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Senior Years

Senior Years

We Are

Our Senior Years journey is designed to support future career pathways. Individualised pathways are achieved through traditional academic subjects, virtual schooling options, and links with local TAFE colleges and registered training Organisations. In the Senior Years journey, the pastoral focus is on coaching young adults for success and supporting their wellbeing by providing a targeted Careers Education. We prepare students for their next stage in life beyond our College, whether it be further study or entry into the workplace. Students are offered a challenging and diverse curriculum for the vital Senior Years, with a wide range of subjects accredited by the Queensland Studies Authority, as well as opportunities to undertake nationally accredited vocational courses. Our vocational subjects provide a smooth transition from school to work. Students may also undertake school-based traineeships, structured work placement, or work experience. We also have a Careers Coordinator on hand to offer guidance and assistance in these important life choices. Our students are able to either drop-in or make an appointment for assistance in any subject or career area.

Academic Curriculum

Our senior secondary curriculum (Years 10-12) is designed to prepare students for their next stage in life, whether it be further study or entry into the workplace. Students are offered a challenging and diverse curriculum for the vital senior years, with a wide range of subjects accredited by the Queensland Studies Authority, as well as opportunities to undertake nationally-accredited vocational courses.

Our vocational subjects provide a smooth transition from school to work. Students may also undertake on-the-job training through School-Based Traineeships, Structured Work Placement or Work Experience. Our Careers Counsellor is on hand to offer guidance and assistance in these important life choices.

St Catherine's Catholic College offers a wide range of senior subjects in order to satisfy the needs of students with different abilities and interests. Students entering Year 11 must choose a course of subjects that will ensure they are eligible to qualify for a QCE. The subjects offered at St Catherine's Catholic College fall into three different categories:

1. General Syllabuses: General subjects are suited to students who are interested in pathways beyond senior secondary schooling that lead primarily to tertiary studies and to pathways for vocational education and      training and work. General subjects include Extension subjects.

  1. Applied Syllabuses: Applied subjects are suited to students who are primarily interested in pathways beyond senior secondary schooling that lead to vocational education and training or work.
  2. Stand Alone VET (Vocational Education and Training) includes those courses which consist of a national qualification at certificate levels I, II or III. These subjects are recorded on the Student Education Profile. While they do not contribute to an OP, they contribute to the calculation of a tertiary entrance rank and the QCE.

Senior Education Profile

Students in Queensland are issued with a Senior Education Profile (SEP) upon completion of senior studies. This profile may include a:

  • statement of results
  • Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE)
  • Queensland Certificate of Individual Achievement (QCIA)

For more information about the SEP visit QCAA Senior Certificates Qualifications.

Statement of Results

Students are issued with a statement of results in the December following the completion of a QCAA-developed course of study. A new statement of results is issued to students after each QCAA-developed course of study is completed. A full record of study will be issued, along with the QCE qualification, in the first December or July after the student meets the requirements for a QCE.

Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE)

Students may be eligible for a Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE) at the end of their senior schooling. Students who do not meet the QCE requirements can continue to work towards the certificate post-secondary schooling. The QCAA awards a QCE in the following July or December, once a student becomes eligible. Learning accounts are closed after nine years; however, a student may apply to the QCAA to have the account reopened and all credit continued.

Queensland Certificate of Individual Achievement (QCIA)

The Queensland Certificate of Individual Achievement (QCIA) reports the learning achievements of eligible students who complete an individual learning program. At the end of the senior phase of learning, eligible students achieve a QCIA. These students have the option of continuing to work towards a QCE post-secondary schooling.


From 2020, the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) replaced the Overall Position (OP) as the standard pathway to tertiary study for Queensland Year 12s. The ATAR is the primary mechanism used nationally for tertiary admissions and indicates a student’s position relative to other students. QTAC will calculate ATARs for Queensland school leavers. 

Career Education Program

The career education program commences formally in Year 10, where students are introduced to career options, goal setting, pathways, resume preparation and job interview training.  There is also a particular focus on helping students make informed subject choices regarding their career pathways in Year 11 and 12.

Work experience

Year 10 students undertake a compulsory block week of work experience in Term 3 which coincides with SET planning, career expos and information sessions.  Work Experience forms an increasingly important part of the educational process for all students.  Placements between businesses and industry provide invaluable insights into the world of work and helps students develop the skills and qualities they will need for a successful transition into working life.   It can be highly motivational for students as they begin to develop a better idea of what working is really about.

