In Years 9 & 10 you had the opportunity to experience a wide range of subjects. In the senior school you begin to specialise, and study five or six subjects each year.
You will find it easier to motivate yourself and to achieve to the best of your ability if you choose the subjects you are good at or personally interested in. If you are not sure what you want to do in the future, choose a course that is as broad as possible and which keeps a range of options open to you once you leave school. If you do know what you would like to do, make sure you know which subjects you need to choose to reach your goals.
Choose your subjects carefully. What you choose now is what the 2022 timetable will be based on. If you change your mind later on the subjects you want may not be available. If you change your mind before the end of the year let your Dean know immediately.
Read the subject descriptions in this booklet carefully before making up your mind. Discuss the options that may be right for you with parents/caregivers. Choose subjects that develop your strengths and interests, as well as subjects that may help you to develop and improve areas of weakness. Look ahead to see where subjects lead in the senior school. The Curriculum Overview will help you with this. If you want more detailed information you can access the senior course information by clicking on the subjects here. Remember to ask for advice and guidance. There are many people who can help you decide on the course that is right for you.
Key Competencies – capabilities for living and lifelong learning
The New Zealand Curriculum (pp. 12-13) identifies five key competencies:
People use these competencies to live, learn, work, and contribute as active members of their communities. These competencies link directly to the school vision, mission and values. At Wellington Girls’ College you will experience multiple opportunities to develop these competencies regardless of the subjects you choose and the extra-curricular activities you are involved in.
Learning Areas – important for a broad, general education The New Zealand Curriculum specifies eight learning areas: English, the Arts, Health and Physical Education, Learning Languages, Mathematics and Statistics, Science, Social Sciences, and Technology.
In Years 9-10 all students experience learning in each of these eight learning areas.
In Years 11-13 you have a wide range of subjects to choose from. Some of you will continue with a broad, general course while other students will begin to specialise as you
approach the end of your school years and as your ideas about future direction become clearer.
You can gain credits towards a range of recognised qualifications, and in some cases, participate in programmes offered by workplaces and tertiary institutions. All of our senior courses prepare you for tertiary study at a university or polytechnic, a private training establishment or to enter the workforce.
NOTE: All options are dependent on numbers and staffing.
Years and curriculum levels
The diagram below shows how curriculum levels typically relate to years at school. Note that many students do not necessarily fit this pattern, for example, those with special learning needs, those who are gifted, and those who come from non-English speaking backgrounds.
Broadly speaking, our Year 9 courses target Level 4 of the curriculum and our Year 10 courses target Level 5, laying the groundwork for transition to Level 6 in Year 11. Knowledge and skills from earlier curriculum levels are reinforced within a differentiated programme, taking account of individual learning needs in each class.
Challenge and extension at higher curriculum levels is also provided depending on individual learning needs.
Note: Level 1 is the entry level if you are learning a language you have not learned before, regardless of which year you are in at school.
NCEA Levels 1, 2 & 3
Standards available are organised into levels of increasing difficulty. Standards assessed at school are usually at Levels 1, 2 and 3. Most Year 11 students start at Level 1, and progress to Level 2 in Year 12, and Level 3 in Year 13. NCEA Level 1 aligns with curriculum level 6; NCEA Level 2 aligns with curriculum level 7; and NCEA Level 3 with curriculum level 8.
National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA)
NCEA is the main qualification in the senior secondary school. You are able to obtain NCEA from a wide range of subjects within and beyond the school curriculum. NCEA is a broad based qualification. It encourages you to develop your particular strengths within a well-rounded general education. All learning in the senior secondary school can generate credits towards NCEA.
To gain NCEA Level 1 you must collect at least 80 credits, including 10 credits in Mathematics to satisfy numeracy requirements and 10 credits in English or Te Reo to satisfy literacy requirements.
To gain NCEA Level 2 you must collect 60 credits at Level 2 or above and an additional 20 credits at Level 1 or above, making a total of at least 80 credits. 20 Level 1 credits gained in Year 11 may be used again for NCEA Level 2 the following year. Although there are no literacy or numeracy requirements for NCEA Level 2, achievement in certain literacy standards is a pre-requisite for University Entrance.
To gain NCEA Level 3 you must collect 60 credits at Level 3 or above and an additional 20 credits at Level 2 or above, making a total of 80 credits. 20 Level 2 credits gained in previous years may be used again for NCEA Level 3. The numeracy and literacy requirements for University Entrance are detailed in the University Entrance section.
NCEA certificate endorsements:
To qualify for a merit endorsement you must achieve 50 credits at Merit or Excellence at the same level, or higher, as the certificate being awarded.
To qualify for an excellence endorsement you must achieve 50 credits at Excellence at the same level, or higher, as the certificate being awarded.
Note that credits can be accumulated over more than one year for the purposes of certificate endorsement. Endorsements will be shown on the Record of Achievement.
