Background Mandated Materials

What is the purpose of the Curriculum and Assessment Outline?

In accordance with the School Curriculum and Standards Authority Act, 1997, the Western Australian Curriculum and Assessment Outline (Outline) sets out 'the knowledge, understanding, skills, values and attitudes that students are expected to acquire and guidelines for the assessment of student achievement'.

The Outline is for all Western Australian schools - government and non-government schools, approved international schools and home education providers.

Is the curriculum content in the Western Australian Curriculum and Assessment Outline the same as ACARA's Australian curriculum?

The Western Australian curriculum currently encompasses ACARA's Australian curriculum English, Mathematics, Science and History.

The School Curriculum and Standards Authority has adopted and adapted ACARA's curriculum content and developed year-level syllabuses for Humanities and Social Sciences, Health and Physical Education, Technologies, The Arts and Languages.

The Western Australian syllabuses remain broadly consistent with the Australian curriculum but have been contextualised to make them more suitable for Western Australian students and teachers.

What is the implementation timeline for the Western Australian curriculum?

For information about implementation requirements please click here.

What is the status of the Curriculum Framework?

Given the phased implementation of the Western Australian curriculum, schools may be teaching some learning areas from the Western Australian curriculum supplemented by learning areas described in the former Western Australian Curriculum Framework.

By 2018, all syllabuses, except Languages, will become part of the mandated curriculum for the planning, assessment and reporting of student progress in Western Australia, as prescribed by the Western Australian Curriculum and Assessment Outline.

What are the differences between the Western Australian curriculum and ACARA's Australian curriculum for Phases 2 and 3 learning areas?

The Australian curriculum, developed by ACARA, was written in bands for Health and Physical Education, Technologies and The Arts, whereas the Western Australian curriculum has year-level syllabuses in each of these learning areas.

The Western Australian curriculum for Humanities and Social Sciences has a generic set of skills that apply to the four subjects of Civics and Citizenship, Economics and Business, Geography and History. In addition, key concepts have been developed for Civics and Citizenship and Economics and Business to complement the concepts developed by ACARA for History and Geography.

The Western Australian curriculum for Technologies has a single creating solutions process that applies to both Design and Technologies and Digital Technologies. In Digital Technologies, Digital Implementation has been created as a content organiser, within Processes and production skills to ensure the specific digital content integrity related to creating solutions was maintained.

How does Phase 1 History sit within the Western Australian curriculum?

The Phase 1 curriculum for History will remain in place until the end of 2016 and from 2017, the content for History is included in the Humanities and Social Sciences syllabuses from Pre-primary to Year 10, developed to ensure a coherent learning area.

The Judging Standards Materials for History will remain in place until the end of 2016 and from 2017, there will be a single Achievement Standard for Humanities and Social Sciences.

When will the School Curriculum and Standards Authority publish the Languages Curriculum?

During 2014 the Authority's Board requested a comprehensive overview on the current Pre-primary to Year 12 language provision in and out of school settings in Western Australia be undertaken. The Authority consulted with numerous stakeholders whose input was reflected within the findings of the review, which was published in The State of Play: Languages Education in Western Australia 2014.

The report provides the School Curriculum and Standards Authority Board with a sound basis to make informed decisions about the future development and provision of a practical and manageable language education policy and curriculum in Western Australia.

The Languages Curriculum will be available to schools for familiarisation at the beginning of Semester 2, 2016.

Read the letter to schools regarding P-10 Languages

Where possible schools should provide a language(s) program from Pre-primary to Year 10. However, as a minimum:

  • the Authority requires schools to provide one Language:
  • in Years 3, 4, 5 and 6, commencing with Year 3 in 2018 (Year 4 in 2019,
    Year 5 in 2020, Year 6 in 2021)
  • in Years 7 and 8, commencing with Year 7 in 2022 (Year 8 in 2023)
  • the study of Languages is optional in Years 9 and 10.

For the purposes of Languages education in Western Australia:

  • the Authority will provide syllabuses for second language learners in six Languages: Chinese, Japanese, Indonesian, French, German and Italian
  • the study of an Aboriginal Language is appropriate
  • recently arrived migrants, for whom English is not their first language, may substitute English as a Second Language or further studies in English for the study of another language
  • students who speak English as a second language or as an additional language or dialect, and whose use of Standard Australian English is restricted, may substitute further studies in English for the study of another language
  • the study of Auslan is appropriate
  • schools may offer a language other than those for which syllabuses are provided by the Authority using ACARA's curriculum or a language curriculum approved by the Authority.