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Design and Technologies

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The Design and Technologies curriculum is organised by the three related strands of Technologies and Society, Technological Contexts, and Creating Design Solutions. The Technological Contexts and Creating Design Solutions strands are further organised by sub-strands, as set out below.

StrandsTechnologies and SocietyTechnologies ContextsCreating Designed Solutions
Sub-strandsNo sub-strandsEngineering principles and systemsInvestigating
 Food and fibre productionGenerating
 Food specialisationsProducing
 Materials and technologies specialisationsEvaluating
  Planning and managing

Technologies and Society

The Technologies and Society strand focuses on how people use and develop technologies. It takes into account economic, environmental, ethical, legal, aesthetic and functional factors, and the impact of technologies on individuals, families, local, regional and global communities, and the environment.

Technologies Contexts

The Technologies Contexts strand focuses on the characteristics and properties of technologies contexts, and how they can be used to create innovative designed solutions. It explores four particular contexts, organised under the following sub-strands:

  • Engineering principles and systems explores how forces can be used to create light, sound, heat, movement, control or support in systems. Students develop an understanding of how forces and the properties of materials affect the behaviour and performance of designed engineering solutions.
  • Food and fibre production focuses on food and fibre as human-produced or harvested resources, and how food and fibre are produced in managed environments such as farms or plantations, or harvested from wild stocks. Students develop an understanding of the challenges involved in managing these resources within sustainable agricultural systems. They develop their knowledge and understanding about the managed systems that produce food and fibre through creating designed solutions.
  • Food specialisations explores the application of nutrition principles and the characteristics and properties of food, food selection and preparation, and contemporary food issues. Students come to understand the importance of a variety of foods, sound nutrition principles, food preparation skills and food safety.
  • Materials and technologies specialisations explores a broad range of traditional, contemporary and emerging materials, and specialist areas that involve an extensive use of technologies. Students learn to make ethical and sustainable decisions about designed solutions and processes by learning about and working with materials and production processes.

Creating Designed Solutions

The Creating Designed Solutions strand is based on the major aspects of design thinking, design processes and production processes. The content descriptions in this strand reflect a design process and would typically be addressed through a design brief.

Creating Designed Solutions is organised by five sub-strands:

  • Investigating – students critique, explore and investigate needs and opportunities, reflecting on how the choices they make have implications for the individual, society and the environment.
  • Generating – students develop and communicate ideas for a range of audiences. Students make choices, weigh up options, consider alternatives and document the various design ideas and possibilities.
  • Producing – students apply a variety of skills and techniques to make designed solutions to meet specific purposes and user needs. They apply knowledge about components and materials, including their characteristics and properties, to ensure their suitability. Students learn about the importance of adopting safe work practices. They develop accurate production skills to achieve quality designed solutions.
  • Evaluating – students evaluate and make judgments throughout a design process, about the quality and effectiveness of their designed solutions and others. They determine effective ways to test and judge their designed solutions and reflect on processes used and how they could transfer what they have learnt to other design opportunities.
  • Planning and managing – students learn to plan and manage time, along with other resources, to effectively create designed solutions. Working individually and collaboratively, students’ progress from planning steps in a project, through to more complex project management activities that consider factors such as cost, risk and quality control.

Achievement standards

In Design and Technologies, students progress along a curriculum continuum that provides the first achievement standard at Foundation – Level 2, and then at Levels 4, 6, 8 and 10. 

A 'Towards Foundation Levels A to D' curriculum is provided for students with disabilities or additional learning needs in this curriculum area.

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