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Queensland Academies | The High School of Choice for Gifted Students

Queensland Academies are a set of three independent state high schools created in 2007 by the Department of Education and Training. They were established with the aim of providing an innovative, alternative educational program for highly capable high school students. The program is dedicated to engaging and empowering Queensland’s brilliant students in a collaborative, world-class educational environment to realise their future potential.

Queensland Academies offers a cutting edge senior schooling environments that allow Queensland’s intelligent, innovative and creative students to experience a new form of learning. 

Queensland Academies Schools

Students entering Year 10 can commence the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme at one of three campuses:

The benefits of attending Queensland Academies

Internationally recognised curriculum

Queensland Academies offers the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme, an internationally recognised pre-tertiary level qualification that allows graduating students to study at national and international universities.

Studying with like-minded students

By challenging current approaches to teaching and learning, Queensland Academies empowers students to collaborate and co-direct their learning with their teachers and other students. Queensland Academies and the International Baccalaureate promote a sense of team in which students do not compete for a finite number of top scores.

Stimulating, challenging environment

Highly capable students are stimulated with challenging extension and enhancement opportunities delivered in collaboration with partner universities and organisations. They take part in camps, formals, sports and music events and an array of school-based extracurricular Creativity, Activity and Service (CAS) components. Queensland Academies’ students benefit from a culture that celebrates both a holistic learning environment, as well as one that supports success in state, national and international academic competitions.

Technology-rich environment

University and industry-standard facilities at Queensland Academies campuses have full wireless
connectivity which allows students to use laptop devices as tools for learning.

Preparation for university

The rigor of the IB curriculum, including the core areas of study, Theory of Knowledge (TOK) and Extended Essay (a research topic of the student’s choosing), coupled with our unique pedagogy,
enables students to adjust more readily to university environments.

Partnerships with universities

Partnerships with leading universities afford benefits including credit into second-year university courses, attainment of additional tertiary rankings, industry experience, involvement with university staff and access to world-class resources and facilities.

Queensland Academies Curriculum

Unlike other Queensland schools, Queensland Academies offers the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme as the only senior years curriculum, meaning that all students can benefit from a cohesive study focus. The learning environment is characterised by intellectual challenge, inquiry and the transference of knowledge. The global focus and breadth of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme allows Queensland Academies to be true global influencers – connected to the world, focussed on the future and committed to service.

Queensland Academies focus on identifying and building on the strengths and talents of individuals through a world-class academic curriculum. Students and teachers learn together through lively debate – gaining new understandings as internationally aware path makers who lead with cultural sensitivity toward a future vision.

Students commence at the beginning of Year 10 for an immersion IB preparation program, followed by the IB Diploma Programme, studied in Years 11 and 12, which has the strengths of a traditional curriculum, but with three important additional elements: the Extended Essay (EE), Theory of Knowledge (ToK) and Creativity, Activity and Service (CAS).

Students of the IB Diploma Programme must study a subject from each of the six academic areas or subject groups surrounding a core of requirements. Students are thereby exposed to the two great traditions of learning: the humanities and the sciences.

To be eligible for the award of the IB Diploma, students are required to:

  • Study six academic subjects, one from each of the groups represented by the diagram (exceptions for Group 6 The Arts apply)
  • Complete at least three (and not more than four) subjects at the Higher Level and the remainder at the Standard Level; and
  • Satisfactorily complete the following additional core elements:
    • Theory of Knowledge (ToK)
    • Extended Essay (EE)
    • Creativity, Activity and Service (CAS).

Extended Essay (EE)

The extended essay asks students to engage in independent research through an in-depth study of a question relating to one of the IB Diploma subjects they are studying. The world studies extended essay option allows students to focus on a topic of global significance which they examine through the lens of at least two IB Diploma subjects.

Theory of Knowledge (TOK)

Theory of knowledge develops a coherent approach to learning that unifies the academic disciplines. In this course, students inquire into the nature of knowing and deepen their understanding of knowledge as a human construction.

Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS)

CAS is a framework for experiential learning, designed to involve young people in new roles. The emphasis is on learning by doing real tasks that have real consequences and then reflecting on these experiences over time.

Creativity encourages students to engage in the arts and creative thinking. Activity seeks to develop a healthy lifestyle through physical activity. Service with the community offers a
vehicle for new learning with academic value. CAS aims to develop students who are:

  • reflective thinkers – they understand their own strengths and limitations, identify goals and devise strategies for personal growth
  • willing to accept new challenges and new roles
  • aware of themselves as members of communities with responsibilities towards each other and the environment
  • active participants in sustained, collaborative projects
  • balanced – they enjoy and find significance in a range of activities involving intellectual, physical, creative and emotional experiences.

Queensland Academies Enrolment

Queensland Academies offers enrolment into Year 10 at Queensland Academies Creative Industries campus (QACI) and Queensland Academies Health Sciences campus (QAHS) for highly capable students who are successful in meeting the selective entry application process, to undertake the rigorous International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma programme in Years 10–12. 

Queensland Academy for Science Mathematics and Technology (QASMT) accepts highly capable students who are successful in our selective entry application process, into Year 7 to complete the full International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme (MYP) and the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme (Years 7–12).

