Information and Advice Booklet 2007

Information and Advice Booklet 2007


S3/4 Course

Information and Advice Booklet 2007

Pupil Name:______





5Making your selections

7Beyond S4

8Careers Advice


BEIT Faculty

9PC Passport

English Faculty

10English: Standard Grade


Maths Faculty

12Maths:Standard Grade

14Maths:Access 3

Modern Languages Faculty

15French:Standard Grade

17French:Access 3

Physical Education Department

18Physical Education

Social Subjects Faculty

19Religious Moral &

Philosophical Studies:Intermediate 1/2 Units

Pastoral Care

20Personal & Social Education


Art & Design Department

21Art & Design:Standard Grade

BEIT Faculty

23Accounting & Finance:Standard Grade

25Administration:Intermediate 1/2

27Business Management:Standard Grade/Intermediate 2

29Computing Studies:Standard Grade

Design & Technology Department

31Craft & Design:Standard Grade

32Graphic Communication:Standard Grade

34Enterprise Through Craft:Access 3

Home Economics Department

36Home Economics:Standard Grade

38Hospitality:Intermediate 1

Modern Languages Faculty

39Spanish: Standard Grade

Performing Arts Faculty

41Drama:Standard Grade

42Music:Standard Grade

Physical Education Department

44Physical Education:Standard Grade

Science Faculty

45Biology:Intermediate 2

47Biology:Intermediate 1*/Access3

49Chemistry:Standard Grade

51Chemistry:Intermediate 1*/Access 3

53Physics:Standard Grade

54Physics:Intermediate 1*/Access 3

Social Subjects Faculty

56Geography:Standard Grade

57History:Standard Grade

58Modern Studies:Standard Grade

SFL Faculty

59Supported Studies


60Building Crafts

61Computers and The Internet

62Creative Design

63Digital Imagery

64Engineering Craft Skills



67Health & Technology

68Languages Plus – German



72Religious, Moral & Philosophical Studies

73Sci-Phi – Philosophy in Film



As you will know from the work you have been doing in your PSE class, you are soon to be asked to make important decisions about which subjects you would like to do in S3 and S4. These decisions are very important. They are your first step to working towards a particular set of experiences and qualifications that will be useful to you when you decide to leave school. You will study the subjects you select now for the whole of S3 and S4. Whilst we want you to gain all you can from the learning opportunities in front of you, we also want you to enjoy your time at MeldrumAcademy, so it is important for YOU to spend some time thinking about what is the best combination of subjects for you.

MeldrumAcademy aims to offer you a set of courses that will meet your needs and talents and that you will find interesting and enjoyable. This booklet is designed to help you decide which courses to do. It is designed to support the work you have done and are doing in PSE. You will also find the booklet given to you in PSE called “Which Way Now?” from Careers Scotland helps you think about your options.

This booklet contains information about all the courses that will be on offer here in MeldrumAcademy for you in S3/4. Take the time to read through the information contained in it to find out what you will be doing in each subject and how you will be assessed in order to gain qualifications.

Once you have read the course details use the yellow section ‘Deciding on your Options’ at the back of the booklet to make notes that will help you begin to make your decisions.

Making your selections

It is recommended that all pupils in Scotland have a balanced educational experience in S3/4. This can be done by selecting subjects in a structured way from groups of subjects called Modes. The table below shows the modes and the subjects in each one. To ensure a balanced curriculum some subjects are compulsory while others are optional as shown below.

Most pupils will study 7 courses. You are recommended to study one subject from each Mode:

Mode / Subjects / Compulsory / Select one of
Communication and Language / English
French (You may also choose to study Spanish as an option) / 

Mathematical Studies and Applications / Maths / 
Physical Education / Physical Education
( You may also choose to study Standard Grade P.E. in addition to this compulsory course) / 
Religious & Moral Education / RMPS / 
ICT / PC Passport / 
PSE / Personal & Social Education / 
Communication and Language / Spanish
Scientific Studies and Applications / Biology
Physics / 
Social and Environmental Studies / Business Management
Modern Studies / 
Technological Activities and Applications / Accounting and Finance
Art and Design
Business Management
Computing Studies
Craft and Design
Enterprise Through Craft
Graphic Communication
Home Economics
Physics / 
Creative and Aesthetic Activities / Art and Design
Craft and Design
Enterprise Through Craft
Graphic Communication
Home Economics
Physical Education / 

You may wish to study more than one subject per mode. This is usually possible subject to availability. The options form explains how you can make such choices.

In addition to the seven full courses above you will follow a short course. Short courses offer you the opportunity to broaden your educational experience by choosing from a variety of courses offered by a range of departments/faculties. Most of these courses last for one year and are based on the themes of citizenship, creativity, enterprise, literacy, numeracy, ICT and vocational experience. However, some of you may have particular revision you want to undertake in 8 full National Qualification courses. This is a challenge not to be undertaken lightly but there are two opportunities to do this as a two year course. These are indicated in the list below.

