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NSW Syllabuses

Stage 4 stage statements

English Stage 4 Stage Statement

By the end of Stage 4 students respond to a variety of texts critically, imaginatively and interpretively and compose accurate, clear and coherent texts. They use English in personal, social and learning contexts with increasing control and understanding of the form and features of language and structures of texts, and with increasing awareness of purpose, audience and context. Students make connections between texts, they recognise the main ideas and points of view, and the ways in which texts seek to position responders. They make decisions about whether content and language are appropriate to purpose, audience and context.

In speaking, writing and representing, students shape meaning through the thoughtful selection and ordering of appropriate content and by drawing on a widening repertoire of language choices. They can express a personal point of view, give words and images to their imaginings and compose logical argument. They experiment with form and language in different modes and technologies to produce various types of texts for specific purposes. As appropriate, they plan, draft and edit to produce polished texts.

Students apply their knowledge of textual features and conventions to their texts. They constructively analyse and evaluate their own and others' compositions and they articulate their response to texts and to the process and experience of composing. Students reflect on their learning, becoming aware of how they learn and identifying what they have learned, effective ways to learn and what they need to learn next.

Students who have achieved Stage 4 respond to literary and other texts for enjoyment and to expand their perspectives on their own lives. They engage with images of their real and imagined worlds and explore the relationship between them. They explore texts critically, evaluating content, differentiating between fact and opinion, challenging points of view and identifying, considering and appreciating cultural expressions. They respond to imagery and symbolism in verbal and visual forms. They engage with print, film and digital texts with an informed awareness of the language forms and features and structures of those texts. Students develop personal preferences in what they hear, read and view, and are able to articulate their preference in personal and critical responses.

Mathematics Stage 4 Stage Statement

By the end of Stage 4, students use mathematical terminology, algebraic notation, diagrams, text and tables to communicate mathematical ideas, and link concepts and processes within and between mathematical contexts. They apply their mathematical knowledge, skills and understanding in analysing real-life situations and in systematically exploring and solving problems using technology where appropriate. Students develop fluency with a range of algebraic techniques and in the solution of familiar problems. In solving particular problems, they compare the strengths and weaknesses of different strategies and solutions.

Students develop a range of mental strategies to enhance their computational skills. They operate competently with integers, fractions, decimals and percentages, and apply these in a range of practical contexts, including problems related to GST, discounts and profit and loss. Students are familiar with the concepts of ratios and rates, and apply these when solving problems. They investigate divisibility tests, use index notation for numbers with positive integral indices, and explore prime factorisation, squares and cubes, and related square and cube roots, and the concept of irrational numbers.

Extending and generalising number patterns leads students into an understanding of the use of pronumerals and the language of algebra. They simplify algebraic expressions, substitute into algebraic expressions and formulas, and expand and factorise algebraic expressions. Students solve simple linear and quadratic equations. They develop tables of values from linear relationships and illustrate these relationships on the Cartesian plane, with and without the use of digital technologies.

Students calculate the perimeters and areas of a variety of polygons, circles, sectors and simple composite figures, and solve related problems. They calculate the volumes and capacities of right prisms and cylinders, and solve related problems. They convert between units of area and units of volume, and connect units of volume and capacity. Pythagoras' theorem is used to calculate side lengths in right-angled triangles and solve problems in two dimensions. Students calculate time duration and apply their understanding of Australian and world time zones to solve problems.

Knowledge of the properties of two-dimensional geometrical figures, angles, parallel lines, perpendicular lines and congruent figures enables students to apply logical reasoning to solve numerical exercises involving unknown lengths and angles in figures.

Students construct, interpret and compare data displays, including dot plots, stem-and-leaf plots, sector graphs, divided bar graphs, and frequency tables and histograms. In analysing data, they consider both categorical and numerical (discrete and continuous) variables, sampling versus census, and possible misrepresentation of data, and calculate the mean, mode, median and range. Students represent events using Venn diagrams and two-way tables, and calculate the probability of simple and complementary events in single-step chance experiments.

