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The NSW Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Services (BOSTES) has released draft syllabuses for 17 HSC courses in English, history, maths and science in a bid to modernise education for the ‘Asian Century’.
BOSTES President Tom Alegounarias said in a media release that the draft syllabuses allow for deeper learning opportunities to students and “a richer engagement in the subjects they choose for their senior years of school”.
“Increasing content depth also supports more analytical assessment enabling us to also redesign High School Certificate (HSC) exam questions.
“For maths courses, common content and marking is being introduced to ensure students studying the higher level maths courses are recognised and to reduce any perceived incentive to study maths below their ability for an ATAR advantage,” Mr Alegounarias said.
Proposes Changes at a Glance:
- English – Mandatory unit will focus on spelling, grammar, vocabular and punctuation
- Mathematics – Statistics to be included in all courses. Increased emphasis on problem solving
- Science – Promotion of critical thinking over rote learning of facts
- History – Further opportunities to study Asian history, feminism and Indigenous leaders. Also, deeper analysis of WWII and its impact
Speaking to AAP, Mr Alegounarias also indicated that revisions to English seek to overcome a 30-year trend in education “to underplay grammar”.
BOSTES has proposed modern history electives to highlight the role of women and Indigenous leaders such as Pemulwuy, Eddie Mabo and Faith Bandler, but some syllabuses in technology and Asian language courses won’t be reviewed until next year.
Once confirmed, the new syllabuses will be taught to Year 11 students in 2018, giving teachers a year to adapt.
The drafts are open for public consultation until August 31.