NCEA course endorsements:
Strengths in individual courses are recognised with a course endorsement at Merit or Excellence. To qualify for course endorsement you must:
The following courses are 100% internally assessed, so are not eligible for course endorsement:
Vocational Pathways Award
You can gain a Vocational Pathways industry award if you gain at least 20 credits from sector related standards and you meet the NCEA literacy and numeracy requirements.
The awards can be from the Vocational Pathways of the Social and Community; Service; Primary; Manufacturing and Technology; Creative or Construction either/or Infrastructure sectors.
Qualifications offered in addition to NCEA
Visit the Careers Section of our website for information about subject requirements for engineering, design and the main degrees.
Scholarship is an additional award available for students entering subjects at Level 3. The intention of Scholarship is to identify and reward the very top achievers in each subject nationwide. As it is not a qualification, credits are not collected for achievement in Scholarship. Students have the chance of winning financial awards for study at tertiary level based on their performance in Scholarship examinations. Detailed information regarding Scholarship is issued to interested students each school year.
Entry to some university, polytechnic and Private training courses require specific school subjects. Read this section very carefully if you are planning to go to tertiary in 2021 or beyond.
The only Year 13/Level 3 subjects NOT on the approved list are:
All other Year 13/Level 3 subjects offered at WGC are on the approved list.
*Humanities can be used to get UE in Classical Studies
University Entrance and NCEA Level 3 are NOT the same thing. To be awarded University Entrance, you will need to tick all of the following:
NCEA Level 3
60 credits at Level 3 or above, and an additional 20 credits at Level 2 or above, making a total of 80 credits .
14 credits at Level 3 or higher in an approved subject
14 credits at Level 3 or higher in a second approved subject
14 credits at Level 3 or higher in a third approved subject
10 credits at Level 2 or above available through a range of subjects made up of 5 credits in reading and 5 credits in writing
Numeracy & Literacy
The Dean will contact you if you are going into Year 13 and have not gained the minimum literacy credits required for University Entrance (5 approved credits in reading; 5 approved credits in writing) and/or the minimum numeracy credits you require (10 credits at Level 1 or above). There are a range of subjects you can take which offer the reading and writing credits you need, and there are a range of ways in which we can support you to achieve the numeracy credits you need. Course outlines show which standards count for UE Literacy.
Applicants to Auckland University are required to have gained a minimum of 17 credits in English at Level 2 and/or Level 3. If you do not meet this requirement but otherwise qualify for admission you are required to complete an academic English Language course during your first year of study.
Choose your 2023 subjects carefully. What you choose now is what the 2023 timetable will be based on. If you change your mind later the subjects you want may not be available.
Confirmation of subject choices – Year 12 & 13 2023
A multi-level course may be right for you. Talk to your Dean and relevant HODs if this is something you are considering.
Placement of students in compulsory subjects:
English, Mathematics and Science are compulsory in Year 11. English is compulsory in Year 12. We want to make sure you have the chance to achieve the minimum literacy and numeracy credits required to gain NCEA Level 1 and for university entrance, while keeping future pathways as open as possible.
HODs for Mathematics and Science look at your achievement data and consult with teachers in their departments to determine the subject branches best suited to you. We want to maximise your chances of achieving the literacy and numeracy credits you need, while still providing you with appropriate challenge and extension.
Check information regarding course pre-requisites very carefully. Some subjects have no pre-requisites; others have strict pre-requisites that you must meet to be able to take that subject. This is to ensure that you have the best chance of success as you advance to a higher level of study. You must take this into account when making your provisional choices.
Charges in addition to standard stationery costs are noted where relevant in the course information, as well as any specialist equipment you may need access to for particular courses.
In cases of hardship, please make contact with the school either via the Guidance Counsellor, the Dean, or the Finance Office.
Note that stationery lists for each year level can be accessed in the Start and end of year folder under both the 4students and 4parents tabs on our website. Stationery lists for 2023 will be available in this folder in early December.
We strongly recommend that you bring your own internet-capable device to school for learning. This could be a chromebook, ultrabook, laptop, or other device. Note that a smartphone is not a suitable device as it does not have the functionality required for many of the BYOD uses outlined below.
Wellington Girls’ College is a Google Apps school. This means you can access email, calendar and documents for collaborative learning anytime and anywhere. Our website is the springboard to Google Apps and to all your courses as well as to a range of information and help topics under the 4students tab. Take time to explore our website regularly until you are familiar with it and can find what you need exactly when you need it.
Our vision is for learning with and through technologies that equips students to be confident, connected, innovative, resourceful learners. Your device has a big part to play in this process and you will use it for many purposes. You will use it for research; for making and managing notes; for completing assignments and projects; for creating and sharing presentations; to connect and collaborate with others in your class, in your school and beyond; to create a portfolio of your work in certain subject areas; and to reflect on what you are learning and what your next steps will be. Along the way you will also discover for yourself other ways in which your device can support your learning.