Course Description

Biology is the study of living organisms, life processes and interactions between organisms and their environment.

The Preliminary course incorporates the study of the mechanisms and systems that living things use to obtain, transport and draw on materials for their own growth and repair; biotic and abiotic features of the environment and the interdependence of organisms in an ecosystem; the evolution of life on Earth; and the effects of global changes on the diversity of Australian biota during the formation of the Australian continent.

The HSC course builds upon the Preliminary course. It examines the processes and structures that plants and animals use to maintain a constant internal environment and the way in which characteristics are transmitted from generation to generation. The options cover a variety of interest areas and draw on the increased information and understanding provided by improved technology to examine areas of current research.

Exclusions: Senior Science (Preliminary only)

Topics Covered

Preliminary Course

Core Modules

  • A Local Ecosystem
  • Patterns in Nature
  • Life on Earth
  • Evolution of Australian Biota

HSC Course

Core Modules

  • Maintaing a Balance
  • Blueprint of Life
  • The Search for Better Health

One Option from the following modules:

  • Communication
  • Biotechnology
  • Genetics: The Code Broken?
  • The Human Story
  • Biochemistry

Particular Course Requirements

Each module specifies content which provides opportunities for students to achieve the Biology skill outcomes. Biology modules 8.1 (Preliminary) and 9.1 (HSC) provide the skills content that must be addressed within and across each course.

The Preliminary course includes a field study related to local terrestrial and aquatic environments. Students will complete a minimum of 80 indicative hours of practical experiences across Preliminary and HSC course time with no less than 35 hours in the HSC course. Practical experiences must include at least one open-ended investigation in both the Preliminary and HSC Courses.

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Further Information

HSC Exam