S3 Course Choices
S2 to S3 Subject Index 3
Administration & IT 5
Art and Design 6
Business & Enterprise 8
Computing Science 10
Design and Manufacture 11
Graphic Communication 14
Health and Food Technology 15
Media Studies 20
Modern Languages 21
Physical Education 23
Administration and IT
Every organisation, no matter how small, is supported by people performing
Administration and IT aims to develop employability skills in learners and allows them to
gain an understanding of the personal qualities and attributes required of people
involved in providing administrative support.
Developing essential IT skills will stand learners in good stead regardless of the career
path they ultimately choose and thus learners will be able to play their part in the
economic and social life of the 21st century effectively.
Health & Safety
Use of office software (spreadsheet, database, word processing)
Communication (gathering and sharing information)
Art and Design
In S3 pupils will follow a broad skills based course which will form the foundation for
National 4 or National 5 courses in Art and Design in S4. The course covers both
traditional art and design techniques and modern cutting edge digital image making
Pupils will learn:
to experiment with the visual elements using a range of media to produce
drawings and colour studies.
to handle materials with control and assurance to create still life paintings.
some basic skills to manipulate images in Photoshop.
some basic photography skills.
to work through the design process to communicate imaginative and original
graphic, illustration and textile design solutions.
to use skills and creativity to generate original ideas in expressive and design
to express and communicate your thoughts and feelings through your art and
to analyse and make informed judgments about the work of artists and
skills which can be applied to other areas of the curriculum.
Pupils will continue to build on their skills developed during S1 and S2 through a number
of different Chemistry contexts. These contexts include:
Unit 1 – Earth Materials
Fuels and hydrocarbons (including manufactured materials)
Unit 2 – Atomic Structure
Structure of the atom
An introduction to bonding
Unit 3 – Skills Unit you will gain experience in:
Researching topical chemistry issues
Practical lab skills
Investigation design and write up
Pupils will be assessed on project work, presentations, homework and written
assessments as they progress through the course.
Computing Science is transforming the way we conduct our daily lives. It has made it
possible to carry out banking transactions, check the news, watch a video and many
other activities using a mobile device. It is a subject which is economically vital to the
What will you learn?:
You will learn all about modern and mobile computing and how it is used in
society. This will range from finding out how to use and produce multimedia
enriched Information Systems to developing programming techniques using
different languages like Scratch and Visual Basic.
You will learn the skills required to prepare graphics for the World Wide Web,
create and test programs, web pages, photo albums and investigate the
underlying knowledge of associated topics like file types, file sizes, processor
capability and storage media.
The experiences and outcomes for Computing will help you develop an understanding
of the need for digital information in society and the different ways that information
systems are developed.
Information is media rich and this unit has many activities that develop skills to enable
the integration of different media, eg. graphics, sound, text and video to create
websites, adverts, icons, logos and other digital solutions.
Presentation skills are covered in a variety of different formats such as radio adverts,
short videos, animations, multimedia
presentations and web portfolios.
Investigation plays an important part and pupils learn to compare different security
software, computer systems and emerging technologies and consider their suitability for
the world of work
You will also learn how to design and write programs in different programming
You will learn that all applications are programs and need to be planned for, designed,
implemented and tested. This is the approach that is taken to develop programming
techniques and skills in Scratch. Some programming in Visual Basic will also take place
so that a comparison of languages can be completed. As well as learning how to test
that programs are working correctly, evaluation of solutions to problems will be
This course leads to National 4, National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher.
All pupils will choose English in S3 and will continue to study the four key modes of
Pupils will develop their skills in these elements by studying literature and language as
well as aspects of the media.
Pupils will also be preparing for their National 4 and 5 courses, and much of the
assessment will be centered on ensuring that pupils will be presented at the correct
level in S4. Assessments will include:
Critical essays on texts studied in class (poems, short stories, plays, films and novels)
Close reading of both fiction and non-fiction passages and extracts in both familiar
and unfamiliar contexts
Writing tasks (imaginative, personal and discursive/ persuasive)
Listening tasks which may also be audio-visual
Speaking tasks which may be individual presentations, group discussions or group
Homework tasks will likely involve:
Personal research or reading for pleasure
Preparation for assessments (including talks)
Drafting or redrafting folio essays
Close reading or language tasks
Geography explores the relationship between the earth and the people who inhabit it.
It studies physical processes and human interactions at a range of scales from local to
global. In S3 pupils investigate a range of topics to enhance their knowledge and
understanding of the world around them. Pupils will also be given the opportunity to
develop and enhance fieldwork skills through investigating local areas.
Topics covered will include:
Our Changing Urban Areas – Dundee is changing every day. This Unit focuses on the
features of the city, changes, and impacts of change, including the Waterfront
Killer Diseases – investigating the causes, impacts and solutions of selected major
diseases that affect both developed and developing countries.
Hazards – focusing on Hurricanes in a developed and developing country (e.g.
