Calshot Activities Centre

Common Entrance

Field Studies for students working towards their Common Entrance examinations, are tailored to meet the specifications of each course.

Students completing beach profiles

The investigations may focus on methods and investigative skills in order to prepare the students for exam questions, or it may form part or all of a students coursework.

Each programme is individually written with your input to ensure that the aims of your visit are met to a high standard. All sessions are taught by our experienced, graduate tutors. In the evenings follow up work usually takes the form of evaluating the methods used, representing data and write up, which is delivered by our tutors.

The duration of these courses will be arranged when booking, but usually they run from 3 – 5 days. We do also offer one day field studies courses if that suits you better.

Programmes for Common Entrance courses do not always contain Landsports and the focus is on academic achievement. If you would like to talk about the possibility of adding some land sports to a programme, perhaps as an evening session or a reward at the end of the week, then please speak to our bookings staff who can go through the options with you.

We understand that your group may require a different focus from studies, if you would like us to adapt any of our studies or provide alternatives please do not hesitate to contact us

 

Fluvial Geomorphology

River Lymington (4 + 1) or (6 + 1)

To investigate changes in a river system as it flows from source to mouth

8 site source to mouth river study sampling; width, depth, wetted perimeter, velocity, pebble size and shape and channel cross-section. Option of also recording; bank full width, depth and wetted perimeter, environmental conditions bi-polar survey and field sketches.  On return to the centre using our Dell latitude lap-tops data will be analysed. Hydraulic radius, river discharge and cross-sectional area will be calculated. Cross-sectional profiles of all 8 sites will be drawn.

For each group to visit all 8 study sites requires 6 sessions plus 1 evening session. If limited on time the study can be completed in 4 sessions with 1 evening session by groups ‘leap-frogging’ sites and pooling data, each group would record data at 4 sites.

Study sites 1 and 2 require up to an hour of driving (traffic dependent) however the river characteristics seen on this river are excellent.

River Darkwater (4 + 1)

To investigate changes in a river system as it flows from source to mouth

An 8 or 4 site source to mouth river study sampling; width, depth, wetted perimeter, velocity, pebble size and shape and channel cross-section. Option of also recording; bank full width, depth and wetted perimeter, environmental conditions bi-polar survey and field sketches. On return to the centre using our Dell latitude laptops data will be analysed. Hydraulic radius, river discharge and cross-sectional area will be calculated. Cross-sectional profiles of all 8 sites will be drawn.

For all 8 sites to be sampled in one day, groups would need to ‘leap-frog’ sites. They would collect data from 4 sites each and pool the data. The 4 site study is a good option if short on time.

Although closer to the centre the river Darkwater does not have the excellent examples of river characteristics seen on the river Lymington.

Coastal Studies

Coastal Geomorphology (4 + 1) or (2 + 1)

To investigate the coastal processes and landforms of Stanswood Bay

We are perfectly placed for this study as the centre is situated on Calshot Spit. Students will track the geomorphic changes of Stanswood Bay. Starting at Cadland Cliffs students will record; beach shape, pebble shape and size, wind and wave data, groyne effectiveness and make annotated field sketches at each site. 5 sites can be studied to record changes from the cliffs to the spit. The follow up will enable the students to analyse their data graphically.

Succession Studies

Heathland Biogeography (4 + 1)

To investigate the biotic and abiotic changes down a heathland slope

Study the changing vegetation and associated abiotic factors of this New Forest Heathland slope. The vegetation will be sampled using 50cm x 50cm quadrats, the terrain will be profiled and a variety of abiotic factors, including soil, will be recorded along a 60m transect. Analysis of the data will be in the form of kite diagrams which can either be drawn on our custom-made excel spreadsheet using our Dell latitude lap-tops or by hand on A1 graph paper.

Psammosere Succession (4 + 2) or (8 + 2)

To investigate changes across a sand dune system, looking at succession and dune morphology

Please note; This study takes place at Studland National Nature Reserve which is a 2hr drive from the centre.