Details about each short course are in Part 3 of the booklet. When you choose a short course it will be important to ensure that it creates a balanced curriculum for you.

Short Courses on offer this session are:

Short Course / Department/Faculty
Building Crafts / Design & Technology Department
Computers and The Internet / BEIT Faculty
Creative Design / Art & Design Department
Digital Imagery / Art & Design Department
Engineering Craft Skills / Design & Technology Department
Euro-File / Modern Languages Faculty
Geology / Social Subjects Faculty
Health & Technology / Science Faculty
Languages Plus – German / Modern Languages Faculty
Performance / Performing Arts Faculty
Physics – Intermediate 2 ( 2 Year) / Science Faculty

RMPS – Intermediate 2 ( 2 Year)

/ Social Subjects Faculty
Sci-Phi – Philosophy in Film / Social Subjects Faculty

Once you have had time to think about the information in this booklet you will receive a helpful form in PSE. Follow the simple on the form and these will guide you as you make your final course decisions.

Beyond S4

So now you have some guidelines to follow when selecting subjects you would like to do in S3/4. One last thing to bear in mind will be to consider what you might want to do at the end of S4. This may seem like a long way away, but the decisions you make now may have a potential impact on the options you will have to consider in two years time. You may be planning to leave school at that stage if you are old enough. It is normally possible for those who stay on at school to progress from S3/4 into a higher level course in most subjects. The diagram below shows you the sort of pathways which you might be able to consider.

Some examples of the ways which you may be able to progress in many subject areas are:

  • If you achieve Foundation level in English, you might move on to Intermediate 1 in English.
  • If you achieve Intermediate 1 in Maths, you might move on to Intermediate 2 in Maths.
  • If you achieve a Credit level in French, you might move on to Higher French.

Careers Advice

Most of you will have spent some time thinking about what you might like to do when you leave school. There is a wide variety of ways in which you can find some more information about possible careers. Page 26 of the “Which Way Now” booklet may give you some more ideas about things to do.

During the “Options” process you will meet the Careers Adviser for MeldrumAcademy in one of your PSE lessons. You may also have taken the opportunity to meet her at a lunch time “clinic” and can continue to do so at anytime. Watch the bulletin and the plasma screen for dates of clinics.

You are welcome to log on to the website where there is a lot of useful information and a section dedicated to S2 Options.




PC Passport : ICT

Why PC Passport?

PC Passport is a new suite of IT qualifications from the SQA. The course focuses on the acquisition of up-to-date IT skills.

What does the course involve?

PC Passport has a very simple structure. You can study PC Passport at Beginner (Intermediate 1) or Intermediate (Intermediate 2) levels. How far you get through PC Passport depends on you.

Beginner (Intermediate 1) / Intermediate (Intermediate 2)
Internet / Internet
Word Processing / Word Processing
Spreadsheets / Spreadsheets

How is your work assessed?

PC Passport is completely internally assessed for an SQA qualification. There is no final exam to sit. Each unit contains a number of small assessments on completion of the unit. It is possible to re-sit each assessment once. To obtain a PC Passport at a particular level, you need to pass all the units of that level.

It is possible to further develop your PC Passport level beyond school and in the work place as these qualifications are being used in industry.

English: Standard Grade

Why English?

A good command of English is the key to success in many aspects of your life and work. It is important to be able to communicate well with others and to express yourself clearly in writing. Skills in English will help you in many other school subjects and later, in the world of work. Reading books, newspapers and magazines provides enjoyment and information throughout your life.

What does the course involve?

There are three main elements in this course which have an equal weighting in calculating the final award in the subject:

  • Reading: studying poetry, drama, novels and short stories in detail and writing about them critically.
  • Writing: completing a variety of writing tasks ranging from pieces which give information, to creative work in which the imagination is used and ideas developed
  • Talk: learning to play a useful part in discussion as well as giving an individual talk

Additional skills which are developed in this course include –

  • working with others in groups
  • learning to improve and redraft your own work.

How is your work assessed?

English is assessed at Foundation, General and Credit levels.

  • Close Reading and Writing are assessed by an external examination, set and marked by the SQA.
  • Talk is assessed in school by the teacher.

A Folio of five pieces of course work is sent to the SQA for assessment. The pieces in this Folio contribute towards your final mark for Reading and Writing.

Mode: Language and Communication


English: Access

Why English?

Being able to read, speak and write in clear English is the key to success in many aspects of life and work. Skills in English are important in many school/college subjects and essential in many occupations. This course provides you with purposeful reading, writing, talking and listening. These activities enable you to improve and extend your communication skills and also help you to enjoy the English language in prose, poetry and drama.

What does the course involve?

