Curriculum and Pathways
To confidently engage and flourish in the modern world, we believe in the transformative competencies of entrepreneurship, creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, communication, character and citizenship.
Our Curriculum is developmentally structured to meet the interests, capabilities, and passions of students as they progress through secondary school.
At Irene McCormack Catholic College, Religious Education is regarded as the first learning area, as outlined in the Bishop’s Mandate, and is studied by all students at the College.
As with every school in Western Australia, the College delivers the Western Australian Curriculum mandated by the School Curriculum and Standards Authority in years Seven to Ten. Adapted from the Australian Curriculum, the curriculum consists of the eight learning areas – English, Health and Physical Education, Humanities and Social Sciences, Languages, Mathematics, Science, Technologies and The Arts.
At Irene McCormack College, we are committed to ensuring that the context in which the curriculum is taught be both relevant to the lives of students and address the contemporary issues they face. With these considerations and the Alice Springs (Mparntwe) Education Declaration in mind, we ensure that the context in which learning takes place gives special attention to the cross-curricula priorities:
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures
- Asia and Australia’s engagement with Asia
We believe in future-focused, lifelong learning and as such ensure that the general capabilities are embedded into our approach to teaching. We are committed to ensuring students develop the knowledge, skills, behaviours, and dispositions that will assist them to live and work successfully in the twenty-first century. We believe that children require and are entitled to have a strong sense of identity and wellbeing, should feel connected with and be able to contribute to their world, feel confident and involved in their learning and be growing into effective communicators.
There are seven general capabilities:
- Information and Communication Technology (ICT) capability
- Critical and creative thinking
- Personal and social capability
- Ethical understanding
- Intercultural understanding.
In Years 11 and 12, students are supported to find the right pathway for them to ensure that upon completion of their educational journey at Irene McCormack College, they have the skills, knowledge, and qualifications to continue their journey to live a meaningful, selfless and spiritual life. Whether their aim Is to Continue their study at University or TAFE, or to find meaningful employment, we have a variety of career and study pathways to meet the individual needs of each child.
At Irene McCormack Catholic College, we recognise that students entering secondary school In Year Seven find themselves at a formative and sometimes overwhelming stage of their life. Developmentally, there are significant physical, emotional, social, and intellectual changes. Added to this are the changes associated with attending a new school and with it many and varied expectations and organisation requirements. We offer a holistic program where the staff work with students to accommodate this period of time with the deliberate organisation of structures and curriculum within an environment that reflects the College motto of Prayer, Service and Justice. In Year Seven, all our students use an iPad as their device, which is provided by the College. We believe digital technology can transform and redefine learning, allowing students to become flexible and agile curators and creators of new knowledge.
The Curriculum in Year 8 builds on the experiences of Year Seven, with a focus on skill and concept development, critical thinking and problem solving. Harnessing the concept of ‘self’, students are encouraged to develop their independent learning skills as well as learn how to work collaboratively with others. We believe these skills form the cornerstone of your child’s lifelong educational journey. Multiple opportunities to grow and develop these essential skills are embedded in a well-balanced program of learning across all courses.
In Year 9 at Irene McCormack Catholic College, we work in partnership with our students to develop them into passionate life-long learners. Encouraging them to become independent individuals, providing them with opportunities to engage in critical and creative thinking and walking life’s journey in reflection through prayer, service and justice highlights a curriculum that embeds holistic growth.
The Year 9 program includes compulsory courses in Religious Education, English, Mathematics, Science, Social Sciences, and Health and Physical Education. Students also have the opportunity to select from Learning Areas that focus on the Arts, Languages and Technologies, and or one of the many specialist courses on offer.
In Year 10 at Irene McCormack Catholic College, students are empowered to take responsibility for their own learning and to develop a strong sense of independence, responsibility for self and commitment to choices.
In Year 10, students develop appropriate study habits, engaging in a range of strategies to complete their courses successfully.
The Year 10 program includes compulsory courses in Religious Education, English, Health and Physical Education, Mathematics, Science and Social Sciences. Students also have the opportunity to select from Learning Areas that focus on the Arts, Technologies, and Languages.
In Year 11, students commence a career journey that will take them beyond school to the world of work or to one of a wide range of post school study or training options. We offer a wide range of subjects and courses and a variety of pathways to meet the individual needs of each student, so that no matter what their dreams beyond Irene McCormack College encompass, students feel supported in their journey to finding their passion, their purpose and perform to the best of their ability.
In Year 12, students commence a career journey that will take them beyond school to the world of work or to one of a wide range of post school study or training options. We offer a wide range of subjects and courses and a variety of pathways to meet the individual needs of each student, so that no matter what their dreams beyond Irene McCormack College encompass, students feel supported in their journey to finding their passion, their purpose and perform to the best of their ability.
Planning a learning pathway to your dream career can be a daunting prospect. Our expert Career Counsellor, VET Coordinator and leadership team can assist you to discover your talents and passions and map out the appropriate study plan.
