Head of Social Science
The interdisciplinary faculty of Social Sciences is always buzzing as it encompasses a range of lifelong learning skills. Experiential learning is the foundation of our subjects as it enables a shift from being task-oriented to learning-oriented. A study reported in the Social Science Review promulgates that:
‘…excursions offer learners opportunities to develop their knowledge and skills in ways that add value to their everyday experiences in the classroom’.
The students are exposed to such valuable experiences to enhance their understanding in the disciplines of Business Studies, Commerce, Economics, Geography and Legal Studies, where they apply the acquired skills to real life situations. This is made possible through the arduous planning and ardent nature of our dynamic team which includes a new staff member, Mr. Anthony Tassone, who we welcomed at the start of the year.
The Taronga Zoo is perceived through a different view with Business Studies students investigating the marketing strategies of the organisation and gain insight into business concepts. Legal Studies students gain a first-hand experience of the proceedings of court cases through visiting the courts in the CBD. The functioning of the government is experienced by Commerce students through role play activities at the NSW Parliament. In Year 9 they learn the nuances of running a small business through ‘Commerce in the Quad’. The study of Geography can never be complete without authentic fieldwork ranging from investigating sustainability issues at Homebush wetlands, or urban dynamics of Sydney, or creating ‘contour potatoes’ in the classroom! The Economics students keep abreast of the impacts of global changes on the Australian economy through interactive conferences and networks.
All information gained through these experiences bring the content ‘alive’ making it more meaningful and accessible, which subsequently promotes student engagement. Research on innovative education has propounded that relevance and usefulness of content can not only promote student motivation but sustain their interest throughout the course.
The successful results of the HSC 2015 in Social Sciences are a testament to the role of fieldwork based pedagogies in facilitating effective student engagement and learning.
Ms Gauri Gupta
Head of Social Science