All Senior students are encouraged to undertake work experience during school holidays.  Special allowance and flexibility for work experience can be given during the school term and is organised on an individual basis.

Careers Website

Comprehensive information is available on the St Catherine's careers website as well as many activities for students to do and resources to assist with career and further education decision making.

Vocational Education and Training (VET)

What is VET?

Vocational Education and Training (VET) provides students with nationally recognised qualifications that focus on delivering skills and knowledge required for specific industries. Our Year 10, 11 and 12 students have the opportunity to complete qualifications at Certificate II and III level, either at school or outside of school (e.g. TAFE). VET also includes school-based apprenticeships and traineeships.

Benefits of VET

Participating in VET provides students with:

  • nationally recognised qualifications
  • credit points towards the attainment of the Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE)
  • hands-on work experience in the industry
  • work-ready knowledge and skills
  • support in their transition to employment, vocational and higher education pathways

School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships

School-based apprenticeships and traineeships (SATs) combine school, training and paid employment to give students in Year 10, 11 and 12 an industry-recognised national qualification and points towards their QCE. Our students are able to complete SATs in a large variety of industry areas, including vet nursing, childcare, automotive, tourism and hospitality, engineering, beauty, hairdressing, retail, electrotechnology, building and construction, health and many more. School-based apprenticeships and traineeships can be a lead into full-time employment on completion of Year 12.

Currently, our senior timetabling accommodates students undertaking apprenticeships and traineeships on a Friday.

VET Qualifications

St Catherine’s Catholic College offers students the opportunity to study certificate courses as an external subject. Students may choose whatever qualification they wish to complete and the school provides flexibility and support. Students may choose to undertake courses as an extra study load or in place of an elective subject.

As the school continues to grow, incorporation of VET subjects into the curriculum is being developed. Like any elective subject, numbers will determine if the class is run or not. Examples of courses which will be on the options list for 2019 include: Fitness, Health and Community Services, Hospitality, Business.

VET success stories

Jessie McAlpin

Jessie was very proactive in seeking work experience. She has always been interested in a career involving animals. After a very successful work experience stint at Orchid Valley Vet Surgery in Cannonvale she was offered a school-based traineeship. She is currently studying a Certificate II in Animal Handling, which is the first step in becoming a qualified veterinary nurse. Jessie works at the clinic on Fridays and studies her course in place of an elective subject at school.

Oliver Jones

Ollie was always a very practical learner and was interested in pursuing a mechanical trade. Ollie also was very proactive in seeking work experience and spent many a school holidays undertaking several placements. He was offered a school-based apprenticeship at Fraser Ford in Proserpine as they were very impressed with his attitude and work ethic. Ollie finished Year 12 in 2017 and is now a full-time apprentice.

Please contact Melissa Pepper if you have any questions relating to the VET or Careers at the College.

Active Responsible Engagement

St Catherine's Catholic College is guided by the gospel values of justice, compassion and reconciliation. In a school the size of St Catherine’s Catholic College, it is important to know who to approach when questions or problems arise.  For both parents and students, the first contact should be the student’s teacher. The classroom teacher can give valuable insight into their progress in academic and social areas. Students meet each morning with their Homeroom Teacher for notices and pastoral care. The classroom teacher/ homeroom teacher is the first point of contact. Each year level has a Pastoral Care Coordinator to monitor student progress and coordinate pastoral care activities for the year level.

The Pastoral Care Coordinator would be the parents and students next point of contact after the homeroom teacher.

The Deputy Principal and Assistant Principal also take overall responsibility for students’ well-being. They are happy to talk with parents about any aspect of a student’s school life.

Education at St Catherine’s Catholic College occurs in the context of a college community where staff, students, and parents work together to enable each person to develop knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to become a lifelong learner. We focus on meeting the needs of each individual student and provide programs that collectively focus on the development of the whole person.

Values and Expectations are:

  1. Justice- Be Responsible
  2. Excellence- Be Your Best
  3. Compassion – Be Considerate
  4. Community- Be Respectful

Senior Years Documents

Welcome to the documents section, this is where you can download useful forms for your son or daughter here at St Catherine's.

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