The physical sciences endeavour to explain natural phenomena and properties of matter that occur in the physical world: physics uses models and theories based on physical laws to visualise, explain and predict physical phenomena; and chemistry uses an understanding of chemical structures, interactions and energy changes to explain chemical properties and behaviours.
Knowledge and understanding of science, scientific literacy and scientific methods are necessary for learners to develop the skills to resolve questions about their natural and constructed world.
The purpose of science education is to develop scientific literacy, fostering learners:
The physical sciences endeavour to explain natural phenomena and properties of matter that occur in the physical world:
Physical Sciences - Foundation Level 2 aims to equip students with skills and knowledge in physical sciences. These can be applied to explain observations of the properties and behaviour of matter and natural phenomena that occur in the real world. In studying this course, learners will also develop skills in scientific thinking and understanding of scientific terminology.
Learners will be exposed to a range of scientific approaches for inquiring into the physical and chemical nature of their world. Content will have a strong practical basis and, where possible, links with the learners’ experiences and lives. A variety of approaches can be used to achieve this purpose.
On successful completion of this course, learners will be able to:
This course has a complexity level of 2.
At Level 2, the learner is expected to carry out tasks and activities that involve a range of knowledge and skills, including some basic theoretical and/or technical knowledge and skills. Limited judgment is required, such as making an appropriate selection from a range of given rules, guidelines or procedures. VET competencies at this level are often those characteristic of an AQF Certificate II.
This course has a size value of 15.
build on students’ learning in F-10 Australian Curriculum: Science.
In the practice of science, the three strands are closely integrated: the work of scientists reflects the nature and development of science; it is built around scientific inquiry; and it seeks to respond to and influence society.
Science Inquiry Skills and Science as a Human Endeavour strands (respectively):
These three strands will be integrated into four (4) interwoven threads of Science Understanding based on the themes of chemical and physical behaviours in the world:
All course content is compulsory.
While each area described in the content is compulsory, the order of delivery is not prescribed. The course may be delivered in a number of ways, for example:
APPLY SKILLS TO ORGANISE AND COMPLETE ACTIVITES (CRITERION 1)
Criterion 1 is to be assessed throughout the course using a range of assessment tasks.
COLLECT, PROCESS AND COMMUNICATE SCIENCE INFORMATION (CRITERION 3)
Criterion 3 is assessed within all threads of the Science Understanding strand requiring learners to complete activities and communicate using the appropriate and agreed conventions, including:
UNDERTAKE, INTERPRET AND REVIEW PHYSICAL SCIENCES EXPERIMENTS (CRITERION 2)
DESCRIBE THE APPLICATION AND IMPACT OF PHYSICAL SCIENCES ON SOCIETY (CRITERION 4)
Learners will engage with the following concepts, placing the physical sciences firmly as a human endeavour:
DESCRIBE AND UTILISE CONCEPTS OF CHEMICAL STRUCTURE AND PROPERTIES (CRITERION 5)
Chemical structures and properties can be directly related to how atoms interact with each other. Learners will study:
DESCRIBE AND UTILISE CONCEPTS OF PHYSICS (CRITERION 6)
There are clear principles that underpin the physical behaviours of matter. Learners will study:
DESCRIBE AND INTERPRET CHEMICAL BEHAVIOUR AND DATA RELATED TO CHEMISTRY (CRITERION 7)
Chemical behaviour can be represented, explored and generalised using chemical formulae and equations. Measurable data can be used to explore and ascertain chemical data and behaviour. Learners will study:
DESCRIBE AND INTERPRET DATA RELATED TO PHYSICS (CRITERION 8)
Physics can be explained, explored and modelled using measurable and observable data. Learners will study:
PHYSICAL SCIENCES IN SOCIETY INVESTIGATION
Learners will undertake an investigation related to the impact of physical sciences on society (criterion 4). This investigation requires at least 10 hours of course design time and may include a practical component
The investigation will take the form of a written report or presentation. Learners will negotiate a topic for investigation. The topic will be drawn from a current or historical issue related to the application of physical sciences in society. Examples are noted below:
The focus of the investigation and report (or presentation) will be to:
If a practical component is included as part of the investigation then it must:
The relevance and outcomes of the practical work should be clearly documented.
