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Joanne Anderson graduated from the University of Ulster Coleraine in 1994 with a BSc (Hons) in Geography and a Diploma in Area Studies.  She completed a PGCE with the University of Ulster Coleraine in 1995 and has been teaching at Shimna Integrated College since September 1996.

Stuart Scott graduated from Loughborough University in 2007 with a BSc in Geography and Sports Science. He completed a PGCE in Geography at the University of Ulster, Coleraine in 2008. Stuart joined Shimna Integrated College in January 2015 following two years teaching in Prague British School, Czech Republic.

Suzy Mawhirt graduated from the University of Ulster in 2011 with a BSc (Hons) in Geography with Psychology and a Diploma in Professional Practice. She completed a PGCE in Geography at Hope University, Liverpool in 2012.

Alison McGlynn graduated from Queens University in 2001 with a BA (Hons) in Human Geography and Economics. She completed a PGCE at Canterbury Christchurch University in 2003 and has been teaching at Shimna College since 2005.


Key Stage 3

We believe Geography is a fascinating subject which lends itself well to lots of different teaching approaches and has something to suit everyone.  We hope to inspire in our students a curiosity about the world and its people that will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

In Years 8 – 10 we investigate topics such as…

  • Farming today

  • Weather

  • What a disaster!

  • Rivers

  • Our crowded world

  • Threatened fragile ecosystems


Our students study the CCEA GCSE course which is broken into:

  • Unit 1: Understanding our natural world (Physical Geography)

  • Unit 2: Living in our world (Human Geography)

  • Unit 3: Fieldwork report

Units 1 & 2 are assessed by two examinations which are undertaken on completion of each unit. Unit 3 takes the form of a controlled assessment report which is based on data collected on a river fieldtrip. This report contributes 25% of the overall grade achieved by students. 

A Level

Students will undertake the study of the CCEA GCE geography course and we hope they will be inspired to continue with their geographical studies to degree level.

A Level geography is a course that encourages students to examine and question the world around them. As a subject, it examines both physical and human aspects. More importantly, it explores how the physical and human world interact with each other.



A series of geography clubs are offered for Key Stage 4 & 5 students. These are classes for Controlled Assessment support and topic specific revision classes.  We also run an eco-club which takes place weekly and supports students’ learning about many aspects of geography.



We are very aware of how lucky we are to be located in Newcastle with a stunning natural environment right on our doorstep for fieldwork opportunities.  All of our students are given opportunities each year to undertake local fieldtrips and we also make good use of our school grounds.

We run and enter lots of competitions. For example, Year 8 students take part in a competition to design a tourist leaflet for Newcastle which is judged by a representative from Newry,, Mourne and Down District Council and Year 10 students compete in groups to decide where we should go on a four day geography trip.

Students are given frequent opportunities to engage in active learning tasks including producing contour models, farm diversification models, structure of the earth models and constructing earthquake proof buildings.  Some of the excellent work they produce may be viewed on our Facebook page.

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