A vibrant and diverse programme

Geelong Grammar students can select from a broad range of subjects across a spectrum of disciplines. Our VCE programme offers a vibrant and engaging curriculum that ensures the gifts of every student are energised and optimised.

VCE studies are made up of Units 1, 2, 3 or 4. Each unit is a semester, or half year in length. Students may choose to study Unit 1 or Unit 2 of a subject as stand-alone units, however Units 3 and 4 must be studied as a sequence.

Most students will undertake 22 units over the two-year VCE period; 12 units at Year 11, and 10 units at Year 12.

Students who display the academic ability and maturity in Year 9 have the option of completing either VCE Unit 1 or 2 or both in Year 10. Similarly, Year 11 students wishing to study a Unit 3 and 4 sequence need to be achieving an overall B average in Year 10 and a B+ in the prerequisite subject.

To obtain the VCE, students must satisfactorily complete sixteen units, including:

At least three units from the English group: English, English (EAL) or Literature, and at least three other Unit 3 and 4 sequences.

At least one of the English units must be a Unit 3 and 4.

What is the ATAR?

The Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) is a means of statistically treating study scores and is important to tertiary institutions for student selection. Its calculation is undertaken by the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC).

The ATAR uses study scores from Unit 3 and 4 VCE studies and, where appropriate, VCE VET programs. The scores in each study are compared or ‘scaled’ to yield a percentile ranking for each student that reflects their comparative performance against all other candidates across the state.

Students completing the IB Diploma are also given a ranking, which can be converted to an ATAR for tertiary admission purposes.

Hear more about the VCE


Please see below for the course offerings at Geelong Grammar within the VCE programme.

Please note: The provision of any subject is dependent on sufficient numbers of students selecting that subject. In the event that a subject is not available due to insufficient numbers, the students involved would be informed of this as soon as possible.


Description: The VCE course focuses on how English language is used to create meaning in written, spoken and multimodal texts of varying complexity. Literary texts selected for study are drawn from the past and present, from Australia and from other cultures. Other texts are selected for analysis and presentation of argument.

Description: English as an Additional Language (EAL) is central to the learning and development of students for whom English is not their home language. Through learning EAL, students build their capacity to communicate confidently and effectively, developing English language competence in the modes of Speaking and Listening, Reading and Viewing, and Writing.

Description: In VCE Literature students undertake close reading of texts and analyse how language and literary elements and techniques function within a text. Emphasis is placed on recognition of a text’s complexity and meaning, and on consideration of how that meaning is embodied in its literary form. The study provides opportunities for reading deeply, widely and critically, responding analytically and creatively, and appreciating the aesthetic merit of texts.


Description: Further Mathematics Units 3 and 4 are designed to be widely accessible and comprise a combination of non-calculus based content from a prescribed core, plus two from four possible modules. Further Mathematics provides general preparation for employment or further study, in particular where data analysis, recursion and number patterns are important.

Description: Mathematical Methods Units 3 and 4 are completely prescribed and extend the study of simple elementary functions to include combinations of these functions, algebra, calculus, probability and statistics, and their applications in a variety of practical and theoretical contexts. They also provide background for further study in, for example, science, humanities, economics and medicine.

Description: Specialist Mathematics Units 3 and 4 are designed to be taken in conjunction with Mathematical Methods Units 3 and 4, or following previous completion of Mathematical Methods Units 3 and 4. The areas of study extend content from Mathematical Methods Units 3 and 4 to include rational and other quotient functions as well as other advanced mathematics topics such as complex numbers, vectors, differential equations, mechanics and statistical inference. Study of Specialist Mathematics Units 3 and 4 assumes concurrent study or previous completion of Mathematical Methods Units 3 and 4.

Science and Technologies

Description: VCE Agricultural and Horticultural Studies takes an interdisciplinary approach to the exploration of food and fibre production, with an overarching focus on land cultivation and the raising of plants and animals through evidence-based, sustainable and ethical practices. Students consider the role of agriculture and horticulture from local, state, national and global perspectives.

Description: Biology is a diverse and evolving science discipline that seeks to understand and explore the nature of life, past and present. The study explores the dynamic relationships between organisms and their interactions with the non-living environment. It also explores the processes of life, from the molecular world of the cell to that of the whole organism, that maintain life and ensure its continuity. In VCE Biology inquiry methodologies can include laboratory experimentation, fieldwork that may also involve use of technologies, surveys and sampling techniques, microscopy, local and remote data logging, simulations, animations, literature reviews and the use of global databases and bioinformatics tools

Description: VCE Chemistry enables students to explore key processes related to matter and its behaviour. Students consider the relationship between materials and energy through four themes: the design and composition of useful materials, the reactions and analysis of chemicals in water, the efficient production and use of energy and materials, and the investigation of carbon-based compounds as important components of body tissues and materials used in society.

