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NSW Syllabuses

Science K–10 (inc. Science and Technology K–6) - Stage 4 - Knowledge and Understanding Living World


A student:

  • SC4-14LW

    relates the structure and function of living things to their classification, survival and reproduction

  • SC4-15LW

    explains how new biological evidence changes people's understanding of the world

Related Life Skills outcomes: SCLS-17LW, SCLS-18LW, SCLS-19LW, SCLS-20LW, SCLS-21LW


  • LW1 There are differences within and between groups of organisms; classification helps organise this diversity. (ACSSU111)
  • Students:
  • a. identify reasons for classifying living things
  • b. classify a variety of living things based on similarities and differences in structural features
  • c. use simple keys to identify a range of plants and animals L
  • d. identify some examples of groups of micro-organisms
  • e. outline the structural features used to group living things, including plants, animals, fungi and bacteria
  • f. explain how the features of some Australian plants and animals are adaptations for survival and reproduction in their environment LCCT
  • LW2 Cells are the basic units of living things and have specialised structures and functions. (ACSSU149)
  • Students:
  • a. identify that living things are made of cells
  • b. identify structures within cells, including the nucleus, cytoplasm, cell membrane, cell wall and chloroplast, and describe their functions
  • c. outline the role of respiration in providing energy for the activities of cells
  • d. identify that new cells are produced by cell division
  • e. distinguish between unicellular and multicellular organisms
  • f. identify that different types of cells make up the tissues, organs and organ systems of multicellular organisms
  • LW3 Multicellular organisms contain systems of organs that carry out specialised functions that enable them to survive and reproduce. (ACSSU150)
  • Students:
  • a. identify the materials required by multicellular organisms for the processes of respiration and photosynthesis
  • b. explain that the systems in multicellular organisms work together to provide cell requirements, including gases, nutrients and water, and to remove cell wastes L
  • c. outline the role of cell division in growth, repair and reproduction in multicellular organisms
  • d. describe the role of the flower, root, stem and leaf in maintaining flowering plants as functioning organisms LCCT
  • e. describe the role of the digestive, circulatory, excretory, skeletal/muscular and respiratory systems in maintaining  a human as a functioning multicellular organism L
  • f. outline the role of the reproductive system in humans
  • LW4 Scientific knowledge changes as new evidence becomes available, and some scientific discoveries have significantly changed people's understanding of the world. (ACSHE119, ACSHE134)
  • Students:
  • a. research an example of how changes in scientific knowledge have contributed to finding a solution to a human health issue CCTEU
  • b. recount how evidence from a scientific discovery has changed understanding and contributed to solving a real world problem, eg animal or plant disease, hygiene, food preservation, sewage treatment or biotechnology LPSC
  • c. describe, using examples, how developments in technology have contributed to finding solutions to a contemporary issue, eg organ transplantation, artificial joints/limbs, treatment for diabetes, asthma, kidney or heart disease ICTL
  • d. give examples to show that groups of people in society may use or weight criteria differently in making decisions about the application of a solution to a contemporary issue, eg organ transplantation, control and prevention of diseases and dietary deficiencies CCTDDPSCEU
  • LW5 Science and technology contribute to finding solutions to conserving and managing sustainable ecosystems.
  • Students:
  • a. construct and interpret food chains and food webs, including examples from Australian ecosystems
  • b. describe interactions between organisms in food chains and food webs, including producers, consumers and decomposers (ACSSU112)
  • c. describe examples of beneficial and harmful effects that micro-organisms can have on living things and the environment
  • d. predict how human activities can affect interactions in food chains and food webs, including examples from Australian land or marine ecosystems (ACSSU112) CCT
  • e. explain, using examples, how scientific evidence and/or technological developments contribute to developing solutions to manage the impact of natural events on Australian ecosystems LCC
  • f. describe how scientific knowledge has influenced the development of practices in agriculture, eg animal husbandry or crop cultivation to improve yields and sustainability, or the effect of plant-cloning techniques in horticulture SEL
  • Additional content

    Additional content is not prerequisite knowledge for following stages, but may be used to broaden and deepen students' skills, knowledge and understanding in Stage 4.
  • Students:
  • describe how people in occupations that involve the biological sciences use understanding and skills from across the disciplines of Science WE
  • debate why society should support biological research CCTPSCEU
  • design and construct simple keys to identify a range of living things CCT
  • classify, using a hierarchical system, a range of selected plants and animals to species level L
  • identify, using an example of an organism or group of organisms, where the classification has changed as a result of new evidence from technological developments, scientific discoveries and/or advances in scientific understanding
  • research the contributions of Australian scientists to the study of human impact on environments and to local environmental management projects SEWE
  • discuss how the observations and understanding of the structure, function and life cycles of native plants are used by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples AHC