The calling of the Humanities is to make us truly human in the best sense of the word” – J I Miller.

At St Columba’s pupils get access to five Humanities subjects; Business Management, Geography, History, Modern Studies and Religious, Moral & Philosophical Studies, which allows them to get a comprehensive understanding of how, and why, our world works the way it does.

Business Management

Businesses create wealth and wellbeing, jobs and choices; it is therefore essential that society has effective businesses and business managers to sustain this role. St Columba’s Business Management allows pupils to develop an understanding of the systems organisations use to ensure customers’ needs are met and fosters enterprising skills and attributes by participating in activities in realistic business situations and initiatives such as Young Enterprise Scotland. Pupils develop financial awareness through a business context and insight into how organisations manage their resources for maximum efficiency. Business Management at St Columba’s uses a variety of engaging ways to develop an understanding of the steps taken by organisations to improve their overall performance and raises awareness of how external influences impact on organisations.

The subject can be taken to National 5 and Higher level.


Geography is the study of Earth’s landscapes, peoples, places and environments. There has never been a better or more important time to study Geography as interest grows around issues such as climate change, sustainable development, migration, environmental degradation and social inequality.

Due to its inter-disciplinary nature, Geography develops a range of transferable skills such as map reading, data collection and analysis and extracting, interpreting and presenting numerical and graphical information. At St Columba’s, Geography is considered a valuable life skill which prepares pupils to become well-educated young citizens who understand, and think critically about, current global issues. Pupils will learn to appreciate the ways in which people and the environment interact in response to physical and human processes on local, national, international, and global scales. As Michael Palin says, "Geography is a living, breathing subject, constantly adapting itself to change. It is dynamic and relevant".

Geography can be taken to National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher level and pupils undertake a number of fieldtrips during their studies.

As members of the School’s Eco Committee pupils can play an important part in raising awareness for and developing initiatives within the school community related to environmental issues.


At St Columba’s History is a lively, popular and exciting subject. Pupils learn to explain historical developments and events, evaluate historical sources and draw conclusions. We aim to fire pupils’ imagination, stimulate debate and encourage them, on the basis of evidence, to form views. The subject fosters an important understanding of our modern, multi-cultural society and hopefully allows them to develop an empathy and respect for others, both past and present.

History can be taken to National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher level.

To enhance the classroom experience of History, pupils tour the Battlefields of France and Belgium in Senior III and have the option to visit Auschwitz in Senior VI. There is also the opportunity to participate in the Big History Project.

Modern Studies

At St Columba’s Modern Studies helps to develop pupil’s knowledge and understanding of contemporary political and social issues in local, Scottish, United Kingdom and international contexts. Pupils develop an awareness of the social and political issues that they will meet in their lives.

Modern Studies employs a range of research and information handling skills which foster a sound understanding of the democratic process. It also encourages a detailed understanding of social and economic issues at local, Scottish, national and international levels and assesses the ways that the needs and inequalities faced by many are addressed. It explores different views about the extent of state involvement in society and encourages pupils to debate issues. Modern Studies at St Columba’s is therefore an engaging subject that develops an understanding of the nature and processes of conflict resolution whilst also fostering an understanding of human and legal rights and responsibilities, and their application in different global societies.

Modern Studies can be taken to National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher level.

There are opportunities for pupils to enhance their classroom learning with visits from guest speakers and trips to organisations and places of relevance, such as the Scottish Parliament. Extra-curricular opportunities include the Newspaper Club for Senior I and Senior II pupils.

Religious, Moral and Philosophical Studies

Religious, Moral and Philosophical Studies is the study of the beliefs and values that shape the world in which we live – locally, nationally and globally. At St Columba’s pupils will have the opportunity to study Christianity and World Religions and explore a range of contemporary Moral and Philosophical issues.

RMPS encourages pupils to develop a range of transferable skills including literacy, research, presentation and critical thinking skills and to communicate their beliefs and values with clarity and confidence through presentations, reports, discussions and debates.

RMPS at St Columba’s helps pupils to become engaged and responsible citizens aware of their beliefs and values and the beliefs and values of others and equipping learners with the skills and knowledge to understand and participate fully in the world around them. 
It will be taught at Transitus, SI and SII from August 2017.