Year 8 Unit 1: Research project

Welcome to Year 8 and the first unit of the year. In this unit, you will learn how to be critical of online sources to make the best possible use of them to make a presentation about a contentious (debatable) topic. Your assessment in this unit will focus on your ability to find and use good sources, to construct an engaging presentation for a specific audience, and to review the quality of your work.

Learning objectives

Using data and information sources

  • Understand how the content and style of an information source affect its suitability for particular purposes, by considering:
    • its mix of fact, opinion and material designed to advertise, publicise or entertain
    • the viewpoints it offers
    • the clarity, accessibility and plausibility of the material
  • Devise and apply criteria to evaluate how well various information sources will support a task
  • Justify the use of particular information sources to support an investigation or presentation
  • Using open, closed and leading questions
  • Relating information graphically through charts
  • Searching and selecting information

Please click here to view the rubric for this unit.


Lesson 0: Welcome to year 8!

In this lesson we will cover the basics you need in order to learn in Computing lessons. From access to the network to checking your email and managing your Google Drive, you will learn it all here.

Lesson 1: Introduction to information, validity and bias

In this lesson you will be introduced to some key concepts for this unit: reliability, validity and bias. You will encounter some websites where all may not be quite as it seems, and by the end of the lesson should have a good idea of how to be critical about the information you find online.

Lesson 2: Choosing a topic

In this lesson you will select a topic for you to debate, and begin to find sources to help you construct your argument. You will learn about where to look for reliable, trustworthy information about complex topics and what to do with useful information when you find it.

Lesson 3: Designing a slide deck

In this lesson you will begin to make choices about how your argument should be presented, from colours and fonts to layout of content. Never forgetting the importance of clarity, it is vitally important that your slide deck is attractive and engaging for your audience.

Lesson 4: Primary research

In this lesson you will learn how to collect quality data from primary sources, through surveys and interviews. Gathering primary data is a very complex task, and creating a Google Form is only part of the process.

Lesson 5: Wrapping up

In this lesson you will combine all of the content you have gathered to construct your presentation. Your work will be graded based on your ability to identify reliable sources, construct a convincing argument, make a judgement on your chosen topic, and present your ideas clearly and engagingly.