Getting Started with Course Selection

The aim of this website is to provide a guide to students in planning their pathways towards further education, training and employment.

It contains a detailed list of courses to be offered at PNGHS along with a listing of teachers who can give you guidance with your course selections.

If you do not know what you want to do in your future, do not worry, that is extremely common. 

Keep your options broad.


SUBJECT SELECTION IS NOT YET OPEN







Things to think about:
  • What are you interested in?
  • What are you good at?
  • What do you enjoy?
  • If you know what you want to do/study when you leave school - what subjects do they suggest?
Who can you talk to for advice?
  • Parents and caregivers
  • Teachers
  • School Deans
  • Your school's careers team 
Additional Resources:

Find out as much information as you can about NCEA courses, the requirements for NCEA at each level, University Entrance requirements, approved subjects:  www.NZQA.govt.nz

Careers New Zealand helps New Zealanders make informed learning and work decisions: www.careers.govt.nz

The  PNGHS student information google site : here


What must I choose in Year 9?

Compulsory Full year Subjects: English, Mathematics, Physical Education and Health, Science and Social Studies.

Te Ao Māori:  All Year 9 students take this course which runs for a third of the year.   Te Ao Māori will provide an introduction to the Māori world where students will learn basic pronunciation, mihi, tikanga, karakia, waiata, components of Māori performing arts and our local Māori history. Students desiring a deeper understanding of Te Ao Māori are encouraged to take Te Reo Māori.

Options: Students then choose any five other semester courses from any of the subjects listed below:

French, Spanish, Te Reo Māori, Te Reo Māori Advanced, Drama, Dance, Music, Advanced Music, Media studies,  Visual Art, Visual Imaging, Commerce, Food Technology, Fashion and Textiles, Digital Technologies, Design and Visual Communication.

We also have some options that are selected after recommendation and further testing such as English Language Learning, Mathematics Extra and English Extra.


What must I choose in Year 10?

Compulsory Full year Subjects: English, Mathematics, Physical Education and Health, Science and Social Studies.

Options: Students choose any  four half-year semester courses from any of the subjects listed below:

Drama, Dance, Media Studies, Music, Visual Art, Visual Imaging, Commerce, French A, French B, Te Reo Māori,  Te Reo Māori Advanced, Te Ao Haka, Food Technology, Fashion and Textiles, Digital Technologies, Design and Visual Communication

If choosing French or Te Reo Māori, please read the course descriptions very carefully.

We also have some options that are selected after recommendation and further testing such as English Language Learning.


What must I choose in Year 11?

Compulsory subjects: You have to take an English course, a Mathematics course and a Science course. You will be placed in the most appropriate course for you based on your work in Year 10. 

Options: Students choose any three other subjects from the Level I NCEA lists for Year 11.  All students study six subjects.  Students need to check the  recommendations listed in the subject area.  In order to keep future pathways open, students are advised to choose subjects that lead towards Year 13 University approved subjects. 

Level 1 NCEA subjects that lead to the University Entrance approved list in Year 13 include: Accounting, Art, Dance, Design and Visual Communication, Digital Technologies, Drama, Economics, English or English Plus or English Studies, Food and Nutrition, French, Geography, History, Japanese, Fashion and Textiles, Mathematics or Foundation Mathematics, Media Studies, Music, Physical Education, Science, Science Plus, Social Studies, Te Ao Haka and Te Reo Māori.

The following subjects are also available and contribute to NCEA Level 1: Hospitality and Mathematics Studies.  English Language Learning (formerly known as ESOL) is available and offered to students following assessment.


What must I choose in Year 12?

Year 12 students study any six subjects from NCEA Level 2 or five subjects and Ngā Kete Mātauranga.  Students need to check the  recommendations listed in the subject area.

Students are recommended to take at least five subjects from NCEA Level 2 subjects that lead to the University Entrance approved list in Year 13. 

Level 2 NCEA subjects that lead to the University Entrance approved list in Year 13 and require a prerequisite of at least 60 credits from NCEA Level 1: Accounting, Art History, Biology, Business, Chemistry, Childcare and Health, Classical Studies, Computer Science, Dance, Digital Technologies Media, Drama, Economics, English Plus or English or English Studies, Food and Nutrition, French, Geography, Design and Visual Communication, History, Japanese, Fashion and Textiles, Mathematics or Foundation Mathematics, Media Studies, Music, Photography and Design, Physical Education, Physical Education and Health, Physics, Visual Art, Social Studies, Te Ao Haka and Te Reo Māori.