Science Stage 4 Stage Statement

By the end of Stage 4 students use scientific inquiry by actively engaging in using and applying the processes of Working Scientifically. They identify questions and problems that they can test or research scientifically. They select and use appropriate strategies, understanding and skills to generate creative plausible solutions to identified problems. Individually and collaboratively they plan and conduct a range of types of first-hand investigations, including fieldwork and controlled experimental methods, ensuring that fairness, safety and ethical guidelines are followed.

Students process and analyse data and information from first-hand investigations and secondary sources to identify trends, patterns and relationships, drawing relevant, evidence-based conclusions. They reflect on how the methods, strategies used and the quality of data obtained could be improved. Their ideas, methods and findings are communicated to a given audience using appropriate scientific language, representations and text types, with information sources acknowledged using a recognised method.

By engaging in scientific inquiry, students develop their knowledge of and about science ideas and concepts, as well as the nature, development and importance of scientific evidence. They explain how scientific knowledge changes as new discoveries and technological developments are made available, appreciating that new evidence leads to an improved understanding of the world.

Students describe the action of unbalanced forces on the motion of objects in everyday situations, including the Earth's gravity. They discuss how developments in scientific knowledge and technology have contributed to finding solutions to problems involving the use of energy transfers and transformations in simple systems and how the solutions may impact on other areas of society.

Students relate the structure and function of living things to their classification, survival and reproduction. They predict the effects of environmental changes on ecosystems and how scientific understanding influences the development of some management practices. They explain the contribution and influence of scientific knowledge and technological advances in finding solutions to contemporary issues and that these solutions may involve ethical considerations.

Students describe the dynamic nature of models, theories and laws in developing scientific understanding of the Earth, solar system and observed properties and behaviour of matter. They describe processes occurring in and on the Earth and the time scales involved, as well as situations where understanding and skills from across the disciplines of Science are used in exploration for resources and obtaining and processing of materials. They explain how advances in scientific understanding influence the choices people make about resource use and management practices in shaping sustainable futures.

Students relate the physical and chemical properties of matter to how materials are processed and used by society in everyday life. They describe situations where scientific knowledge and collaboration between scientists generates solutions to obtaining and making new substances from the Earth's spheres.

History Stage 4 Stage Statement

By the end of Stage 4, students describe the nature of history and archaeology, and explain their contribution to an understanding of the past. They describe major periods of historical time and sequence events, people and societies from the past. Students recognise and explain patterns of change and continuity over time and explain the causes and consequences of events and developments. They describe and assess the motives and actions of people in the past. Students demonstrate an understanding of the causes and effects of events, past societies and developments over time.

Students sequence events and developments within a chronological framework with reference to periods of time. They select and organise information from primary and secondary sources and use it as evidence to answer inquiry questions. They identify and describe the meaning, purpose and context of historical sources and use the evidence from these sources to support historical narratives and explanations. They identify and describe different contexts, perspectives and interpretations of the past. Students identify and explain different points of view in sources. They develop texts, particularly descriptions and explanations. In developing these texts, and organising and presenting their findings, they use historical terms and concepts. They use evidence in sources and acknowledge their sources of information. They select and use appropriate oral, written, visual and/or digital forms to communicate about the past. Students undertake a relevant site study either by visiting an actual site or through a virtual source.

Geography Stage 4 Stage Statement

By the end of Stage 4, students describe geographical processes that influence the features and characteristics of places and environments across a range of scales. They describe how places are perceived and valued differently and explain interconnections within environments and between people, places and environments. Students investigate environmental change and differences in human wellbeing and discuss strategies for addressing geographical challenges, taking into account environmental, economic and social factors.

Students undertake geographical inquiry to build knowledge and understanding of people, places and environments through the collection, collation and analysis of primary data and secondary information. Students propose explanations for spatial distributions, patterns and trends and infer relationships. They propose solutions, and may take action to address contemporary geographical challenges and predict outcomes. Students participate in fieldwork to collect primary data and develop their personal capabilities and workplace skills.