Social Subjects

Broad General Education

In Social Studies, S1 pupils are challenged to locate, explore and link features and places locally and further afield as well as linking periods, people and events in time and place. They also develop their understanding of values, beliefs and cultures around the world. The content covered includes volcanoes and earthquakes, Scottish landscapes, key events in Scottish history, child poverty and children’s rights in Scotland and across the World.

In S2 Geography pupils study rainforest environments and the issues involved in the exploitation of tropical rainforests. They also investigate the reasons for different levels of development across the world. In Modern Studies, pupils learn how our government works and its impact on our lives. They also look at other types of governments around the world and the impact they have. In History, pupils learn lessons from the Holocaust and the Cold War.

S3 pupils develop their understanding of global issues affecting the world today as well as the impact of key historical events. The content covered includes the USA, alliances, terrorism, crime, global climate change and the impact of tropical storms. Studying the causes of the American, Russian and French Revolutions and the English Civil War provides pupils with an insight into the influences that persuade people to rebel against their government.

In addition, all pupils in S1-3 are challenged to develop their research skill both independently and as part of a group. Pupils are also encouraged to become involved in class discussions about real issues that are affecting the world today and to form an opinion on them.



Geography N4/5: Learners are expected to develop their geographical skills through active learning activities like fieldwork and mapping and GIS exercises. The course content is made up of 3 units. In the Physical Environments unit students will cover the formation of limestone and river landscapes, land use management issues and weather systems. The Human Environments unit covers world population and distribution, contrasts in development and changes in rural and urban landscapes. In the Global Issues unit, learners study the issues involved in global climate change and environmental hazards. Pupils will also undertake an Added Value unit or Assignment.

Higher Geography: Students continue to develop their geographical skills, in particular mapping skills, research skills including field work skills and add a range of presentation skills. The first of the 3 units is Physical Environments and involves studying the earth’s atmospheric, ocean and fresh water circulatory systems, soils and the formation of glaciated and coastal features. The Human Environments unit covers the causes and impacts of changing population structure and land degradation as well as the management of urban change in developed and developing cities.  The Global Issues unit adds depth to the study of Global Climate change and Development issues and introduces the causes, impact and management of a water-related disease. . Pupils will also undertake an Assignment.

Advanced Higher Geography: This course is skills based with students engaging in a wide range of Physical and Human fieldwork. Data collected through fieldwork will complement their map work, processing and presentation skills resulting in the production of a fieldwork report. The students will also learn how to critically evaluate sources and opinions on key Geographical Issues.

History N4/5: Learners are expected to develop their historical skills through source work, research, and active learning. The course content is made up of three units. In the British unit, students cover Changing Britain, 1760-1900. Here pupils look at the development of the Industrial Revolution, its impact on health and housing, and finally the growth of democracy in Britain. The Scottish unit is The Era of the Great War, 1910-1928, where pupils look at WWI from the Scottish perspective. This includes fighting on the front, the rise and decline of industry, the role of women, and finally the impact the war had on politics. The European and World unit is on World War Two, 1939-45. Pupils will learn about the European invasion of the Nazis and the war in the Pacific. Pupils will also under take a historical studies added value unit and assignment.

Higher: Pupils continue to expand their historical skills and analytical writing, particularly with analysing factors, source work, and historical research. The first unit of study is European and World in which we focus at the development of the Crusades. Pupils will learn why the Crusades were called, the reasons for victories and defeats and lastly, the decline of the Crusading Ideal. Medieval Britain is the second unit, looking at the development of the feudal system and the consolidation of power by Henry II of England, David I of Scotland, and King John. We also study how the church plays a vital role in everyday life and politics within medieval society. The Scottish unit covers the Scottish Reformation which is the growth of Protestantism in Scotland through the reign of Mary, Queen of Scots and her son, James VI. Pupils also undertake a historical studies assignment.

Advanced Higher History: This course is an intensive look at the American Civil War. The course focuses on the politics and culture leading up to the war, the military tactics and battles, and the political and social issues during the war.  Besides having course content and lectures, pupils will refine their research skills and are required to write a dissertation on an aspect of the Civil War. Pupils are to have a firm grasp on historical sources and historiography and are expected to be discipline terms of their own self-study and research.

N4/5 Modern Studies: In National 4/5 Modern pupils study a range of relevant topics. Topic one is democracy in Scotland which examines Scottish politics. Following this, S4/S5 pupils will then study the causes and impact of crime in the UK. Finally, pupils will then examine the USA and their influence on the rest of the world. Pupils will gain a range of different skills and will have the opportunity to present their work in different formats. Pupils will complete course work as well as an assignment.

Higher Modern Studies: In Higher Modern Studies pupils also study three topics. Firstly, senior students will study the USA. However, the Higher course goes into far more detail. Following this, pupils will then study the causes and impact of inequalities in the UK. The final part of the Higher course will study Democracy in the UK and the workings of the UK Parliament and Government. This course provides pupils with a range of essential transferable skills that are important in later life. Course work will focus on essay and source skills. Pupils also complete an assignment.

Advanced Higher Modern Studies: In Advanced Higher Modern Studies pupils will study crime and the law in the UK and the Penal system. This course examines the causes and impact of crime in the UK. In addition, senior S6 students will also learn about prisons in the UK and whether they meet their aims. Course work continues to build on essay and source skills as well as completing a personal dissertation.