Example themes for topics include, but are not limited to:
On at least three occasions learners will document an experiment to address all elements in criterion 2 in a form that will include:
Criterion-based assessment is a form of outcomes assessment that identifies the extent of learner achievement at an appropriate end-point of study. Although assessment – as part of the learning program – is continuous, much of it is formative, and is done to help learners identify what they need to do to attain the maximum benefit from their study of the course. Therefore, assessment for summative reporting to TASC will focus on what both teacher and learner understand to reflect end-point achievement.
The standard of achievement each learner attains on each criterion is recorded as a rating ‘A’, ‘B’, or ‘C’, according to the outcomes specified in the standards section of the course.
A ‘t’ notation must be used where a learner demonstrates any achievement against a criterion less than the standard specified for the ‘C’ rating.
A ‘z’ notation is to be used where a learner provides no evidence of achievement at all.
Providers offering this course must participate in quality assurance processes specified by TASC to ensure provider validity and comparability of standards across all awards. Further information on quality assurance processes, as well as on assessment, is on the TASC website: http://www.tasc.tas.gov.au
Internal assessment of all criteria will be made by the provider. Providers will report the learner’s rating for each criterion to TASC.
The following processes will be facilitated by TASC to ensure there is:
TASC will verify that the provider’s course-delivery and assessment standards meet the course requirements and community expectations for fairness, integrity and validity of qualifications TASC issues. This will involve checking:
This process may also include interviews with past and present students. It will be scheduled by TASC using a risk-based approach.
The assessment for Physical Sciences - Foundation Level 2, will be based on the degree to which the learner can:
|Rating A||Rating B||Rating C|
|selects and uses techniques and equipment to safely, competently and methodically complete practical tasks||selects from familiar techniques and equipment to safely and competently complete practical tasks||safely uses routine techniques and equipment to complete practical tasks|
|explains the purpose and actions intended by instructions in order to complete tasks||describes the purpose and actions intended by instructions in order to complete tasks||identifies the purpose and actions intended by instructions in order to complete tasks|
|monitors and assesses progress towards meeting goals and timelines, and plans future actions||monitors progress towards meeting goals and timelines, and plans future actions||monitors progress towards meeting goals and timelines|
|describes own contribution to the successful completion of group activities.||identifies own contributions to the successful completion of group activities.||identifies own contributions to the successful completion of group activities.|
|Rating A||Rating B||Rating C|
|discusses the purpose of experiments||describes the purpose of experiments||identifies the purpose of experiments|
|collects and records data accurately and systematically||collects and records data accurately||collects and records data accurately in given formats|
|applies suggested representation of data and explains trends and relationships||applies suggested representation of data and describes trends and relationships||applies suggested representation of data and identifies trends and relationships|
|draws valid and reasoned conclusions, based on evidence and the correct physical sciences concepts and comments||draws conclusions based on evidence and appropriate physical sciences concepts||draws conclusions based on evidence|
|comments on the validity of conclusions, identifies sources of uncertainty and describes ways to improve the quality of evidence.||identifies sources of uncertainty and describes ways to improve the quality of evidence.||makes limited suggestions for improvement to experiments.|
|Rating A||Rating B||Rating C|
|collects and discusses the reliability of data and information using a variety of relevant resources||collects data and information using a variety of relevant resources||collects data and information using a limited range of relevant resources|
|selects and uses accurate scientific terminology correctly to clearly communicate key concepts and ideas from physics and chemistry||uses key scientific terminology to communicate key concepts and ideas from physics and chemistry||uses given scientific terminology to clearly communicate key concepts and ideas of physics and chemistry|
|selects and uses appropriate scientific formats and units for communication of information||from a range, selects and uses appropriate scientific formats and units for communication of information||uses appropriate scientific formats and units for communication of information, as directed|
|accurately records sources of information.||records sources of information.||records sources of information as directed.|
|Rating A||Rating B||Rating C|
|discusses how physical sciences meets needs in society||describes ways in which physical sciences meets needs in society||identifies ways in which physical sciences meets needs in society|
