mathematics student and teacherThe HSIE faculty at Kogarah High Schools offers a wide range of courses across the school curriculum. The faculty promotes student centred and independent learning through group work and individual research in a supportive and caring environment.

Faculty Aims/Objectives:

Faculty Structure:

In years 7 and 8 students remain in the same class for all subjects. In year 7 their HSIE subject is History, in year 8 these subjects are Geography and LOTE. In year 9 students remain in the same class to complete the History and Geography course. They can also elect to study Commerce or LOTE in years 9 and 10. In years 11 and 12 Kogarah High School offers Society and Culture, Economics, Legal Studies, Business Studies, LOTE, Senior Geography, Modern History, Ancient History and Work Studies.

Junior Courses (Years 7-10)


Geography Years 7 - 10 stimulates students' enjoyment of and interest in the interaction of the physical and human environments. Students achieve this as they develop geographic knowledge, understanding, skills, values and attitudes and engage in the community as informed and active citizens. A study of Geography builds on students' prior learning and experience to enable them to explain patterns, evaluate consequences and contribute to the management of physical, social, cultural and built environments.

HISTORY (YEARS 7, 9, 10)

In Year 7 (Stage 4) the students are asked to answer the question 'What is History?' and are guided through the basic terms and concepts of historical enquiry. Studies of ancient and medieval society show us how people lived in other times. The effects of colonization on Australian and American indigenous people encourage empathy and understanding of other cultures while building skills necessary for History work in Years 9 and 10. In Years 9 and 10 (Stage 5) students learn about Australia's history in relation to the world. Topics include the birth of the Anzac legend in W.W.1, the 'Great Depression', Australia's role in W.W.2, the ideology of the 'Cold War' and bring student's understanding and knowledge of Australian history right up to the present day. Students will learn a variety of learning and presentation skills. They also become confident in the process of finding, understanding and analysing various forms of information.


Commerce provides the knowledge, skills, understanding and values that form the foundation on which young people make sound decisions on consumer, financial, business, legal and employment issues.This course is offered as an elective course for students in Years 9 and 10. Students gain greater competence in problem-solving and decision-making by evaluating the range of consumer, financial, business, legal and employment strategies. Through the study of Commerce students develop financial literacy which enables them to participate in the financial system in an informed way. Topics studied include Consumer Choice, Personal Finance, Law and Society and Employment Issues.

Elective Courses (Years 11-12)


Geography Stage 6 enables students to study the spatial and ecological dimensions of biophysical and human phenomena in a changing world. Geography is an investigation of the world which provides an accurate description and interpretation of the varied character of the earth and its people. It is a key discipline through which students develop the ability to recognise and understand environmental change and the interactions which take place in our world.

Geography has many dimensions, two of which are emphasised in this syllabus:


This course is for students who want to know how and why historical events have shaped the 21st century in which we live. Exploration of the recent past gives them the answers to life in present times. The preliminary course in Year 11 features case studies that are both compelling and highly interesting! These can include topics such as the political and military adventure of Napoleon, the effects of the American Civil War on slavery and the controversy surrounding the assassination of US president 'JFK'. In Year 12 the HSC course can take students to the mud and blood of trench warfare in W.W.1, through the brutal regime of Adolf Hitler and into the hot deadly jungles of the Vietnam War. Students will gain skills such as analytical and critical thinking, organization of ideas, planning of tasks and much more!


This course will have students amazed at the achievements of ancient civilizations and the personalities that lived, worked and conquered empires. The preliminary course in Year 11 examines the fascinating world of archaeology and forensic science that enables historians to unravel the distant past. Investigations of strangled 'bodies in bogs' to mummification, the mighty pyramids and mysterious tombs of ancient Egypt help students understand the process of historical enquiry. In Year 12 the volcanic eruption of the year 79 that buried Pompeii and instantly killed 5000 people is examined in depth as the core study, also learn the true story of Leonidas, the Spartan 300 and their enemy the Persian 'King of Kings' Xerxes. The ancient History course teaches students about analysis of evidence, planning of tasks and much more!


This course is for students who wish to learn about how a modern business works. You will study marketing, finance, operations and human resources, which comprise most of the successful businesses. Also you will explore the type of tasks that different key business functions require and the many and varied strategies that are implemented. It is anticipated that knowledge gained in this course will greatly assist students to succeed when they choose to set up or own their own business in future.


Legal Studies develops students' knowledge, understanding and critical thinking skills in relation to the legal system and its effectiveness in promoting a just and fair society, with a view to empowering students to participate effectively as responsible citizens at the local, national and international level.

Students will develop the knowledge and understanding about:

Furthermore, students will develop skills in:

and informed and responsible values and attitudes in regard to:


Work Studies plays an important role in assisting students to understand the world of work by gaining knowledge, skills, values and attitudes which will facilitate school to work transition. An awareness of issues and concepts related to the world of work and the acquisition of work-related skills are valuable for all students, irrespective of their post-school aspirations. Work Studies will assist students to recognise the links between education, training, work and lifestyle, and the economic and social factors that affect work opportunities. It will develop students' skills in accessing work-related information, presenting themselves to potential employers, and functioning effectively in the workplace. Work Studies can equip students to make more informed decisions about their future study and employment pathways. The strongly practical orientation of the course is intended to give students useful experiences against which to test their emerging career and/or study preferences.


The aim of Society and Culture is to develop a student's knowledge, understanding, skills, values and attitudes essential to achieving social and cultural literacy by examining the interactions between persons, societies, cultures and environments across time. This course is offered as an elective course for students in Years 11 and 12 The study of Society and Culture provides students with knowledge, understanding and skills that form a valuable foundation for a range of courses at university and other tertiary institutions. In addition, the study of Society and Culture assists students to prepare for employment and full and active participation as citizens. In particular, there are opportunities for students to gain recognition in vocational education and training. Topics studied can include Social and Cultural Literacy, Intercultural Communication, Belief Systems and Popular Culture.


Economic decisions have a crucial influence on the quality of life experienced by people throughout the world. The study of economics can help individuals, groups and societies make choices that assist them to improve their quality of life. This course is offered as an elective course for students in Years 11 and 12 Discussion of economic issues dominates the media and politics. By understanding economics, students can make informed judgements about issues and policies and participate responsibly in decision-making. Students will benefit from the study of economics if they engage in studies that include business, accounting and finance, media, law, marketing, employment relations, tourism, history, geography or environmental studies. Topics studied include Consumers and Business, Markets, Australia's Place in the Global Economy and Economic Policies and Management.

Student Requirements:

Homework and Assessment:

Students are regularly set homework after lessons. It is imperative that students complete all homework as these subjects emphasise on building skills and knowledge necessary to progress in each subject area. Presentation of bookwork is also important due to the fact that HSIE stresses the development of skills. Such skills include drawing timelines, graphs, and tables which must be accurately produced. Assessment is ongoing such that students are able to demonstrate their understanding of topics over a number of tests, assignments and major examinations.

Extracurricular Activities:

Curriculum Links: