Senior Learning Community

Our Senior Learning Community (SLC) is the final phase of education at Hillcrest for students in Years 9 - 12. It is a time of significant emotional and physical growth, and a time when a student's identity begins to take a more defined form as they approach maturity and adulthood.

Students are guided through the art of goal-setting, and meeting the higher expectations of independence, responsibility, self-motivation and self-discipline. We provide SLC students with many opportunities to explore their personal talents and interests, while preparing them for the rigours of tertiary education and life beyond our College. 

Our aspiration is for Hillcrest graduates to leave our College as confident, caring and well-balanced young adults, who are equipped to thrive and make a meaningful contribution to society.
Head of Senior Learning Community

We foster a community where all students are encouraged to achieve their personal best, as they uphold the highest standards of behaviour and respect, reflecting the values of our College.

Our supportive College culture ensures that every student who joins Hillcrest, joins a welcoming and inclusive community. We believe if a student feels secure, valued, inspired and challenged in their learning, and comfortable in their environment, they will ultimately succeed.

Overview of Curriculum

All students study and follow the Australian Curriculum in Year 9 and Year 10. In Year 11 and Year 12, all students study from a wide range of Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) General and Applied subjects and courses that count towards their Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE).

The College aims to provide offerings to enable students to choose their desired pathway and offers an extensive range of choices. While a large number of our graduates undertake further studies, the goal is not to get all students to University.  Our goal is to help students find a pathway to success in a way that is meaningful to them.

Students in Year 9 must study Australian Curriculum English, Mathematics, Science, History and can choose from 14 Australian Curriculum elective choices, in Year 10 must study Australian Curriculum English, Mathematics, Science, History over 16 Australian Curriculum Elective Choices in Year 10 and students in Years 11 and 12 can choose from over 35 different General and Applied subjects in Year 11 and 12, two of which must be an English and Mathematics subject.  

Please see the respective year level in the below tabs for more detailed information.

Term Year 9 Year 10 Year 11 Year 12
Term 1
Australian Curriculum
Australian Curriculum
Unit 1
Unit 3
Term 2
Australian Curriculum
Australian Curriculum
Unit 2
Unit 4
Term 3
Australian Curriculum
Australian Curriculum
Unit 2
Unit 4
Term 4
Australian Curriculum
Unit 1
Unit 3

*Week 1 to 3 Preparation for exams, Week 4 to 6 External exams, Week 7 Graduation

Life Groups

Our vertical Life Group structure means that students across all SLC year levels meet every morning in their Life Group which creates an opportunity to connect and mentor students across younger years. Life Groups have become a highly valued foundation of our community, and Life Group Leaders support each student’s personal goals to personally monitor and nurture their academic, spiritual, social, and emotional development.

SLC Facilities

Our Senior Learning Community facilities have been extensively renovated with refurbishments to many classrooms and common areas, equipping students with state-of-the-art technologies and adaptable spaces for a variety of individual or collaborative work. Our senior students enjoy:

Subject-Specific Facilities
  • New science laboratories
  • Purpose-built Art rooms, with a kiln
  • A commercial-grade hospitality kitchen
  • Engineering workshops
  • ESTEAM Labs
  • Commercial-grade hospitality kitchen for Nutrition Studies
General Academic Facilities
  • Modern library with a mezzanine study area for Years 10-12
  • Specialist teaching spaces to cover a range of subject offerings
  • Science Block with state-of-the-art laboratories
  • Innovative and Collaborative spaces.
Year 9
Year 9

All students study the following Australian Curriculum subjects each week: 

  • English - 5 lessons
  • Mathematics - 5 lessons
  • Science - 5 lessons
  • History - 2 lessons
  • Physical Education - 5 lessons
  • Elective 1 - 4 lessons
  • Elective 2 - 4 lessons

Students choose 2 electives each semester from the following list of Australian Curriculum subjects:

The Arts:
  • Music
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Media
  • Arts
  • Visual Art
  • Design and Technology – Engineering principles and systems.
  • Design and Technology – Food specialisation
  • Design and Technology – Materials specialisation
  • Digital Technology 


Humanities and Social Sciences: 
  • Geography 
  • Economics and Business
  • Civics and Citizenship 

Students also study the following school-based subjects each week: Subject Number of Lessons Christian Living 1 Career Education 1 Sport 3

Year 10
Year 10

All students study the following Australian Curriculum subjects each week in Terms 1, 2 and 3. In Term 4 Year 10, students commence QCAA QCE Subjects.

  • English - 5 lessons
  • Mathematics - 5 lessons
  • History - 2 lessons
  • Elective 1 - 5 lessons
  • Elective 2 - 5 lessons
  • Elective 3 - 5 lessons
  • Elective 4 - 5 lessons

NOTE: One elective must be Science.