Our staff can assist students with:
- Planning your career pathway
- Advice for subject selections
- Advice for career choices and goal setting
- Support to develop a resume
- Advice for interview skills
- Skill-based and Workplace learning
- TAFE and Registered Training Organisations
Irene McCormack Catholic College provides extensive choice and opportunities for students in courses leading to achievement of the Western Australian Certificate of Education (WACE), and entrance to TAFE and university, or for securing employment.
Our dynamic learning environment ensures students are offered a range of academic pathways tailored to help them achieve excellence at an individual level.
Direct entry through the study of courses that contribute to the achievement of the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR). Each university sets a course entry rank in order to receive an offer for each course. This is seen as the fairest method for student comparison and, as a nationally recognised measure, it is used by many universities as the primary basis for admission. However, Universities may admit students based on other conditions which include prior study, portfolios and interviews.
This generally means that ATARs reflect supply and demand more than the intellectual capacity needed to study the course.
”"I truly enjoyed studying my ATAR subjects throughout Year 11 and 12 at IMCC. Although challenging at times, ATAR really helped push me in the direction I wanted to go in life. The course units of Economics, Politics and Law and Modern History not only peaked my interests, but also have given me a serious advantage at university whilst studying my double degree of a Bachelor of Law and a Bachelor in Economics. Integrating into University life has been seamless as a result of my prior knowledge because of my subjects, and the way in which ATAR classes set you up for a successful student career. If I had to re-do my student life over again, I would always pick to do ATAR, because of the benefits it has had on me."Josh
Alternative University entry – Edith Cowan University UniPrep Schools Program
Uni Prep Schools provides an alternate pathway to university through Edith Cowan University. Edith Cowan University aims to enable students from all backgrounds to succeed in higher education and life-long learning. To support this commitment, UniPrep Schools has been approved by ECU’s Academic Board as a four-unit course, based on the existing UniPrep University program. UniPrep Schools will complement students’ senior school commitments by enhancing academic skills development, integrating university experiences, and providing accessible pathways to tertiary study. The program will also equip students with transferable career development skills and digital literacies. The teaching and learning content, digital learning technologies, and assessments are provided to students before the commencement of each unit through the ECU Online Learning Management System.
Students can now complete UniPrep Schools across Year 11 and Year 12 as part of the two-year UniPrep Schools pathway. This program is competitive and has prerequisites.
”"I believe the UniPrep course has been highly valuable to the UniPrep students of 2022, myself included. I think this course achieves its purpose of giving students a solid understanding of the many skills intrinsic to the academic environment of university, for example paragraph structure, study techniques, stress management, APA referencing, behaving in a professional manner etc, as well as preparing successful UniPrep students for university learning and assessment standards
On a personal note, as a successful UniPrep student myself, I found the course content and learning material within the UniPrep Schools Program to be very accessible and engaging to work with, while being simple to understand and learn from. The lectures presented were all clear, concise, and successfully conveyed their learning material in a methodical way that was simple to understand."Kelly
Virtual Schools Network (ViSN)
ViSN is an online learning system provided to students in Catholic schools. The program offers students the opportunity to undertake ATAR subjects not available at their own school. Students are required to work independently online and are assigned by a mentor teacher who both delivers the course and assesses and monitors the student’s progress. Support is available through the following means:
- ViSN Teacher – only a message, email, Teams Call or phone call away. The first point of call when a student needs help with their course.
- School-Based ViSN Mentor – available to help on a daily basis, during school hours. They will also ensure students are progressing as planned.
- Tech Support – the College has technology specialists who can help with ICT issues.
- Online Course Classmates – those doing the same online course can be a big help if students have a question or need to clarify something.
- Parents/Guardians – are a great support to help keep students on track at home.
Online learning is of particular benefit in transitioning to further study, especially university, where more and more courses are being delivered online due to:
- Timetable clash
- Course not available
- Elite athlete away for competitions
- Independent learner
- Health condition prevents regular attendance at school
Vocational Education and Training
At IMCC, we believe that students deserve an individualised approach to pathway planning. To support this, we offer access to a range of Vocational Education and Training opportunities. We offer a plethora of opportunities for students to develop industry specific kills and qualifications both on campus and externally at one of our many training provider partnerships.
The College offers students the opportunity to complete nationally recognised certificate course in several modes:
1. School based certificate courses
A curated range of certificate courses are offered on site. These courses are taught by experienced teachers with addition industry qualifications and experience. These certificate level courses can be used to gain access to employment or further study and can be accessed by students on any pathway. Each year the courses that we offer and reviewed to determine and ensure that we are meeting the needs of our students and remain current and industry relevant.
”"Completing the Certificate II in Workplace Skills in Year 11 at the College last year was exciting as I was able to learn useful skills like communication, teamwork, and work health and safety. It was really intriguing. I’m very excited to complete my Certificate III in Business this year. "Chiara
2. TAFE based and private providers of certificate courses
Students have access to a wide and diverse range of certificate courses offered through our external provider partners. Students can access certificate courses ranging from Certificate II to Certificate IV. Typically, these offer hands on, practical study coupled with specific units of competency that link to further courses and future employment. These courses are very much industry specific and aid students in their career pathway and ensure their readiness for the next step of their journey.
