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Year 9 - making choices of subjects for years 10 -11

girl at desk

What subjects you choose

Over the next two years you will study a range of subjects. Some you can choose to do, others are compulsory.

Choosing the right subjects and getting the right qualifications will give you a better chance of getting the career of your choice. It is important to think about your subject options carefully to ensure you have the qualifications you need when you finish Year 11.

Over the next two years you will study a range of subjects. Some you can choose to do, others are compulsory. Choosing the right subjects and getting the right qualifications will give you a better chance of getting the career of your choice. It is important to think about your subject options carefully to ensure you have the qualifications you need when you finish Year 11.

Subjects fall into two categories - academic, traditional school subjects like English and history, or vocational courses to do with the world of work.
Core (compulsory) GCSE subjects are:
  • Maths
  • English Language
  • English Literature
  • Welsh (if you live in Wales)
  • Sciences (either single, double or triple science)

The core science GCSE subjects are Biology, Physics and Chemistry. You need to choose at least one core science subject as part of your options but you will also have the opportunity to choose all three.

mother and father

You will also do lessons in citizenship, physical education (PE), sex education, work-related learning, careers education, and religious studies. Some of these subjects could involve coursework but you may choose not to sit a final exam.

All the other subjects such as geography, drama, history and modern foreign languages are optional. You can pick up to four optional subjects as your first choice. You may not be able to take all your first choice options. A school may decide not to run a subject if not enough students pick it as one of their options. As a fallback have some second choice options in reserve just in case.

You should be given an options booklet, outlining the subjects your school offers, and have a one-one interview with your from tutor. This will help you to also choose your subjects. Remember, not all schools offer the same choice of subjects.

building

Most schools hold events where you and your parents or carers can find out about what subjects your school offers. At these events you will be able to speak to your teachers and find out more about the subjects you are interested in.

You will find out how each subject is assessed - simply by exams or a mixture of course work and exams - and what qualifications you can work towards.To give you an idea of the sort of subjects that may be available to you and what qualifications you take in them have a look at the subject file in Which Way Now?
which way  now Visit the interactive Which Way Now website

Changes to GCSE

Year 10 September 2016
As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3, 4 and 5, students will start studying new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:
ancient languages
art and design
biology
chemistry
citizenship studies
computer science
dance
double science
drama
food preparation and nutrition
geography
history
modern foreign languages (French, German and Spanish)
music
physical education
physics
religious studies
Summer 2018 As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3, 4 and 5, students will take exams for new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:
ancient languages
art and design
biology
chemistry
citizenship studies
computer science
dance
double science
drama
food preparation and nutrition
geography
history
modern foreign languages (French, German and Spanish)
music
physical education
physics
religious studies
Year 9 September 2017 As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3, 4, 5 and 6, students will start studying new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:
ancient history
astronomy
business
classical civilisation
design and technology
economics
electronics
engineering
film studies
geology
media studies
modern foreign languages (Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Italian, Japanese, Modern Greek, Modern Hebrew, Polish, Punjabi, Russian and Urdu)
psychology
sociology
statistics
Summer 2019
As well as the subjects in sections 1, 3, 4, 5 and 6, students will take exams for new GCSEs, graded 9 to 1, in:
ancient history
astronomy
business
classical civilisation
design and technology
economics
electronics
engineering
film studies
geology
media studies
modern foreign languages (Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Italian, Japanese, Modern Greek, Modern Hebrew, Polish, Punjabi, Russian and Urdu)
psychology
sociology
statistics

 

The Diploma 

The Diploma is a new qualification offering the best of both worlds - a combination of classroom learning and practical hands-on experience, together with the opportunity to develop functional skills in English, maths and ICT. Ten subjects are currently available in areas such as Environmental and Land-based Studies, Creative and Media; and Business, Administration and Finance. The Diploma can be studied at three levels:
 
Foundation and Higher Diploma: Mainly taken as two-year course for 14 to 16 year olds within the national curriculum. 
 
Advanced Diploma: Two-year programme worth three and a half A levels. Taken in school sixth form, sixth-form college or FE college.

 

Look at the online 14 to 19 Area Prospectus www.direct.gov.uk/14-19prospectus and school, college and other brochures, prospectuses and websites to find out what courses and qualifications are available locally.

 
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...my daughter is struggling. youngest in her year (yr 5) and I have just found out that when she goes out for extra maths practise, her 'teaching assistant' is getting cross if she gets something wrong!! I am on the verge of strangling them! She did some extra maths from your website the other day on fractions - loved the worksheet and enjoyed the 1-1 with me explaining it slowly. Thanks for a fab resource, so glad I subscribed! Mandy, 2/3/2012

Year 9 books