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Bio or Extension Science? (1 Viewer)

Ben04Stephen

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Hi Guys just started year 12 and picked up Extension Science as kind of an impulsive subject. Currently this means i'm doing 13 units which honestly I don't think I can manage. I have 2 options for this ether drop bio and keep ext science or drop ext science and keep bio. It's almost impossible to find any info about extension science and I have no idea if it scales well or is worth it. I picked it up believing it would scale well and was generally enjoyable. Anyone have suggestions on which subject to keep? Or should I keep both even though they may not count towards my ATAR?
 

YourLocalDumbAss

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you doing science extension is very impressive!
it’s quite rare in students as it has the lowest enrolment out of all sciences
 

Hivaclibtibcharkwa

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Hi Guys just started year 12 and picked up Extension Science as kind of an impulsive subject. Currently this means i'm doing 13 units which honestly I don't think I can manage. I have 2 options for this ether drop bio and keep ext science or drop ext science and keep bio. It's almost impossible to find any info about extension science and I have no idea if it scales well or is worth it. I picked it up believing it would scale well and was generally enjoyable. Anyone have suggestions on which subject to keep? Or should I keep both even though they may not count towards my ATAR?
I’ll be incredibly biased on my judgment. But Keep bio
 

jimmysmith560

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As far as I'm aware, Biology does not scale as high as other Science subjects like Physics and Chemistry. Considering the nature of Science Extension, I believe it would also scale higher than Biology. However, with that being said, scaling should not be the basis for keeping/dropping a subject. What you should prioritise is your interest in either Biology or Science Extension and your academic/performance potential in each of those subjects, i.e. will you be able to perform better in Science Extension or Biology? Your year 11 studies/results in Biology are a good thing to consider as they can indicate how you may end up performing in year 12 if you were to keep Biology, allowing you to make a more informed decision. If applicable, your study interests beyond the HSC are also something to consider. While both Biology and Science Extension may be beneficial in terms of tertiary studies in a scientific field, Science Extension allows you to gain some exposure to scientific research, which may be a useful addition prior to commencing your studies.

Another factor that you may wish to consider is the unit difference between Biology and Science Extension, with Biology being a 2 unit subject and Science Extension being a 1 unit subject. This means that performing well in Biology overall will have a positive impact on your ATAR. While this is the same in the case of Science Extension, the difference is the extent to which good performance can positively impact your ATAR, which is higher with Biology than Science Extension because of the superior unit value.

I hope this helps! :D
 

username_2

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Hi Guys just started year 12 and picked up Extension Science as kind of an impulsive subject. Currently this means i'm doing 13 units which honestly I don't think I can manage. I have 2 options for this ether drop bio and keep ext science or drop ext science and keep bio. It's almost impossible to find any info about extension science and I have no idea if it scales well or is worth it. I picked it up believing it would scale well and was generally enjoyable. Anyone have suggestions on which subject to keep? Or should I keep both even though they may not count towards my ATAR?
So... I did science extension so I feel like you need a warning. I dropped bio btw. But what im getting at is that 1) many students have hated science extension - this im telling this because they chose the subject because they taught it was gonna scale well 2) As much as I can say that the bio syllabus is humongous, the amount of effort you have to put into science extension far exceeds that of bio is nearly all aspects because you will be learning some pretty high level stuff (which i wont go over) and you have the report to do, which requires a lot of assistance from a teacher or university programs even. So I suggest you choose science extension if you understand the risks you will be taking (as Im assuming you want a real high atar - most of the people bos tend to be monsters so) as it doesnt guarantee you a high atar or a easy mark and is one of those subjects that is to an extent dependent upon the teacher as well. More so that others because you need to convince them to get you some help for the experiment and stuff. SO choose carefully. (choose science extension - best subject).
 

Ben04Stephen

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So... I did science extension so I feel like you need a warning. I dropped bio btw. But what im getting at is that 1) many students have hated science extension - this im telling this because they chose the subject because they taught it was gonna scale well 2) As much as I can say that the bio syllabus is humongous, the amount of effort you have to put into science extension far exceeds that of bio is nearly all aspects because you will be learning some pretty high level stuff (which i wont go over) and you have the report to do, which requires a lot of assistance from a teacher or university programs even. So I suggest you choose science extension if you understand the risks you will be taking (as Im assuming you want a real high atar - most of the people bos tend to be monsters so) as it doesnt guarantee you a high atar or a easy mark and is one of those subjects that is to an extent dependent upon the teacher as well. More so that others because you need to convince them to get you some help for the experiment and stuff. SO choose carefully. (choose science extension - best subject).
Would you say that the workload is higher than bio even as a 1 unit course? I understand that it will be a very difficult course and the report is essential. Our school does have a uni program for assistance I'm pretty sure. I scored in the 70-80% range for bio in year 11 but that was due to the fact that i almost ignored the subject for others and didn't properly study for the yearlies. From what i've heard, science extension is a subject with a lot of work for a scaling that is average or worse than chem, which to me is not appealing. Another factor influencing me is probably the increased amount of study periods and better flexibility if I drop a 2 unit subject but I enjoy bio at the same time.
 