”"Cyber Security is a great course to do. Throughout the two years I've done a Certificate III in Cyber Security I found that it not only boosted my passion for technology, but encouraged me to think about my future and what I want to do after school. In TAFE, we do hands-on activities like PC building and theory learning about how to be safe online. TAFE is a great option to do while you're at school because you’re in a course with like-minded people, which makes it easy to make friends and it gives you a better idea about what you may like to do in the future. I highly recommend trying a TAFE course."Shannan Da Cruz
Vocational Education and Training (VET) Courses - Government Funded
- Students need to apply using the online application for these very competitive one- and two-year courses, usually around July each year. Students must meet minimum literacy and numeracy requirements to be eligible.
- Students receive offers later in the year, if successful.
- If successful, students will attend TAFE 1 or 2 days a week whilst still completing Year 11 and 12 school studies.
Vocational Education And Training (VET) Courses– Fee For Service
- There are a number of private Registered Training Organisations (RTO) providers that offer VET in School (VETis) programs that allow the student to complete senior school studies and attend a chosen course one day a week.
- Courses may be off-site, face to face in classes or online depending on the course and RTO.
- These courses incur tuition fees that are payable by families.
We believe that our students need a range of opportunities to future proof their pathways. For students to succeed in the ever-changing world of work, they need to be provided with the ability to develop key transferable skills, such as communication, negotiation, and collaboration and have to opportunity for career exploration.
- Students in Years 11 and 12 can access Workplace Learning. Once a week, students are engaged in a real-life work environment. Here, they develop transferable skills, gain real world experience in an industry of their interest, and develop important networks and connections. Workplace learning offers students a hands-on way to pursue their career exploration and can also be used toward graduation. Our Workplace learning program is overseen and directed by our VET coordinator who supports the students both in school and at the workplace. This program has enabled many students to gain direct employment after graduating from the College.
”"I started a Certificate II in Community Health and Wellbeing through AMA this year and it is such an amazing opportunity. It gives you a pathway towards where you want to go, and so many opportunities for practical learning and skill development as well. At the moment we are doing mini activities to get used to the course, and team building which is so good because I get to learn so much about the other girls. Later this year we will be put in work placement, where we will go to aged-care homes and help out with the knowledge and skills we have received during class times.
This course is so thought out, which I am very appreciative of because after this two-year course is over, I’ll undertake a Diploma of Nursing. "Ada
”"Over the past two years, I have enjoyed three semesters of onsite experiences. I have attended workplace learning at Ella Bache and Peace in Pod beauty salons. Participating in workplace, I have learnt many transferrable skills, including communication and time management skills, teamwork and customer service. I have also gained information and training within the beauty industry. Since my first workplace in Year 11, I learnt quickly that the beauty industry is the career I am passionate about and would like to pursue. I am now currently completing a Certificate in Lash and Brow Services, and then progressing towards brow tattooing and cosmetic surgery. I would highly recommend completing the Career and Enterprise subject, as it prepares students for future careers. "Shyan
ONSITE - Workplace Learning Program (WPL)
The Workplace Learning Program (WPL) at the College offers GENERAL students enrolled in Career and Enterprise General an opportunity to apply for the program through ONSITE, our third-party provider.
ONSITE is the schools’ industry based Vocational Education and Training third party partner who provide students with the opportunity to undertake industry-based work experience.
The College has developed a partnership with ONSITE, an industry specialist, to further extend the opportunities offered to students. ONSITE build partnerships with industry and training organisations to give students a competitive edge. Through ONSITE, students can access the Workplace Learning program and a selection of Certificate courses. Through the partnership with ONSITE, students gain supported and tailored workplace experience along with a variety of workplace skills.
The WPL program consists of two placements per year where students attend a chosen workplace one day per week for 10 weeks to gain a greater insight into interested industries, workplaces and/or occupations.
Students work in a wide variety of chosen industries including retail, hospitality, real estate, hairdressing, IT, childcare, education, aged care, automotive, electrical, plumbing, carpentry, plastering, painting, agriculture, healthcare to help develop core work skills and gain greater insight into the world of work.
ONSITE incurs a fee that is payable by families.
”"I attend North Metropolitan TAFE in Joondalup one day per week. I am currently studying a Certificate II Kitchen Operations. Friday is easily my favourite day since I get to attend TAFE and learn all the new cooking techniques and styles. It really intrigues me and keeps me focused. I would change nothing. Attending TAFE is one of the best things I have chosen to do, it opens my possible job opportunities and apprenticeships. Along with this I have made some lifelong friends who I'm always excited to see and make going even more enjoyable."Michael
”"Thank you for the opportunity to go to TAFE every Friday for the past year to complete my Certificate II in Automative Servicing Technology. I have learned a lot and have gained so much experience in my chosen trade."Tom
”"Completing the Certificate II in Workplace Skills in Year 11 at the College last year was exciting as I was able to learn useful skills like communication, teamwork, and work health and safety. It was really intriguing. I’m very excited to complete my Certificate III in Business this year."Shannan
Further Career Information
Extensive career information and advice is available on our Careers page by clicking button below.