Traditionally, school science has been subdivided into Physics, Chemistry and Biology. What the sciences have in common is their absolute respect for experimental truth over unsubstantiated opinion and to that end all three sciences involve a significant element of laboratory work. The Science department provides a challenging curriculum that strives to meet the needs of the student body by:
As scientists, we seek to understand the mechanisms by which the life machine works, how it came to be and what the future holds. Where appropriate, we try to come to terms with the ethical issues this understanding inevitably raises. From the Big Bang to the end of time, or from the behaviour of a lone electron to the behaviour of a society of human beings, there is no aspect of the universe in which a broad-minded scientist does not take an interest. Man has always yearned to explore and to know about his place in the greater scheme of things: we all ask the big questions at some stage. Our aim in Science is to equip James Ruse students with the intellectual skills and some of the background knowledge that will enable them to investigate these issues confidently and responsibly over the course of their lives.
Olympiad Training Program
The Australian Science Olympiad program at James Ruse provides recognition, training and ultimately international representational opportunities for the very best Science students. Each year the top 25 students in Australia from each of the three programs are invited to a 16-day intensive residential school at the ANU.
The Olympiad Training is provided during out-of-school hours by two members of the Science Faculty together with a team of nine tutors, all of whom are former James Ruse students and Olympiad Scholars. Over 250 students from Year 9 to 11 participated in this training program in 2007.
The Science Enrichment program is designed as a series of laboratory activities to challenge Year 7-8 students beyond the boundaries of the normal science curriculum. It will appeal to students who like to investigate and explore Science as an enjoyable mental activity. It is not intended to enhance the academic performance of students. Since 2002, nearly 600 students have participated in the Science Enrichment program on Friday afternoons where simple, appealing experiments are performed to enhance student interest in science, with a heavy emphasis on pyrotechnics. Commentary about the background science, historical context and humorous anecdotes complement the fun and spectacular demonstrations are a weekly feature. Participation in the Science Enrichment program can be used as credit towards a James Ruse Award.