Unit description

Introduces students to the nature of science through four core scientific disciplines: chemistry, physics, biology and geology. Students analyse and in some instances solve problems in real-world contexts involving scientific observation, measurement and experimentation. 

Unit content

Topic 1: The nature of science and inquiry:

  • Measurement
  • Observations
  • Experimentation

Topic 2: Physics:

  • Forces and motion
  • Work, energy and power

Topic 3: Chemistry:

  • Atomic Structure
  • Elements and molecules
  • Equations and reactions

Topic 4 : Biology:

  • Cells
  • Organism
  • Physiology

Topic 5: Geology:

  • Minerals
  • Rocks
  • Land formation

Learning outcomes

Unit Learning Outcomes express learning achievement in terms of what a student should know, understand and be able to do on completion of a unit. These outcomes are aligned with the graduate attributes. The unit learning outcomes and graduate attributes are also the basis of evaluating prior learning.

GA1: Intellectual rigour, GA2: Creativity, GA3: Ethical practice, GA4: Knowledge of a discipline, GA5: Lifelong learning, GA6: Communication and social skills, GA7: Cultural competence
On completion of this unit, students should be able to:GA1GA2GA3GA4GA5GA6GA7
1communicate an understanding of the nature of science.Knowledge of a discipline
2demonstrate an understanding of key concepts across four broad scientific disciplines.Knowledge of a discipline
3apply analytical and problem solving skills in defined scientific contexts.Intellectual rigourCreativity

On completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. communicate an understanding of the nature of science.
    • GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
  2. demonstrate an understanding of key concepts across four broad scientific disciplines.
    • GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
  3. apply analytical and problem solving skills in defined scientific contexts.
    • GA1: Intellectual rigour
    • GA2: Creativity

Prescribed texts

  • No prescribed texts.
Prescribed texts may change in future study periods.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching method
Lecture online 1 hour (12 weeks)
Structured online learning 2 hours (12 weeks)
Short written response35%

Intensive offerings may or may not be scheduled in every session. Please refer to the timetable for further details.

Southern Cross University employs different teaching methods within units to provide students with the flexibility to choose the mode of learning that best suits them. SCU academics strive to use the latest approaches and, as a result, the learning modes and materials may change. The most current information regarding a unit will be provided to enrolled students at the beginning of the study session.

Fee information


Commonwealth Supported courses
For information regarding Student Contribution Amounts please visit the Student Contribution Amounts.

Fee paying courses
For postgraduate or undergraduate full fee paying courses please check Domestic Postgraduate Fees OR Domestic Undergraduate Fees


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