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Choices 13-16

Choosing your options in year 8 or 9 is one of the first big decisions you will have to make.  But don't panic - no one expects you to have all the answers immediately.

Why do I have to choose?

  • because it's time for you to have a say in what you are going to study

  • because there's not enough time to fit every subject in

  • as work gets harder you will want to concentrate on the subjects you enjoy most and are good at

  • you might want to take a new subject

Getting the balance right

Whatever plans for the future you have now, the chances are you will probably change your mind a number of times over the next few years. Choosing the subjects you enjoy but also getting a good balance of subjects, will leave you more options when you are choosing your courses and jobs for the future.

The 14-16 offer

Any young person currently in Year 9 may apply to move to the University Technical College Cambridge (UTC) at 14 for their Key Stage 4 education (Years 10 and 11).

In September 2017 UTC Cambridge was renamed and is now called Cambridge Academy for Science and Technology.

Students can join Cambridge Academy for Science & Technology at the start of year 10. The Cambridge Academy for Science & Technology offers a broad and balanced academic and technical curriculum with an emphasis on core academic subjects (8 GCSEs) alongside Challenge Projects to ensure students are able to move into any field related to Science, Engineering, Maths and Computer Science at the end of year 11.

Of the 32 teaching hours per week, all students will spend at least 19 hours on STEM lessons and projects.

Students can achieve between 8 and 11 GCSEs during their two years of study.

The entry requirement for year 10 at Cambridge Academy for Science and Technology is a passion and commitment to their specialist subject – Science – along with the intention to pursue a career in a related area.

Vocational Studies at Cambridge Regional College

From September 2017, Cambridge Regional College (CRC) are looking at offering a vocational study programme to Year 10 and 11 pupils, to run alongside their existing school curriculum.

This section of Youthoria will be updated once more information becomes available about the vocational study programme.

Information about current courses available at CRC can be found on the college website.

So how do you choose?

First of all think about yourself:

  • what you are good at, your talents

  • your strengths and weaknesses

  • what interests you

  • also find out whether you need any particular subjects for the careers you're interested in at the moment

Then find out as much information you can:

  • talk to your subject teachers

  • what do the courses actually involve?

  • have you checked out your career ideas and qualifications you need?

  • how are courses assessed - will there be controlled assessments and coursework as well as exams?

  • go along to your options open evening

Finally talk your plans over with

  • your parents

  • friends and relatives who know you well

  • your careers coordinator or tutor

But ultimately the choice is yours!

Do try and get a balance of subjects

Do choose subjects that interest you

Do make your own choices

Do find out what the course is all about

Don't take subjects because you like the teacher or because of your friends

Don't think in terms of boys and girls subjects

Don't panic - you can always take other subjects later.


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