Stage 6

The study of a language in Stage 6 enables students to develop skills in the areas of communication, intercultural understanding, literacy, cognitive and social development and general knowledge. It also helps to deepen students' understanding and appreciation of the diverse attitudes within the wider Australian community and beyond. In Stage 6, there are 34 languages offered.

HSC icon banner languages

Due to the number of HSC language courses available and smaller candidature sizes, the HSC hub for Languages provides advice documents for each of the course levels.

Professional teacher associations, foreign government agencies and universities have provided support for many language courses.

We have language-specific support available here – access the language and course level from the left-hand menu to find:

  • practice speaking questions for most Beginners and Continuers courses
  • sample listening and reading activities for most Beginners and Continuers courses.

For collegial discussions with other teachers and advice from the Languages and Culture team, please join our Languages NSW (7-12) virtual statewide staffroom on Yammer (staff only).


Join us in our virtual statewide staffroom

Our virtual statewide staffroom has over 500 language teachers connecting with each other – asking questions, and sharing ideas and resources. You can also access direct support from the Languages and Culture team and search over 200 teacher-contributed resources for Stages 4-6.

You can access our staffroom through Yammer, the Department of Education's social media platform, under 'My applications' in the portal.

Search for the Languages NSW (7-12) group and then simply join the group.

Stage 6 courses

There are up to five courses of study available in languages at Stage 6 level:

  • Beginners
  • Continuers
  • Extension
  • [Language] in Context
  • [Language] and Literature.

Student eligibility for each course can be accessed on the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) eligibility criteria for Stage 6 Languages website.

Note: Not all languages have all five courses available.

Our head teacher support document (DOCX 1.7 MB) unpacks each of the Stage 6 course requirements in more detail.

The Stage 6 language syllabuses are available on the NESA HSC Languages page.

Stage 6 school-based assessment requirements

The NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) released Stage 6 school-based assessment requirements, effective from Term 1 2018 for Year 11 and Term 4 2018 for Year 12. Download and read NESA's Assessment and Reporting documents for each course.

Assessment and Reporting in Beginners Stage 6

Assessment and Reporting in Continuers Stage 6

Assessment and Reporting in Extension Stage 6

Assessment and Reporting in [Language] in Context Stage 6

Assessment and Reporting in [Language] and Literature Stage 6

Sample assessment schedules

Sample assessment schedules for each course are available on NESA's website. Follow the link to the relevant language course.

Learning from home

Useful languages links for Years 11-12 (DOCX 70KB) outlines additional resources to support teaching at home.

Distance education – single subject language provision

If a language is not available for study at a student's home school, students in Years 9-12 enrolled at either a government or non-government high school can study a language via distance mode learning through a specialist distance education school.

The NSW Department of Education has 5 distance education schools located across NSW which offer students in Years 9-12, subject to quota restrictions, the opportunity to study a language as a single subject if it is not available to study at their registered school.

The distance education schools providing single subject language provision:

Saturday School of Community Languages

Saturday School of Community Languages offers students in Years 7-12 from government and non-government high schools the opportunity to study their background language if it is not available for study in their weekday school.

The school operates on Saturdays during the school term in 14 centres located in Sydney, Wollongong and Newcastle.

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