Description: VCE Physics provides students with opportunities to explore questions related to the natural and constructed world. The study provides a contextual approach to exploring selected areas within the discipline including atomic physics, electricity, fields, mechanics, thermodynamics, quantum physics and waves. Students also have options for study related to astrophysics,bioelectricity, biomechanics, electronics, flight, medical physics, nuclear energy, nuclear physics, optics, sound and sports science.

Description: Product design is a response to changing needs and to improve quality of life by designing creative, innovative and sustainable products. Central to VCE Product Design and Technology is design thinking, which is applied through the product design process providing a structure for creative problem solving. The design process involves identification of a real need that is then articulated in a design brief. The need is informed by research to aid the development of solutions that take the form of physical, three-dimensional products. Development of these solutions requires the application of technology and a variety of cognitive and physical skills, including design thinking, drawing and computer-aided design, testing processes and materials, planning, construction, fabrication and evaluation.

Description: VCE Psychology enables students to explore how people think, feel and behave through the use of a biopsychosocial approach. As a scientific model, this approach considers biological, psychological and social factors and their complex interactions in the understanding of psychological phenomena. The study explores the connection between the brain and behaviour by focusing on several key interrelated aspects of the discipline: the interplay between genetics and environment, individual differences and group dynamics, sensory perception and awareness, memory and learning, and mental health.


Description: VCE Accounting explores the financial recording, reporting, analysis and decision-making processes of a sole proprietor small business. Students study both theoretical and practical aspects of accounting. They collect, record, report and analyse financial data, and report, classify, verify and interpret accounting information, using both manual methods and information and communications technology (ICT).

Description: VCE Business Management examines the ways businesses manage resources to achieve objectives. The VCE Business Management study design follows the process from the first idea for a business concept, to planning and establishing a business, through to the day-to-day management of a business. It also considers changes that need to be made to ensure continued success of a business. Students develop an understanding of the complexity of the challenges facing decision makers in managing these resources.

Description: Economics examines the role of consumers, businesses, governments and other organisations in the decision making about the allocation of resources, the production of goods and services and the effect that these decisions may have on material and non-material living standards. Through studying economics students utilise the economic models and tools of economists effectively to analyse and evaluate the decisions made by key economic agents and, in the process, appreciate the different viewpoints about the issues that may affect a modern economy.

Description: VCE Legal Studies examines the institutions and principles which are essential to Australia’s legal system. Students develop an understanding of the rule of law, law-makers, key legal institutions, rights protection in Australia, and the justice system. Through applying knowledge of legal concepts and principles to a range of actual and/or hypothetical scenarios, students develop their ability to use legal reasoning to argue a case for or against a party in a civil or criminal matter. They consider and evaluate recent and recommended reforms to the criminal and civil justice systems, and engage in an analysis of the extent to which our legal institutions are effective and our justice system achieves the principles of justice.

Health and Physical Education

Description: VCE Health and Human Development provides students with broad understandings of health and wellbeing that reach far beyond the individual. Students learn how important health and wellbeing is to themselves and to families, communities, nations and global society. Students explore the complex interplay of biological, sociocultural and environmental factors that support and improve health and wellbeing and those that put it at risk. The study provides opportunities for students to view health and wellbeing, and development, holistically – across the lifespan and the globe, and through a lens of social equity and justice.

Description: VCE Physical Education explores the complex interrelationships between anatomical, biomechanical, physiological and skill acquisition principles to understand their role in producing and refining movement, and examines behavioural, psychological, environmental and sociocultural influences on performance and participation in physical activity. Students participate in practical activities to examine the core concepts that underpin movement and that influence performance and participation in physical activity, sport and exercise.


Description: VCE Australian and Global Politics offers students the opportunity to engage with key political, social and economic issues, and to become informed citizens, voters and participants in their local, national and international communities. Australian Politics increases awareness of the nature of power and its influence. It allows students to become informed observers of, and active participants in, their political system. Global Politics provides students with an insight into the political, social, cultural and economic forces that shape our rapidly changing world. Students develop a critical understanding of the world in which they live and of contemporary global issues

Description: VCE Geography enables students to examine natural and human phenomena, how and why they change, their interconnections and the patterns they form across the Earth’s surface. In doing so, they develop a better understanding of their own place and its spaces and those in other parts of the world. These spatial perspectives, when integrated with historical, economic, ecological and cultural perspectives, deepen understanding of places, environments and human interactions with these.

Description: The study of VCE History assists students to understand themselves, others and their world, and broadens their perspective by examining people, groups, events, ideas and movements. At GGS, we offer Unit 1 and 2 courses in Ancient History and/or Modern History, and a Unit 3 and 4 course in Revolutions.

