Curriculum

By choosing Botany Downs Secondary College you can be assured of earning a world class qualification.

We deliver New Zealand’s National Certificates of Educational Achievement (NCEA) Levels 1 – 3. These are national qualifications for secondary school students and are widely recognised throughout the world.

In Year 9, ALL subjects are compulsory.
Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
English Literacy Support
Mathematics Mathematics and Statistics
Health & Physical Education Health & Physical Education
Science Science
Social Sciences Social Studies
Languages French
Japanese
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food Technology
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
The Arts Dance
Drama
Music
Visual Art
Vocational Courses
In Year 10, English, Mathematics, Health & Physical Education, Science, and Social Sciences are compulsory subjects.

Languages, Technology, The Arts, and Vocational Courses are optional.

Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
English Literacy Support
Media Studies
Mathematics Mathematics and Statistics
Mathematics and Statistics – Extension
Health & Physical Education Health & Physical Education
Outdoor Leadership
Physical Education
Science Science
Electronics
Social Sciences Social Studies
Ancient Civilisations
Business Pathways
Investigative Geography
Languages French
Japanese
Spanish
Maori
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food Technology
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
Digital Technology
The Arts Dance
Drama
Music
Visual Art
Digital Art
Vocational Courses
In Year 11, only English and Mathematics are compulsory subjects.

Health & Physical Education, Science, Social Sciences, Languages, Technology, The Arts, and Vocational Courses are optional.

Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
Media Studies
Mathematics Maths and Statistics – Numeracy
Mathematics and Statistics – Alternative
Mathematics and Statistics
Mathematics and Statistics – Extension
Health & Physical Education Health & Physical Education
Early Childhood Education
Health Education
Outdoor Education
Physical Education
Science Science
Science – Alternative
Science – Extension Science
Electronics
Science – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
Social Sciences Accounting
Business Studies
Economics
Geography
History
Languages French
Japanese
Spanish
Maori
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food Technology
Food and Hospitality
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
Digital Technology
The Arts Dance
Drama
Music
Visual Art
Digital Art
Career Pathways
Vocational Courses Career Pathways
In Year 12, English is the only compulsory subject.

Mathematics, Health & Physical Education, Science, Social Sciences, Languages, Technology, The Arts, and Vocational Courses are optional.

Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – Alternative
Media Studies
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
Mathematics Mathematics and Calculus
Mathematics and Statistics – Alternative
Mathematics and Statistics
Mathematics and Statistics – Extension
Health & Physical Education Health Education
Sports Science
Sports Leadership
Outdoor Education
Early Childhood Education
Science Biology
Chemistry
Physics
Electronics
Social Sciences Accounting
Business Studies
Economics
Financial Studies
Geography
History
Classical Studies
Travel and Tourism
Languages French
Japanese
Spanish
Chinese
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food and Hospitality
Food Technology
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
Digital Technology
Digital Technology – Programming
Microsoft Office Specialist
The Arts Dance
Drama
Music
Visual Art
Art History
Design
Photography
Vocational Courses Careers Pathways
In Year 13, ALL subjects are optional.
Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
English Literacy Support
Mathematics Mathematics
Mathematics and Calculus
Mathematics and Calculus – Alternative
Statistics and Probability
Statistics and Probability – Alternative
Health & Physical Education Health Education
Physical Education
Sports Leadership
Outdoor Education
Early Childhood Education
Science Biology
Chemistry
Physics
Electronics
Social Sciences Accounting
Business Studies
Economics
Financial Studies
Geography
History
Classical Studies
Travel and Tourism
Languages French
Japanese
Spanish
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food and Hospitality
Food Technology
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
Digital Technology
Digital Technology – Programming
Microsoft Office Specialist
The Arts Dance
Drama
Making Music (Practical)
Music Studies
Visual Art
Art History
Design
Photography
Vocational Courses Careers Pathways

Subjects

YEAR 9
In Year 9, ALL subjects are compulsory.

scroll/swipe to view full table

Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
English Literacy Support
Mathematics Mathematics and Statistics
Health & Physical Education Health & Physical Education
Science Science
Social Sciences Social Studies
Languages French
Japanese
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food Technology
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
The Arts Dance
Drama
Music
Visual Art
Vocational Courses
YEAR 10
In Year 10, English, Mathematics, Health & Physical Education, Science, and Social Sciences are compulsory subjects.

Languages, Technology, The Arts, and Vocational Courses are optional.

scroll/swipe to view full table

Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
English Literacy Support
Media Studies
Mathematics Mathematics and Statistics
Mathematics and Statistics – Extension
Health & Physical Education Health & Physical Education
Outdoor Leadership
Physical Education
Science Science
Electronics
Social Sciences Social Studies
Ancient Civilisations
Business Pathways
Investigative Geography
Languages French
Japanese
Spanish
Maori
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food Technology
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
Digital Technology
The Arts Dance
Drama
Music
Visual Art
Digital Art
Vocational Courses
YEAR 11
In Year 11, only English and Mathematics are compulsory subjects.

