NCEA L1 Science - Pūtaiao

Course Description

Teacher in Charge: Dr E. Attridge

Science is able to inform problem-solving and decision-making in many areas of life. Many of the major challenges and opportunities that confront our world need to be approached from a scientific perspective, taking into account social and ethical considerations.

Studying science enables you to:

  • develop an understanding of the world, built on current scientific theories
  • learn that science involves particular processes and ways of developing and organising knowledge and that these continue to evolve
  • use their current scientific knowledge and skills for problem-solving and developing further knowledge
  • use scientific knowledge and skills to make informed decisions about the communication, application, and implications of science as these relate to their own lives and cultures and to the sustainability of the environment.

The level 1 Science course will give you a general understanding of biology, chemistry, physics as well as earth & space science. You can then use those skills in a number of different subjects at levels 2 and 3.

In the science course for 2022, there are three main areas of science that you will study. In Chemistry, you will learn about selected chemical reactions, along the way learning about the periodic table and how chemical reactions take place.

In Biology, you will learn about genetics and how it impacts our lives. You will be able to explain how we inherit characteristics and how to interpret genetic cross diagrams. 

In Physics you will learn about motion, forces, and energy. This is a great module for understanding how machines work and leads on to Level 2 Physics as well as engineering courses.


Course Overview

Term 1
You will start the year learning about the periodic table. An understanding of how and why the elements in the table are arranged will lead to you being able to predict chemical reactions and write chemical formulae for them. You will learn four different types of chemical reaction and be able to identify which reaction is taking place practically. This culminates with an internal- Selected chemical reactions.

Term 2
During this term, you will learn about Genetic variation, one of the two external exams. You will be able to describe the structure of DNA and predict the results of different genetic crosses using Punnett squares. There are genetic disorders that can be passed on to offspring, and being able to understand the inheritance of genes is a very useful skill. Later in the term you will move onto the first part of Mechanics, learning about forces. This leads into an internal- a practical investation.

Term 3
The mechanics unit continues through term 3. You will look at motion, including velocity and be able to draw speed / time and velocity / time graphs. You will then learn about kinetic energy and gravitational potential energy. This will prepare you for the derived grade exam mid-term. You end the term with a biology internal.

Term 4
The first few weeks focus on revision to prepare for the externals in November.

Learning Areas:

NCEA Level 1, Science - Pūtaiao


NCEA L2 Biology - Mātauranga Koiora A, NCEA L2 Chemistry - Mātai Matū A, NCEA L2 Physics - Mātai Ahupūngao A, NCEA L2 Science - Pūtaiao, NCEA L2 Sustainable Marine Science

Career Pathways

Medical Laboratory Technician, Optometrist, Metal Worker, Phlebotomist, Brewer, Roading Construction Worker, Mechanical Engineer, Saw Doctor, Secondary School Teacher, Water/Wastewater Treatment Operator, Intelligence Officer, Carpenter, Farm Assistant, Science Technician, Meteorologist, Medical Laboratory Scientist, Psychologist, Watchmaker and Repairer, Jeweller, Technical Writer, Dairy Farmer, Crop Farmer/Manager, Curator, Medical Imaging Technologist, Agricultural/Horticultural Scientist, Agricultural Technician, Forensic Scientist, Agricultural/Horticultural Consultant, Air Force Airman/Airwoman, Air Force Officer, Electronics Trades Worker, Aircraft Maintenance Engineer, Anaesthetic Technician, Geologist, Environmental Scientist, Economist, Animal Care Attendant, Electrician, Veterinary Nurse, Zoologist, Energy and Chemical Plant Operator, Chemist, Aquaculture Farmer, Environmental Engineer, Ranger, Food Technologist, Professional Sportsperson, Author, Forestry Scientist, Glazier, Funeral Director/Embalmer, Microbiologist, Baker, Gardener, Farmer/Farm Manager, Groundsperson, Hairdresser/Barber, Industrial Spray Painter, Insurance Adviser