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The ICT Approved Specialist Program at Ashdale Secondary College immerses students in innovation and creativity. Students will engage with the latest technology and teaching methods, placing them at the forefront of this exciting, fast-paced industry. As part of the ICT Approved Specialist Program, students will have the opportunity to have input in their learning, work on solutions to real-world problems and engage with current research initiatives.

The ICT Approved Specialist Program offers students the choice of two Institutes to further develop their knowledge and skills;

  1. Creative Technologies Institute, or
  2. STEM Institute.

The ICT Approved Specialist Program requires a three-year commitment (Years 7 to 9) to develop the students as self-directed learners. Students must also commit to a compulsory one-hour lesson outside regular school hours, i.e. before or after school.

The Creative Technologies Institute

The Creative Technologies Institute delivers an enriched digital technologies curriculum while developing student skills in various areas of ICT, such as graphic design, photo media, coding, Lego robotics, circuitry, entrepreneurial skills, project management, video game design and the latest innovations in the technology industry.

Classes are designed to provide students with a unique learning experience that fosters creativity and innovation. Students can also access specialised excursions, incursions, guest speakers, industry partnerships and expos. The College’s research-based learning models are used to develop the ICT capability of students as they learn to use ICT effectively and appropriately to access, create and communicate information and ideas, solve problems and work collaboratively.

Students in the Creative Technologies Institute are involved in competitions such as Robocup, Screen It, the NCSS Programming Challenge and ICT Explorers to demonstrate their skills. Students are given access to the TV studio, virtual reality equipment and the Creative and iMac labs for ongoing project development.

The STEM Institute

The STEM Institute delivers an enriched and accelerated curriculum across Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, nurturing high-achieving students to target career paths across various STEM professions. Curriculum delivery focuses on an interdisciplinary approach across STEM subjects. Lessons are designed around finding solutions to real-world problems. The STEM Institute develops critical thinking and problem-solving skills and creates an environment that promotes innovation, collaboration and an entrepreneurial mindset.

Students in the STEM Institute will have access to tertiary and industry partners, exposing them to professionals within STEM fields. Participants can showcase their work in various forums, including expos, competitions and business projects. Incursions and excursions are a valuable part of the program, enriching and enhancing the learning experience. Students within the STEM Institute are involved in the development and management of Mendel’s Garden, provided access to Class Pads in mathematics and use of mechatronics workshop with laser cutters and 3D printers for prototyping.

Differences between
the two Institutes
Technologies Institute
Duration of CourseYears 7 to 9Years 7 to 9
Curriculum FocusEnriched Digital Technologies curriculumEnriched and accelerated Science and Maths curriculum
Student EntrySelection by online testing and an interview may be requiredStudents will also be required to participate in various STEM and ICT-based activities. Both individual and group work will be included
Hours per week in Specialty AreaIT – 2 hours
Creative Lab – 1 hour
IT – 2 hours
Creative Lab – 1 hour
1 hour per week1 hour per week
Remain with the specialist group in other Learning AreasNoYes – Science and Maths
Hardware and Software
Laptop or MacBook (please see device specification sheet)Laptop or MacBook (please see device specification sheet)

What else should I know?

Both Institutes provide a clear pathway to Senior School, targeting career paths across various leading-edge professions. Our expert teachers undertake development programs that encourage inquiry-based teaching and learning strategies. There is a strong emphasis on creative and critical thinking, scientific method and problem-solving.
The program is offered in a learning environment that is technology-smart and rich. Parents must supply a laptop for school and home use to ensure that every student has access to the appropriate technology (see the specifications sheet on our website for further details).

What do I need to do to apply?

Entry into this program is based on merit. All students will take an online test focusing on numeracy and general ability. Students will also be required to participate in various STEM and ICT-based activities. Both individual and group work will be included. The session will conclude with a get-to-know-you chat with a member of the ASC staff.

Key Dates:

15 – 26 April Primary School visits
Monday, 29 April, 6.30 pmParent Information Evening
Friday, 24 May, 4 pm Expression of Interest close date
4 – 7 June ASP Testing (3 days)
24 – 28 June Offers sent out