Year 11 Science

EP Science has an extensive library of smart Year 11 lessons that are fully aligned to the curriculum and enable students to build their confidence in basic maths skills and grow their problem solving strategies.

Year 11 Science Overview

Across the country, Science is compulsory until Year 10, when it becomes a choice for a student’s final two years of schooling. Many students at this level still (understandably) have not firmly settled on a career they want to follow, so deciding whether a science is necessary to them may be more of a personal choice. If students enjoy science, it’s likely to be a good fit and may factor in their choice of career. It can also be a great source of background knowledge for navigating the world around them, even if it doesn’t contribute to their future working life.

If they do know what they want to do, students can look into the pathway for that career and see whether science subjects are required or helpful in achieving this. For future healthcare professionals, agricultural scientists, pilots and engineers, for instance, Year 11 Science should definitely get the tick and they may even need to take more than one science subject.

In Year 11 and 12, when students are studying towards their Higher School Certificate, having a solid idea of the direction of your study can be important to ensure you achieve well over the course of the two years. After all, everything means more when you can see the finishing line.

What is on offer across the country for Year 11 Science?

Different states across Australia have different subjects on offer within the subject of science, with most fitting within the categories of the big four: Biology, Chemistry, Earth and Environmental Science and Physics. 

For instance, in New South Wales, Year 11 Science students can pick from Biology, Chemical World Science Life Skills, Chemistry, Earth and Environmental, Earth and Space Science Life Skills, Physics, and Science Extension. 

In Western Australia students have a wide range of choices depending on their schools, which may include Agricultural Science and Technology, Animal Production Systems, Aviation, Biology, Chemistry, Earth and Environmental Science, Human Biology, Integrated Science, Marine and Maritime Studies, Physics, Plant Production Systems, and Psychology.

For specific subjects available in your area, it is best to check with the school itself. 

What does each of the four main Year 11 Science subjects involve?

Chemistry in Year 11

Chemistry investigates materials and substances and the ways in which they transform through interactions and transfers of energy. Students may enjoy this subject for its experimental nature, or if they have a penchant for using test tubes and beakers and applying elements while wearing a lab coat. Mathematical brains may also like this subject as it puts mathematics into practice with scientific equations. 

The two main units for Chemistry in Year 11 are Chemical fundamentals: structure, properties and reactions, and Molecular interactions and reactions. For Chemical fundamentals, students relate matter and energy in chemical reactions, considering the breaking and reforming of bonds as new substances are produced. This is given real life application through research and experiments.

In Molecular interactions and reactions, students develop their knowledge and understanding of the physical and chemical properties of different materials, such as gases, water, aqueous solutions, acids and bases.

Earth and Environmental Science

Earth and Environmental Science has many facets, in an overarching field of inquiry that studies interactions between the Earth, water, air and living things and the relationships between these components. This subject has much to do with timescales, with work that looks into the history of the Earth in various ways as well as the processes it undergoes in the present day. It draws upon a range of methods from geology, biology, physics and chemistry, so can be seen as a good all round Science subject with real life application. Students with an interest in conservation or land management may be very keen to study this subject for their own interest as well as their future careers and lifestyles.

The two units included in this subject are Introduction to Earth systems, and Earth processes – energy transfers and transformations.

Introduction to Earth Systems includes looking into the processes that formed the oceans and atmosphere, while reviewing the origin and significance of water at Earth’s surface and how water moves through the hydrological cycle. It is also a study of the environments influenced by water, in particular the oceans, the cryosphere and groundwater and an examination of soils and how they are formed and change. 

Earth processes – energy transfers and transformations involves exploration into processes behind the transfer and transformation of energy from the sun and Earth’s interior, and the ways in which this controls processes within and between the geosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere and biosphere.


Physics is a fundamental science used to explain a wide range of natural phenomena in the universe. It provides the foundation of much knowledge used as a basis for other sciences and for many innovations and technologies. Students are likely to enjoy the experiments involved in this area of science and for mathematical minded students, the equations. Much of physics involves learning models, laws and theories and investigating them by analysing and interpreting data.

The two units in Year 11 Science are Thermal, Nuclear and Electrical physics and Linear Motion and Waves Description. In the former, students develop an understanding of heating processes, nuclear reactions and electricity in order to understand the ways in which global energy needs are met. They look into the transfers and transformations required for modern industrial society and are able to predict, describe and explain these. 

For Linear Motion and Waves Description, students learn how motions and waves can be used to explain, predict and describe a range of phenomena in nature. They look into terms of linear motion in terms of position and time data, and the relationships between force, momentum and energy for interactions in one dimension.

Whatever branch of science a student chooses to take, they’re sure to need a solid understanding of content. The skills needed to succeed in science will come from in-class activities, experiments and demonstrations but it’s important to hang those skills on a well-built foundation of science knowledge.

Having an online bank of resources and activities that actually motivates students to revise content will come in handy for both Year 11 and Year 12 science. The stakes are higher now, so setting up an independent “little and often” study program will help Year 11 students get through science with a lot more confidence – and better grades. 

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Why Use EP for Year 11 Science?

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