Essential Developing Cultural Capital in Geography

This on demand course provides extensive advice on develop cultural capital within your Geography curriculum.

  • 1-2 hours learning time
  • 6 course steps

About this course

This on demand CPD course provides a guide to developing cultural within the geography classroom, focusing on what it is and why it is important, including the concept of symbolic violence and how to explore different cultures within your geography lessons.

The videos will also provide lots of tips on how to bring high culture, global culture and pop culture into your curriculum, along with the benefits of doing so, and finally the course looks at how to support students in developing their own cultural capital.

Throughout the course Catherine makes reference to many sources and resources - you will find the complete list of these (along with hyperlinks where relevant) in the Files section of this course.

Who it's for

This short course is suitable for all teachers who deliver Geography.

Course series


Course outline

In this video Catherine gives a brief introduction to cultural capital and how it relates to geography, and talks about what will be covered in this CPD course.

  • Video 1 - Introduction

In this video Catherine talks about the origins of the term cultural capital and what it means today, along with Ofsted's use of the term. She also looks at how cultural capital is linked to educational success, and what the barriers are for some students in developing cultural capital, before starting to think about what developing cultural capital might look like in geography lessons.

  • Video 2 - What is Cultural Capital?

In this video Catherine talks about the concept of symbolic violence and how this relates to cultural capital, in terms of making students feel that their own culture is less important, and why we need to address this in our geography lessons. She discusses how symbolic violence relates to geography and why there needs to be a careful balance between covering the curriculum but also being sensitive to other cultures.

  • Video 3 - What is Symbolic Violence?

In this video Catherine talks about the importance of exploring other cultures in your geography lessons, but also the need to think carefully about whose stories we are telling and where to start the stories, considering who has had the power to tell their stories, whose stories have been marginalised and why. She also discusses how students may need support in understanding how people in different parts of the world and different social groups may have very different norms and values, and the need to appreciate intersectionality - i.e. how different groups of people will have different experiences within society.

  • Video 4 - Cultures in Geography

In this video Catherine shares some fantastic ideas about how to bring high culture, global culture, pop culture and local culture into your geography curriculum, and how these develop students' cultural capacity but also they have an impact on their appreciation and understanding of the geography curriculum. She is also discusses the importance of fieldwork in getting students to engage with landscapes, and how this also helps them to develop their own cultural capital.

  • Video 5 - Practical Ideas

In this final video Catherine talks about all the opportunities that are out there for students to independently develop their own cultural capital, particularly through our brilliant subject associations, as well as how we can support students in work experience and volunteering opportunities that will develop their cultural capital, and by recommending things for them to watch and read.

  • Video 6 - Supporting Students


  • Catherine Owen

    Catherine Owen is Head of Geography at The King Alfred School an Academy in Somerset and is Geography SLE for The Priory Learning Trust. She is a published author as well as an experienced presenter and has over 25 years' experience of teaching KS3, GCSE and A level Geography. She has also recently been made Vice-President of the Geographical Association.

Free course

You get full and unlimited access to the course content and features.

What's included?

  • 1-2 hours learning time
  • 6 course steps
  • Designed and delivered by highly experienced presenters
  • Track your progress
  • Device-friendly learning platform

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