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Science / Year 9 / Science as a Human Endeavour / Use and influence of science

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

Values and needs of contemporary society can influence the focus of scientific research (ACSHE228)

Elaborations
  • considering how technologies have been developed to meet the increasing needs for mobile communication
  • investigating how scientific and technological advances have been applied to minimising pollution from industry
  • considering how choices related to the use of fuels are influenced by environmental considerations
  • investigating the work of Australian scientists such as Fiona Wood and Marie Stoner on artificial skin
  • considering safe sound levels for humans and implications in the workplace and leisure activities
  • investigating contemporary science issues related to living in a Pacific country located near plate boundaries, for example Japan, Indonesia, New Zealand
General capabilities
  • Ethical understanding Ethical understanding
ScOT terms

Values (Psychology)

Video

Air cargo scanner

Did you know that air cargo is not subjected to the same kind of scrutiny that we face? In order to redress this security problem, CSIRO scientists have developed an air cargo scanner that is capable of detecting different materials in cargo. What are some of the benefits of a scanner that can detect not just shapes and ...

Video

Could cyborgs really exist?

A cyborg is a human or animal body incorporating robotic or computer technology. Could cyborgs ever exist outside film or television? Watch this clip to discover how cyborgs, or cybernetic organisms, are already being used to treat medical conditions like colour blindness. What future applications might there be for cybernetics ...

Video

Make no bones about ocean acidification

Extra carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is posing a real problem for the world's oceans. It's leading to ocean acidification and coral reefs are the big losers. See how acidification of the water leads to less calcium carbonate, a vital ingredient corals use to build their skeleton. Watch this clip to find out more.

Video

Japanese tsunami's nuclear threat, 2011

Remember the earthquake and following tsunami that hit Japan in March 2011 and damaged a nuclear power plant? Find out about the damage caused, what exploded and why, and the aftermath of the disaster. What debates about nuclear power plants were reignited by the events in Japan?

Video

Taking elite training to new heights

What is altitude training and does it really benefit elite athletes? This clip explains how the body responds to changes in oxygen availability at high altitude, and how athletes use this knowledge to adapt their training. Find out about a study to determine the best altitude-training program and the impact of winter sports ...

Video

Cancer - when the baddies take over

Cancer is a major disease in Australia and there are many different types, including leukaemia, and breast and skin cancers. View this clip to discover more about how cancer forms, why it occurs, and what cancer research is being done.

Video

Native plant seed bank

Did you know there is a special bank in which Australian native plant seeds are deposited? In this clip, Gardening Australia presenter, Angus Stewart visits the Australian Botanic Garden at Mount Annan to investigate the work of a seed bank. Find out about the process the scientists at the seed bank use to obtain and prepare ...

Video

When does life begin?

The use of embryonic stem cells for medical research is a hotly debated ethical issue, with much of the discussion focusing on when human life begins. Listen to the views both of scientists and of some people from several faith traditions. In a major stem-cell breakthrough, scientists have discovered a new type of stem ...

Video

Assisted Finger Orthosis

Rehabilitation from hand tendon surgery, one of the most common types of surgery in Australia, is set to benefit from new technology. Assisted Finger Orthosis will help recovering patients by restricting the movement of the fingers so as not to damage the work done by the surgery, while at the same time restoring strength ...

Video

Microscopic pollen helps catch a criminal

An expert in plant pollen finds herself working in forensic science, helping police solve crimes. Find out how Dr Lynne Milne's knowledge of plant pollen was used in a criminal investigation. See how soils have a 'signature profile' based on the types and abundance of pollen.

Video

Algae oil

Could algae be used to create an alternative to crude oil? It's not straightforward - but it is possible. This video describes how algae and waste products from other industries could be used to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and play a part in controlling climate change.

Video

Graphene: the new wonder material

Graphene is perhaps the most significant new material produced in recent years. It has many potential applications in electrical devices, biomedical technology and solar energy. Graphene is a form (allotrope) of carbon with some special chemical and physical properties. Watch this clip to explore the molecular structure, ...

Video

Protecting exposed lake beds during drought

Visit the Lower Lakes near the mouth of the Murray River in 2009. Step onto the dried-out lake floor and watch what the wind does to the sand. How can planting rye grass help to stop erosion and to control a toxic environment in the mud beneath the sand? Find out in this clip.

Video

Antibiotic resistance

Antibiotics are drugs used to treat infections and diseases caused by bacteria. Unfortunately, bacteria has an enormous capacity to adapt, which means they become immune to antibiotics. What are the repercussions of bacteria in our bodies becoming resistant to antibiotics and why could this present a big problem to human health?

Audio

Reducing motoring emissions

Many businesses need to transport goods or people on a daily basis. Vehicles cause pollution and too many vehicles can result in road congestion. This audio clip describes environmentally friendly modes of transport. Explore the options with Catapult reporter Dominic Jarvis, then decide which might be best for different ...

Video

Innovation to improve underwater photography

The way light moves through water presents some challenges for underwater photographers. Watch this clip to find out how cinematographer Pawel Achtel may have solved the issues of distortion and loss of sharpness sometimes observed in underwater images. See his innovative design at work.

Video

Predicting earthquakes

Will scientists ever be able to accurately predict earthquakes? Imagine the number of lives that could be saved if this were possible. Dr Maryanne Demasi joins a group of researchers drilling into one of the most earthquake-prone regions on Earth as they try to improve earthquake prediction to add precious seconds to earthquake ...

Video

Endangered Mala returned to natural habitat

Have you ever heard of the Australian marsupial called a Mala? Perhaps not, because this creature (also known as the Rufous Hare-wallaby), has been extinct in the wild for decades. Find out about a project to re-introduce the Mala into Uluru - Kata Tjuta National Park. Learn also about the significance of this marsupial ...

Video

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.

Video

Going to school on sardines

Why might scientists research sardines by sampling schools of these pelagic fish? In this clip, find out about the links between knowing reproduction rates of sardines, their population numbers and sustainable fishing.