Modern Studies

Modern Studies is the study of political, social and economic events as they are happening today. The issues are studied within the context of Scotland, the UK and one other international country. In the Nationals and the Higher our main topics are a) Democracy in Scotland, b) Social Issues in the UK and c) the USA. Learning skills is an important part of Modern Studies and we focus on three main skills: 1) detecting and explaining bias and exaggeration, 2) making and justifying decisions and 3) drawing and justifying conclusions. In the Advanced Higher we compare the political systems of Scotland, the UK and the USA as well as looking at Research Methods.
Who might choose this subject?
To study at Higher a pupil should have an A or B pass at National 5. For Advanced Higher a student should have an A or B pass at Higher. For National 4 a National 3 pass is required and for National 5 a National 4 pass is required. A candidate without these requirements must speak to the Head of Humanities to attempt to come to an agreement on admission. Admission will be dependent upon attainment in the other subjects in Humanities and in English.

Many Modern Studies students go on to have a career in the NHS, the  police, law, local government, journalism, social work, the civil service, banking and management.

Additional Information

National 5 involves a final exam, internal assessments and an Added Value Unit. Pupils will conduct their own research in for the Added Value Unit.

National 4 does not involve a final exam. There are three internal assessments and an Added Value Unit (AVU). For the AVU pupils must research a topic of their choice and write a report on it.  The qualification is a simple pass or fail with no grades.

At National 3 level there are three written assessments that need to be passed to achieve the qualification. There is no AVU or exam.

At Higher there is an exam and an assignment to do during the year. Students will have to conduct their own research for the assignment.

At Advanced Higher there is an exam, a dissertation and internal assessments