Ofsted 'deep dives': geography

Find out what Ofsted inspectors might ask during a geography 'deep dive'. Download our list of questions to help you speak confidently about geography with inspectors.

Last reviewed on 8 March 2023
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School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 38834
  1. Will Ofsted do a geography deep dive?
  2. How deep dives work
  3. Questions Ofsted might ask during geography deep dives
  4. Differences between primary and secondary geography deep dives
  5. How to prepare

Ofsted inspectors use subject 'deep dives' to inspect your curriculum.

They use them to consider the 'intent, implementation and impact' of your curriculum as part of the 'quality of education' assessment.

See paragraphs 215 to 217 of the School Inspection Handbook for more details.

Ofsted has emphasised that it does not make judgements on specific subjects, lessons or teachers. Its inspectors use deep dives to help them arrive at an overall 'quality of education' judgement.

Will Ofsted do a geography deep dive?

In primary schools, Ofsted will: 

  • Always do a deep dive in:
    • Reading
    • 1 or more foundation subjects, which could include geography
  • Often do a deep dive in maths

In secondary schools, Ofsted will usually focus on a sample of 4 to 6 subjects. Geography could be one of these subjects.

See paragraph 216 of the School Inspection Handbook for more details.

How deep dives work

Who's involved?

Subject leads in primary