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Stage 6 (11–12) syllabus development

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New Stage 6 (11-12) syllabuses: English, Mathematics, Science and History

The new Stage 6 syllabuses in English, Mathematics Standard, Science and History, including five Life Skills courses are now available on the NSW Syllabuses site.

Read about the NESA Board’s decision to postpone the implementation of the new Stage 6 Mathematics Advanced, Extension 1 and Extension 2 syllabuses. Updates about the release of the new syllabuses and an implementation timeline will be provided through NESA News.

Consultation was conducted on the Science Extension draft syllabus between February and April 2017. Feedback received from consultation will inform the development of the final syllabus. Updates about the new syllabus will be provided through NESA News.

Following extensive consultation over three years with teachers, educators, academics, school sectors, parents, business and the community, the new syllabuses feature:

  • a focus on ‘depth’ of content studied rather than ‘breadth’ of topics covered
  • online format for easier programming and navigation
  • links to teaching and assessment resources, and
  • the incorporation of Australian Curriculum content.

New assessment requirements

New requirements for school-based assessment for each of the new Stage 6 courses are available on each syllabus page on the NSW Syllabuses site.

During Term 2, there will be opportunities to provide feedback on draft HSC Examination Specifications for English, Mathematics, Science and History.

Support for schools and teachers

Course guides are available for each new syllabus, including advice on assessment and reporting requirements on the NSW Syllabuses website. These guides will assist schools and teachers to understand and implement the new syllabuses and assessment requirements.
Download our PowerPoint presentation introducing the new NSW Stage 6 Syllabuses for English, Mathematics, Science and History. 
From March 2017, more support materials will be released for each new syllabus. These course-specific materials will include samples of: scope and sequences; teaching units; assessment activities and assessment schedules.
In Term 1 2017, Program Builder will be available to assist teachers and schools to plan and program for implementation of the new syllabuses.

Timeline for implementation

In 2018, Year 11 students will begin their Stage 6 studies with the new syllabuses for English, Mathematics, Science and History. They will undertake school-based assessment according to the new assessment requirements.

The Year 12 students of 2019 will study the new Year 12 courses and undertake school-based HSC assessments based on the new requirements. They will be the first cohort to complete HSC examinations using the new English, Mathematics, Science and History syllabuses. They will also be the first HSC cohort to be examined on the redesigned examination questions.

Schools and teachers will have the rest of 2017 to familiarise themselves with the new content and school-based assessment requirements, and plan for implementation in 2018.

  • Familiarisation and planning
  • Implementation of new syllabuses for Year 11 students
  • Implementation of new school-based assessment guidelines for Year 11 students
  • Implementation of new school-based assessment guidelines for Year 12 students
  • New syllabuses examined at HSC for the first time
  • Redesigned HSC examination questions introduced                    

Support for parents

The Parent Guide to New Stage 6 Syllabuses and Assessment from 2018 is available. Schools may wish to distribute this information or direct parents to the website using their school communication channels.

Stronger HSC Standards

On 19 July 2016 the former Minister for Education, Adrian Piccoli, announced reforms to the HSC, which will be implemented for Year 11 students in 2018 and Year 12 students in 2019.

This reforms include the introduction of a Minimum Literacy and Numeracy Standard. From 2020, Year 12 students must reach a minimum standard of functional literacy and numeracy for the award of the HSC credential. 

Read more about the  Stronger HSC Standards reforms, including a timeline for implementation.

Stage 6 syllabus development background

Read more about the background to this development process including the draft syllabuses.