Rural Settlement in the Isle of Purbeck

Type of questions


Mark scheme and examiner’s comments

a) Suburbanisation is the outward growth of urban development that engulfs surrounding villages and rural areas. It has been enabled by the growth of public and private transport systems, by which the inhabitants of the new areas were able to commute to the main town/city. The transport systems that have enabled this over time are railways, trams, buses and the private car.
Counter-urbanisation is the process of depopulation from major urban areas to smaller urban centres, largely due to dissatisfaction with urban living in such large centres. The rise of new communication technologies, especially in electronic systems, may have encouraged this movement.

b) The impact of suburbanisation / counter-urbanisation taking place in an area:

  • The increased use of a commuter railway station nearby.
  • Higher levels of traffic movement in that area – more road congestion.
  • The increased value of houses in the area.
  • The increased construction of council / Housing Association housing.
  • The increase in the construction of ‘executive housing’ in the area.
  • The increased rate at which conversions of farm buildings to exclusive housing takes place.
Level 1 Simple generalised statements of impact with no depth or detail, and not attributed to any named area. 0–3 marks
Level 2 More specific statements of impact that may be attributed to a named area, or demonstrate greater depth of understanding and /or knowledge. 4–7 marks
The attitudes have got to be from the point of view of existing residents. They may be in favour of the development as:
  • Service provision will improve: pub, medical centre, community hall, etc.
  • Investment will take place in terms of infrastructure (roads, sewers, recreational facilities).
  • The values of their homes will increase.

    They may be against the development as:
  • The area will have a greater population: more outsiders; greater pressure on existing services (such as schools, post offices).
  • Traffic levels will increase with associated pollution levels.
  • Family members will have difficulty buying homes as demand increases.
Level 1 Only one attitude stated or simple statements are listed with no real attitudinal development. 0–3 marks
Level 2 More than one attitude stated, that are different and clearly attributed. 4–7 marks



Type of questions
Edexcel A

6465 and 6466

Mark scheme and examiner’s comments

6465 question:
This case study could be part of a discussion to illustrate a number of factors that influence rural areas.

The answer should consider these ideas among others:

  • Travel-to-work patterns.
  • Migration.
  • The influence of retailing.
  • Effect of urban area on rural land values.
  • The provision of basic services in rural areas that compete with those in urban areas.

Remember that the influence of urban communities on rural areas can be beneficial as well as detrimental. Those influences may change over time. They will vary from place to place. The Purbeck example could contrast with the rural-urban fringe around a major conurbation such as Manchester, or around an LEDC city.
Students must keep to the focus on socio-economic characteristics. It would be very easy to drift off into environmental factors such as pollution.

Level 1 A few simple statements describing some of the characteristics of rural areas. 1–4 marks
Level 2 Describes some social and / or economic influences on rural areas. Limited range of location and of ideas. 4–7 marks
Level 3 Identifies and offers some explanation for some influences on rural areas, though not all are discussed and exemplified in detail. Unbalanced treatment of effects on social and economic characteristics. 8–11 marks
Level 4 Examines a range of ideas, most of which are relevant and supported by detailed examples. Specifically addresses the question set. 12–15 marks
Level 5 Examines a wide range of relevant ideas covering positive and negative influences of urban areas. Clear focus and balance of social and economic characteristics. A well-organised answer, using relevant detailed examples. Is able to draw relevant contrasts between different locations. 16–20 marks

Synoptic question:
The focus of the question is on change and how rural communities are affected by it. This open question allows students to examine physical, social, economic and cultural changes if they so wish. There is an expectation that pupils will refer to a range of situations from around the world so that they can make some kind of comparative comment. The rate of change is also worth a comment from the better candidates. This case study can be used to describe and explain positive and negative changes in the Developed World. It would be useful and relevant to include examples from elsewhere in the UK, perhaps nearer to a conurbation and a more isolated settlement.

Level 1 Describes one or two changes in rural areas. Generalised points. Much irrelevance. 1–5 marks
Level 2 Describes some changes in a variety of rural locations. Some contrast implied between levels of development. Location detail recognised but very limited. 6–9 marks
Level 3 Comments on changes but unbalanced treatment. Probably only physical and socio-economic changes. Implied comparison between areas at different levels of development. Some location detail but tendency towards narrative rather than analysis. 10–15 marks
Level 4 A good range of ideas focused on change, although probably only physical and socio-economic. Some comparisons between different levels of development. Some reference to positive and negative changes. 16–19 marks
Level 5 An impressive range of ideas with a clear focus on change in a variety of forms. Comments on positive as well as negative changes. Wide-ranging situation compared from countries at different levels of development and at different scales. Accurate and relevant location detail. 20–25 marks


Type of questions
Edexcel B


Unit 2: Managing Change in Human Environments


Mark scheme and examiner’s comments

1. Guidelines:

  • Carry out service count for each village.
  • Develop the graph correctly labelling x and y axis.
  • Describe the graph in technical terms – direct relationship, positive correlation, positive and negative anomalies.
  • Relate the pattern to issues such as threshold population and location (see map of Isle of Purbeck). In explaining anomalies, look for increased nodality or the impact of tourism.

2. Guidelines:

  • Target the example carefully – for example for b) it must be a village.
  • Try to include as much factual information to support the assertions.

a) Rural deprivation needs to be defined, either as material, opportunity or mobility deprivation, giving located details of particular closures. The idea of the demultiplier effect (Figure 18) would form a useful framework.

b) Corfe Castle would be a useful case study. It is clearly expanding in terms of population and also services. Counter-urbanisation of communities from the Bournemouth – Poole conurbation combined with the rise of IT broadband-linked self employment, plus the growing revenues from tourism which help to retain services.

c) Define counter-urbanisation. Identify named villages. Look at reasons for counter-urbanisation based on push (from city) and pull (of the countryside). Also look at facilitating factors such as broadband access, improved commuting roads, etc.