The aim of this Field Study is to establish the extent to which Year 12 students understand and appreciate the ACT College System of senior secondary and the information which appears on the ACT Year 12 Certificate. In order to provide the reader with a basis for understanding what happens over the final two years of secondary education in the ACT the author has established the historical context that gave rise to the establishment of the Secondary Colleges in the ACT. This brief history outlines the causes and reasons which led to separation from the NSW state system of education and the decision to develop a different approach to the provision of education for students in Year 11 and 12. To provide an idea of how the system works a description of what makes up the College System is provided. This includes an explanation of how the colleges relate to the high schools, their curriculum, the accreditation of courses, assessment and certification. The role of the ACT Schools Accrediting Agency is explained in the way it underpins the credibility of the system and of how it carries the responsibility for the final generation of the ACT Year 12 Certificate. While this study looks at the system some seven years after it began, earlier evaluations had taken place which examined matters linked with the ACT Year 12 Certificate. In writing this report the author reviews two important assessments of the system, one of the role of the ACT Schools Accrediting agency and the other concerned with the success of the Colleges as educational institutions from a student viewpoint. The author also attempts to compare the changes which came with the ACT College System with recent developments and current thinking about senior secondary education in other Australian states. The major part of the Field Study was a survey of a sample of Year 12 students at the end of 1983 to establish the extent to which they understood the aspects of the system they had been a part of for two years. The data and findings of this survey are presented. The report concludes with an outline of the most recent changes, developments and reactions which in some way affect the system. At the end of the conclusion, the author presents a list of recommendations aimed at overcoming some of the problems pin-pointed in the report.
|Date of Award||1985|