Key word examine

Key word examine

The BOSTES key word examine is used a number of times in HSC PDHPE. The BOSTES glossary of key words define examine as:

enquire into.

This is a rather short definition, requiring the person to simply investigate or find/provide information on the topic. Google, however, provides a more thorough definition of the term:

  1. inspect (someone or something) thoroughly in order to determine their nature or condition.
  2. test the knowledge or proficiency of (someone) by requiring them to answer questions or perform tasks.
  3. formally question (a defendant or witness) in court.[1]

These definitions though useful in general as they show to examine requires questions and is similar to an examination or a test, for HSC PDHPE they can be misleading. The only time the key word examine is linked with questioning in HSC PDHPE is in Sports Medicine where it is paired with the term “critically“. It is critically, though, that ads the questioning as you inquire into the content.

If you are ever asked to examine something in a HSC PDHPE exam, it is essentially going to be asking you to describe the topic. Unless it comes from a section that is pairs with a “justify” or “critically”. You could use the Scaffold for examine.

Some terms to use when answering an examine question include: therefore, because, however, for instance, for example or thus. You may also like to use phrases such as: “some features of… are…” or “…is characterised by…”.

The key word examine occurs in the HSC PDHPE syllabus in the following locations:

Factors Affecting Performance

Sports Medicine

  • critically examine policies and procedures that regulate the timing of return to play, considering questions such as:
    • why aren’t such policies applied to all sports?
    • who should have ultimate responsibility for deciding if an athlete returns to competition?
    • should athletes be allowed to use painkillers in order to compete when injured?

Improving Performance

  • analyse TWO of the training types by drawing on current and reliable sources of information to:
    • examine the types of training methods and how they best suit specific performance requirements
    • design a training program
    • describe how training adaptations can be measured and monitored
    • identify safe and potentially harmful training procedures.


[1] Google define examine.

About the Author:

Founder of and TeachersPD, Host of the Effective Teaching podcast and Co-host of The Education Station podcast Education Consultant, Deputy Principal at SEDA College, Google for Education Trainer and Innovator, Former ACHPER NSW Board Member, Presenter for EdTech Team, ACHPER and the PDHPE Teachers Association. B App Sc (Ex & Sp Sc), Dip Ed