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St Andrew's RC High School

Respect, Happiness,
Confidence and Ambition

S3-4 Modern Studies

Ambition, Confidence, Happiness and Respect.


The Course (description and levels)

In S3 Modern Studies learners will study selected topics from the following areas:

Democracy in Scotland and the UK: in which learners will study the effect of political decisions as well as the importance and impact of political participation by individuals or groups on any decision making. Learners will also study the role of the media in a democracy, assessing its importance in informing and influencing citizens, and explaining the decisions made by those in power.

Social Issues in the United Kingdom: learners will investigate the social issues of wealth inequalities.

International Issues: learners will study the political, social and economic issues of a world issue such as the USA. The study will also include Government reactions and responses to social and economic issues.


How this course can help you

Modern Studies can help pupils to understand some of the important issues in the world today. Learners will study a range of social, economic and political issues enabling them to make informed decisions about society. Learners will develop higher order writing, thinking, analytical and processing skills. Learners will be expected to evaluate sources and to comment on these; to draw relevant information from sources and texts in order to write cognitive and evaluative pieces of work. We will encourage learners to express articulate and informed opinions, and to write technically literate answers, using of diagrams where appropriate. Learners will also develop skills that will allow them to make links across seemingly disparate subjects, and to understand at the same time why these inter-dependent links exist. Careers: a wide variety of careers are available to students of Modern Studies among which are: teaching, law, civil service, police, journalism, broadcasting and publishing.

Criteria for Progression to the Next Level of Certification

Progression from CfE Level 4 is to National 4. From CfE Level 3 the progression is to National 3.

Learners in S3 will progress to National 3, National 4 or National 5 in S4, depending on the progress they make in S3:

National 3: Pupils will be expected to be secure in most elements at Level 2 by the end of S3

National 4: Pupils will be expected to be secure in most elements at Level 3 by the end of S3

National 5: Pupils will be expected to be secure in most elements at Level 4 by the end of S3

Learners must pass all formative and summative assessments, including independent pieces of research.


Learners will be assessed by means of end-of-unit department assessments, formative assessments and case study projects. 

Learners will receive detailed feedback on their work, indicating areas of success, and areas to be developed.

Expectations of the Department

In Modern Studies, learners will be expected to commit to this course, undertaking to complete all work to the highest degree possible. There will be regular homework throughout S3 and learners will be encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning. Good behaviour, good work ethic, purposive activity and respect for fellow learners, staff and materials and resources are essential.