South Otago High School

South Otago High School

Quality Education in a Supportive Community

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Thai Visit March 2015
Thai Visit March 2015
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OE Catlins River Walk
OE Catlins River Walk
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Duke of Ed Hollyford
Duke of Ed Hollyford
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Curriculum

Science

Aims:

The Science Department aims to provide pupils with a set of skills that enable them to understand the physical, material and biological world around them. We also encourage curiosity, and the exploring of scientific ideas and methodology to allow students to go on to study at degree level. Science is an important part of our society and having a good basic understanding of various issues and ideas is critical to being able to participate fully as a local, national and global citizen.

Subjects Offered:

Year 9:

An introduction to working and thinking scientifically, and an introduction to the three different specialist areas within the subject. Underpinning the topics studied is an introduction to scientific inquiry and developing the skills required to carry out practical investigations

Year 10:

Building on the work of Year 9, and preparing students for the courses offered in Year 11. This is again a general course and covers all the different specialist areas, with an ongoing emphasis on scientific inquiry.

Year 11:

A mixture of specialist subjects and courses based on internal assessment, external assessment and a mixture of both. Some focus will be on pre-requisites for Level 2 courses, which will generally be by exams in the various specialties. There will also be some internal assessment by designing and carry out practical investigations, and some course may be entirely coursework based.

Year 12 Biology:

Covers cellular processes, ecology, an organism’s adaptations to its habitat, as well as genetics. This course is a mixture of internal and external assessment.

Year 12 Chemistry:

Aims to develop students’ interest in Chemistry through an understanding of the fundamental concepts of chemistry to be able to interpret observations. Students will investigate and measure the chemical properties of a range of substances. They will relate properties of matter to structure and bonding and apply chemical knowledge and skills to explain aspects of the natural world.

Year 12 Physics:

This course is the introductory course for students who wish to engage in Physics related careers. Students will develop an interest and awareness of how things work in our physical environment. Students will also develop problem solving skills throughout the course.

Year 13 Biology:

This course is primarily aimed at students going on to further education, and is a mixture of external exams and coursework based internals, which have been contextualised to reflect student interests and stated outcomes. The examinable topics studied are Human Evolution and Processes Leading to Speciation. The internal research coursework currently includes transgenic hormones in sport, cloning and selective breeding in farm animals, thermoregulation in Coast-to-Coast competitors and an ecological niche practical.

 

Year 13 Chemistry:

This course takes students to the next level of Chemistry building on their knowledge and concepts from Year 12 Chemistry. Students will further investigate and develop an understanding of the ways materials and chemical processes interact with people and the environment. Students will also carry out a range of practical investigations and use this and other information to explore chemical behaviour. By the end of the course students will be able to describe important concepts in chemistry and major patterns of chemical behaviour.

 

Year 13 Physics:

This course provides students with a solid background for further study in Physics (including, but not limited to engineering, medical sciences and environmental science) at university and/or general knowledge for later life.  Students will investigate physical phenomena (in the areas of mechanics, light and waves) and will produce complex qualitative and quantitative explanations for a variety of unfamiliar situations.

Department Staff:

Mr T Swallow  – HOD
Mr C Sly – Assistant HOD
Mr R Li
Mr D Metcalfe
Mrs B Wilson-Dale
Mr K Nicholson