S1 Course Choice Handbook

S1 Course Choice Presentation

We recommend that all learners and parents/carers watch this video before you begin the process of considering and discussing your course choices for next year.

S1 Course Choice Presentation


An Introduction to S1 Options

To all S1 Learners
The aim of this page is to assist you and your parents in making your choices for S2 and S3.

In first year you have followed a common course studying a wide range of subjects.  In your second year you will continue to study a wide range of subjects covering all of the Curriculum areas.

At the end of S1 you have the opportunity to decide which nine courses you would like to study in greater depth in S2 and S3 along with your core curriculum. You must select one subject from each of the following Curriculum areas: Expressive Arts, Modern Languages, Science, Social Subjects and Technology. You will then make a further four choices from any subjects you wish. Please note that you will study these choices in S2 and S3.  Your next choices will be made at the end of S3.

These choices are called electives. The course descriptors describing the electives have been prepared by your teachers and are at the bottom of this page. They give you information on what you will study, how you will learn, the way in which you will be assessed, how much homework you will need to do and they also provide guidance on which courses you may wish to study in S4 and beyond. You are encouraged to read all of the information and gather more detailed information through discussions with your subject teachers.

Support Programme

This handbook is full of information to support you and your child make the best choices and contains:

  • An overview of the curriculum on offer
  • An S1 course choice presentation (this video replaces the normal course choice information evening and is full of essential information)
  • An overview of the support programme
  • A course choice preparation form to support conversation at home (from the pastoral team)
  • The course choice sheet
  • The course choice descriptors
  • The link to enter choices online at home
  • Links to various support websites e.g. PlanIt Plus and My World of Work.

Further support and information:

  • From January Pastoral teachers will be working with their PSE classes on the S1 options process, giving information and advice.
  • If your child is finding it difficult to make their choices they can request an interview with the pastoral team. You will find out more in the presentation mentioned above.
  • The S1 reports will be issued on the 2nd February.
  • The S1 options completion deadline is the 19th February. Please note that this is online and should be done with parents at home.  The S1 course choice presentation will walk you through the process.
  • It is important that choices are submitted on time as late submission may increase the chance of your reserve choice being used.
Using the handbook

The contents have been thought out carefully to support you.
You should refer to the handbook from time to time for advice.
Please consult with your pastoral teacher if you require clarification on any point.

Which courses are for you?

Before selecting a course you must carry out research to ensure that you understand fully what you are going to study, how hard it will be and how you will be assessed.  You also need to know why you are taking the course.  Is it because it is an essential entry requirement for further study or employment, because you enjoy the area of study and/or because you feel you have talents in this field?  It might even be all three!

You will find lots of helpful tools and information to help with subject choices online.  A few recommended and very helpful websites are listed below:




Courses everyone will study (Core)
  • English – 5 periods
  • Mathematics – 5 periods
  • Physical Education – 3 periods
  • Religious & Moral Education – 1 period
  • Personal & Social Education – 1 period
Your Choices (Electives)

You also have the opportunity to choose nine additional subjects (called electives). These electives should be subjects that you wish to study in more depth.   The ranges of electives on offer are explained at the bottom of this page.  You will receive two periods in each of these nine electives. These electives will last for all of S2 and S3.


  1. Expressive Arts
  2. Modern Languages
  3. Science
  4. Social Subjects
  5. Technologies
  6. Free Choice 1
  7. Free Choice 2
  8. Free Choice 3
  9. Free Choice 4
Elective Course Choice Descriptors



Business & Computing Technologies



Fashion and Textiles



Graphics, Design & Manufacture


Introduction to Hospitality


Modern Languages

Modern Studies



Physical Education (Elective)


Practical & Vocational Skills



Course Choice Sheet and Link to Online Choice Entry

S1 Choice Sheet – Jan 21

Please remember to enter your choices online below.  (You will need your unique log in details – these will be distributed on return to school):


(Please enter your choices above by the 19th February at the latest as a late submission may increase the chance of your reserve being used)

Further information

Further information on curriculum developments and the shape of the new National Qualifications that your child will sit in the Senior Phase can be found on the SQA website.  www.sqa.org.uk

You may wish to look at the S3 and S4/5 pages on this website to begin to consider what options may be available to your child as they progress through the school.

Do not hesitate to contact the appropriate Pastoral Teacher if you are worried about any aspect of your child’s choice.


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