|explains issues related to applications of physical sciences in society||describes issues related to applications of physical sciences in society||identifies issues related to applications of physical sciences in society|
|describes in detail components of issues, and presents balanced discussions||identifies key components of issues, and presents balanced discussions||identifies components of issues, and lists points in favour, and against|
|argues reasoned conclusions, articulating links to relevant evidence.||presents reasoned conclusions, using relevant evidence.||uses limited evidence to support conclusions.|
|Rating A||Rating B||Rating C|
|describes trends in properties of elements within groups and periods of the periodic table||describes properties of elements within periods and groups of the periodic table||correctly identifies properties of elements using the periodic table|
|describes relationships between properties within classes of chemical compounds||describes properties of classes of chemical compounds||identifies properties of compounds|
|utilises classes of reactions to identify reactants or predict products||utilise classes of reactions to predict products from given reactants||identifies products of reactions given familiar reactants|
|selects appropriate common chemicals when utilising concepts of chemical structure and properties to predict bonding, formula and reactions.||utilises concepts of chemical structure and properties of common chemicals to predict bonding, formula and reactions.||utilises concepts of chemical structures and properties of given chemicals to predict bonding, formula and simple reactions.|
|Rating A||Rating B||Rating C|
|explains physics concepts* related to observations and theories||describes physics concepts* related to physical observations and theories||recognises and identifies physics concepts* related to physical observations and theories|
|correctly identifies, utilises and appropriately converts units of measure when solving problems||correctly identifies and utilises appropriate units of measure when solving problems||identifies appropriate units of measure when solving problems|
|explains and utilises appropriate physics concepts when solving problems||describes and utilises appropriate physics concepts when solving problems||identifies appropriate basic physics concepts* and utilises them when solving problems|
|explains relationships and ideas that connect physics in a system and utilises them to solve problems.||describes simple relationships and ideas that connect physics in a system and utilises them to solve problems.||identifies simple relationships and ideas that connect physics in a system to explore problems.|
*for physics concepts continued in Physical Sciences Foundation see: Science Understanding Section, Describe and Utilise Physics Concepts
|Rating A||Rating B||Rating C|
|accurately interprets complex chemical data and information||accurately interprets chemical data and information||utilises chemical data and information, as directed|
|generalises chemical reactions to generate and describe classes of reactions||describes chemical reactions identifying reactants and products||identifies key reactants and products within given chemical reactions|
|utilises, explains and interprets constant proportions within ions, compounds and reactions||utilises, describes and interprets constant proportions within compounds and reactions||uses constant proportions within compounds and reactions|
|interprets mathematical data and information to select and utilise appropriate mathematical techniques when solving problems||interprets mathematical information and data and utilises simple mathematical techniques when solving problems||uses mathematical information and data to solve simple problems|
|correctly transposes mathematical equations to calculate answers.||correctly selects appropriate transpositions of mathematical equations to calculate answers.||substitutes correctly into given mathematical equations to calculate answers.|
|Rating A||Rating B||Rating C|
|interprets mathematical information and data to select and apply appropriate mathematical techniques when solving problems||interprets mathematical information and data to apply basic mathematical techniques when solving problems||uses mathematical information and data to solve simple problems|
|correctly transposes linear mathematical equations, or selects appropriate transpositions from non-linear equations, to calculate answers||correctly selects appropriate transpositions of mathematical equations to calculate answers||substitutes correctly into given mathematical equations to calculate answers|
|accurately reads and interprets complex data from a graph/table||accurately reads and interprets data from a graph/table to describe physical behaviour||accurately reads data from a graph/table to illustrate physical behaviour|
|constructs appropriate graphs or tables from data||selects from a range of given formats and constructs graphs and tables from data||constructs graphs and tables from data, as directed|
|accurately interprets diagrams and symbols, and uses them to correctly explain physical behaviour when solving problems.||accurately and appropriately interprets diagrams and symbols to describe physical behaviour when solving problems.||accurately uses diagrams and symbols to explore physical behaviour when solving problems.|
Physical Sciences - Foundation Level 2 (with the award of):EXCEPTIONAL ACHIEVEMENT
The final award will be determined by the Office of Tasmanian Assessment, Standards and Certification from 8 ratings from the internal assessment.