You must complete three units in each course:

Language Study, Literary Study and Oral Communication (Access 2)

Language Study, Literary Study and Personal Study (Access 3)

Language Study

This unit concentrates on writing of different kinds and also covers a wide range of related reading.

Literary Study

In this unit you are involved in reading literature and giving your feelings and opinions on it. You will use a variety of texts from at least two of four categories: prose fiction, poetry, drama and mass media. One of these texts must be Scottish.

Oral Communication

In this unit you will

  • watch and/or listen to a variety of texts such as speeches or broadcasts (news, documentaries, advertisements, etc)
  • say what your own opinions and feelings are about the texts
  • take part in group discussions
  • plan and deliver a talk about something of interest to you

Personal Study

You will select and study text(s) or topic(s) from one or more than one of the following:

  • Literature (fiction or non-fiction)
  • Language
  • mass media

Mode: Language and Communication

Mathematics : Standard Grade

Why Mathematics ?

The mathematics course is designed to play a useful part in you personal development and overall education. It provides you with skills which are helpful in other school subjects and which will be important for your every day life, now, and in the world of work. This course helps you to learn to appreciate mathematics and understand its important in today’s world.

For many Further Education courses this is a compulsory subject for entry and employers very often require job applicants to have a qualification in mathematics.

Course outline

Two elements this course are –

  • Knowledge and Understanding
  • Reasoning and Enquiry

The course teaches you to describe, tackle and solve problems that arise in real life using mathematical knowledge and techniques. This involves –

  • Interpreting information
  • Identifying methods of solving problems
  • Carrying out the calculations and work necessary
  • Presenting the solution

The areas that are covered are –

  • Number and money
  • Measure and Shape
  • Relationships
  • Statistics

Throughout the course you will be involved in making estimates and checking calculations. You will also learn the importance of accuracy in measurement and calculation.

How is your work assessed?

Mathematics is assessed at Foundation, General and Credit levels.

  • Knowledge and understanding and Reasoning and Enquiry are assessed by external examinations, set and marked by the SQA.
  • At each level, two papers will be set, one where a calculator may not be used and one where a calculator may be used.


Successful completion of this course will normally lead to study at the following levels:

  • A pass at Foundation Level – Intermediate 1
  • A pass at General Level – Intermediate 2
  • A Pass at Credit level - Higher
Mode: Mathematical Studies & Applications

Mathematics : Access 3

Why Mathematics?

This course is designed to improve your skills in arithmetic and basic mathematics. The course centres on the use of Mathematics in everyday situations such as shopping, holidays and budgets.

Entry to the course

5 – 14 level B/C pass in S2

What does the course involve?

The course is made up of three units of work.

Using Mathematics 1

This unit includes :

  • Whole number skills
  • Use of simple fractions
  • Money calculations
  • Measuring length accurately

Using Mathematics 2

This unit builds on the work of Unit 1. It includes

  • Money & measurements – calculation in everyday situations
  • Multiplying and dividing numbers
  • Rounding up money to the nearest pence
  • Interpretation of tabled information eg: timetables
  • Measuring length, weight and volume

Using Mathematics 3

The unit continues the work of the previous two units in:

  • Number, fraction and percentage calculations
  • Bar graphs, line graphs and scatter graphs
  • Measurement skills
  • Simple line symmetry, area and volume.

How is your work assessed?

On completion of each unit pupils are tested using SQA approved assessments.

Mode: Mathematical Studies & Applications

French: Standard Grade

Why French?

Every pupil has the entitlement to learn a foreign language up to Standard Grade level. The ability to speak another language is important in many areas of business and commerce. Since the opening of the Single European Market in 1992, trade barriers have been removed and many companies now operate in several European countries. As a result, employers are often looking for people who can speak more than one language. French is central to European business life as well as being an invaluable springboard to the learning of other languages. Languages other than English are increasingly being used on the internet and knowing another language can open up lots of new possibilities.

You will find French a very useful language when travelling abroad as it is widely spoken in Europe and beyond.

Course outline

There are four main elements in this course –

  • Reading: developing the ability to read French text through a variety of exercises, such as reading signs, notices, magazine articles, advertisements and texts.
  • Speaking: learning to communicate in French in every day situations. You may be expected to produce spoken work on tape.
  • Listening: learning to listen to and understand examples of French text or dialogue read on tape by native French speakers, the teacher or other students.
  • Writing: building on the other skills by learning to write answers and passages in French.

Throughout the course, time is spent on improving your grammatical skills and increasing your vocabulary.

How is your work assessed?

French is assessed at Foundation, General and Credit levels. At every level assessment of all four skills - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking - is compulsory.

  • Reading and Listening are assessed by an external examination, set and marked by the SQA.
  • Writing is performed internally under controlled conditionsbut marked externally.
  • Speaking is assessed in school by the teacher but passed to external examiners for verification.

In the calculation of the overall award, Speaking and Reading are given twice as much weight as Writing and Listening.