Mount Annan High School

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Emailmountannan-h.school@det.nsw.edu.au

HSIE Stage 5

HSIE Stage 5

Geography (Mandatory)

History (Mandatory)

Commerce (Elective)

 

Geography Rationale

 

Geography is a rich and complex discipline involving two key dimensions:

  • the spatial dimension – where things are and why they are there
  • the ecological dimension – how humans interact with environments.

 

A study of Geography builds on students' prior learning and experience to enable them to explain patterns, evaluate consequences and contribute to the management of physical, social, cultural and built environments. Geography does this by:

  • focusing objectively on the physical components of environments – this enables students to view a community as part of the wider global environment
  • providing a basis for recognising and responding to the constant changes taking place in environments at local, regional, national and global scales
  • providing geographical methodologies that contribute to an understanding of the world
  • examining the various perspectives of people in communities and the consequences of their actions on environments
  • developing an appreciation of the intrinsic value of environments – this may enrich the lives of those who experience them
  • empowering students with a knowledge of civics that enables them to exercise citizenship.

 

The study of Geography develops a wide range of skills such as gathering, organising and evaluating geographical information from a variety of sources, including fieldwork. Through the spatial dimension, geography enables students to identify and analyse the physical, social, economic, political, legal and technological factors that influence where things are and why they are there. The ecological dimension requires students to identify and analyse the ways humans interact with environments and in so doing develops students' skills in evaluating arguments and problem-solving. Culture is a key determinant of people's lives and worldview and through the study of Geography students develop knowledge and understanding of different cultures and develop perspectives that enhance their understanding of the world.

 

The study of Geography enables students to critically assess the ideas and opinions of others and to form and express their own ideas and arguments. In so doing it forms a basis for active participation in community life, ecological sustainability, creating a just society, promoting intercultural understanding and lifelong learning. Through the study of civics and citizenship students develop knowledge of the decision-making processes that exist at a variety of scales, which informs them of ways they can participate as responsible and informed members of society.

 

 

History Rationale (New Syllabus implemented as from 2015)

 

History is a disciplined process of inquiry into the past that helps to explain how people, events and forces from the past have shaped our world. It allows students to locate and understand themselves and others in the continuum of human experience up to the present. History provides opportunities for students to explore human actions and achievements in a range of historical contexts. Students become aware that history is all around us and that historical information may be drawn from the physical remains of the past as well as written, visual and oral sources of evidence.

 

The study of History from Kindergarten to Year 10 investigates the actions, motives and lifestyles of people over time, from individuals and family members, to local communities, expanding to national and world history contexts. It introduces the idea that History contains many stories and that there is never only one uncontested version. There are many differing perspectives within a nation's history, and historians may interpret events differently depending on their point of view and the sources they have used. The study of History strengthens an appreciation for and an understanding of civics and citizenship. It also provides broader insights into the historical experiences of different cultural groups within our society and how various groups have struggled for civil rights, for example Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, migrants and women. History encourages students to develop an understanding of significant historical concepts such as cause and effect, change and continuity, significance, empathy and contestability.

 

History as a discipline has its own methods and procedures. It is much more than the simple presentation of facts and dates from the past. History provides the skills for students to answer the question 'How do we know?' An investigation of an historical issue through a range of sources can stimulate curiosity and develop problem-solving, research and critical thinking skills. It develops language specific to the discipline of History and provides opportunities to further develop literacy skills. Students learn to critically analyse and interpret sources of evidence in order to construct reasoned explanations and a rational and informed argument based on evidence, drawn from the remains of the past. Students engage in research involving traditional methods and ICT, including evaluating web-based sources and using a range of technologies for historical research and communication.

 

Commerce Rationale

 

Commerce provides the knowledge, skills, understanding and values that form the foundation on which young people make sound decisions on consumer, financial, business, legal and employment issues. It develops in students an understanding of commercial and legal processes and competencies for personal financial management. Through the study of Commerce students develop financial literacy which enables them to participate in the financial system in an informed way.

 

Central to the course is the development of an understanding of the relationships between consumers, businesses and governments in the overall economy. Through their investigation of these relationships, students develop the capacity to apply problem-solving strategies which incorporate the skills of analysis and evaluation. Students engage in the learning process which promotes critical thinking, reflective learning and the opportunity to participate in the community.

 

To function competently in our democratic and pluralistic society, students need to develop the ability to research information, evaluate options, and participate in collaborative decision-making within the commercial and legal framework and acquire the necessary skills to become self-directed lifelong learners.

 

Commerce provides for a range of learning styles and experiences that suit the interests and needs of all students. It emphasises the potential and use of information and communication technologies. Students gain greater competence in problem-solving and decision-making by evaluating the range of consumer, financial, business, legal and employment strategies. In examining these they also develop attitudes and values that promote ethical behaviour and social responsibility and a commitment to contribute to a more just and equitable society.