Science centres on student academic excellence. The HSC results in Biology, Chemistry and Physics are outstanding with almost 100% of students gaining a Band 5 and 6. Many of our graduates go on to excel in careers such as Medicine, Engineering, Dentistry, Pharmacy and Research Science.
Science Years 7-10
The aim of the Science Years 7-10 Syllabus is to develop students’:
- Interest in and enthusiasm for science, as well as an appreciation of its role in finding solutions to contemporary science-related problems and issues.
- Knowledge and understanding of the nature and practice of scientific inquiry, and skills in applying the processes of Working Scientifically
- Scientific knowledge of and about phenomena within the natural world and the application of their understanding to new situations and events.
Science in Years 7-10 has four major focus areas:
- The Living World
- The Physical World
- The Chemical World
- The Earth and Space
Sydney Tech incorporates many Gifted and Talented activities into the junior years with the aim to extend the students and engage them in inquiry based learning. Science is a practical subject and content is reinforced through the many and varied experiments and field trips.
These are valuable learning experiences that are designed to fulfil the field study requirements of the NSW Science Syllabus.
- Year 7 visit the Aquarium, IMAX Theatre and Taronga Park Zoo, where students study the different types of living organisms.
- Year 8 visit Lawrence Hargraves Lookout at Stanwell tops and Austinmer Beach as well as Wildlife World and the IMAX Theatre.
- Year 9 visit the IMAX Theatre and the Powerhouse Museum to enhance their knowledge of space.
- Year 10 visit the Australian Museum where they study evolution, Luna Park where they study the motion of rides as well as the effect of gravity.
Sydney Tech students have the opportunity to extend themselves by entering different competitions where they excel. Sydney tech always achieves many High Distinctions and Distinctions in the following competitions:
- ICAS Science competition which is run by the University of NSW;
- Rio Tinto Science competition
- Royal Australian Chemical Institute Chemistry Quiz
The study of Chemistry recognises that a study of the nature of materials includes natural and made substances, their structures, changes and environmental importance. The history and philosophy of science as it relates to the development of the understanding, utilisation and manipulation of chemical systems is important in developing current understanding in Chemistry and its applications in the contexts of technology, society and the environment.
- How substances are classified.
- How substances react.
- Why substances react.
- What happens when substances react.
- How substances are used by humans.
- How we can use substances to monitor the environment.
Students at STHS perform at a high level in the HSC for Chemistry with state rankings achieved each year. Chemistry teaching focuses on scaffolding the longer response questions and ensuring that the boys are well prepared for the HSC.
Biology Stage 6 explores the levels of organisation of life, from the molecular level through cellular to higher levels of organisational structure and function, which exhibit evolution as a common source of unity and diversity. It includes developing an understanding of the interactions within and between organisms and between organisms and their environment.
- How living things are classified.
- How living things interact.
- How living things function.
- What is the origin and evolution of living things.
- Why Australian fauna and flora are unique.
- How has human impact changed the environment.
Biology students at Sydney Technical High School achieve at a high level and most achieve Band 5 or 6 in the HSC. Biology is an important subject for students who intend on going into careers such as veterinary science, medicine, zoology. At STHS the knowledge is enhanced by compulsory field trips to the Childrens’ Hospital for pathology study and to the National Park for ecology.
Physics in Science Stage 6 provides students with a contemporary and coherent understanding of energy, matter, and their interrelationships. It focuses on investigating natural phenomena and then applying patterns, models (including mathematical ones), principles, theories and laws to explain the physical behaviour of the universe. It uses an understanding of simple systems (single particles and pairs of particles) to make predictions about a range of objects from sub-atomic particles to the entire universe and aims to reveal the simplicity underlying complexity.
Physics tells us:
- How substances work.
- How substances interact.
- Which forces cause substances to interact.
- How laws and principles determine the universe.
- How physical phenomena are used by people.
- How physical principles impact on technology.
Physics is about how things work and has many practical applications. Physics is the basis for students who want to become engineers and architects.
Many students at STHS achieve at a high level in the HSC. To enhance their learning, students are also given the option to attend astronaut training in Orlando, USA.
Science & Engineering Challenge
The Science and Engineering Challenge is a competition that is conducted by the University of Newcastle each year. This is a hands-on event where students are required to develop solutions to problems that have many correct solutions, with each possible solution having a trade-off between cost, aesthetics and maintainability.
The challenge is a set of fun and competitive events, which involve the principles of science, engineering and technology. Schools are divided into eight teams of four students to tackle a range of projects from building model hover crafts, catapults and bridges to designing a power network and an eco-friendly home.
Sydney Tech has won many State Championships and National Championships.
In 2012 and 2015 Sydney Tech students (from Years 10-12) went on an 11 day excursion to Orlando, USA.
Students learn by hands-on experiences and the aim of this excursion is for the students to visit the Kennedy Space Centre and the NASA facility and experience life as an astronaut. This is a valuable life experience that is designed to further enhance the quality teaching of science. It also exposes the students to the many different science and engineering career opportunities that exist.
The visit endenders high levels of interest and enthusiasm amongst participants fortunate enough to attend.
Debbie Noyes (Head Teacher Science)
David Davis (Head Teacher Administration, Head Teacher Creative Arts, on leave)