Ben04Stephen

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As far as I'm aware, Biology does not scale as high as other Science subjects like Physics and Chemistry. Considering the nature of Science Extension, I believe it would also scale higher than Biology. However, with that being said, scaling should not be the basis for keeping/dropping a subject. What you should prioritise is your interest in either Biology or Science Extension and your academic/performance potential in each of those subjects, i.e. will you be able to perform better in Science Extension or Biology? Your year 11 studies/results in Biology are a good thing to consider as they can indicate how you may end up performing in year 12 if you were to keep Biology, allowing you to make a more informed decision. If applicable, your study interests beyond the HSC are also something to consider. While both Biology and Science Extension may be beneficial in terms of tertiary studies in a scientific field, Science Extension allows you to gain some exposure to scientific research, which may be a useful addition prior to commencing your studies.

Another factor that you may wish to consider is the unit difference between Biology and Science Extension, with Biology being a 2 unit subject and Science Extension being a 1 unit subject. This means that performing well in Biology overall will have a positive impact on your ATAR. While this is the same in the case of Science Extension, the difference is the extent to which good performance can positively impact your ATAR, which is higher with Biology than Science Extension because of the superior unit value.

I hope this helps! :D
For bio I understand that it doesn't scale as high as chem and bio but it is still a relatively strong subject for me. The real dilemma I have is that I have no idea what the science extension course is like and whether I will be able to maintain a high grade. Also if I drop bio and focus heavily on science ext is the scaling for a high mark worth it? I initally though it would scale higher than chem, but I've heard from a couple people that it only scales averagely. Which honestly would make it worthless for me as its a waste of time when I already enjoy bio.
 

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For bio I understand that it doesn't scale as high as chem and bio but it is still a relatively strong subject for me. The real dilemma I have is that I have no idea what the science extension course is like and whether I will be able to maintain a high grade. Also if I drop bio and focus heavily on science ext is the scaling for a high mark worth it? I initally though it would scale higher than chem, but I've heard from a couple people that it only scales averagely. Which honestly would make it worthless for me as its a waste of time when I already enjoy bio.
There is a factor that you need to consider in addition to scaling for either Biology or Science Extension and that factor is unit value. Biology is a 2 unit subject whereas Science Extension is a 1 unit subject. This means that good overall performance in Biology will have a more significant effect on your ATAR than will good overall performance in Science Extension, because Biology has a higher unit value.

You mentioned that Biology is a relatively strong subject for you, indicating your potential to perform well in this subject throughout year 12. You also mentioned that you actually enjoy Biology. I believe that, in addition to the unit value consideration, this would be enough to outweigh the scaling benefit of Science Extension, therefore my suggestion being to keep Biology.
 

Ben04Stephen

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There is a factor that you need to consider in addition to scaling for either Biology or Science Extension and that factor is unit value. Biology is a 2 unit subject whereas Science Extension is a 1 unit subject. This means that good overall performance in Biology will have a more significant effect on your ATAR than will good overall performance in Science Extension, because Biology has a higher unit value.

You mentioned that Biology is a relatively strong subject for you, indicating your potential to perform well in this subject throughout year 12. You also mentioned that you actually enjoy Biology. I believe that, in addition to the unit value consideration, this would be enough to outweigh the scaling benefit of Science Extension, therefore my suggestion being to keep Biology.
Thank you for the advice it is greatly appreciated. I know I am still stuck on the scaling aspect but are there any large advantages to ext science that would make it justifiable over bio? (Assuming I get a mark in the 90% region)
 

jimmysmith560

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Thank you for the advice it is greatly appreciated. I know I am still stuck on the scaling aspect but are there any large advantages to ext science that would make it justifiable over bio? (Assuming I get a mark in the 90% region)
No worries. Regarding scaling, while Science Extension does scale higher than Biology, it is important to keep in mind that the higher the mark, the less significant the effect of scaling will be. Considering your example, a mark of 90 overall would be more beneficial (and possibly less difficult, considering the information you provided about your position in this subject) to achieve in Biology than in Science Extension, due to the fact that while it is the same mark, Biology, being a 2 unit subject, can contribute more to your ATAR than can Science Extension.

