Academic Pathway & NCEA

Sacred Heart College provides a challenging curriculum based on The New Zealand Curriculum Framework and is renowned for providing students with a caring, supportive environment in which they excel both academically and personally. Students at all levels are extended academically with appropriate support and specialist courses. Wherever possible students are encouraged to enter national and international competitions in a variety of subjects. The College has achieved considerable success in these competitions.

At Years 9 and 10 the curriculum has a greater reliance on individually based learning, with separate teachers in the core as well as specialist subjects. All students have the opportunity to study an international language such as Spanish or Chinese if they wish. 

In Year 10 all students follow a common course of core subjects, as well as choosing three options from a range of nine – Art, Computer Studies, Commerce, Supplementary English, ELL, French, Graphics and Design, Chinese, Maori, Music, Technology and Visual Language. 

Senior School
In Year 11 students enter NCEA Level 1. Able students are offered a range of extension courses.

In Years 11 to 13 many courses are available covering the National Qualifications Framework Unit Standards, and NCEA Levels 2 and 3. Many students undertake study across the levels.

Underpinning the curriculum at all levels are the courses offered in Religious Education, which for International Students is compulsory and taught by ELL teachers to further assist in improving on their English competency and gaining credits. 

English Language Learner Department (ELL)
Sacred Heart College has three fully qualified English Language Learner (ELL) teachers who teach small groups, according to their English language learning needs. For students who require extra English language support, the College offers extra support through the English Language Learners (ELL) Department. For further information on English Language Learners Department please visit the ELL webpage.

Subjects and Subject Selection
At Sacred Heart College, we encourage International Students to choose the subjects based on their personal interest and future goals. Where it is possible, courses at Sacred Heart College are organised so that:

  • Students can work at different levels in different subjects.
  • Years 11, 12 and 13 students study a compulsory core of subjects at each level, together with a number of optional subjects.
  • Standards for the NCEA can be accumulated over several years.


Student Course books
Student coursebooks give detailed information about each subject and course and information about requirements for New Zealand universities. 
Senior Coursebook 2017 (download from the Resource panel)
Year 10 Coursebook 2017 (download from the Resource panel)

NCEA Examinations
National Certificates of Educational Achievement (NCEA) are New Zealand’s national qualifications for Year 11-13 secondary students. NCEA is part of the National Qualifications Framework (NZQF) and NCEA exams are recognised throughout the world at many universities and high schools. All International Students who are at Sacred Heart College from February to December (one full academic year) will be required to sit NCEA exams at the end of the year.

The NCEA exams are an extra cost to the student. Please refer to the current fees schedule for this cost. For more information about these exams, please go to the NCEA webpage.