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An explanation of school subjects

Accounting (designated subject): this is a practical, relevant subject designed to develop the logical thought processes of learners. Students are expected to apply their knowledge and understanding, as the concepts are built up in a hierarchical fashion. Experience has shown that the ability to think logically, good levels of concentration are usually prerequisites for success in this subject.

Business Studies (designated subject): previously known as Business Economics and deals with the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values critical for informed, productive, ethical and responsible participation in the formal and informal economic sectors. The subject includes business principles, theory and practice that underpin the development of entrepreneurial initiatives, sustainable enterprises and economic growth. Business Management is the study of how decisions are made within the business setting, with the objective to ensure learners understand business management from a business perspective.

Civil Technology (non designated subject):  falls in the Engineering and Technology field, with subjects that form part of the Build Environment, such as bricklaying and plastering, building construction, plumbing and metalwork and woodwork. This subject gives students the opportunity to practically carry out simulation and real-life projects, while also dealing with safety and first aid.

Computer Applications Technology (CAT) - (non designated subject):  is the useful preparation for most careers, and covers the integrated components of a computer system (both hardware and software), along with the practical techniques for their efficient use and application to solve everyday life problems.

Information Technology (IT) - (designated subject): is the study of the ICTs used for the capturing of data, the processing of data into useful information and the management, presentation and dissemination thereof, as well as the activities that deal with the solution of problems through logical thinking. It also includes components of the electronic transmission, access and manipulation of data and information. ICT involves solution planning, web development, algorithms, software engineering, application development and problem solving using the variety of ICT tools available.

Consumer Studies - (designated subject): will equip learners with life skills and is the foundation for entrepreneurial potential, including 4 modules: food and nutrition, clothing and nutrition, housing and furnishings and entrepreneurship. The subject encourages positive attitudes and values in both the home and working environment, at the same time empowers individuals to become self-reliant through the application of entrepreneurial skills. The theory is reinforced with practical experiences in the classroom and the subject will have a positive influence on many aspects of a learner’s life.

Engineering Graphics and Design (designated subject): this subject integrates cognitive and manipulative skills to communicate graphically, using a combination of lines, symbols and signs in order to produce products, processes, services and systems which contribute toward economic growth. The students apply specific skills and understanding in order to solve problems related to Engineering Graphics and Design. Learners are able to communicate their ideas graphically, learn by solving problems in creative ways and carry out practical projects, using free-hand instruments, computer-aided design, 2 and 3 dimensional drawings, projection methodologies, spatial drawings and computer aided design (CAD).

Geography (designated subject): teaches students about earth’s places, people, environments and societies relevant to everyday experiences. This subject is an applied science and gives a balanced viewpoint, which is good preparation for the world of work.

History (designated subject): is a subject that teaches all students to analyse information, question the validity of statements and argue their point of view. This subject provides insight into human behaviour through the study of relevant content and psychological profiling, it incorporates multiple skill sets from flow charts and timelines to essay writing and debate. The study of History is an analysis of actions and reactions, as the subject demands interaction with the material in order to develop opinions and motivate the answers.

Life Orientation (LO) - (non designated subject): is the study of the self in relation to others and to society. LO addresses skills, knowledge and values about ones’ self, the environment, responsible citizenship, a healthy and productive live, social engagement, recreation and physical activity, career and career choices. These include opportunities to engage in the development and practice of a variety of life skills and to solve problems, to make informed decisions and choices and to take appropriate actions to live meaningfully and successfully in a changing society. LO not only focuses on knowledge, but also emphasizes the importance of the application of skills and values in real life situations, participation in physical activity, community organisations and initiatives.

Life Sciences (designated subject): is the study of life in the changing natural environment. Students will access and interpret knowledge, question phenomena, carry out investigations and practical’s, explore and evaluate knowledge and the impact it has on the environment and society.

Mathematics (designated subject): is the study of the measurement, properties, and relationships of quantities and sets, using numbers and symbols. Maths success is achieved and maintained by students who tackle their homework every day conscientiously to process each concept and prepare adequately and timeously for exams where the practicing of the learnt concept is tested.

Mathematics Literacy (designated subject): was introduced in 2006, to provide an alternative for students who do not need grade 12 Maths for further education, in the knowledge that basic functional mathematics is required in all careers. The content of Maths Lit is focused on real life contexts, from cell phone bills to map reading, all of which require calculation and the ability to interpret numbers in a meaningful way. There is very little abstract mathematics involved a clear focus on understanding and problem solving. Students who take this subject often improve their marks over time and gain confidence to work with mathematical concepts.

Physical Science (designated subject): is the study of physics and chemistry of nature and is geared towards logical thinking, application of the knowledge and the students’ ability to work consistently each day.

Religion Studies (designated subject): is the study of multi-disciplinary, secular study of religious beliefs, behaviours and institutions. The subject describes, compares, interprets, and explains religion, emphasizing systematic, historically based, and cross-cultural perspectives. Keeping in line with the changing circumstances in our modern South African society, Religion Studies seek to understand the world and the various existing perceptions on religion. Students gain valuable knowledge about the different world religions and as a result they become prepared for the diverse job market.

Visual Arts (designated subject): represents a broad field of creative practice that involves the hand, the eye, the intellect and the imagination. It creates 2 and 3 dimensional objects and environments which reflect the aesthetic, conceptual and expressive ability of students. Learners engage meaningfully with their world, providing students the opportunity to stimulate and develop intellect, while engaging their creative imagination through visual and tactile experiences and the innovative use of materials and technology in the realization of their ideas. Students acquire the capacity to make practical and aesthetic decisions in the development of a coherent body of work.