Supported by dedicated, passionate teachers, students flourish at St Columba’s College through their experience of an innovative, contemporary curriculum that allows every girl to explore her individual passions while embracing rich learning opportunities that help build the ‘whole’ student.
In the early secondary school years, all students have the opportunity to explore a wide range of core subjects, covering all major educational domains. From Year 9, students may choose from a range of elective subjects, assisting them to forge a personalised study pathway that will continue into further education or employment.
Religious Education is a central and compulsory curriculum thread throughout every student’s educational journey at St Columba’s. The Religious Education curriculum aims to strengthen faith by focusing on a range of areas including the teachings and values of the Church, the connections between the community and the Church, our College’s religious heritage, ethics and morality, and the different belief structures around the world.
In junior levels, students study foundational elements of communication, such as text, film and imagery, while developing their writing skills through analysis, opinion and discussion. In senior levels, students expand on this knowledge, evolving their communication skills to include public speaking, persuasive pieces and essays.
Health and Physical Education
The development of both mind and body at St Columba’s means all junior and senior students have the opportunity to participate in our Health and Physical Education program. While providing opportunities to develop healthy habits, students also build self-confidence, mutual respect and teamwork skills. Co-curricular sport programs through St Columba’s SCSA membership means girls are also able to participate and compete in a range of co-curricular sporting activities outside of the classroom.
Students may choose from three languages at St Columba’s: French, Italian and Japanese. Junior levels learn the basics of the language, while immersing themselves in each country’s culture and history. Senior language studies continue to expand and improve both written and oral skills. All language students have the opportunity to undertake an overseas study tour.
In the junior years, students develop their confidence and mathematical skill set as they learn to master increasingly challenging problems and concepts. From Year 9, students may undertake an accelerated mathematics subject, with students in senior levels able to choose Mathematics subjects that are suited to their individual ability and preferred post-school pathway.
Recognising that the careers landscape is constantly evolving, the Pathways domain supports and equips students in their career development journey, providing relevant information, skills and knowledge. From Year 9 this program prepares students for further education and employment, to help each girl define and pursue her preferred future path.
In junior levels, students study a range of scientific areas including Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Geology, taking part in scientific experiments and learning how to write scientific research reports. Students are able to expand on these areas in senior levels, with Chemistry, Physics, Biology and Psychology all offered within the Science domain.
Our wide range of Performing Arts subjects includes Music, Dance, Drama and Theatre Studies. Year 7 students experience Music, Dance and Drama in their first year at St Columba’s. Students have the option to pursue these subjects through their senior years, where they combine practical skills with theoretical knowledge.
Fostering creativity and talent, the Visual Arts curriculum enables students to work with a wide range of media. From painting, drawing, graphic design and sculpting in junior levels through to specific techniques such as photography and textiles in senior levels, there is an overarching emphasis on fostering imagination, confidence and creative flair.
From Year 7, students explore the wide scope of the Humanities domain, including Geography, Politics, History and Economics. This continues to the senior levels, where students can choose to focus on a specific area within the Humanities, through the many electives on offer at the College.
YEAR 9 & 10
The learning programs at Years 9 & 10 continue to build on the essential skills and dispositions across all domains and introduces some opportunities to explore their talents, abilities and areas of interest. Our Future Directions and Exploring Pathways programs in Years 9 and 10 give students’ opportunities to connect with their community and experience learning in a variety of contexts and environments. Students acquire the knowledge and skills to make informed decisions about their future.
The course in Year 10 is structured in such a way that it provides choices within each of the core domains as well as an opportunity to begin exploring specialised areas. For example, students are offered a variety of options as part of their English program. They can study maths appropriate to their skill level and interests. As part of the transition to the senior level, students complete a VCE unit in Religious Education.
To read more about the Year 9 and Year 10 curriculum, please see the subject handbooks below.
YEAR 11 & 12
At these two year levels, St Columba’s is committed to providing students with flexible and tailored pathways as is evident in the variety of courses offered. Most of our students in their final years of secondary school choose to complete the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE). The College offers a broad range of VCE subjects for students to undertake which are made up of semester-length units. Students can include a VET (Vocational Education and Training) Course as part of their VCE program. The College also offers the Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning as an alternative pathway which is individually tailored to meet specific learning styles and vocational interests. To read more about the curriculum offered for our Year 11 and 12 students, please see the Senior Pathways handbook below.