Years 12 Subject Information

Students in Year 12 will study the Cambridge International AS Level qualification. This is the first half of a full Cambridge International A Level. The second half of the course will be taught in Year 13 and is called A2 Level. Students who complete both AS and A2 complete an A Level in that subject. However, not all students choose to do both AS and A2 Levels. Depending on what students want to study they can achieve University Entrance with AS Level subjects only.

Students will choose the best programme for their future studies in consultation with their teachers. Typically students will choose 4 or 5 subjects.


English – Students will study and complete that NCEA Level 2 English programme in order to gain their “literacy” requirement for university.  English is the only compulsory subject. Students will be able to choose from the following subject options:

Mathematics – AS Mathematics builds on the mathematical principles learned in the IGCSE curriculum. The focus is on the transferable skills of analysis, modelling, working with mathematical information and logical and independent thinking.

Physics – AS Physics is the first step towards A Level Physics. Key physics concepts covered in IGCSE Combined Science will be expanded and new topics introduced. These include waves, matter and energy, models of physical systems, forces and fields. There is a strong practical element to this course too.

Chemistry – AS Chemistry has an important practical component to the course. The key concepts taught include atoms and forces, patterns in chemical behaviour, chemical bonds and energy changes.

Biology – AS Biology builds on the biological concepts taught in the IGCSE Combined Science.  As well as practical observations and experiments, key concepts will include cells, biochemical processes, DNA, natural selection and organisms in their environments.

Computer Science – AS Computer science will build on the problem solving and computational skills learned in the IGCSE course as well as further, more intensive studies of communication and internet technologies, hardware and software and more in-depth use of programming languages and algorithms.

Information Technology – AS Information Technology follows on from IGCSE Information and Communication Technology.  At the AS Level students will cover topics such as Data processing and information, algorithms and flow charts, eSecurity, spreadsheets, modelling sound and video editing, databases and more.

Digital Media and Design – This is a relatively new subject for Cambridge International. It follows on from the more general Design and Technology which students will have studied in IGCSE. This subject will focus more on the digital side of design such as digital photography, moving images, mobile and multimedia applications.

Art Design and Graphic Communication – This subject encompasses a broad field of study, including typography and illustration, packaging and digital development in Photoshop. Careers in Design include, graphic designer, special effects, advertising, computer animations, package design, web design or art director. This subject will assist students who are interested in following any of these career paths.

Business Studies – Business studies provides a broad perspective of business activity and gives an overview of different functions of business. It develops a student’s understanding of business, eg, Business and the environment within which it operates, market decisions, people in business organisations, operational management decisions, business and finance and marketing, human resources and finances.