Study the changing vegetation and associated abiotic factors of this famous sand dune system. The vegetation will be sampled using 50cm x 50cm quadrats, the terrain will be profiled and a variety of abiotic factors, including soil, will be recorded along the transect. Analysis of the data will be in the form of kite diagrams which can either be drawn on our custom-made excel spreadsheet using our Dell latitude lap-tops or by hand on A1 graph paper. The night before the study an evening session will be used for the introduction and methods for the study, this allows the group to leave at 9am the next morning. The second evening session will include looking at how to interpret the kite diagrams.

An alternative Halosere Succession study situated close to the centre is available for small groups, please enquire if you feel your group could benefit from this.

 

River Darkwater, River Lymington or Bartley Water (4 + 1)

To investigate the distribution and abundance of freshwater invertebrates in a New Forest stream

River biota will be sampled using the kick sampling method and identified using a mixture of dichotomous and picture keys. Some abiotic readings will also be taken. Samples will be taken from either pools and riffles or different sites. The groups results will be pooled using analysis spreadsheets on our Dell Latitude laptops.

We are able to use 3 different sites for this study enabling us to record sufficient data without greatly effecting the local environment.

Marine Studies

Sub-littoral Ecology (2)

To investigate seaweeds and marine fauna found in Southampton Water

Using our 8.5m trawling boat, Naiad, students are able to collect and sort seaweeds and fauna found at the bottom of Southampton Water and plankton floating at the surface. The follow up allows students to use their classification skills to identify the organisms they have caught, and study their adaptations. Students then link what they have learnt to food chains and food webs.

Littoral Ecology (2)

To investigate the species found on two different beach types, sheltered and exposed

Students will begin by identifying problems faced by beach living organisms and thinking about how they have adapted to life in such a harsh environment. They will then collect organisms from the beach and identify their collection and look at the organisms adaptations.

Succession Studies

Heathland Biogeography (4 + 1)

To investigate the biotic and abiotic changes down a heathland slope

Study the changing vegetation and associated abiotic factors of this New Forest Heathland slope. The vegetation will be sampled using 50cm x 50cm quadrats, the terrain will be profiled and a variety of abiotic factors, including soil, will be recorded along a 60m transect. Analysis of the data will be in the form of kite diagrams which can either be drawn on our custom-made excel spreadsheet using our Dell Latitude lap-tops, or by hand on A1 graph paper.

Woodland Studies

Woodland Biodiversity (2 + 1) or (4)

To investigate differences in the ground flora between a broadleaf forest area and coniferous forest area

Data will be collected from a 10m x 10m sample area at both sites. Using 50cm x 50cm quadrats vegetation presence will be recorded. Some abiotic readings will also be taken from within the sample area. A map of trees within the area will be drawn with the girth and species of each tree recorded.

 

Abseiling (1)

Individually students have the opportunity to try to abseil off the top of our climbing wall whilst being encouraged by other members of their group.

Archery (1)

Requires good concentration, a sharp eye and a steady hand. Archery is approached in a disciplined but supportive atmosphere, and provides a change of pace from many of our more physically demanding activities.

Climbing (1 or 2)

We possess the South’s premier indoor climbing facility, 520m2, from short easy angled slabs, to a 13m overhang with abseiling platform. Groups work in three’s and have therefore plenty of opportunity to learn and practise the skills associated with this fast growing and accessible sport. Developing trust, support and communication are also important factors.  

High Ropes (1)

Our unique indoor facility provides groups with a year round opportunity to explore the concepts of support and trust whilst facing personal challenge. Challenges available include Crate Build, Cat Walk and Peg Pole.

Initiative Course (1)

Elements such as ‘The Spider’s Web’, ‘The Tunnel’, ‘Washed Out Bridge’, and ‘Mushroom Field’ emphasize different team qualities and stimulate discussion when reviewing. Students are encouraged to think about how they are perceived within the team, and how they contribute to its success.

Low Ropes (1)

Our recently upgraded outdoor course features many exciting challenges which provide a basis for discussions on assessing risk, problem solving, recognising leadership and other qualities which are the hallmarks of successful teams.

Skiing (1 or 2)

The emphasis is on energetic and fun sessions, where progression is at the pace of the individual’s capabilities.

Track Cycle (1)

A unique opportunity to have a go on the only indoor banked velodrome in the South of England. The cycle track provides a safe yet challenging introduction to this Olympic sport.