Modern Studies follows a multidisciplinary approach to develop understanding of contemporary political and social issues in local, Scottish, United Kingdom and international contexts.
Pupils in S4 will complete their final National qualification topic of Democracy in the United Kingdom. They will demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the main democratic processes, institutions and organisations which make up political life in Scotland and the UK by giving factual descriptions and detailed explanations. Pupils will also develop their skills in using information collected from a range of sources about contemporary issues which are mostly familiar. Pupils will analyse sources to support and oppose views, giving detailed justifications for decisions and giving detailed support for valid conclusions.
Higher MODERN STUDIES
Pupils in Higher will develop on their skills gained at National 5 level by continuing with the two topics of Democracy in the United Kingdom and USA as a World Power, whilst learning a different topic of Social Inequality. They will develop applying factual and theoretical knowledge and understanding, and giving detailed explanations and analysis of the above issues. Pupils will also analyse, evaluate and synthesis a wide range of evidence which may be written, numerical and graphical to: detect and explain the degree of objectivity, draw and support conclusions and explain the degree of reliability.
Advanced Higher MODERN STUDIES
Pupils in Advanced Higher will study and analyse complex political or social issues in the UK and adopt a comparative international approach to the USA by completing a 3-hour question paper and a dissertation. The 90-mark question paper will see pupils answer two 30-mark essays (in Section 1: 'Political Issues'), discuss the pros and cons of particular research methods ,and review the reliability of a provided source. For the dissertation, pupils choose and justify a political or social issue to research before researching it widely and collating the evidence into a 5,000-word dissertation, with full references. Through the dissertation pupils must analyse the issue, evaluate the evidence, develop a clear line of argument, and draw a conclusion.