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NSW Syllabuses

Rationale

Geography is the study of places and the relationships between people and their environments. It is a rich and complex discipline that integrates knowledge from natural sciences, social sciences and humanities to build a holistic understanding of the world. Students learn to question why the world is the way it is, reflect on their relationships with and responsibilities for the world and propose actions designed to shape a socially just and sustainable future.

Geography emphasises the role, function and importance of the environment in supporting human life from local to global scales. It also emphasises the important interrelationships between people and environments and the different understandings of these relationships. The wellbeing of societies and environments depends on the quality of interactions between people and the natural world.

Geographical inquiry involves students acquiring, processing and communicating geographical information. Through an inquiry approach students explain patterns, evaluate consequences and contribute to the management of places and environments in an increasingly complex world. This process enables them to apply inquiry skills including: asking distinctively geographical questions; planning an inquiry and evaluating information; processing, analysing and interpreting that information; reaching conclusions based on evidence and logical reasoning; evaluating and communicating their findings; and reflecting on their inquiry and responding, through action, to what they have learned. Engagement in fieldwork and the use of other tools including mapping and spatial technologies are fundamental to geographical inquiry.

The study of Geography enables students to become active, responsible and informed citizens able to evaluate the opinions of others and express their own ideas and arguments. This forms a basis for active participation in community life, a commitment to sustainability, the creation of a just society, and the promotion of intercultural understanding and lifelong learning. The skills and capabilities developed through geographical study can be applied to further education, work and everyday life.