How Does the HSIE Syllabus Impact My Child’s ATAR/HSC?

Human Society and Its Environment (HSIE) encourages students to investigate and analyse the interactions between people and the world in which we live. It covers the traditional humanities subjects of history, geography, and religion whilst also looking in depth at culture, society, business, employment, and law. Let’s look at the likely impacts of the HSIE syllabus on your child’s ATAR or HSC. 

HSIE Syllabus Tutors

HSIE is a Key Learning Area

Whether your HSC student is on the ATAR pathway or not, HSIE is one of the Key Learning Areas of high school study. Over 70% of NSW students choose HSIE subjects in their final years of high school, studying an average 3-4 units each. 

Units in the HSIE syllabus include: 

  • Aboriginal studies 
  • Ancient history 
  • Business studies 
  • Economics 
  • Geography 
  • History extension 
  • Legal studies 
  • Modern history 
  • Society and culture 
  • Studies of religion 

Please note that although this article references the NSW curriculum, similar areas of study exist in other states. 

HSIE syllabus and ATAR weights

ATAR scores are scaled (or weighted) to make scoring fair for all students regardless of subject difficulty. Scaling is adjusted according to the number of students completing each subject across all learning areas. It means that students can focus on the subjects they want to study rather than selecting subjects purely because they are deemed an easier option to gain a high HSC score. 

More students in NSW elect to study HSIE subjects than science subjects. In scaling, the HSIE student is likely to have their HSC score scaled down compared to the science student, even if both students’ HSC results are in the same percentile. 

Should your child study HSIE subjects?

Yes – if they want to. It’s important that your child studies subjects that interest and engage them and that will help them in their tertiary studies and future career path.  

Studying a science subject in the hope of having their ATAR scaled up can be counterproductive. If science is not your child’s strong point or interest, that will likely reflect in their HSC score. Your child will have endured two years of stressful and unenjoyable study for no advantage. 

HSIE tutors

The best way to reduce the risk of being scaled down in ATAR weighting is to ace your HSIE subjects! An A-Team Tuition HSIE tutor can help your child achieve higher HSC HSIE marks to achieve the ATAR score they need.

Contact us today to transform your child’s learning experience.