YEAR 11 TO 13

CLICK HERE for the Senior Assessment Handbook. This booklet includes all information regarding internal and external assessments, extension application forms and any other matters relating to assessments.

CLICK HERE for information on Careers and Gateway.

Selecting Your Subjects for 2017

CLICK HERE for the NCEA Credit Analysis Information Booklet

This Curriculum Information outlines all the subject requirements at senior level at Bream Bay College for 2013. This should be read in conjunction with the Subjects Guide that has a brief outline of each subject, showing the progression through the years at school, their credit values, entry requirements at senior levels and extra costs for each subject where applicable.

CLICK HERE for information on video conferencing / correspondence courses that may be available at Bream Bay College or contact our head of Correspondence Lucy Williams email:

School courses career pathway action plan – a sheet to help with planning Please study the information with your son/daughter; it is designed to help your child carefully choose their subjects for 2013. The subjects you select are an important part of getting you on the right track for your future, so it is important that you choose the right direction. The further you go in senior school the more difficult it becomes to change that direction. The best advice we can give you is to keep as broad a range of subjects for as long as possible.

For each subject you choose, consider the following:

  • What are the entry requirements?
  • Will I enjoy the subject?
  • Can I succeed at the subject?
  • Where does it lead me?

>> Click here to view Subject Option Choices for 2015

For help with Scholarship information:

For advice:

  • Check the “people are able to assist you”information below.
  • Talk to the Head of Departments
  • Check
Course availability
All subjects will run subject to student numbers and staffing availability at the Principal’s discretion.

Four Factors to consider while choosing subjects:


Do you have a career in mind? It is important to be adaptable in a world of work that is rapidly changing. You will probably change jobs a number of times.
Keep your options open, be flexible, do not specialise too soon, could a Gateway Placement help? By taking a course of English, Mathematics and Science in Year 11 you have a wide range of options open to you


Year 11 is your first step in your senior studies. Have you chosen subjects that will allow you to progress to a higher level?

Some subjects have pre-requisites. This means that you can move up to that level of study. you have to have studied certain lower level subjects before


Have you chosen subjects that you like or are good at? You are more likely to succeed in something if you are interested in it and enjoy it. Develop your strengths!
It may be better to choose subjects you enjoy rather than do poorly in a subject you do not enjoy, but feel you have to take for a particular reason.


Do you have the skills that will help prepare you for life? To live successfully in our society it is essential to be able to relate to other cultures, to appreciate the arts and music, and to have a range of life skills and other skills to help occupy your leisure time.


What to consider when choosing your subjects

Every effort is made to ensure that as many students as possible are able to study a programme of their choice.  It is a priority of the school to offer a continuity of courses and to answer student need. Subjects which do not attract sufficient students may not be able to run, or may have to be offered with reduced teacher contact hours.  Well-qualified staffing is another consideration.

 This formula should be of use:

INTEREST                 +                       ABILITY                   +                OCCUPATION                =               SUBJECT

School Staff available to assist you:

Careers Advisor Mrs Reynolds
Gateway Co-Ordinator Ms D'Ath

National Certificate of Educational Achievement

Some subjects will be assessed by Achievement Standards (e.g. ), some by Unit Standards (e.g. Tourism) and some by a combination of both (e.g. Geography).  Where a subject offers more than one programme at a particular year level (e.g. Level 1 English), check the descriptions carefully.  If you are still unsure which programme is most appropriate for you, consult your class teacher, the Head of Faculty, Careers Advisor or House DP.

Standards spell out what you must know and be able to do.  When you have met all the requirements of the standard, you gain credit(s).  Everyone who reaches the standard gets the recognition. 

A unit standard assessment will either be Achieved (A) or Not Achieved (N).  Achievement standards recognise three levels of achievement:  Achieved (A), Achieved with Merit (M) and Achieved with Excellence (E).  All senior subjects offered at Bream Bay College will provide our students with the opportunity to obtain the National Certificate in Educational Achievement (NCEA), Levels 1, 2 or 3.  The unit standards which many of our subjects offer may contribute towards a variety of other national certificates as well as NCEA.

are like “points” that count toward a variety of national certificates which can be completed at school.  Different achievement or unit standards have different numbers of credits depending on the amount of work/effort/time that is expected. 

National certificates can be studied at various levels.  A National Certificate (Level 1) equates to a Year 11 level of study, National Certificate (Level 2) equates to Year 12; Level 3 to Year 13, and so on.