Health & Physical Education, Science, Social Sciences, Languages, Technology, The Arts, and Vocational Courses are optional.

scroll/swipe to view full table

Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
Media Studies
Mathematics Maths and Stats – Numeracy
Mathematics and Statistics – Alternative
Mathematics and Statistics
Mathematics and Statistics – Extension
Health & Physical Education Health & Physical Education
Early Childhood Education
Health Education
Outdoor Education
Physical Education
Science Science
Science – Alternative
Science – Extension Science
Electronics
Science – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
Social Sciences Accounting
Business Studies
Economics
Geography
History
Languages French
Japanese
Spanish
Maori
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food Technology
Food and Hospitality
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
Digital Technology
The Arts Dance
Drama
Music
Visual Art
Digital Art
Career Pathways
Vocational Courses Career Pathways
YEAR 12
In Year 12, English is the only compulsory subject.

Mathematics, Health & Physical Education, Science, Social Sciences, Languages, Technology, The Arts, and Vocational Courses are optional.

scroll/swipe to view full table

Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – Alternative
Media Studies
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
Mathematics Mathematics and Calculus
Mathematics and Statistics – Alternative
Mathematics and Statistics
Mathematics and Statistics – Extension
Health & Physical Education Health Education
Sports Science
Sports Leadership
Outdoor Education
Early Childhood Education
Science Biology
Chemistry
Physics
Electronics
Social Sciences Accounting
Business Studies
Economics
Financial Studies
Geography
History
Classical Studies
Travel and Tourism
Languages French
Japanese
Spanish
Chinese
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food and Hospitality
Food Technology
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
Digital Technology
Digital Technology – Programming
Microsoft Office Specialist
The Arts Dance
Drama
Music
Visual Art
Art History
Design
Photography
Vocational Courses Careers Pathways
YEAR 13
In Year 13, ALL subjects are optional.

scroll/swipe to view full table

Learning Areas Subjects
English English
English – English as an Additional Language (EAL)
English Literacy Support
Mathematics Mathematics
Mathematics and Calculus
Mathematics and Calculus – Alternative
Statistics and Probability
Statistics and Probability – Alternative
Health & Physical Education Health Education
Physical Education
Sports Leadership
Outdoor Education
Early Childhood Education
Science Biology
Chemistry
Physics
Electronics
Social Sciences Accounting
Business Studies
Economics
Financial Studies
Geography
History
Classical Studies
Travel and Tourism
Languages French
Japanese
Spanish
Technology Design and Visual Communication
Food and Hospitality
Food Technology
Multi Materials Technology
Textiles Technology
Digital Technology
Digital Technology – Programming
Microsoft Office Specialist
The Arts Dance
Drama
Making Music (Practical)
Music Studies
Visual Art
Art History
Design
Photography
Vocational Courses Careers Pathways

Our focus is to provide a range of subjects and alternative options for students. So, whether you want to be an actor or an architect, we can help you to get what you need to achieve your own academic and career goals. Of course, the availability of subjects depends on the time of year and the number of students in each class, but, as you can see, we have a great selection from which to choose.  

All international students follow the same academic programme as other students in the college, so you’ll have the same opportunities as New Zealand students (although additional fees may apply) and you’ll be taught side-by-side with Kiwi kids.

Schooling at secondary level in New Zealand

Secondary study lasts five years and begins when students are 12 or 13 years old. The National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) is the main school qualification at this level, and is well-recognised overseas

In Years 11-13, we prepare students to achieve NCEA Levels 1-3.

A great feature of our NCEA system is its flexibility; more able students can be assessed against higher level standards.

  • In English, for example, the teacher could set a writing task and assess students against Level 1, or Level 2 standards, depending on your ability.
  • In Mathematics, students can complete their class-based assessments for Level 1 standards, and then make a start on some Level 2 standards.

This approach allows us to challenge all students and provide a selection of subjects that is best for you.

If you’d prefer, you can watch a short video  on how NCEA works.

Recognition

New Zealand has a world-leading education system recognised by the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). A number of international agreements ensure NCEA results are understood and accepted overseas. The New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) is recognised in the European Union (including Britain and Germany), Australia, Thailand, and India.

We also have lots of experience dealing with students from Latin American countries and we are able to arrange con-validation for students from Bolivia, Brazil, Columbia and Mexico.

In short, wherever you come from, we are able to work with your country’s education system to have your time and qualifications recognised.

Support

We know choosing subjects can be difficult, especially when you are familiar with a different school system. That’s why when you arrive, we will work with you individually to make sure you get a timetable that meets your specific needs.

More about New Zealand’s education system

You can read more about the New Zealand education system at the Ministry of Education website and Education New Zealand’s Study in New Zealand website

A peak body for schools supporting international students in the education sector

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