Year 10 | Sciences

Sciences at Year 10

Students are required to study the equivalent of a full year of Science (ie. two semester units) at the Year 10 level.  Students anticipating a career in the Sciences may take an additional Science unit as an elective if desired.  The units offered include general science units according to the Victorian Curriculum (Forensic Science and Environmental Science) as well as electives for students wishing to specialise in agriculture and horticulture (10 AgHort), biology (Genetics and Evolution), chemistry (10 Chemistry) and physics (10 Physics).

Science Pathways  page is provided to assist with your subject choice.  Consulting this diagram and the flow charts below is essential for ensuring that your Year 10 subject choices will prepare you to do the VCE Science courses of your choosing.

Accelerated Studies

At Year 10 Students may undertake one of the VCE Science subjects (VCE Agriculture and Horticulture Unit 1, VCE Biology Units 1 and/or 2,  VCE Physics Unit 1) as part of their required allotment. Note that students wishing to undertake the accelerated Physics unit (VCE Physics Unit 1) should have both a keen interest in experimenting as well as strong mathematical skills.  VCE Psychology Unit 1 can also be taken as an accelerated study in Year 10 but this must be counted as an elective unit and chosen in addition to another two Science units as it does not cover Victorian Curriculum content.

 
 
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Year 10 | AgHort

OVERVIEW

In this unit you will study local agricultural and horticultural operations and the biological factors that influence these operations. You will develop an understanding of how the biological and physical components of the environment and human resources influence the type of agriculture or horticulture undertaken at particular locations. You will apply your knowledge and skills in establishing a small business project involving the care of living plants or animals.

ASSESSMENT

Assessment tasks are drawn from tasks such as topic tests, practical reports, visual representations and research tasks

PATHWAYS

Year 10 AgHort is a direct pathway for VCE Agricultural and Horticultural Studies but can also be followed by VCE Unit 1 and 2 Biology or Psychology or Unit 3 and 4 Environmental Science.

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Year 10 | Chemistry

overview

This unit is recommended if you are thinking of studying VCE Chemistry. Essential background theory is investigated in two main contexts: Analysis of Unknown Compounds and Organic Chemistry. You will extend your use of chemical formulae and the Periodic Table to describe ionic compounds and balance chemical equations. You will apply your chemical knowledge and practical skills to analyse unknown substances and, during the process, investigate a range of reaction types.

The factors which influence the rate of chemical reactions are accurately explored using data-logging equipment. When studying organic chemistry, you will investigate the diverse substances that come from organic matter, ranging from fuels to fragrances. You will learn how to systematically name these compounds and explore both the combustion of fuels and the measurement of their boiling points.

assessment

Assessment tasks are drawn from tasks such as topic tests, practical reports, visual representations and research tasks.

PATHWAYS

Year 10 Chemistry provides a Pathway for VCE Chemistry but can also be followed by VCE Unit 1 & 2 AgHort, Biology or Psychology or Unit 3 & 4 Environmental Science.


 
 
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Year 10 | Environmental Science

overview

In this unit, you will analyse how the periodic table organises elements and use it to make predictions about the properties of elements. You will explain how chemical reactions are used to produce particular products and how different factors influence the rate of reactions. Atomic theory is developed to understand relationships within the periodic table.

You will describe and analyse interactions and cycles within and between Earth's spheres as well as the theory of plate tectonics. You will consider how the Earth has changed over its history and how human activity affects global systems. You will consider how our understanding of Earth's systems has been developed by scientists.

When carrying out experimental investigations, you will develop questions and hypotheses and independently design and improve appropriate methods of investigation, including field work and laboratory experimentation.

 

Assessment

Assessment tasks are drawn from tasks such as topic tests, practical reports, visual representations and research tasks

PATHWAYS

Year 10 Environmental Science can lead to unit 1 & 2 Biology, Unit 1 & 2 Chemistry and Unit 3 & 4 Environmental Science



 
 
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Year 10 | Forensic Science

overview

In this unit, you will study Genetics and Physics concepts in the context of Forensic Investigations. When considering car crashes, an understanding of forces and movement is necessary (including Newton’s laws of motion). Through knowledge of momentum and inertia, stress and strain, you will consider what happens in collisions to both the passengers and the car, including the role of crumple zones and airbags.

You will also learn about DNA, its structure and function in the body and its role in determining inherited characteristics. You will also investigate the techniques of DNA fingerprinting, blood spatter and blood typing. You will work in teams to experiment with practical forensic techniques.

Assessment

Assessment tasks are drawn from tasks such as topic tests, practical reports, visual representations and research tasks

pathways

Studying Forensic Science provides a good introduction for VCE Biology and VCE Physics but these subjects may also be followed by VCE Unit 1 & 2 AgHort, Psychology or Unit 3 & 4 Environmental Science.

 
 

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Year 10 | Genetics and Evolution

overview

The way you look is part of your genetic make-up. Genetics is the branch of Biology concerned with heredity and the study of laws governing similarities and differences between parents and offspring.

This unit also considers DNA and RNA, their structure and role in the genetic code and making proteins. The way that humans use their understanding of genetics is studied through gene technologies, DNA fingerprinting and genetically modified organisms, including the ethics associated with these fields.

This unit also looks at Darwin’s theory of evolution and how we explain biodiversity. Natural selection, variations in populations and the use of fossil evidence is explored with an emphasis on the evolution of hominids (humans).

Assessment

Assessment tasks are drawn from tasks such as topic tests, practical reports, visual representations, research tasks and media analysis and response.

PATHWAYS

Studying Genetics & Evolution provides a good introduction for VCE Biology but these subjects could also be followed by VCE Unit 1 & 2 AgHort or Psychology or Unit 3 & 4 Environmental Science.

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Year 10 | Physics

overview

This unit is particularly recommended if you are thinking of studying VCE Physics. In this unit, you will carry out guided experimental investigations relating to such things as forces involved in driving cars, and avoiding or surviving collisions. You will learn how to design experiments to test your predictions and how to apply mathematical models to account for your experimental data.

You will study Newton's Laws of motion and investigate the forces that produce movement. In the magnetism component of the course, you will study how magnets interact along with field models and the relationship between electricity and magnetism.


Assessment

Assessment tasks are drawn from tasks such as topic tests, practical reports, visual representations and research tasks

Pathways

10 Physics is a pathway for VCE Physics but can also be followed by VCE Unit 1 & 2 AgHort, Biology or Psychology or Unit 3 & 4 Environmental Science.

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VCE | Psychology in Year 10

overview

VCE Psychology Unit 1 can be taken by Year 10 students as an elective but it cannot be counted as one of the 2 compulsory Science units.

See the VCE section of the curriculum guide for more information on Psychology.

Please Note:

Students must receive approval to undertake VCE units. See the Year 9 Year Level Coordinator to find out more.

  • A maximum of three VCE Units across two subject areas is permitted in Year 10

  • A single unit may be undertaken in a subject area