Our Fragile Environments – focusing on the human impact on the Rainforest or Tundra
Weather – exploring weather patterns and learning to predict the weather that affects
our daily lives.
Coasts - focusing on formation of coastal features, land use and conflict on coastal
Pupils will be assessed in a variety of ways, from end of Unit tests, to projects, posters
and other evidence for which clear success criteria will be given. Pupils will be
encouraged to be in charge of their own learning through peer and self assessment, in
addition to teacher assessment.
All pupils will be expected to complete homework in a range of forms in order to
reinforce and develop learning, understanding and skills.
Health and Food Technology
The purpose of this course is to allow students to develop practical and technological
skills and make informed food, lifestyle and consumer choices which will have a positive
effect on their own health and the health of others. Practical cookery skills will be
developed through Food Technology based units with an emphasis on Nutrition,
Dietary Targets, and Product Design and Development.
Written homework will be given regularly and students will also have homework
assignments to complete.
Students will be expected to provide a suitable container for taking food home and
pay towards the cost of food.
Progressions: This leads to a National 4/5 qualification in Health and Food Technology
and offers progression to Higher Health and Food Technology.
This will take place regularly as part of learning and teaching and will allow for naturally
occurring evidence to be gathered in a portfolio for each pupil. Assessment will
include a variety of approaches to allow for personalisation and choice that challenge
pupils in relation to the depth of their knowledge, understanding and skills taught in the
Broad General Education (BGE) Curriculum.
The purpose of these assessments is to allow teachers to gauge pupils progress with the
BGE and prepare pupils for the assessment practices in the senior phase of National
S3 pupils will study a variety of topics to build up their knowledge and understanding of
some important events in World History.
This is a natural progression from S1 Scottish History and S2 British History Units.
Germany 1918 – 1939 will develop your knowledge and understanding of the lives of
Germans following the First World War as well as the reasons why the Nazis gained
power in the 1930s.
The Holocaust will develop your knowledge and understanding of the lives of those
affected by genocide as well as the reasons for discrimination and persecution.
The American West topic will develop your knowledge and understanding of the
lives of Native Americans and white settlers, as well as the reasons for conflict
between them in the 1800s.
Pupils will be asked to describe events and explain why events happened in the
past. You will also be given opportunities to work out which reasons are the most
important in explaining events in the past.
Each unit will use primary and secondary sources to develop your ability to
understand sources? Is a source useful? What does the source tell us? How does
one source compare with another? Pupils get to act as detectives, looking at a
range of evidence, which helps to reconstruct events in the past.
An investigation will give you the chance to research an event in the past and
present a balanced report. Researching and presenting are important skills which
will help you develop as a learner. The skills of researching and reporting are also
valuable skills for the world of work and for life outside school.
You will be given study guides for each unit of work. Textbooks, pictures, photos,
newspaper articles and DVDs will be used to develop your knowledge and skills in
During S3, pupils will build on the skills and knowledge they have developed in Lifeskills in
S1 and S2. As part of the Health and Wellbeing outcomes they will look at planning for
the future, relationships and lifestyle choices.
Planning for the Future – Pupils will reflect on their progress and their skills and qualities in
preparation for making subject choices. They will be encouraged to identify their
strengths and their next steps. They will explore how their learning links to different
careers to help them make informed choices. All pupils will use the World of Work
website to explore career options and prepare for the future.
Healthy Relationships and Relationships and Sexual Health – Pupils will further develop
their understanding of relationships and what makes a healthy relationship. They will be
able to identify signs of an unhealthy relationship and develop the skills to manage
challenging situations. Pupils will reflect on what love means to them and they will know
how to keep themselves healthy and safe within relationships. The Young Peoples‟
health worker will have input into the relationship unit.
Lifestyle Choices and Health - Pupils will look at risk taking behaviour and reflect on how
their lifestyle choices may impact on their wellbeing. They will develop their research
skills by carrying out an investigation into the impact of substance misuse on individuals
and the community. They will further develop their skills in assessing risk to help them
make safe choices. They will also consolidate their knowledge and understanding of
the different risks associated with the internet and how to access support.
In addition to this, pupils will explore their understanding of mental health and mental
illness. They will build on their previous knowledge to further understand the factors that
may affect mental health and the support services available.
The S3 Mathematics course is designed to prepare pupils for the transition into Senior
Phase in S4. In S3 Mathematics learners will be studying courses that aim to build upon
and extend prior knowledge, they will be actively encouraged to further develop
higher order thinking skills and decision making to enable them to problem solve and
integrate mathematical knowledge.
An emphasis will be placed on Numeracy, course work tasks and mathematical
challenges to develop skills for learning, life and work.
Regular checks on progress will be made throughout the year using self and peer
assessment as well as class and year group assessment.
Learners will be given the opportunity to develop their skills in:
Algebra and its applications
Reasoning in real life contexts
Interpretation of Data
Geometry and its application in real life contexts
Most learners will enhance their learning and extend their knowledge to cover topics
All learners should expect regular homework throughout S3 in addition to any class work
that needs to be completed.
