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Junior Secondary Curriculum - Subjects and Courses

Junior Secondary Curriculum - Subjects and Courses for Years 8 to 10 (Middle Years in a Secondary setting)

How is the junior secondary curriculum structured in each state?
What subjects and courses are available in the junior secondary curriculum in each state?
Are there mandatory junior secondary curriculum requirements in each state?

How is the junior secondary curriculum structured in each state?

Year 7–10 curriculum and assessment in Victoria is outlined in the Victorian Essential Learning Standards (VELS). The Victorian Essential Learning Standards describe what is essential for students to achieve from Years Prep to 10 in Victorian schools. They provide a whole school curriculum planning framework that sets out learning standards for schools to use to plan their teaching and learning programs, including assessment and reporting of student achievement and progress.

Achievement in Years 7 and 8 is associated with Level 5 standards, while achievement in Years 9 and 10 is associated with Level 6 standards. The VELS learning domains are organised under three major learning strands: Physical, Personal and Social Learning; Discipline–based Learning; and Interdisciplinary Learning.

The VELS was introduced in 2006 with schools required to report against the standards in the Mathematics and English domains in the first year. Other VELS learning domains are being implemented progressively over 2007 and 2008.

What subjects and courses are available in the junior secondary curriculum in each state?

The VELS provide a framework for school curriculum planning. Victorian schools have the flexibility to design P–10 programs suited to their students’ needs around the three learning strands: Physical, Personal and Social learning; Discipline–based learning; and Interdisciplinary learning. Each teaching and learning program must incorporate the domains within each strand as detailed below, although there are a range of approaches that can be taken:

Physical, Personal and Social Learning:

  • Health and Physical Education
  • Civics and Citizenship
  • Interpersonal Development
  • Personal learning

Discipline–based Learning

  • The Arts
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • The Humanities (History, Geography, Economics)
  • Science
  • Languages Other Than English (LOTE)

Interdisciplinary Learning
Information and Communications Technology

  • Communication
  • Design, Creativity and Technology
  • Thinking processes

 

Advice for teachers of students with English as a second language and teachers of students with disabilities is provided in companion documents.

In addition, some Year 9–10 students undertake Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) studies from the Year 11–12 curriculum.

Are there mandatory junior secondary curriculum requirements in each state?

Victorian schools are expected to offer courses in Years 7–10 involving all the learning domains and are expected to assess and report student achievement against all the standards. In Years 9 and 10, exceptions may occur where individual students undertake VCE or vocational studies, on the basis of individual student pathways to further study and work.

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