Science / Year 10 / Science as a Human Endeavour / Nature and development of science

View on Australian Curriculum website Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority
Curriculum content descriptions

Scientific understanding, including models and theories, is contestable and is refined over time through a process of review by the scientific community (ACSHE191)

Elaborations
  • considering the role of different sources of evidence including biochemical, anatomical and fossil evidence for evolution by natural selection
  • investigating the development of the Watson and Crick double helix model for the structure of DNA
  • investigating the history and impact of developments in genetic knowledge
  • investigating the development of the periodic table and how this was dependent on experimental evidence at the time
  • considering the role of science in identifying and explaining the causes of climate change
  • recognising that Australian scientists such as Brian Schmidt and Penny Sackett are involved in the exploration and study of the universe
General capabilities
  • Ethical understanding Ethical understanding
ScOT terms

Evaluation,  Theories,  Dissent,  Peer review

Interactive

Tectonics investigator

Investigate the internal structure of the Earth using earthquake measurements. Examine the Earth’s outer layer. Fit the Earth's tectonic plates together like a jigsaw puzzle. Identify how plate movements produce many features of the Earth’s surface. Predict the formation of new volcanic islands. This learning object is ...

Interactive

Exploring atoms: atom structure

See how scientists such as Ernest Rutherford have investigated the structure of atoms. Explore possible models. Fire charged particles at atoms and find which model best fits the results. This learning object is one in a series of six objects. Three of the objects are also packaged as a combined learning object.

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Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin was a nineteenth century scientist and writer whose influence on the nature and development of science is undisputed. See how he has influenced three notable Australian scientists in this short video from ABC Catalyst.

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Can photons and atoms generate laser?

Electrons around atoms can absorb and emit photons of particular colours of light – see three different atomic models explain what's going on.

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'Junk DNA' not junk after all

Geneticists have long thought that 98 per cent of human DNA was 'junk' (or 'non-coding') DNA. However, recent scientific research suggests that there is much more to this DNA than first thought. Watch this clip to discover more.

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Declining forests of Giant Kelp

Imagine diving between giant kelp that reach more than 30 metres from the bottom of the ocean to the surface. The east coast of Tasmania is one of the few places in the world where these underwater forests exist. But how much longer will they survive? Watch this clip to find out why these magnificent ecosystems are disappearing ...

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Polar explorer observes Arctic melt, 2009

An Australian polar explorer describes his experience and observations of the Arctic following a three-month expedition around Greenland. Onboard Greenpeace's MV 'Arctic Sunrise' in 2009, Eric Philips saw at firsthand the conditions of the ice in the Arctic. Listen as Eric describes the changes he has seen after many yearly ...

Interactive

Kamay – looking up

This resource explores the navigation techniques used during the journey of the Endeavour and contrasts these with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander navigational and astronomical systems that have been in place for many thousands of years. This learning sequence contains activities suitable for Year 7 - Year 10 science ...

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Tsunami prevention in the Pacific

By investigating sediments and debris left by devastating tsunamis throughout history, Japanese scientists are making discoveries that change the way we understand disaster prevention in the Pacific. Watch as research teams examine rocks and mud layers; create digital simulations of past tsunamis; and investigate the seabed ...

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Accelerating glaciers in Antarctica

Discover a white world in which glaciers are racing toward the sea at seven times their normal speed. This is what is happening in Antarctica now and the consequences will eventually be felt at your nearest beach. Travel with scientist Dr Paul Williams to see some stunning images of what is occurring around the fringes ...

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Thinning ice sheet

Discover that that the massive ice sheet in East Antarctica has been losing mass since 2006 instead of growing, as was previously thought. Watch animations to see how scientists from NASA and Australia are using satellite technology and aerial monitoring to investigate the thickness of East Antarctica's ice sheet. Find ...

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Building models of organic molecules

Have you seen the model of long-chain carbon molecules first developed by Friedrich August Kekulé? This model enabled chemists to make a great leap forward in their understanding of the structure of organic molecules. See how to represent the structure of methane, ethane, propane, butane and octane. Find out how to rearrange ...

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Fossils and the evolution of life

Have you ever wondered how scientists know when the early mammals appeared on Earth, or how long ago dinosaurs died out? Watch this clip to discover the role of fossils, and the rocks they are found in, in revealing the order and history of life on Earth. This clip takes you to fossil sites in Queensland; and to Shark Bay ...

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Genetics, inheritance and epilepsy

Explore genetics, the patterns of inheritance and disease-causing mutations. Find out about Gregor Mendel's historic pea-plant breeding experiments showing that traits are inherited in particular patterns. See how Australian scientists discovered the gene mutation responsible for a type of epilepsy.

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Large Hadron Collider discovery, 2012

Have you heard of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC)? Watch this clip to find out about a scientific discovery at the LHC that left physicists uncharacteristically emotional. Catalyst's Dr Derek Muller takes you inside the LHC and talks to scientists there about the discovery of the Higgs boson and what it means for our understanding ...

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Oil from super-greenhouse events

Why did most of the world's oil deposits form at a specific prehistoric time? Learn how overheated super-greenhouse climates caused vast stretches of the world's oceans to stagnate and become depleted of oxygen. Discover the connection between these anoxic events and Earth's oil reserves. Watch scientists investigating ...

Video

When neutron stars collide

Using technologically advanced supercomputers, scientists have developed theories about the creation of black holes deep in outer space. Watch the computer simulation in this clip to see how the collision of two neutron stars produces a gamma ray burst and a new black hole. Discover that our continuing understanding of ...

Video

Arctic sea ice

Can you imagine the Arctic without any ice? In this clip you will voyage into the Arctic and witness the shrinking of the vast sea ice. Scientists use animation to show how the ice has reduced over time, and predict how long before it completely disappears during summer months. Discover some possible implications of this ...

Video

Arctic ice melting

What do you think might be causing the big sea ice melt in the Arctic? Is it a natural phenomenon or is something else occurring? Watch this short clip to find out what scientists think is happening to the ice in the Arctic.

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Clouds, thunderstorms and climate change

Fly into a massive thunderstorm with pilots and scientists as they study how global warming could affect storms. Learn how changes in ice clouds due to climate change could provide clues to future weather patterns. See scientists capture data on the beginning of an unusual cyclone. This excerpt is from a documentary on ...