VCE | Environmental Science

Environmental Science Pathways

 
 
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Environmental Science | Unit 3

How can biodiversity and development be sustained?

OVERVIEW

You will investigate principles of sustainability and environmental management, consider the impact that development has on ecosystems and apply your knowledge to a case study where you will consider the impacts and risks associated with development.

Using scientific techniques to collect and analyse data will enable you to evaluate the effectiveness of proposed or existing environmental management strategies. You will investigate the principles of sustainability and environmental management. You will consider the impact that development has on ecosystems. You will be required to apply your knowledge to a case study where you will consider the impacts and risks associated with development. You will use scientific techniques to collect and analyse data enabling you to evaluate the effectiveness of proposed or existing environmental management strategies.

VCAA Environmental Science Study Design

UNIT PREREQUISITES

Any 2 of Year 10 Chemistry, Genetics and Evolution, Forensics, Environmental or Physics.

AREAS OF STUDY

  1. Is maintaining biodiversity worth a sustained effort?

  2. Is development sustainable?

UNIT ASSESSMENT

  • Unit 3 School assessed coursework (SAC's) 20%

  • Unit 4 School assessed coursework (SAC's) 20%

  • Unit 3 and/or 4 Practical Investigation 10%

  • Unit 3 & 4 examination 50%

Assessment for Outcomes 1 and 2 may include: annotations of a practical work folio; a report of a practical activity; media response; problem-solving; data analysis; or a test.

Unit 3 or 4 Practical Investigation: A student-designed or adapted investigation related to biodiversity and/or energy use is undertaken in either Unit 3 or Unit 4, or across both Units 3 and 4. The investigation is to relate to knowledge and skills developed across Units 3 and 4 and may be undertaken by the student through laboratory work and/or fieldwork.

PATHWAYS

Students undertaking Acceleration can complete this unit in Year 11.

Unit 3 & 4 Environmental Science may lead to environmental science studies, research science, park ranger, public service

 
 

 
 
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Environmental Science | Unit 4

How can the impacts of human energy use be reduced?

OVERVIEW

In this unit, you will examine the concepts associated with the use of different forms of energy by human societies. The focus moves from understanding the relationship between the uses of local sources of energy to examining the global impacts of these uses, including consideration of the consequences over short (seconds to years), medium (multiple years to hundreds of years) and long (thousands to millions of years) time scales. You will investigate through fieldwork and practical activities the extent, availability, consequences, and alternative forms of energy available while considering the environmental, social and ethical challenges involved.

You will investigate the astronomical, solar, and Earth systems and human-based factors that have altered important relationships between the energy, water and nutrient cycles, resulting in the enhanced greenhouse effect and climate change. You will compare natural and enhanced greenhouse effects and their significance for sustaining ecological integrity.

Outcomes: During this unit, you will learn to compare the advantages and disadvantages of a range of energy sources, evaluate the sustainability of their use, and explain the impacts of their use. You will also explain the causes and effects of changes to Earth’s climate, compare methods of measuring and monitoring atmospheric changes, and explain the impacts of atmospheric changes on living things and the environment.

VCAA Environmental Science Study Design

UNIT PREREQUISITES

Unit 3 Environmental Science.

AREAS OF STUDY

  1. What is a sustainable mix of energy sources?

  2. Is climate predictable?

UNIT ASSESSMENT

  • Unit 3 School assessed coursework (SAC's) 20%

  • Unit 4 School assessed coursework (SAC's) 20%

  • Unit 3 and/or 4 Practical Investigation 10%

  • Unit 3 & 4 examination 50%

Assessment for Outcomes 1 and 2 may include: annotations of a practical work folio; a report of a practical activity; media response; problem-solving; data analysis; or a test.

Unit 3 or 4 Practical Investigation: A student-designed or adapted investigation related to biodiversity and/or energy use is undertaken in either Unit 3 or Unit 4, or across both Units 3 and 4. The investigation is to relate to knowledge and skills developed across Units 3 and 4 and may be undertaken by the student through laboratory work and/or fieldwork.

PATHWAYS

Students undertaking Acceleration can complete this unit in Year 11.

Unit 3 & 4 Environmental Science may lead to environmental science studies, research science, park ranger, public service