Towards the end of Term 2 and into Term 3, Year 10 students will be making subject choices for years 11 and 12. It’s a key time for career decision making.
The key message from educators and career counsellors is: choose relevant subjects for the course you are thinking of studying, choose the subjects you enjoy, and subjects you are good at. This is the simple formula for HSC success.
You have options
Your school will publish the full list of HSC Board Developed courses they plan to offer. This booklet will give you course outlines and assessment information. Students and parents should use this booklet to choose subjects. Each school has their own process so make sure you subscribe to school newsletters and emails.
Offerings at school may include a range of 1 unit and 2 unit subjects. These vary from school to school however you’d generally see various options in Science, Maths, English, Social Sciences, PDHPE, Design, and Languages. In addition, students may be able to access distance education courses that open up other possibilities. These subjects are Category A subjects.
Look out for Category A subjects and Category B subjects
Category A courses – ATAR courses that have the academic rigour and depth of knowledge to provide an adequate background for tertiary studies and can contribute to the ATAR calculation.
Category B courses – ATAR courses that don’t provide an adequate background for tertiary studies, but can contribute to the ATAR when combined with Category A courses. No more than 2 units of Category B courses can be included in the ATAR calculation.
VET and TAFE courses
In addition to mainstream HSC courses, many students choose a TAFE or TVET course. These can include: Business Services, Construction, Automotive, Entertainment Industry, Financial Services. Hospitality, Human Services, Information and Digital Technology, Primary Industries, Retail Services, Tourism, Travel and Events – Category B courses. Again, the offerings vary from school to school however students can also access these courses through TAFE or other private colleges. Arrangements and costs vary depending on the school sector.
More broadly, students can choose VET courses from a broad range of vocational areas. These include Music, Design, Childcare, Animal Care, Beauty, Hairdressing, Sports Studies and much much more. TAFENSW offerings for 2019 can be found in the 2019 TVET Brochure.
Choosing the right subjects
In terms of university study, some courses require related areas of study in the HSC. This particularly applies to Mathematics and Sciences. Choosing correctly is essential as poorly chosen HSC subjects may have an impact on future study options. All this can sound worrying however, there’s a really useful resource that will help you work all of this out. The University Admissions Centre (UAC) has information for you at Steps to Uni for Year 10 Students
This page will give you access to information specifically related to Year 10 students that is tailored to assisting you with guiding your child. The resource you’re looking for here is the booklet entitled, Steps to Uni for Year 10 Students – available as a download
Here you’ll find course information from all the universities in NSW and the subject requirements for each course. The booklet is available for purchase from Universities Admission Centre or you can download and read. School Career Advisors usually have copies you can read too.
Work this through. There’s lots of new things to learn here however there’s also a lot of support. This is core business for schools, universities and colleges, and UAC.
Universities are really happy to talk to parents and students. Contact information for institutions is found on the UAC website and you’ll find the universities really helpful. Your school Careers Advisor should also be able to help.
Need some assistance? Get in touch [email protected]
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