Making Decisions

Progressing from Year 10 into the senior years of schooling is an exciting time, irrespective of whether that involves moving towards the Higher School Certificate, the IB Diploma or a vocational qualification.

How to make a good decision

  • Choose a pattern of study that will open up opportunities during your last years at school and beyond
  • Talk to your mentors, Head of House, Heads of Departments if you have any questions about a particular subject
  • Speak to the Careers Office and go to the Careers Expo
  • Have you considered subjects that are provided through external and online educational providers?


3 Study Pathways

Higher School Certificate | International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme | Vocational Pathway

Broad-based pattern of study leading towards university matriculation Broad-based pattern of study leading towards university matriculation Broad-based pattern of study for students who may not be looking to university study
Allows students to specialise in disciplines or ways of learning (only compulsory subject is English) Asks students to work over a broad range of academic disciplines Allows students to study in areas that provide advanced standing or pathways into a range of vocational pathways
Assessed through internal assessments and the external HSC Examinations Assessed through externally moderated internal assessments, an extended essay, and external IB examinations VET subjects assessed through competency-based assessments, work placements and (in some cases) an external examination
Can include a vocational (VET) subject Does not include vocational (VET) subjects Can include traditional academic subjects
Leads to the award of the NSW Higher School Certificate Leads to the award of the IB Diploma Leads to the award of the NSW Higher School Certificate and nationally recognised Certificate II/III qualifications
Subject results provide students with an ATAR to provide access to university Overall result (out of 45) provides students with an ATAR to provide access to university Students may not receive an ATAR (depending on their specific pattern of study)


Factors to consider when choosing a subject

Where will it take you | What are you good at? | Is it offered on campus?

What subjects do I choose?

  1. Think about where Year 11 and 12 will take you – Choosing a course and subjects needs to provide you with as many opportunities as possible when you leave school. That means different things for different people. Think not only about what grades or marks you are chasing, but also possible prerequisites for further study or courses that will lead to what you want to do.
  2. Play to your interests and passions – Students who study the things they like, not the subjects that they are ‘supposed’ to do, achieve better in the long term. Do not commit yourself to two years of study in a subject someone else liked.
  3. Play to your strengths – Everyone has strong suits, skills or approaches that work for them. Consider these in choosing your courses or subjects. There are lots of challenges in senior study, not everything needs (or should) be a battle. Balance your selections between subjects at extension or higher levels with others that allow you to play to your strengths.
  4. Which level should I do? – A range of subjects offer study at different levels of difficulty. This includes Mathematics, English, extension subjects or the SL/HL choices in the IB. We will give boys recommendations on those levels that are best for them that will maximise their chance of success both across Year 11 and 12 and into the future beyond.We acknowledge that some boys will have aspirations to study courses that are outside of our best advice for them, and we are always willing to talk around these with boys and their families.
  5. What if my subject is not available? – Some subjects that are offered will not run in 2019. Subjects will need to have minimum numbers of students to be viable classes. Some subject combinations may provide insoluble clashes in timetables. In this case, students may be asked to reselect one or more subjects.

Have your considered External and Online Courses?

In the IB and HSC program there are opportunities for boys to study external language programs or a range of courses at TAFE as part of the TVET offerings.

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