Options information

What subjects will I need to take?

All students are required to take GCSEs in the FOUR core subjects of Mathematics, English, Science and Religious Education.

Students take two GCSEs in English (English Language and English Literature)

Students who are most able in Science will take three separate GCSEs, one in each of the science subject (Biology, Physics and Chemistry); this is known as Triple Science. Others will take the Combined Science Course, which is worth two GCSEs; this is known as Trilogy Science.

All students take GCSE Mathematics

All students take GCSE Religious Studies

All students will take three other subjects.

Our most able students should carefully consider taking French at GCSE, as this enables them to achieve the EBacc Qualification (GCSE Grade 4 or above in Maths, English, Science. History/ Geography and a Modern Foreign Language).

Students must choose Geography, History or both

All students should choose three option subjects, plus one further option as a reserve choice, to be used in the event a course does not run or we are unable to timetable their chosen combination.

What should I consider when making my choices?

The subject choices that you make now will have a crucial influence on your future. These choices will need to be based on a clear appreciation of your current strengths and weaknesses and your ambitions for the future. For most students that will be in St Edmund’s Sixth Form; after that will come university, college, apprenticeship or employment.

Below are some questions that might be useful to discuss when making those decisions:

  1. Think about what you want to do at 16+ (Sixth Form? Apprenticeship? College?) and choose the subjects that will support these plans.

  2. Choose a well-balanced timetable: try not to choose all of your subjects from the same department

  3. What are your best subjects? It is a good idea to pick the subjects where you do well.

  4. Which subjects do you enjoy? If you enjoy a subject, you are more likely to do well in it.

  5. There are some subjects you have not studied before, do these interest you? Find out more about them; it is sometimes good to have a fresh start and study something different.

  6. Do not pick a subject because you work well for that teacher; it may be a different teacher taking that subject in Years 10 and 11.

  7. Do not choose subjects just because your friends have chosen them; you are likely to be in different groups, anyway.

  8. Creative subjects such as Art/Music/Drama can add good variety to your choices.

  9. If you wish to achieve the EBacc qualification, you need to choose French. (Unless you are fluent in, and can read/write in another foreign language which contributes to the EBacc qualification, such as Polish, Punjabi, Italian, Urdu, Portuguese – see Mrs Wilcox for a full list of such languages).

  10. Think about whether you will be more suited to GCSE qualifications (mainly final exam) or Vocational qualifications (Some units of coursework are completed throughout the two years of study) .

  11. Seek plenty of advice and ask many questions – you can also find out more about each course by looking it up online using the course code given on each subject page.