Progression from S3 will be into the appropriate National 4 or National 5 course in either
Mathematics or Lifeskills.
Level 3/4 Experiences and Outcomes
The S3 course provides a foundation of skills and terminology that can be built upon in
S4 National 4/5.
The main purpose of the Media course is to analyse and create media content. The
course enables learners to understand and develop their media literacy skills and
appreciate the opportunities and challenges that occur within the media industry. This
course provides learners with opportunities to develop both theoretical knowledge of
the media and the ability to create media content.
During the course learners will analyse media texts, design, and plan. The knowledge
and skills that learners acquire by successfully completing the course will be valuable for
learning, life and work.
The course aims to develop:
The ability to analyse and create media content, as appropriate to purpose,
audience and context
Knowledge and understanding of the role of media within society
The ability to apply media literacy concepts and terminology
The ability to plan and research when creating media content, appropriate to
purpose, audience and context
The ability to evaluate the learner‟s own practice and that of others
In S3 pupils develop the knowledge and skills which will enable them to progress to
National 4 and National 5, as appropriate, in S4.
Modern Languages French and German
Modern languages continues to be compulsory in S3 under the „Broad General
Education‟ and learners will continue from S2 prior learning topics such as: „My identity‟,
„My style‟, and „Holidays‟. This will be covered in a variety of different activities using
the interactive whiteboard, ICT (when available) and class work to cover all learning
styles. Pupils will cover the outcomes as set out in the course. This will include group
work, presentations and individual talks.
S3 German offers an opportunity to be introduced to the language in a very flexible
way. The course is varied with opportunities to find out about many aspects of cultural
life in countries where German is spoken. At the moment we are very lucky to have the
use of a foreign language assistant who is able to offer lots of up to date information
regarding language and events in his/her home country.
The course includes an introduction to:
The structure of the language (different sounds/spelling)
Cultural events e.g. Oktoberfest, Halloween/ Karneval, Christmas
Cultural background e.g. Famous people, history/geography of the country
Moving Image in Education- watching and analysing film in the foreign language
Learning through games/puzzles/practical activities
„Word Wizard‟ spelling competition
Learners studying Level 4 in S3 will be assessed at the end of a unit and will complete
combined assessments; talking and writing, listening and talking etc.
Homework will be set to complement class work and will be a mixture of written
(supported) and learning homework.
Learners who succeed at level 4 would have the opportunity to progress to National 4
Pupils will develop their skills in 2 instruments and perform as part of class ensembles.
The pupil will be able to choose their pieces from a bank of music that includes
everything from pop/rock to classical. For assessment pupils will perform one of their
favourite pieces at the end of the year.
Pupils will develop their composition skills over the year in the form of short projects.
Each topic will have a project that involves composing instrumental music and songs in
groups or individually. Pupils will have access to the very latest composition software
used by professionals in fields such as film and TV scoring. There will also be an
opportunity to record some of their compositions using recording equipment.
Pupils will learn about many different styles of music including Pop/Rock, Jazz, Blues,
World music and Scottish. This involves listening to, and analysing music.
In S3 pupils will follow a course in a variety of activities which will form the foundation for
National 4 and National 5 courses in Physical Education in S4. You will learn:
How to improve performance in a variety of activities
The factors which could have an effect on your performance
How to reflect on your performance and how to use this to improve your skill level
To analyse and develop performance using a variety of methods e.g. Video/Apps
Develop leadership skills for sport
The assessment and homework criteria will be mainly practical based with some
emphasis on theory to provide understanding.
Pupils attending the S3 Physical Education course will gain the necessary knowledge
and understanding in preparation for the National Qualifications in S4.
There are three units in the course:
Unit 1 – Sound, Waves and Space
In this unit you will learn about sound waves, ultrasound, sound levels and basic sound
engineering, radio waves, microwaves, infrared, ultraviolet, X-rays and gamma
radiation, telescopes, line spectra, exploration of the solar system and technologies
arising from space exploration.
Unit 2 – Force, Motion and Electricity
In this unit you will learn about average speed, instantaneous speed, acceleration,
speed-time graphs, forces, Newton‟s Laws, mass, weight, potential energy, kinetic
energy, work and power.
For units 1 and 2 pupils will complete a practical investigation and an assessment.
Unit 3 – Skills Unit you will gain experience in:
Researching topical physics issues
Practical lab skills
Investigation design and write up
All units will enhance aspects of Numeracy, Literacy and Health and Wellbeing.
The S3 course is called Making Moral Decisions – Human Rights and Justice. Throughout
the year we study three topics which are:
Crime and Punishment and Capital Punishment
Racism and Equality
Children‟s‟ Rights and Exploitation
Throughout the year we will be thinking about how people make moral decisions and
we will look at a range of viewpoints about each issue studied, both religious and non
religious. Pupils will be challenged to think about how they make moral decisions and
their own views on the issues studied. This course helps pupils to develop their critical
thinking skills through analyzing a variety of viewpoints and evaluating these while
drawing their own conclusions.