Social & Business Studies

Our Faculty of Social and Business Studies encompasses History, Geography, Modern Studies, Business Studies, Economics, Enterprise and Religious Moral and Philosophical Studies (RMPS).

Business Education courses offer the opportunity to access, understand and contribute to the dynamic business environment that is at the heart of national growth and development.

The main feature of Business Management, Enterprise and Economics is the important impact they have on everyday life, thereby giving learners experiences which are topical. It develops skills for learning, life and work that will be of instant use in the workplace and develops enterprising and employability skills.

Pupils in S3 – S6 can study courses in Business Management, from National 5 through to Advanced Higher, plus Economics as an option for S6 pupils only.  Pupils are challenged to think creatively, developing their ideas both independently and working in groups. 

Geography lessons at Kelvinside Academy inspire curiosity about the world. We pursue explanations for current global issues and help pupils to gain a secure understanding of the key concepts in physical and human Geography. Pupils appreciate the dynamic and interconnected nature of the subject and we take advantage of the flexibility we have to study the most recent and relevant world events.

In S1 and S2, pupils gain an in-depth knowledge of some of the most fundamental geographical concepts, studying topics such as ‘Environmental Issues’ and ‘Volcanoes and Earthquakes’. In S3 and S4, the National 5 course gives pupils their first real taste of field work: they have the opportunity to undertake a river study. They also study a range of Physical and Human topics.  Higher and Advanced higher Geography allow pupils to build on skills and knowledge from previous learning, furthering their understanding of key concepts as well as looking at more complex topics such as ‘Hydrosphere’ and ‘Population Demographics’.

From the start we encourage independent research, informed decision making, debates and creative projects.

There is always something new to discover in history as it enables understanding of different societies and gives an insight into the world we live in. By engaging with major historical issues, pupils develop their ability to think critically and independently.

History studies place importance on the collection of evidence; asking questions, giving opinions, working out ideas and explanations and forming conclusions.

Pupils learn to work with a variety of evidence such as documents, books, photographs, drawings, diagrams, films, exhibits in museums and historical sites. A history course develops skills in selecting evidence, evaluating that evidence and making judgments upon it.

Modern Studies seeks to develop pupil knowledge and understanding of contemporary social and political issues. Students are given the opportunity to study these within Scottish, British and international contexts.

As well as developing knowledge of these areas, pupils are taught skills which enable them to evaluate the different types of evidence that are used by social scientists. Pupils will learn: how to detect and evaluate bias and exaggeration, how to evaluate complex data and resources, how to use evidence to support arguments and how to write reports and essays which are balanced and based on fact, not just opinions.

In S1 and S2 pupils are presented with a challenging subject involving the causes and effects of change. Pupils are encouraged to consider contemporary issues in an objective, tolerant way. Modern Studies also seeks to contribute to pupils’ understanding of cultures other than their own, the role of the media in influencing public opinion and the impact of new technology on society.

RMPS is a well-established and highly regarded part of the curriculum where study and debate a variety of beliefs and views, from the moral theories of the ancient Greeks to those of Bentham and Hume. They are encouraged to think about the effects of economic policy, approaches to law making and how beliefs impact on individuals and society.

Senior Prep to Senior 2 study a variety of moral issues, world religions and ethical theories. They are encouraged to develop their own thoughts and skills through written work, vocal discussion and creative activities. Art, music, architecture, food and our calendar are some of the areas that have been shaped by religious values and practices.

As they move into S5 pupils can study RMPS at Higher. The course includes units on Origins (Philosophical Questions) and Morality in Medicine. These are important topics which help develop analytical skills and the importance of ethics in our daily lives and professions.

Kelvinside Academy runs the largest ethics conference of its kind for Higher RMPS students in Scotland. Pupils and teachers travel from other schools all over Scotland to attend the conference which has now run for five years. The content supports and builds upon the SQA Higher course.