>> Click here for the 2015 NCEA External Examination Timetable
  • NCEA Level 1
NCEA Level 1 comprises a minimum of 80 credits.  Of these, 10 must be from approved literacy and 10 from approved numeracy standards.  So to achieve NCEA Level 1 in one year, you need to choose a course that will give you at least 80 credits, and meet the literacy and numeracy requirements.  If 50 of the credits are at merit or above the certificate gains a merit endorsement. If 50 of the credits are at excellence level the certificate gains an excellence endorsement.
  • NCEA Level 2
For a student to be awarded NCEA Level 2 they must achieve 80 credits, 60 of which must be from Level 2  (or above) standards.  That is to say, you can forward any 20 Level 1 credits towards NCEA Level 2.  When planning your course, it is important to be aware that, although there are no literacy or numeracy requirements for NCEA Level 2, there will be if you are seeking university entrance (see next page).  If 50 of the credits are at merit or above the certificate gains a merit endorsement. If 50 of the credits are at excellence level the certificate gains an excellence endorsement.
  • NCEA Level 3
For a student to be awarded NCEA Level 3 they must achieve 80 credits, 60 of which must be from Level 3 standards. There is no literacy or numeracy requirements for this qualification but if you are intending to study for a degree at university or polytechnic then you have to meet certain numeracy and literacy requirements (see next page).  If 50 of the credits are at merit or above the certificate gains a merit endorsement. If 50 of the credits are at excellence level the certificate gains an excellence endorsement.

Subject endorsements
Any NCEA subject may gain a subject endorsement of merit if there are 14 credits at merit level or above and excellence if there are 14 credits at excellence level.  Three of these credits must be from external assessments for all subjects other than PE where they may be all internal assessment credits.

New Zealand Scholarship 

The best students in each examination subject nationally are encouraged to enter Scholarship.  The number of awards in each subject is based on a proportion of the number of Year 13 students entered for national assessment in those subjects.  Scholarship is a monetary reward. Although it does not attract credits towards NCEA Level 3 or 4, the fact that a student has gained Scholarship will appear on their Record of Achievement.
Interested students should consult their subject teachers or Heads of Faculty.  Further information can be found in Circulars available from NZQA at

University Entrance with NCEA

You will qualify for entrance to a university in New Zealand if you have obtained Level 3 NCEA this includes a minimum of:

The above credits must include

  • 10 credits at Level 1 or higher in Mathematics or Pangarau


  • 10 credits at Level 2 or higher in English OR Te Reo Maori. 5 credits must be in Reading and 5 credits in Writing. These will be selected from a schedule of approved achievement standards and unit standards. Approved standards will be offered in our Level 2 & 3 English OR (not both) Te Reo Maori. programmes.

To summarize, for university entrance you will need:


 Note that some degree programmes have limited entry.  In these cases, a higher level of attainment in NCEA will be required.  For information, see Careers, check the university's website or contact them directly.

"Approved" subjects for University Entrance available at BBC:

Accounting   Economics Music Studies
Biology English  Painting (Art)
Chemistry Geography  Physical Education 
Dance  Home Economics Physics   
Design and Visual Communication (Graphics) History Te Reo Maori
Digital Photography Mathematics (Calculus) Technology (Hard Materials)
Digital Technology  Mathematics (Statistics)  Technology (Fabrics)

University Entrance approved Correspondence and/or Video Conferencing Options available at BBC:     

Agriculture & Horticulture French Language Media Studies
Art History German Language Religious Studies
Business Studies Health Education Samoan Language
Classical Studies Indonesian Language Spanish Language
Cook Island Maori Language Japanese Language Te Reo Maori Language
Design (Practical Art) Korean Language Te Reo Rangatira
Drama Mandarin Language Tongan Language


 Additional subject choices available at BBC include:

**(Please note these are not University Entrance approved subjects)

Employment Skills (Level 1&2) Environmental Studies (Level 1&2) Latin Language(Level 1) Legal Studies (Level 1&2)

Approved University Entrance - Literacy Standards

In Brief

  • 5 Credits at level 2 or higher are required in Reading and 5 credits in Writing at level 2 or higher from the standards listed below
  • The Literacy requirement can be fulfilled in either English or Te Reo Maori, but NOT a combination of both

Approved University Entrance - Numeracy Standards

The National Qualifications Authority (NZQA) states that:

“A minimum of 10 numeracy credits at level 1 or higher in Mathematics or Pangarau on the National Qualifications Framework”.

This means that ANY level 1 (or higher) Mathematics credits gained, will give the student the necessary University Entrance Numeracy requirements.

You may access your record of achievement through the NZQA website.
  • You must first register to generate a password
  • You will need your National Student Number (NSN) & Date of Birth – your NSN number is found on any correspondence that has come from NZQA to you.  Otherwise you may contact your house DP and they will find this for you.