Level 2 NCEA subjects which are not UE approved: Mathematics Studies, Hospitality, English Language Learning (formerly ESOL) and Childcare Studies.

Students who do not take English at Level 2 need to check that they are meeting literacy requirements for tertiary entry.  


Our Vocational Learning programmes offer the following options which are available by application or student selection:

Gateway combines study at school with workplace learning. Students gain Unit Standard credits towards their national qualifications while gaining workplace experience.

Pathways (previously known as STAR)  students study work related courses that will contribute Unit Standard credits towards their NCEA qualifications and National Certificate courses. Other opportunities are made available to assist students to explore career pathways and tertiary training. 


What must I choose in Year 13?

Year 13 students may choose five subjects from the NCEA Level 3 lists. It is recommended that students aiming to achieve UE select a minimum of 3-5 five university approved subjects. Students need to check the subject recommendations listed in the subject areas.

NCEA Level 3 subjects: the following subjects lead to University Entrance: Accounting, Art History, Biology, Business, Calculus, Chemistry, Classical Studies, Computer Science, Dance, Digital Technologies Media, Drama, Economics, English or English Aotearoa, Food and Nutrition, Foundation Statistics, French, Geography, Design and Visual Communication, Health and Wellbeing, History, Japanese, Fashion and Textiles, Media Studies, Music, Physical Education, Physical Education and Health, Physics, Visual Arts (with up to two options from Design, Painting, Photography, Printmaking or Sculpture), Social Studies, Statistics, Te Ao Haka and Te Reo Māori.

NCEA Level 3 subjects which are not UE approved: Hospitality, Childcare Studies, Tourism and English Language Learning.


Our Vocational Learning programme offers the following options available by application or student selection:

Gateway combines study at school with workplace learning. Students gain Unit Standard credits towards their national qualifications while working, and experience a career they are considering.

Pathway students study work related courses that will contribute Unit Standard credits towards their NCEA qualifications and National Certificate courses. Other opportunities are made available to assist students to explore career pathways and tertiary training e.g opportunities to attend UCOL one day a week to explore their career options and to develop industry relevant skills, knowledge and credits.


Cost of courses

Regarding course contributions, course costs for take home items and equipment required we are working hard to create equity for students through complying with the Ministry of Education Guidelines.  

Equipment required: Students’ families and whānau are expected to supply stationery.  If families/whānau choose to purchase stationery from our kura, then payment can be enforced – however families/whānau are free to purchase stationery from any outlet.  Textbooks which are part of the cost of curriculum delivery will be loaned to students.  Students will not be made to purchase or hire textbooks, or pay a deposit to cover possible damage. 

Course contribution: Items that are part of the curriculum i.e. workbooks are listed under course contribution.  Food eaten as part of a food technology class is a course contribution because students need to conduct a sensory evaluation of the food they prepare to ensure it is fit for consumption.  Families and whānau can choose to pay all, some or none of this requested donation.  We ask that where families are able to pay they do so as this allows us to provide an exciting and enriching curriculum.  

Course costs: Families/whānau can be charged for the cost of materials when they have agreed that the item can be taken home. Families and whānau will be informed of the choice to purchase so that they have notice of the likely cost. Schools and kura can require family/whānau to decide whether they want to purchase the take-home component when the student signs up for the course. 

Equity funding:  For families/whānau who are struggling to meet costs please contact HoD Guidance Petrina Paki who manages our Equity fund [email protected]


Meeting Learning Needs - Acceleration

Students who have shown a very high level of ability may be offered the opportunity of acceleration. This is done on an individual basis where teachers have recommended this avenue of support for the student. Students may also request acceleration which will be considered, and a final decision will be made by the school.


University Entrance

Listed below is the criteria that must be met to gain University Entrance.

Achievement of NCEA Level 3, including:

  • UE Numeracy – 10 credits at Level 1 or higher from specified achievement standards or three specific numeracy unit standards, (they will likely have these from Level 1 or 2) and including
  • UE Literacy – 10 credits (five in reading and five in writing) from specified Level 2 and Level 3 achievement standards.  (They will likely have these from Level 2) AND
  • Achievement of NCEA Level 3 (60 Level 3 credits) including 14 credits in each of three courses from the list of University Entrance Approved courses.