Level 3 Social Studies

Course Description

Teacher in Charge: Ms S. McRae

The standards offered in this course may be altered at the discretion of the Head of Department.

The focus at Level 3 is to understand how individuals and groups can influence and campaign for social change at local, national and global levels. We also look at different ideologies and belief systems and how these can influence people's behaviour and responses to different issues and events.

It is recommended, though not necessary, that students taking this course have completed Year 12 Social Studies. A comprehensive introduction to the key skills will be undertaken at the start of the year.

The study of Social Studies at this level is excellent preparation for tertiary education and a variety of careers including Sociologist, Psychologist, Social Worker, Anthropologist, Customer Service, Police Officer,Journalist, Councillor, Teacher, Lawyer, Human Resources, Economist, Judge, Judge’s Assistant, the United Nations, work with NGOs, Politics, Film Maker, Government Agencies, Nursing and Criminologist.
Topics include:

  • Ideological clashes of colonial statues in the USA and NZ.
  • Debate over Euthanasia and Cannabis and laws are made in NZ
  • Crime Inquiry (Criminology/Psychology)
  • The fight for gender equality in India
  • Social action on a humanitarian or environmental issue
  • Terrorism

At this level students are challenged to think critically about social issues, to analyse complex situations and find ways of explaining them, and to think about their own viewpoints.
Level 3 students will also have the opportunity to participate in a Criminal Justice workshop.

Course Overview

Term 1
We will start with a comprehensive introduction to learn the key skills for the Level 3 course, using the debate over colonial statues as our case study.
Our first major unit of work will be to examine how law reform and the democratic process works in New Zealand. We will look at different people and groups campaign for law reform, using euthanasia and the cannabis debates as case studies.

Term 2
Our second major unit of work will involve social action. Students will work collaboratively to address a social or environmental issue of their choice.

The final internal assessment topic will be centred around Crime and Criminology. We will examine different theories of crime and students will conduct a critical inquiry inquiry about a crime motivated by ideology.

Term 3
Finally, we will prepare for the external achievement standard. We only do one external standard. We will examine gender inequality in India and look at how the ideologies of conservative Hinduism and feminism shape this issue.

Term 4
This term we will solely be focused on revision.

Recommended Prior Learning

10 Level 2 Social Studies’ credits OR for students who have not studied Level 2 Social Studies, 10 Level 2 credits from English or another Social Science subject. These 10 credits may come from internals and/or externals. Approval from HOD Social Sciences is required for students who do not meet the prerequisites. (based on Entrance Exams and Internal Assessment results)

Credit Information

This course is eligible for subject endorsement.

This course is approved for University Entrance.

Internal or
L1 Literacy Credits UE Literacy Credits Numeracy Credits
A.S. 91596 v2 Social Studies 3.1 - Demonstrate understanding of ideological responses to an issue
4r,4w *
A.S. 91597 v2 Social Studies 3.2 - Conduct a critical social inquiry
Term: null, Week: null
6r *
A.S. 91599 v2 Social Studies 3.4 - Examine personal involvement in a social action(s) that aims to influence policy change(s)
Term: null, Week: null
6r *
A.S. 91600 v2 Social Studies 3.5 - Examine a campaign of social action(s) to influence policy change(s)
Term: null, Week: null
4r *
Total Credits
Approved subject for University Entrance

Number of credits that can be used for overall endorsement: 20

* Only students engaged in learning and achievement derived from Te Marautanga o Aotearoa are eligible to be awarded these subjects as part of the requirement for 14 credits in each of three subjects.

Total Credits Available: 20 credits.
Externally Assessed Credits: 4 credits.
Internally Assessed Credits: 16 credits.


Courses will only run based on minimum entries

Selecting a course does not guarantee entry into this course

You may apply for an exemption if you do not meet the prerequisites of a course or if the course requires this for entry

Standards offered can be altered at the discretion of the HOF or HOD of the Department

Some standards in NCEA courses might be optional depending on student strengths