Humanities and Social Sciences

The Humanities and Social Sciences (HASS) Learning Area at John Tonkin College aspires to develop informed, positive citizens in our community. We seek to explore and understand our society in a globalised world. In HASS we learn from the past, engage and understand the present, to protect our future.


We actively teach our students to empathise with all walks of life.

Our Years 7–10 suite of subjects – Civics and Citizenship, Geography, History and Economics, provides students with the opportunity to gain a strong understanding of the dynamic social, political and environmental changes around them.

In senior secondary, Geography and Modern History headline our ATAR pathways. These, coupled with general Politics & Law and Tourism, offer great scope for students to continue their journey to strong active citizenship.

A strong sense of respect and care underpins our learning. Taking learning outside of the classroom, HASS offers numerous exciting field trip opportunities to heighten practical understanding of our world. In particular, our bi-annual international tours to Cambodia give our students the opportunity to directly engage with another culture so different from our own.

I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to attend the Cambodia tour, I am so glad I took part in this opportunity. Every day held a new adventure and each activity was unique in its own way. It’s hard to pick a favourite experience but the look on the children’s faces when we gifted them with care packages will forever be pictured in my mind. They were so overwhelmed it was like it was a dream come true for them. The 30k bike ride was hard but their reactions were worth every kilometre. I built amazing friendships and the trip would not have been the same without the 12 students and 4 fantastic teachers. It was definitely a trip of a lifetime, and it has given me the urge to carry on traveling.

Jessie McEvatt, HASS student

I’m truly passionate about our HASS subjects and providing students with opportunities to learn about them. If you can develop care and empathy in yourself and others you can make positive change in the world.

Mark Tilbury HASS Co-ordinator