The Social Sciences provide students with a wide range of opportunities to broaden their experiences and skills to enable them to be engaged, socially aware members of society.

Social Studies

Social Studies is studied by all students at Sacred Heart College from Years 7 to 10. It is the investigation of people and the way in which they think, feel and act. Whilst New Zealand is a key focus, other societies at different places and times are studied, as well as global issues and current events.


Geography is the study of people and the environment. In Years 11 to 13, a wide variety of topics and settings is covered including resources, population, coastal processes, development, and natural environments. Several field trips are held each year. Geography is an elective subject.

Global Studies

Global Studies is an elective subject at Year 10. It is a mix of both Geography and History and a diverse range of topics is studied.


History is the study of a range of key historical events and the impact of these events on individuals and groups . Perspectives and historical interpretations are also covered. Themes include conflict and nationalism. History is an elective subject at Years 11 to 13.

Travel and Tourism

Travel and Tourism is an elective subject in Years 12 and 13. It is intended to provide a basis of knowledge about one of New Zealand’s greatest foreign-exchange earners. Destinations in New Zealand and overseas are covered, as are many skills required to succeed in this area.


Social Sciences Department Staff

Ms Lucy Stone       Head of Department
History, Social Studies 
Mr Nick Croxford Assistant Head of Department
Geography, Social Studies
Br Dunstan Henry Global Studies 
Miss Hannah Lightfoot Geography, Social Studies 
Mrs Anne McMillan          Social Studies, Travel and Tourism
Br Murray Kelly Social Studies
Miss Rachael Burrowes Social Studies


The aim of the Commerce Department is to guide students to learn about the ways in which people participate in economic activities and about the consumption, production and distribution of goods and services. They develop an understanding of their role in the economy and of how economic decisions affect individuals and communities. The Department also helps create students that are financially more literate. Students will then make more informed decisions about fiscal responsibility and improving their general well-being. 

This is achieved by providing students with the skills and knowledge required to be more responsible citizens which is the cornerstone of a healthy and vibrant economy. 

Year 10 Commerce

This is a foundation course, offering a brief introduction to Accounting, Business Studies and Economics. The course also provides some general consumer financial information that is beneficial to all people: knowledge about credit, budgets and responsible spending.


Years 11 to 13

Accounting enhances financial literacy by enabling students to develop the knowledge and skills to manage the financial affairs of individuals, communities and businesses.

Accounting gives students the tools to make real-life financial decisions in a constantly changing and uncertain world, as they learn the accounting processes and financial statements that are used by a range of businesses, from sole traders in Year 11 to partnerships and companies in Year 13.

Business Studies

Years 11 to 13

Studying Business Studies will stimulate future entrepreneurs to think about what is involved in starting their own business. It will provide students with the knowledge and skills they need to produce and market their own product. Students will also understand the different internal and external factors such as sources of funding and legal influences that will impact on the success of a business. It will also give them insight into what decisions business owners have to make as well as the consequences of these decisions for the business and society in general.  Businesses contribute to the development of a culture of enterprise in New Zealand and helps to improve the economic and community well-being of the country.

In Year 11 students will study small to medium size businesses, in Year 12 they study medium to large businesses and in Year 13 they will study how global markets impact on New Zealand businesses.


Years 11 to 13

Studying Economics enables students to attain a level of economic literacy and understanding which allows them to develop a continuing and critical interest in contemporary economic issues. Economics helps students to understand how the economy operates, the participants in the economy of consumers, producers, government, financial institutions and the overseas sector, and how the various groups interact. This is done by creating economic models: supply and demand in Year 11 which is developed in Year 12 and Year 13 to money markets, the labour market and AD/AS models.

All Commerce subjects are elective; however, they should be compulsory for any student who wants to be involved in business, whether as a manager or an owner of their own business, or as a tradesman.

It also provides the financial literacy that people in New Zealand desperately require.


Year 10 Commerce is an introduction to Accounting, Business Studies and Economics.
Years 11 – 13 Accounting, Business Studies and Economics lead towards Commerce-related degrees at university and the subjects can be included in other degrees.

Commerce Department Staff

Mrs Sonia Collins Head of Department
Year 13 Accounting 
Year 13 Business Studies
Year 13 Economics
Year 10 Commerce
Mr Liam Bradley Year 10 Commerce
Years 11 and 12 Business Studies
Mrs Grace van As Year 10 Commerce
Years 11 and 12 Accounting
Years 11 and 12 Economics