Subject Number of Lessons

Students choose 2 electives each semester from the following list of Australian Curriculum subjects:

The Arts:
  • Music
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Media Arts
  • Visual Art
  • Design and Technology – Engineering principles and systems
  • Design and Technology – Food specialisation
  • Design and Technology – Materials specialisation
  • Digital Technology 
  • French
Humanities and Social Sciences:
  • Geography
  • History
  • Economics and Business
  • Civics and Citizenship
Health and Physical Education:
  • Health and Physical Education
  • Mathematics 10A
  • Science
  • Christian Living - 1 lesson
  • Career Education - 1 lesson
  • Sport - 3 lessons

Year 11 & 12
Years 11 and 12

All students study QCAA English and Mathematics and then select up to 4 elective options.  Elective options may be chosen from QCAA General Subjects, QCAA Applied Subjects, School-Based Traineeship, School-Based Apprenticeship, or Vocational Education and Training course. We aim for all students to be eligible for a Queensland Certificate of Education at the end of Year 12.

Subject Number of Lessons

  • English - 5
  • Mathematics - 5
  • Elective 1 - 5
  • Elective 2 - 5
  • Elective 3 - 5
  • Elective 4 - 5
  • Christian Living - 1
  • Career Education - 1Sport - 3

The QCAA develops four types of senior subject syllabuses — General, Applied, Senior External Examinations and Short Courses. Results in General and Applied subjects contribute to the award of a QCE and may contribute to an Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) calculation, although no more than one result in an Applied subject can be used in the calculation of a student’s ATAR.

Extension subjects are extensions of the related General subjects and are studied either concurrently with, or after, Units 3 and 4 of the General course.

Typically, it is expected that most students will complete these courses across Years 11 and 12. All subjects build on the P–10 Australian Curriculum.

General syllabuses

General subjects are suited to students who are interested in pathways beyond senior secondary schooling that lead primarily to tertiary studies and to pathways for vocational education and training and work. General subjects include Extension subjects.

QCAA General Subjects offered at Hillcrest Christian College include:

  • Accounting
  • Biology
  • Business
  • Chemistry
  • Dance
  • Design
  • Drama
  • Earth & Environmental Science
  • Engineering
  • English
  • English as an Additional Language
  • Film, Television & New Media
  • French
  • General Mathematics
  • Geography
  • Legal Studies
  • Literature
  • Mathematical Methods
  • Modern History
  • Music
  • Physical Education
  • Physics
  • Psychology
  • Specialist Mathematics
  • Visual Art
  • English & Literature Extension
  • Music Extension (Composition)
  • Music Extension (Musicology)
  • Music Extension (Performance)
Applied syllabuses

Applied subjects are suited to students who are primarily interested in pathways beyond senior secondary schooling that lead to vocational education and training or work.

QCAA Applied Subjects offered at Hillcrest Christian College include:

  • Essential English
  • Essential Mathematics
  • Hospitality Practices
  • Industrial Technology Skills
  • Information and Communication Technology
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Senior External Examination

The Senior External Examination consists of individual subject examinations provided across Queensland in October and November each year by the QCAA.

Short Courses

Short Courses are developed to meet a specific curriculum need and are suited to students who are interested in pathways beyond senior secondary schooling that lead to vocational education and training and establish a basis for further education and employment. They are informed by, and articulate closely with, the requirements of the Australian Core Skills Framework (ACSF). A grade of C in Short Courses aligns with the requirements for ACSF Level 3.

For more information about the ACSF see: framework.

Gifted and Academic Excellence Pathways
Gifted & Talented Program

Hillcrest’s Gifted and Talented Program provides students the opportunity to accelerate their learning. Our Honours Program provides high-achieving Year 10-12 students with access to QCAA-accredited Honours, Extension Mathematics and English courses, mentoring programs and access to study university subjects and adheres to the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA).

Excursions & Camps
Class Excursions

All of our classes at Hillcrest embark on a range of excursions throughout the year, designed to bring our curriculum to life outside of the classroom, and ultimately deepen our students’ understanding of a current topic. Excursion costs are generally included in school fees, and often include visits to theme parks, museums, galleries, technology centres, law courts, universities and more.

Camp Program

Our camps are the highlight of the school calendar for many students, and provide a wonderful way for them to connect with their College peers, as they learn things about themselves that they may not have discovered in the classroom. Students often grow in self-confidence during our exciting College camps, as they extend their boundaries, overcome fears, create lasting memories and develop friendships that carry them throughout their senior years. Life Group Camps occur in the SLC at the beginning of each year and involves students from all year levels attending the same camp along with their Life Group peers. Camps are a compulsory part of our College curriculum, and vary in length and destination. 

The cost of our College camps are generally included in College fees, including the Year 6 Sydney-Canberra trip, and the Year 9 Northern Territory Outback Experience.

