Science Stage 4
By the end of Stage 4 students use scientific inquiry by actively engaging in using and applying the processes of Working Scientifically. They identify questions and problems that they can test or research scientifically. Students process and analyse data and information from first-hand investigations and secondary sources to identify trends, patterns and relationships, drawing relevant, evidence-based conclusions. Students can describe the action of unbalanced forces on the motion of objects in everyday situations, including the Earth’s gravity. Students relate the structure and function of living things to their classification, survival and reproduction. Students can describe the dynamic nature of models, theories and laws in developing scientific understanding of the Earth, solar system and observed properties and behaviour of matter.
Science Stage 5
By the end of Stage 5 students use scientific inquiry by actively engaging in using and applying the processes of Working Scientifically to increase their understanding of and about the world around them. In Stage 5 students process, analyse and evaluate data and information from first-hand investigations to draw conclusions consistent with the evidence, identifying sources of uncertainty and possible alternative explanations for findings. Students can apply models, theories and laws to explain phenomena and situations involving energy, force and motion and can describe changing ideas about the structure of the Earth, origins of the universe and the diversity of life on the Earth to illustrate how models, theories and laws are refined over time by the scientific community as new evidence becomes available. Students can explain how scientific understanding has contributed to knowledge about global patterns of geological activity and interactions between global systems and can explain the organisation of the periodic table, chemical reactions and natural radioactivity in terms of atoms.
Science Stage 6
Earth and Environmental Science
The Year 11 course investigates compositional layers of the Earth, the origins of minerals, tectonic movements and energy transformations and includes the study of human impact on the Earth’s resources and its surface.
The Year 12 course investigates how the processes of plate tectonics, the formation of water and the introduction of life interact with the atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere and climate. Investigation of hazards, the mitigation of their effects and resource management are also considered, which leads to an understanding of the need to centralise the theme of sustainability for the long-term welfare of our planet and all forms of life dependent upon it.
The Year 11 course investigates cellular structure and provides a basis for understanding the way in which multicellular organisms transport and absorb nutrients and carry out gas exchange. Exploring variations in the structures and functions of organisms provides an understanding of the effects of the environment on living things and on biodiversity.
The Year 12 course investigates reproduction, inheritance patterns and the causes of genetic variation in both plants and animals. Applications of this knowledge in biotechnology and various genetic technologies are explored in the light of their uses in the treatment, prevention and control of infectious and non-infectious diseases.