On Thursday 21 September, Lower Sixth geographers headed into Oxford to kickstart our A level Geography course with some exciting practical work. The ultimate aim of this trip was to gain the fieldwork skills we would need later on in our A level course so that we would be ready when it came to completing our coursework.
The day consisted of two main activities and objectives: to investigate Oxford’s urban microclimate and to assess gentrification in Jericho.
So, bright and early, we split into small groups that we would be working in for the day and headed out to given locations around Oxford. My group were to work from the New Botley suburbs, into central Oxford, investigating the microclimate at 15 different points along the Botley Road.
My group and I learned how to use many new pieces of geographical equipment, including a lux meter (to measure light), clinometer (to measure building height), and thermohygrometer (for air temperature). Other groups repeated this task along different major Oxford roads.
After recording all our results and meeting back in the centre of the city, we embarked on our next challenge which was to assess gentrification in Jericho (West Oxford). This time, we recorded our findings online using Survey123 (ArcGIS) technology on our mobile phones. We concluded that there were significant signs of gentrification in this area of Oxford. An unfortunate turn of events happened next: the rain pushed us into a café, where we had to shelter with cake and coffee, and discussed our findings!
Overall, it was a fun day, and I am left with confidence that I will be able to successfully do technical geographical research in preparation for my coursework later this school year.