Modern History atar course Year 11 syllabus important information



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School-based assessment


The Western Australian Certificate of Education (WACE) Manual contains essential information on principles, policies and procedures for school-based assessment that needs to be read in conjunction with this syllabus.

Teachers design school-based assessment tasks to meet the needs of students. The table below provides details of the assessment types for the Modern History ATAR Year 11 syllabus and the weighting for each assessment type.



Assessment table – Year 11

Type of assessment

Weighting

Historical inquiry

Students use the relevant historical skills to plan, conduct and communicate an inquiry related to the elective they are studying. The inquiry proposition is devised by the teacher or the student.

The final presentation can be: a written report; an analysis of the sources used in the inquiry; a debate; a hypothetical; an oral presentation and/or a multimodal presentation which can be presented individually or in a group.

Typically one historical inquiry is completed for each unit.

20%

Explanation

A response in the form of an essay (which can be scaffolded) or a sectionalised answer for one or more closed or open questions or for a topic. The question can require students to respond to propositions or points of debate; explanations or evaluations of historical evidence; and interpretations and/or representations.

At least two explanation tasks must be administered under test conditions.

20–30%

Source analysis

A number of sources are interpreted, analysed, evaluated and/or synthesised. Questions typically require students to use evidence from the sources when commenting on: message; origin, purpose and context; reliability, usefulness and contestability of the evidence; perspective; and relevance to the context.

The teacher can select the sources and provide the questions or a student (or group of students) can select a range of sources to respond to questions provided by the teacher.

Source materials can include: photographs, cartoons, paintings, graphs, government papers, extracts from newspaper articles, letters, diaries, literary sources, and/or secondary sources.

At least two source analysis tasks must be administered under test conditions.

20–30%

Examination

Typically conducted at the end of each semester and/or unit. In preparation for Unit 3 and Unit 4, the examination should reflect the examination design brief included in the ATAR Year 12 syllabus for this course.

30%

Teachers are required to use the assessment table to develop an assessment outline for the pair of units
(or for a single unit where only one is being studied).

The assessment outline must:

include a set of assessment tasks

include a general description of each task

indicate the unit content to be assessed

indicate a weighting for each task and each assessment type

include the approximate timing of each task (for example, the week the task is conducted, or the issue and submission dates for an extended task).

In the assessment outline for the pair of units, each assessment type must be included at least twice. In the assessment outline where a single unit is being studied, each assessment type must be included at least once.

The set of assessment tasks must provide a representative sampling of the content for Unit 1 and Unit 2.

Assessment tasks not administered under test/controlled conditions require appropriate validation/authentication processes. For example, student performance for an historical inquiry could be validated by a task (such as a structured essay, extended answer or analysis of the sources used in the inquiry) which is completed in class after the final presentation is submitted.


Grading


Schools report student achievement in terms of the following grades:

Grade

Interpretation

A

Excellent achievement

B

High achievement

C

Satisfactory achievement

D

Limited achievement

E

Very low achievement

The teacher prepares a ranked list and assigns a grade for the pair of units (or for a unit where only one unit is being studied). The grade is based on the student’s overall performance as judged by reference to a set of pre-determined standards. These standards are defined by grade descriptions and annotated work samples. The grade descriptions for the Modern History ATAR Year 11 syllabus are provided in Appendix 1. They can also be accessed, together with annotated work samples, through the Guide to Grades link on the course page of the Authority website at www.scsa.wa.edu.au

To be assigned a grade, a student must have had the opportunity to complete the education program, including the assessment program (unless the school accepts that there are exceptional and justifiable circumstances).

Refer to the WACE Manual for further information about the use of a ranked list in the process of assigning grades.

Appendix 1 – Grade descriptions Year 11


A

Historical Skills

Selects a range of sources and analyses these for accuracy, bias, omissions and differences in viewpoint.

Responds to key words in research or essay questions, accurately applying evidence and historical understandings from appropriately acknowledged sources.

Identifies and explains why historical perspectives change.

Uses appropriate historical terms and concepts to develop cohesive arguments which are analytical, logical and coherent.


Historical Knowledge and Understanding

Assesses the extent to which one or more of the following: people/events/ideas and/or structures, have direct and indirect consequences within and/or between societies.






B

Historical Skills

Selects a range of sources and begins to analyse for accuracy, bias, and different viewpoints.

Begins to respond to key words in research or essay questions, applying some evidence and historical understandings from appropriately acknowledged sources.

Explains why various perspectives of history exist.

Uses appropriate historical terms and concepts and develops an argument which is logical, coherent and largely narrative.


