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GCSE: Hot and Bothered? A study of climate change

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David Rayner

ISBN: 9781843772644

Published: 2011

Price: £24.99

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Description

The huge topical issues surrounding climate change are common to the GCSE specifications and this book builds on prior knowledge and understanding to engage and challenge GCSE students.

The fact that climate change has become increasingly controversial is both a benefit and a challenge, and the topic can be tackled at many different scales and from many different angles. Scale underpins much of this topic, embracing geological time scales and factors that affect climate change at the regional and global scale as well as human impacts at the personal, community, government and international scale. Students need to understand how relatively small-scale changes in a factor such as global temperature can have large-scale impacts on the functioning of Earth and the lives of its seven billion inhabitants.

The future of these impacts is poorly understood and cannot accurately be predicted because of the complexity of their interactions – therefore students should consider the extent to which we trust scientists’ predictions about future climate change. The students start by investigating the main causes of natural climate change in the geological past before moving on to assess human impact and the local and global consequences, both negative and positive, across different parts of the world. Still at the global scale students will tackle thorny issues such as government action, the role of climate change campaigning and the contribution to and suffering from climate change of two countries: the USA and Bangladesh. Concluding on a personal level, students assess their own lifestyles and then draw all their findings from the unit together to consider what the future might hold and their individual stance on climate change.