Study only what you want to at school? Totally possible.

Image provided: Vani Vasan, Year 7 student at Kardinia International College, Victoria
Image provided: Vani Vasan, Year 7 student at Kardinia International College, Victoria

Vani Vasan from Kardinia International College in Geelong takes us through the selection process of an incredible set of subjects and electives in year seven. From ‘languages other than english’ (LOTE) to maths and history, she has got it all covered!

1. What subjects are you currently studying Vani?

I currently study French, Japanese, English, Science, Maths, Digital Technology and Defending Fitness. These are the subjects I chose for Semester 1.

We have already made our selections for Semester 2, where I will be taking 7 out of my 9 choices of French, Japanese, English, Science, Maths, Drama, Game Lab, Greek and Roman History, and Basic Fitness.

Choice of subjects

2. How did you end up choosing them?

I sat down with my parents and decided on which ones I would like to pursue. For e.g normally year 7 students only take one LOTE, but I wanted to try my hand at both French and Japanese.

I had to convince my parents after which I was able to take Japanese and French. There are a few subjects like English and Maths that all students learn, but you have a variety of choice for the others. Even with English, not everyone is studying the same.

Telling Tales is what I’m doing right now – Based on the R J Palacio novel Wonder, while some other students are doing Animalia – based on the Michael Morpurgo novel – War Horse.

In fact, the Student textbook shop gave me War Horse and I read it a few times before the start of school only to find out that I was actually going to be reading Wonder, which I had already read many times a couple of years ago.

Image provided: Vani Vasan, Year 7 student at Kardinia International College, Victoria
Image provided: Vani Vasan, Year 7 student at Kardinia International College, Victoria

3. Which ones are your favourite?

French, English and Japanese. I also like Maths a lot, but I like reading and writing, so languages hold a slightly higher rank.

Process of selection

4. Kardinia International has a unique system when it comes to choosing subjects, where you select your own set of seven subjects twice a year. Can you tell us a bit about how this works?

It’s very difficult to choose only 7 subjects when there are so many more that you would like to do. I would like to do all 9 subjects that I have chosen for Semester 2, but timetabling everything in will become quite difficult so they make us choose 7.

They give us the lists of all subjects Year 7 students can take and then ask us to think it over and make an informed selection.

After that, they ask us to make a final selection and the College reserves the right to accept us for the subject or not, based on whether they have space and if we are suited for the subject.

Our school also allows us to take accelerated studies in subjects we are very good at.
A friend of mine is doing accelerated maths, and I could have taken the same for English, but as I am the youngest in class, my parents and I agreed to take my time and enjoy all subjects slowly.

RELATED: Electives and cool STEM careers

5. What do you like about this selection process?

I like that there are lots of opportunities at senior school. It’s not like primary school where I had to study whatever was on the course schedule. Here I can increase my skills in subjects I like and enjoy. It also helps me think about what I could do later in life.

What’s for the future?

6. What would you like to study at school in the coming years?

I enjoy learning about various things, and I am not currently sure what I would really like to do, but I like languages and writing, so that’s definitely on the list. I am hoping to study theatre and drama also as they go hand-in-hand with stories.

I also like to know how everyone thinks and how their circumstances affect their behaviour, so maybe psychology. I wish something along that line was offered to year 7 students, but I will get the chance to study psychology in around year 10.

7. And what would you like to study after Year 12?

Currently, I want to study psychiatry. I have always had an interest in medicine, but only recently have I become curious about external factors affecting mental health and how it impacts different people in different ways.

8. We heard that you also like coding. Do you want a technology or STEM job when you finish school?

I love coding, and if I do get a job in coding, I would like a job where I create programs and games, and even if I don’t get a job specifically in coding, my interest and experience will be a big help as the technological world is expanding and becoming more significant in different kinds of jobs.

Wondering what electives to take in Year 11 and 12? Check out 5 things you need to know about choosing electives 

Astha Singh

Author: Dr Astha Singh

Astha is the Managing Editor at Refraction Media. She is a STEM Marketer and holds a Honors, Masters & PhD degree in Science. She has been producing STEM marketing content for over 10 years and is an avid advocate of Diversity in the STEM industry.

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