Yanco Agricultural High School

A quality secondary education in an historic rural setting

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HSIE – Human Society and its Environment

The study of HSIE encompasses the subjects History and Geography. Both of these subjects are compulsory for students in Years 7-10 in New South Wales. The study of both of these subjects enables students to have an understanding of not only the world in which they live, but also helps to build an understanding of today’s society and the events and issues which have shaped this.



Geography is the study of places and the relationships between people and their environments. The study of this integrates knowledge from natural sciences, social sciences and humanities to build an understanding of the world. Through the study of Geography, students are encouraged 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.

The study of Geography enables students to become informed, responsible and active 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.

Geography is a compulsory subject in New South Wales for Years 7-10.



The study of history stimulates curiosity, develops problem solving skills and involves research and critical thinking skills. Far from just a study of facts and dates, history provides the skills for students to question, “How do we know?”

The study of History involves students undergoing a process of inquiry into the people, forces and events which have helped to shape the world we live in today. History provides opportunities for students to explore human interactions and achievements in a range of historical contexts from Ancient societies to modern Australia. Students are given the opportunity to analyse and evaluate a range of primary and secondary sources to further inform their understanding of the past.

The study of history provides insights into and appreciation of the experiences of different cultural groups within society and how various groups have struggled for civil rights, for example Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, migrants and women. The study of history encourages students to develop an understanding of cause and effect, change and continuity, significance, empathy and contestability.

At Yanco Agricultural High School students study history from Years 7 to 10. In the senior school Modern History is offered, as well as Ancient History and Extension History (Year 12 only).

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