The minimum requirements for an award in Physical Sciences - Foundation Level 2 are as follows:
EXCEPTIONAL ACHIEVEMENT (EA)
7 ‘A’ ratings, 1 ‘B’ rating
HIGH ACHIEVEMENT (HA)
3 ‘A’ ratings, 4 ‘B’ ratings, 1 ‘C’ rating
COMMENDABLE ACHIEVEMENT (CA)
4 ‘B’ ratings, 3 ‘C’ ratings
SATISFACTORY ACHIEVEMENT (SA)
6 'C' ratings
PRELIMINARY ACHIEVEMENT (PA)
4 ‘C’ ratings
A learner who otherwise achieves the ratings for a CA (Commendable Achievement) or SA (Satisfactory Achievement) award but who fails to show any evidence of achievement in one or more criteria (‘z’ notation) will be issued with a PA (Preliminary Achievement) award.
The Department of Education’s Curriculum Services will develop and regularly revise the curriculum. This evaluation will be informed by the experience of the course’s implementation, delivery and assessment. In addition, stakeholders may request Curriculum Services to review a particular aspect of an accredited course.
Requests for amendments to an accredited course will be forward by Curriculum Services to the Office of TASC for formal consideration.
Such requests for amendment will be considered in terms of the likely improvements to the outcomes for learners, possible consequences for delivery and assessment of the course, and alignment with Australian Curriculum materials.
A course is formally analysed prior to the expiry of its accreditation as part of the process to develop specifications to guide the development of any replacement course.
The statements in this section, taken from documents endorsed by Education Ministers as the agreed and common base for course development, are to be used to define expectations for the meaning (nature, scope and level of demand) of relevant aspects of the sections in this document setting out course requirements, learning outcomes, the course content and standards in the assessment.
Unit 2 – Aqueous solutions and acidity
Unit 1 – Heating processes
The accreditation period for this course has been renewed from 1 January 2022 until 31 December 2025.
During the accreditation period required amendments can be considered via established processes.
Should outcomes of the Years 9-12 Review process find this course unsuitable for inclusion in the Tasmanian senior secondary curriculum, its accreditation may be cancelled. Any such cancellation would not occur during an academic year.
Version 1 – Accredited on 30 July 2017 for use from 1 January 2018. This course replaces Physical Sciences (SPW215114) that expired on 31 December 2017.
Version 1.i - Accreditation renewed on 22 November 2018 for the period 1 January 2019 until 31 December 2021. Amendment on 14 December 2018 to move Investigation and Practical work to 'Work Requirements' section of course document.
Version 1.ii - Renewal of Accreditation on 14 July 2021 for the period 31 December 2021 until 31 December 2023, without amendments.
|Analyse||To examine, scrutinise, explore, review, consider in detail for the purpose of finding meaning or relationships, and identifying patterns, similarities and differences.
|Anomalous data||Data that does not fit a pattern; outlier.
|Communicates||Conveys knowledge and/or understandings to others.
|Complex||Consisting of multiple interconnected parts or factors.
|Critically analyse||Examine the component parts of an issue or information, for example, identifying the premise of an argument and its plausibility, illogical reasoning or faulty conclusions.
|Critically evaluate||Evaluation of an issue or information that includes considering important factors and available evidence in making critical judgement that can be justified.|
|Data||The plural of datum; the measurement of an attribute, for example, the volume of gas or the type of rubber. This does not necessarily mean a single measurement: it may be the result of averaging several repeated measurements. Data may be quantitative or qualitative and be from primary or secondary sources.
|Demonstrate||Give a practical exhibition as an explanation.
|Describe||Give an account of characteristics or features.
|Evaluate||Provide a detailed examination and substantiated judgement concerning the merit, significance or value of something.|
|Evidence||In science, evidence is data that is considered reliable and valid and which can be used to support a particular idea, conclusion or decision. Evidence gives weight or value to data by considering its credibility, acceptance, bias, status, appropriateness and reasonableness.
|Explain||Provide additional information that demonstrates understanding of reasoning and/or application.
|Familiar||Previously encountered in prior learning activities.
|Genre||The categories into which texts are grouped; genre distinguishes texts on the basis of their subject matter, form and structure (for example, scientific reports, field guides, explanations, procedures, biographies, media articles, persuasive texts, narratives).
|Identify||Establish or indicate who or what someone or something is.
|Investigation||A scientific process of answering a question, exploring an idea or solving a problem that requires activities such as planning a course of action, collecting data, interpreting data, reaching a conclusion and communicating these activities. Investigations can include observation, research, field work, laboratory experimentation and manipulation of simulations.