Sports & Cocurricular
Sports Program

Our engaging and inclusive Sports program provides students with a variety of skills and experiences that may not be gleaned from inside the classroom, and promotes a healthy lifestyle and a well-rounded approach to education. We foster a love of sport by providing an engaging ‘house-based’ culture, and broad exposure to various sports. These include netball, basketball, tennis, futsal and athletics, and are led by experienced coaches both during and after school.

Hillcrest also provides opportunities for excellence in a variety of other sporting contexts, and students who display individual excellence for a team sport can trial to represent the College at both State and National levels.

Students may also participate in our Basketball Excellence Program, where Hillcrest teams are ranked among the best in Queensland and Australia. Other opportunities for team-based excellence exist within our futsal and netball programs, where Hillcrest competes at a State Championship level each year.

Cocurricular Program

Our optional Chess, Debating, Public Speaking, Mooting and Art Club programs complement the academic progress of students, while engaging with the broader community through formal competitions.

We also offer a popular Duke of Edinburgh award program which provides an opportunity for eligible students to engage in Bridge, Bronze, Silver, and Gold Awards, exposing them to adventurous journeys that challenge them personally, physically and socially.

Performing Arts

Our renowned Performing Arts program features 14 choirs, with specialist vocal staff, and the Choral Excellence Program, who have enjoyed recent tours to national and international festivals. Our Instrumental Program has over 320 musicians from Years 4 - 12, including numerous band ensembles and orchestras. Students can also access private tuition from our team of highly accomplished instrumental tutors. We host many community events, including our annual Choral and Art Extravaganza, giving our students the chance to showcase their talents in front of an audience.

We also have over 250 students enrolled in our Hillcrest Dance Academy, run in partnership with the Currumbin Academy of Performing Arts (CAPA) and offering classes in all forms of dance up to Year 12.

Our annual College musicals are a highlight of our College calendar with recent productions including Thoroughly Modern Millie (2017), Seussical (2016), Jesus Christ Superstar (2015) and Wonderland (2014).

SLC Leadership Program

Our Senior Leadership Program starts in Year 9 and continues throughout Year 12, providing students with many opportunities to develop their skills through leadership roles, practical workshops, assistance at College events, and service to others. This program prepares students to undertake leadership responsibilities at our College, in the broader community and in life beyond Hillcrest.

Captains and Prefect Program

Hillcrest’s Captain and Prefect program encompasses the leadership roles of Captains, Vice Captains and Prefects, and has been refined over many years. Two College Captains, two Vice Captains, House Prefects, House Leaders and International Captains are elected to carry out leadership duties in Year 12. These roles provide a special avenue for students to demonstrate their leadership skills and serve the College and community, as they lead their peers.

College Captains, Prefects, International Captains and House Captains have very important leadership responsibilities, and our College Executive undertakes a rigorous application process to determine the students for these positions.

Missions & Community Service

Hillcrest students are invited to participate in a range of mission trips and activities, which provide them with authentic and life-changing experiences.

We believe in connecting students with communities at a local, national and international level, enabling them to serve others and better appreciate the cultural diversities of the world in which we live. Hillcrest students are invited to participate in mission trips and other mission-based activities, which provide them with an authentic and life-changing experience to help those less fortunate.

Mission Trips

Our Mission Trip teams travel to North Queensland and Thailand each year to volunteer in impoverished communities. 

General Community Service Opportunities

Our individual outreach opportunities include community involvement and church programs such as Youth Group leadership. Hillcrest’s Community Service programs raise awareness of social issues and provide students with a rich diversity of activities to help them contribute to the College, and broader community. Students who are involved with serving others often grow in confidence, empathy, resilience and optimism, and an overall sense of social responsibility.

Our young people involve themselves in a wide range of community service experiences including:

  • The Beach to Beach event for cancer awareness
  • Fundraising for Compassion and other charities
  • Red Cross blood donations
  • The Red Shield Appeal
  • Feeding the homeless
  • Mission trips
Pathways Program

Our Pathways Program provides a dedicated team of staff who help every student identify their strengths and weaknesses, their future plans and goals, and guide them towards subject choices that offer the best opportunity for personal success.

Whether students intend to pursue further study through an ATAR, Rank Pathway, Vocational Education or employment, we provide students with every opportunity to succeed. Our aim is for 100% of our graduates to receive either a Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE) or Queensland Certificate of Individual Achievement (QCIA). Students in Years 10 - 12 are also able to participate in diploma programs, traineeships, school-based apprenticeships and first year university subjects.

One2One Device Program

Hillcrest Christian College offers a comprehensive and innovative digital curriculum, equipping our students to be responsible and successful in our technologically-advanced world.

Our one2one Device Program launched in 2018 to align our teaching on one device, and provides every student in the SLC with a Microsoft Surface Book 2, Surface pen and relevant software. The device is leased to students for a three-year term for a nominal fee, which is added to their College fees each term. More information about this program is available by emailing