Year 12 Earth and Space Science

Course Description

Teacher in Charge: N. Major

This is an open course where you can choose the standards you want to study and the order you want to study them in, with a minimum expectation of 4 units (16 credits) over the year. .

Ever wondered how many stars are in the night sky? Or looked at Manaia or Parihaka and wondered how they got there? The answers to these questions lie in Earth and Space Science. Find out how the Universe was created and how Whāngarei's unique skyline was formed.

ESS 2.3 Northland Geology (int 4 cr)

Learn how this area was shaped from rocks formed 1,000 km off our coast and then thrust up into the harbour or by the fiery explosions and magma flows from the large number of local volcanoes. We will supplement the learning with a couple of (optional) field trips to have a look at some of these features and explore the past of Whāngarei.

ESS 2.4 Survival in space or the deep ocean (int 4 cr)

Space is the final frontier, but it is one of the most dangerous places humans can go to. We have to use very sophisticated technology to ensure Image result for astronautsurvival - there is no atmosphere or breathable air, intense solar radiation, micro-meteorites, temperatures that vary between 40 degrees and -120 degrees and microgravity. The effects of this environment cause issues for everyday life, including eating, sleeping and using the toilet! This unit will go through some of the technology required to keep humans alive in space.

Alternatively, you can look at how a named species survives in the deep ocean. How do they withstand the pressure? What about finding food/ mates/ evading predators? What adaptations have their body gone through to allow them to survive in these hostile conditions? We will look at the answers to these questions to research how organisms have adapted to survive on one of the most hostile environments on our planet.

ESS 2.1 - Asteroid impact (int 4 cr)

This unit investigates the probability of an impact on Earth, and looks at the effects of some of the objects that have struck planets in our solar system, as well as here on Earth. The assessment is an investigation into impacts, and how factors such as acceleration and size of object have on the damage caused, including the impact that is thought to have wiped out the dinosaurs. This image is the Barringer Meteor Crater in Arizona.

Image result for barringer

ESS 2.2 - ESS issue (int 4 cr) 

This unit gives you the opportunity to investigate something that is an issue related to Earth and Space Science. It includes the options to look at why Pluto is no longer a planet or to have a look at the causes and symptoms of climate change on the planet. You will need to find the opinions of people connected to the issue about the chosen subject as well as selecting and processing the information you are going to use.

ESS 2.6 - Stars and planetary systems (ext 4 cr)

This unit looks at the formation of the universe, the solar system and the Earth and also the different types of stars. We can tell a lot about the universe from looking back at the oldest stars, many of which no longer exist by the time we see the light from them. We can also estimate size,temperature and what elements are present from the colour of the stars. We will also look at what happens when the stars die, either going supernova or black hole, or just fading out quietly.

What Is A Supernova?


Year 13 Earth and Space Science

Contributions and Equipment

Student Learning Workbook (optional) available from Officemax
1 A4 refill pad
1 1B5 or 1B8

Recommended Prior Learning

Completion of a Year 11 Science or Year 11 Geography or Year 11 Agriculture course and L1 numeracy and literacy

Credit Information

This course is eligible for subject endorsement.

Internal or
L1 Literacy Credits UE Literacy Credits Numeracy Credits
A.S. 91187 v2 Earth and Space Science 2.1 - Carry out a practical Earth and Space Science investigation
A.S. 91188 v2 Earth and Space Science 2.2 - Examine an Earth and Space Science issue and the validity of the information communicated to the public
A.S. 91189 v2 Earth and Space Science 2.3 - Investigate geological processes in a New Zealand locality
A.S. 91190 v2 Earth and Space Science 2.4 - Investigate how organisms survive in an extreme environment
A.S. 91192 v2 Earth and Space Science 2.6 - Demonstrate understanding of stars and planetary systems
Total Credits

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

Pathway Tags

Aeroplane Pilot, Aerospace engineer, Astronaut, Astronomer, Astrophysicist, Avionics engineers, Biochemist, Biophysicist, Cartographer, Chemical engineer, Chemist, Climate change analyst, Climatologist, Computer engineer, Computer systems analyst, Cosmologist, Diver, Drilling engineer, Electrical engineer, Emergency management specialist, Engineering geologist, Environmental consultant, Environmental geologist, Environmental scientist, Environmental toxicologist, Exploration geologist, Explosives expert, Field seismologist, Gemologist, Geochemist, Geodesists, Geographer, Geological engineer, Geologist, Geophysicist, Geoscientist, Geotechnical engineering, Geothermal geologist, Geothermal engineer, GIS specialist, Glacial geologist, Groundwater modeller, Hydrogeologist, Imaging systems engineer, Industrial health & safety engineer, Instrument designer, Kaiwhakaako Māori, Land Surveyor, Laser engineer, Marine Biologist, Marine geologist, Materials engineer, Mechanical engineer, Metallogenist, Meteorologist, Metrology engineer, Microbiologist, Mine geologist, Mineralogist, Minerals surveyor, Mining Engineer, Mud engineer, Mud logger, Museum educator, Natural resource manager, Observatory manager, Observatory scientist, Oceanographer, Optical engineer, Orologist, Palaeontologist, Palaeoclimatologist, Palaeooceanographer, Palaeoseismologist, Petroleum geologist, Petrologist, Photographer, Physical oceanographer, Physicist, Planetarium director, Plasma physicists, Primary School Teacher, Prospector, Remote sensing scientist, Robotics engineer, Rock physicist, Satellite technologists, Science writer, Secondary school teacher, Sedimentologist, Seismic analyst, Seismologist, Seismology engineer, Selenologist, Ship captain, Software engineer, Soil scientist, Spacecraft engineer, Speleologist, Statistician, Stratigraphers, Survey geologist, Survey Technician, Sustainability consultant, Telecommunications engineer, Telescope engineer, Tertiary lecturer, Urban/Regional planner, Vulcanologist, Water Engineer, Wellsite geologist

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