Historical Knowledge and Understanding

Describes how one or more of the following: people/events/ideas and/or structures, have direct consequences in different societies.






C

Historical Skills

Selects a limited range of sources and makes an assessment of accuracy, bias and different viewpoints.

Responds to some aspects of the research or essay question; selects and acknowledges sources but makes limited use of supporting evidence.

Identifies some different points of view of history.

Recounts the major features of the narrative and provides a simple structure for the argument/discussion.


Historical Knowledge and Understanding

Identifies simple interactions between people/events/ideas and/or structures.






D

Historical Skills

Selects sources from a narrow range, which may or may not be relevant, and makes statements about accuracy, bias and different viewpoints.

Responds to one or two aspects of the question. Shows limited range and depth in selecting sources and evidence to support statements, and limited interpretation and acknowledgement of the sources.

Identifies one perspective of an historical event.

Demonstrates a limited knowledge of the historical narrative and the structural conventions.


Historical Knowledge and Understanding

Identifies that there are people/events/ideas and/or structures that characterise a time period.





E

Historical Skills

Selects a limited number of sources, which may have little relevance and provides unsupported statements about accuracy, bias or different viewpoints in the sources.

Responds without addressing the key aspects of the task; uses minimal or no evidence to support answers; provides no interpretation or acknowledgement of the sources.

Provides incomplete and poorly structured responses, displaying little or no knowledge of the historical narrative.

Inaccurately identifies one or more perspectives of an historical event.


Historical Knowledge and Understanding

Provides a few unsupported statements about people or events that characterise a time period.




Appendix 2 – Glossary


This glossary is provided to enable a common understanding of the key terms in this syllabus.


Cause and effect

Used by historians to identify chains of events and developments over time,
short-term and long-term.

Contestability

Occurs when particular interpretations about the past are open to debate
(for example, as a result of a lack of evidence or different perspectives).

Continuity and change

Aspects of the past that remained the same over certain periods of time are referred to as continuities. Continuity and change are evident in any given period of time, and concepts, such as progress and decline, may be used to evaluate continuity and change.

Concept

In the study of history, a concept refers to any general notion or idea that is used to develop an understanding of the past, such as a concept related to the process of historical inquiry (for example, evidence, continuity and change, perspectives, significance).

Contemporary world

As defined in this syllabus, the period of modern world history from 1945 to 2001.

Empathy

Empathy is an understanding of the past from the point of view of a particular individual or group, including an appreciation of the circumstances they faced, and the motivations, values and attitudes behind their actions.

Evidence

In the study of history, evidence is the information obtained from sources that is valuable for a particular inquiry. Evidence can be used to help construct an historical narrative, to support a hypothesis or to prove or disprove a conclusion.

Historical inquiry

Historical inquiry is the process of investigation undertaken in order to understand the past. Steps in the inquiry process include posing questions, locating and analysing sources and using evidence from sources to develop an informed explanation about the past.

Interpretation

An interpretation is an explanation of the past, for example, about a specific person, event or development. There may be more than one interpretation of a particular aspect of the past because historians may have used different sources, asked different questions and held different points of view about the topic.

Modern world

As defined in this syllabus, the period of time in the modern world between 1750 and 2001.

Perspective

A person’s perspective is their point of view, the position from which they see and understand events going on around them. People in the past may have had different points of view about a particular event, depending on their age, gender, social position and their beliefs and values. Historians also have perspectives and this can influence their interpretation of the past.

Primary sources

In the study of history, primary sources are objects and documents created or written during the time being investigated, for example, during an event or very soon after. Examples of primary sources include official documents, such as laws and treaties; personal documents, such as diaries and letters; photographs; film and documentaries. These original, firsthand accounts are analysed by the historian to answer questions about the past.

Representation

A picture or image of the past that may be a popular portrayal within society
(past or present) or that may be created by historians.

Secondary sources

In the study of history, secondary sources are accounts about the past that were created after the time being investigated and which often use or refer to primary sources, and present a particular interpretation. Examples of secondary sources include writings of historians, encyclopaedias, documentaries, history textbooks, and websites.

Significance

The importance that is assigned to particular aspects of the past
(for example, events, developments, and historical sites). Significance includes an examination of the principles behind the selection of what should be investigated and remembered and involves consideration of questions, such as: How did people in the past view the significance of an event? How important were the consequences of an event? What was the duration of the event? How relevant is it to the contemporary world?

Source

Any written or non-written materials that can be used to investigate the past
(for example, newspaper articles, photos, and journal entries). A source becomes ‘evidence’ if it is of value to a particular inquiry.
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