Selective Entry Process

Students wishing to enter a Queensland Academies campus are required to participate in the following selective entry process:

  • Application for Enrolment: Complete the application form on the Queensland Academies website and pay the non-refundable application fee (qa.eq.edu.au/ apply)
  • Entrance Test: All students must sit the Entrance Test. Queensland Academies can make arrangements for international, interstate and regional students to sit this test at a mutually agreed location
  • Interview: Students present their abilities during an interview. For regional, overseas and inter-state students, interviews may be conducted via videoconference or teleconference depending on the facilities available or alternatively students may choose to travel to Brisbane/Gold Coast to present in person. Students are required to select a piece of their own work to discuss at interview that clearly demonstrates their learned practises.
  • Offer of Enrolment: Offers will be made to students on the basis of their entrance test results, interview and academic records.

Queensland Academies for Creative Industries | Kelvin Grove

Queensland Academies Creative Industries Campus (QACI) opened its purpose-built facility in 2007. Co-located in the Kelvin Grove Urban Village, QACI students enjoy learning opportunities with the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), in particular its dynamic and world-leading creative industries precinct.

QACI attracts a diverse range of students from a variety of high schools who share attributes and areas of interest. These students seek a rich and integrated academic curriculum and collaborative learning experiences to exchange ideas with others who hold different types of expertise. Read more about QACI here.

Queensland Academies Health Sciences | Southport

Queensland Academies Health Sciences

Queensland Academies Health Sciences Campus (QAHS) opened in 2008 at Southport in an adjoining campus to Griffith University. Through its partnership with Griffith University and the QAHS curriculum offerings, QAHS also affords credit options to students in areas that include Business, Law, Engineering, Arts, Criminology, Information Technology, Psychology, Education and Multimedia. In addition to being offered places in the established Health Sciences-related fields of Dentistry, Exercise Science, Medicine, Nursing and Midwifery and Pharmacy, an increasing number of QAHS graduates are offered University courses in prestigious
Queensland, interstate, and overseas universities in fields of Business and Commerce, Engineering, Law, and Politics.

QAHS has state-of-the-art facilities including a fully wireless campus, air-conditioned classrooms, university standard science laboratories, a 500 seat Lecture Theatre, and gymnasium. Staff are selected for their expertise and commitment to working in close partnership with parents to ensure each student achieves to their potential. Through the possibilities of research, a spirit of altruism, inherent compassion and scientific curiosity, QAHS students are connected to the world, focussed on the future and committed to service.

QAHS students are involved in a broad range of challenging enrichment activities – some include CSIRO CREST (National Award Winners), BHP Billiton Science Research Awards, Regional, State and National Mathematics and Science Competitions, Regional Sport, Leadership Development Programs, Australian Business Week, Language and Linguistics Competitions, a comprehensive instrumental music program and various Community Projects. Students graduating from the Queensland Academies Health Sciences Campus attain outstanding academic results. This enables them to accept offers into some of the world’s most prestigious universities.

Queensland Academy for Science Mathematics and Technology | Toowong

Queensland Academy for Science Mathematics and Technology

Queensland Academy for Science Mathematics and Technology Campus (QASMT) allows high achieving students to develop their skills through leading edge curriculum and links with the University of Queensland (UQ). QASMT offers an enriched program to enhance the development of students who have an interest and ability in the related fields of Science Mathematics and Technology.

The new STEM precinct offers unparalleled learning spaces with state of the art technology, with university standard science and physics laboratories, robotics and Makerspace center and a contemporary library and study spaces. QASMT develops students’ abilities to research, investigate and reflect on local and global matters. The relationship between students and teachers is based on intellectual challenge and interdependent inquiry and our focus is on the hollistic education of each student.

Students who graduate from QASMT are well prepared for university level and have embarked on careers in new science fields such as Biotechnology and Nanotechnology, as well as established fields like Health Sciences, Engineering, Chemical Sciences, Robotics, Mathematics, Business, Law and Neuroscience.

QASMT students achieve outstanding academic results and have a proven record in attaining offers to some of the most prestigious universities throughout the world. As a result of the special credit arrangements between the University of Queensland and QASMT, many students place UQ as their preferred university of choice.

Where to find the Queensland Academies Campuses

  • The Creative Industries Campus is located on the outskirts of the Brisbane inner city within the Queensland University of Technology’s Kelvin Grove Campus; 61 Musk Avenue, Kelvin Grove.
  • The Health Sciences Campus is on the Gold Coast, adjacent to Griffith University at 102 Edmund Rice Drive, Southport.
  • The Science, Mathematics & Technology Campus is located close to the University of Queensland at 78 Bywong Street, Toowong.

Is Queensland Academies right for your child?

If you have a child in primary or middle school who shows exceptional ability, focus, and drive, Queensland Academies could be the perfect place for them to complete their high school years.

The campuses of Queensland Academies provide a rich learning environment for talented, high-achieving students in their high school years. Students at Queensland Academies enjoy premium world-class facilities and a support network that helps them to become independent critical thinkers, goal-oriented, and culturally aware, recognising their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet. Graduates of Queensland Academies can anticipate access to many of the world’s most prestigious universities and take with them a lifelong love of learning and sense of purpose.

Contact Queensland Academies to arrange a tour of the campuses or to register for their next open days. Call 07 3377 9366.

Photo of author

Janine Mergler

Janine Mergler is a veteran Queensland teacher, graduating from QUT with a BEd majoring in Social Sciences. After many years in the classroom, Janine moved on to academia. She has proudly trained new generations of teachers in her role as a lecturer at Queensland University of Technology Faculty of Education. She has also worked in the Queensland Government as an education specialist, developing education resources and delivering community awareness programs to help families conserve water. Currently she is the owner and editor of Families Magazine, a publication specifically targeted at parents who value a quality education for children.  Janine leads a team of professionals who write about family lifestyle, early childhood, schools and education information and family-friendly events.

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