Ancient History investigates individuals and societies (Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, Rome and China) across three millennia. Modern History examines the causes and consequences of conflict and change in the modern era. Revolutions explores the causes and consequences of revolution in America, France, Russia and China.

Description: The study of VCE Texts and Traditions considers the place and meaning of sacred texts within their religious traditions. In an attempt to understand the intended meaning of the texts, the study focuses on the original contexts of sacred texts and examines their literary characteristics. The study encompasses texts from the Christian, Islamic and Jewish traditions.


Description:At GGS, we offer courses in Chinese Second Language, Chinese Second Language Advanced and a Unit 3 and 4 course in Chinese Language, Culture and Society.

VCE Chinese Second Language and Chinese Second Language Advanced focuses on student participation in interpersonal communication, interpreting the language of other speakers, and presenting information and ideas in Chinese on a range of themes and topics. Students develop and extend skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing and viewing in Chinese in a range of contexts and develop cultural understanding in interpreting and creating language.

VCE Chinese Language, Culture and Society develops an understanding of the language, social structures, traditions and contemporary cultural practices of diverse Chinese-speaking communities. They extend their study of the Chinese language, develop the skills to critically analyse different aspects of the cultures of Chinese-speaking peoples and their communities, and gain insight into the connections between languages, cultures and societies.


Description: VCE French focuses on student participation in interpersonal communication, interpreting the language of other speakers, and presenting information and ideas in French on a range of themes and topics. Students develop and extend skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing and viewing in French in a range of contexts and develop cultural understanding in interpreting and creating language.

Description: VCE German focuses on student participation in interpersonal communication, interpreting the language of other speakers, and presenting information and ideas in German on a range of themes and topics. Students develop and extend skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing and viewing in German in a range of contexts and develop cultural understanding in interpreting and creating language.

Description: VCE Japanese Second Language focuses on student participation in interpersonal communication, interpreting the language of other speakers, and presenting information and ideas in Japanese on a range of themes and topics. Students develop and extend skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing and viewing in Japanese in a range of contexts and develop cultural understanding in interpreting and creating language.

The Arts

Description: VCE Media provides students with the opportunity to analyse media concepts, forms and products in an informed and critical way. Students consider narratives, technologies and processes from various perspectives including an analysis of structure and features. They examine debates about the media’s role in contributing to and influencing society. Students integrate these aspects of the study through the individual design and production of their media representations, narratives and products.

Description: Music Performance Units 1 to 4 aims to broaden and enrich students’ musical experience, to assist students to develop personal awareness of the expressive and aesthetic qualities of music and to encourage a life-long engagement with music and music making. Music performance involves synthesis of knowledge of the music work/s being performed including their structure, style and context and their expressive qualities. Performance also requires the use of an instrument to interpret and realise the work, and knowledge and understanding of how to use an instrument/s to produce and manipulate sound. Performers use musicianship skills along with instrumental techniques to present musically engaging performances.

Description: Certificate III in Music Industry (Performance)
CUA30915 Certificate III in Music Industry (Performance) is offered to students under the auspices of the College of Sound and Music Production (RTO #41549). This qualification is for those students who have an interest in music and are keen to develop skills as a musician with the aim to perform and compose music.

Description: Certificate III in Music Industry (Sound Production)
CUA30915 Certificate III in Music Industry (Sound Production) is offered to students under the auspices of the College of Sound and Music Production (RTO #41549). This qualification is for students who have an interest in music and sound production and are keen to develop skills in a range of areas such as recording, mixing and sound editing.

Description: VCE Studio Arts introduces students to the role and practices of artists in society. Students develop an understanding of the way artists work in a range of cultures and periods of time, the artists’ perceptions, beliefs and actions and their relationship with the viewer. Students examine how artists develop their practice and have used materials, techniques and processes to create aesthetic qualities in artworks. VCE Studio Arts encourages and supports students to recognise their individual potential as artists and develop their understanding and development of art making.

Description: In VCE Theatre Studies students interpret scripts from the pre-modern era to the present day and produce theatre for audiences. Students apply dramaturgy and work in the production roles of actor, director and designer, developing an understanding and appreciation of the role and place of theatre practitioners. Throughout the study, students work individually and collaboratively in various production roles to creatively and imaginatively interpret scripts and to plan, develop and present productions.

Description: The Visual Communication Design study examines the way visual language can be used to convey ideas, information and messages in the fields of communication, environmental and industrial design. Students employ a design process to generate and develop visual communications. The design process provides a structure to organise design thinking and is shaped by considerations of aesthetics and functionality, as well as social, cultural, environmental and economic factors. Students develop the skills to communicate ideas through manipulation and organisation of design elements, design principles, selected media, materials and methods of production.