HSC students get UNE’s biggest boost ever

Published 21 June 2011

booster-bloggHSC students doing business studies, economics and law joined those taking science subjects to make the University of New England’s HSC Booster and study days this year the biggest ever.

Around 1,000 students and their teachers from more 60 schools around the north of NSW converged on Armidale for the Schools, which began on Monday, June 20th.

The HSC booster days in the Sciences have been growing in popularity with students and teachers because of their focus on the curriculum and ability to demonstrate areas of science that cannot be done in most schools. This year more than 700 students from over 42 schools as far away as Wellington in the central west and Woodenbong in the north are visiting Armidale over the three days to add to their learning and ability to manage HSC study and exams.

Adding to this was the return of a revitalised HSC study day hosted by the School of Business, Economics and Public Policy (BEPP) and the School of Law, which attracted nearly 300 students from over 22 schools from Taree to Gulgong. Re-launching the study days was an exciting development according to Professor Alison Sheridan, Head of the School of Business, Economics and Public Policy.

‘It’s great to see students from the region having the chance to learn from presenters who are recognised specialists in the HSC curriculum areas of business studies, economics and law ,’ Professor Sheridan said. ‘It aligns well with BEPP’s area of expertise, and should flow forward into degrees and professional roles in the region.’

The students and teachers attending the Booster and Study Days seemed to share this excitement, with Samuel Brazel of Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School near Tamworth commenting that he had got unexpected, new views of his subject, alternative perspectives from the specialist presenters which he thought would help address questions in the HSC. It also broadened his horizons: ‘it’s been a blast’ he said.

Jeff Guider, Deputy Principal (Boarding) at Farrer, who was also present for the day, added that the activities engaged students with ideas and approaches from people highly experienced in particular areas as educators and presenters. ‘It’s also attractive at other levels, with students getting an experience of the higher education environment and the facilities here at UNE, helping them as they prepare for the transition to University,’ he said. ‘You also have the significant benefit of mixing with and talking to students from schools elsewhere in the region.’

In the Sciences area, Brett Woods of Camden Haven High School said he gained new perspectives from explanations of physics theory, while Callan Hart, also from Camden Haven, said that sessions such as exam preparation and note taking had been very helpful. Rachel Johnson from Warialda High School said the practicals were not just thorough but enabled her to experience things in a way she couldn’t at school – such as seeing parasites under the microscope and doing tests for blood type. ‘It’s definitely helped me understand things better,’ she said.

The HSC Science Booster Days continue until Wednesday, June 22nd, with UNE providing accommodation and meals.