, anchored by age-specific national expectations for pupils aged 7–16 years.

These GA publications provide up-to-date guidance and advice on assessment:

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The chapter ‘Assessing geography’ from The Handbook of Secondary Geography.

The eBook Assessing progress in your key stage 3 geography curriculum to help develop rigorous and consistent approaches to assessing your key stage 3 students’ progress in geography lessons. 

Teaching Geography – Placing the geography curriculum at the heart of assessment practice – This article outlines the importance of using the geography curriculum as the progression model and decoupling formative and summative assessment.

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GA membership provides specialist support and expert advice for geography teaching

Journals & more

Find out more about the GA’s three journals and the GA magazine


GeogPod is the GA’s podcast, each episode discusses a different geographical topic