While the only technical advantage that Science Extension has over Biology is superior scaling, a possible advantage that is within the subject itself is the notion that, because Science Extension allows you to gain exposure to scientific research (which may be a useful addition prior to commencing your university studies in a related field), it is for people who plan to enter industries centred on scientific research and innovation. If you feel that you identify with this notion, then it could be a motivator that would encourage you to keep Science Extension and possibly drop Biology.
 

zizi2003_

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My friend does bio, chem and ext sci and he's acc performing worse in bio when compared to sci ext and surprisingly finds ext easier in terms of the amount of content (since you are focusing only on one area of interest in ext throughout the year, whilst year 12 bio is really content heavy)
 

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Would you say that the workload is higher than bio even as a 1 unit course? I understand that it will be a very difficult course and the report is essential. Our school does have a uni program for assistance I'm pretty sure. I scored in the 70-80% range for bio in year 11 but that was due to the fact that i almost ignored the subject for others and didn't properly study for the yearlies. From what i've heard, science extension is a subject with a lot of work for a scaling that is average or worse than chem, which to me is not appealing. Another factor influencing me is probably the increased amount of study periods and better flexibility if I drop a 2 unit subject but I enjoy bio at the same time.
Okay so in terms of difficulty I would go as far as to say that a bio mark is not a good indicator of how well you will do in science extension. It is a difficult subject to get a band 6 in because the boundaries are not very clear, there is not a lot of material nor are there any reference question that you can learn from. This alone increases its difficulty significantly. But the real problem you will face at the beginning is the topics addressed are so completely different from what you are used to in a science subject that you need to be passionate about it and really appreciate what is happening - atleast that was how I dealt with it in my low ranked school with non-experienced teachers. If you are in the top 100-170 school's this shouldn't be so much of an issue but is still something that you should be wary about. The stuff you are learning is a foundation of a good amount (for a high schooler) of the thinking process in a science degree and write a professional academic report and some schools maintain a journal of the kinds of reports they do. Also, the report is only for the internals but the report's aspects will be assessed in a 10-15 mark question in the HSC (usually the last question. I suggest have a look at the links below for what "high quality science extension reports". Hope it helps.


I also agree that you get a lot of extra time for other subjects (was one of the key reasons I dropped bio as well even though I liked it moderately). But you have to make sure you finish the report early and to a good level - enough to maintain a stable high rank but not so much that you have too much work on your hand (which was what happened to me). Oh yea and dont do it for scaling - you will definitely regret it. Telling from other experiences.
 

Hivaclibtibcharkwa

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No worries. Regarding scaling, while Science Extension does scale higher than Biology, it is important to keep in mind that the higher the mark, the less significant the effect of scaling will be. Considering your example, a mark of 90 overall would be more beneficial (and possibly less difficult, considering the information you provided about your position in this subject) to achieve in Biology than in Science Extension, due to the fact that while it is the same mark, Biology, being a 2 unit subject, can contribute more to your ATAR than can Science Extension.

While the only technical advantage that Science Extension has over Biology is superior scaling, a possible advantage that is within the subject itself is the notion that, because Science Extension allows you to gain exposure to scientific research (which may be a useful addition prior to commencing your university studies in a related field), it is for people who plan to enter industries centred on scientific research and innovation. If you feel that you identify with this notion, then it could be a motivator that would encourage you to keep Science Extension and possibly drop Biology.
Isn’t Extension science similar to senior science which was the worst scaling science. Could you link me where your viewing the scaling of extension science
 

username_2

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Isn’t Extension science similar to senior science which was the worst scaling science. Could you link me where your viewing the scaling of extension science
Investigating science is much closer to senior science in terms of both scaling and content (i think). Science extension is extension - wasn't meant to replace senior science which some dropkicks used to do.
 

jimmysmith560

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Isn’t Extension science similar to senior science which was the worst scaling science. Could you link me where your viewing the scaling of extension science
In addition to the above, it seems as though Science Extension is different from the discontinued Senior Science subject in this regard. If we get a bit more technical and take a look at raw mark and aligned mark data for Science Extension, we can deduce that it aligns rather well:

1635406979291.png
 

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Hivaclibtibcharkwa

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This is raw mark and aligned mark data provided by students who completed Science Extension. It is accessible using the following link:


Keep in mind that the process of alignment applies to the Examination Mark.
Using your same website In 2019 for the same mark of 61 in bio and science extension you get this.

Science extension 31/50 -> 41/50 = 62/100 -> 82/100, 20% increase
Bio: 61/100 -> 82/100, 21% increase
818B42F4-D0DF-4775-BF48-AC516E472CD0.jpeg
 

jimmysmith560

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Using your same website In 2019 for the same mark of 61 in bio and science extension you get this.

Science extension 31/50 -> 41/50 = 62/100 -> 82/100, 20% increase
Bio: 61/100 -> 82/100, 21% increase
View attachment 32971
Perhaps Biology and Science Extension are nearly identical in terms of alignment then. I noticed the same 1% difference also applies in 2020 (a 17% increase in Science Extension vs an 18% increase in Biology). 🤔
 

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