|Law||A statement describing invariable relationships between phenomena in specified conditions, frequently expressed mathematically.
|Mode||The various processes of communication – listening, speaking, reading/viewing and writing/creating.
|Model||A representation that describes, simplifies, clarifies or provides an explanation of the workings, structure or relationships within an object, system or idea.
|Primary data||Data collected directly by a person or group.
|Random error||Uncontrollable effects of the measurement equipment, procedure and environment on a measurement result; the magnitude of random error for a measurement result can be estimated by finding the spread of values around the average of independent, repeated measurements of the quantity.
|Reasoned||Reasoned argument/conclusion: one that is sound, well-grounded, considered and thought out.
|Reliability||The degree to which an assessment instrument or protocol consistently and repeatedly measures an attribute achieving similar results for the same population.
|Reliable data||Data that has been judged to have a high level of reliability; reliability is the degree to which an assessment instrument or protocol consistently and repeatedly measures an attribute achieving similar results for the same population.
|Representation||A verbal, visual, physical or mathematical demonstration of understanding of a science concept or concepts. A concept can be represented in a range of ways and using multiple modes.
|Research||To locate, gather, record, attribute and analyse information in order to develop understanding.
|Research ethics||Norms of conduct that determine ethical research behaviour; research ethics are governed by principles such as honesty, objectivity, integrity, openness and respect for intellectual property and include consideration of animal ethics.
|Risk assessment||Evaluations performed to identify, assess and control hazards in a systematic way that is consistent, relevant and applicable to all school activities. Requirements for risk assessments related to particular activities will be determined by jurisdictions, schools or teachers as appropriate.
|Secondary data||Data collected by a person or group other than the person or group using the data.
|Significant figures||The use of place value to represent a measurement result accurately and precisely.
|Solve||Work out a correct solution to a problem.
|System||A group of interacting objects, materials or processes that form an integrated whole. Systems can be open or closed.
|Systematic error||The contribution to the uncertainty in a measurement result that is identifiable and quantifiable, for example, imperfect calibration of measurement instruments.
|Theory||A set of concepts, claims and/or laws that can be used to explain and predict a wide range of related observed or observable phenomena. Theories are typically founded on clearly identified assumptions, are testable, produce reproducible results and have explanatory power.
|Unfamiliar||Not previously encountered in prior learning activities.
|Validity||The extent to which tests measure what was intended; the extent to which data, inferences and actions produced from tests and other processes are accurate.
Line of Sight - Physical Science Foundation
|Criteria||Criteria and Elements
||Content / Work Requirements|
|undertake and complete scientifics activities and tasks individually and as a group including practical tasks||1. apply skills to organise and complete activities||all||all content|
|use practical skills and techniques safely utilising equipment relating to the physical sciences||2. undertake, interpret and review physical sciences experiments||elements 2 and 3 of C2 standards||Content: Science Inquiry Skills, Work requirements: Practical Work|
|inquire into physical systems by collecting data and finding trends and patterns to draw valid conclusions||2. undertake, interpret and review physical sciences experiments||elements 1, 3, 4, 5, 6 of C2 standards||Content: Science Inquiry Skills, Work requirements: Practical Work|
|collect, process, organise and communicate physical sciences data and information following accepted conventions||3. collect, process and communicate science information||all||all|
|describe the application and impact of physical sciences on society||4. describe the application and impact of physical sciences on society||all||Content : Science as a Human Endeavour, Work requirements: Physical sciences in society investigation|
|describe and utilise appropriate chemistry concepts to explain chemical structure and properties||5. describe and utilise concepts of chemical structure and properties||all||Content: Describe and utilise concepts of chemical structure and properties|
|describe and utilise appropriate principles of physics to explain and solve problems associated with physical behaviours and systems||6. describe and utilise physics concepts||all||Content: Describe and utilise concepts of physics|
|use chemical and mathematical formulae and equations to describe and interpret chemical data and behaviour||7. describe and interpret chemical behaviour and data related to chemistry||all||Content: Describe and interpret chemical behaviour and data related to chemistry|
|utilise mathematics, diagrams and symbols to analyse and interpret physical data||8. describe and interpret data related to physics||all||Content: Describe and interpret data related to physics|