Some of the enrolment frequently asked questions are listed here. If they don't answer your questions please contact us.
Can the student and/or parent lodge the application directly to the NSW School of Languages?
No, the application must be submitted to the student’s high school to be checked, approved and forwarded to NSW School of Languages (NSL).
Who does and does not need to complete an application?
Students enrolling into year 9 and into year 11 will require a new application form even if they are continuing to study the same language. Enrolment from Year 10 to Year 11 is not automatic.
Students with an existing NSL enrolment continuing into the second year of the course do not submit an application. The high school of the student will inform NSL if the student is intending to continue. This applies to Year 9 into Year 10 and Year 11 into Year 12.
When are enrolment applications due for years 9 - 11?
Applications open at the end of July and are due by mid November of the year before study commences. Late applications are accepted up until mid-February of the year study commences, however places in our courses cannot be guaranteed and late enrolments may not be completed by Day 1 of Term 1. Please see the Enrolment application forms for exact dates.
What happens when a student changes school?
If a student has changed schools, and the new school no longer offers the language studied at the previous school, the new school may submit an application for the student at any time.
When are enrolment applications due for year 12?
Applications are due at the end of September so that students can commence the HSC course in Week 1 of Term 4. Late applications are accepted on a case-by-case basis.
Can I enrol my student once the school year has commenced?
Approval must firstly be sought from the home school’s local Director Educational Leadership (DoE schools) or the Rural and Distance Education Coordinator (other educational providers). Please follow the procedure on the ‘Late or unforeseen and unique circumstances’ form on the Enrolment application forms page. Please note that places in our courses cannot be guaranteed.
Can a student study with NSL if the subject is offered at their high school?
No, if the course is offered at a student’s high school they must study the language there, unless the high school supplies evidence of a timetable clash, which is assessed on a case-by-case basis.
What is an intake area? Why can’t my student choose which distance education school they study with?
Each distance education school has a designated intake (catchment) area. We are unable to take students from outside our intake area unless their designated distance education school is full, or does not offer the requested language course. In the former case, the principal of your designated distance education school must provide written approval for the enrolment to proceed to NSL's principal before an application can be submitted.
Can I apply to NSL if the language is not offered at the Distance Education provider for my area?
You can apply to NSL if your local distance education provider does not offer the requested language.
Here is the list of languages that are not available at the other D.E providers:
Year 9 and 10 Chinese
Year 11 and 12 Chinese Continuers
Year 11 and 12 Chinese and Japanese in Context
Year 12 Indonesian and Literature
My student wants to study more units than you allow. Why can’t they?
Distance Education is a safety net to ensure students complete all requirements for secondary education as set out by NSW Standards Authority (NESA). That is, it is provided by the DoE as a minimum and mandatory provision to ensure students have access to the minimum number of subjects/units required for their RoSA and HSC. It is not provided as an add-on subject. In Stage 6 Distance Education, in Year 11, 13 units are allowed which is 1 extra unit in addition to NESA’s minimum requirement of 12 units. In Year 12, students can study up to 11 units which is 1 unit extra in addition to NESA’s minimum requirement of 10 units. This has the added benefit of ensuring NSL students have room on their school timetable for their language study and for contacting their NSL teacher during the school day. It ensures that student workload is manageable with flow-on effects for student wellbeing.
Is distance education right for my student?
If you or your student is unsure if distance education is right for them, ask your student to complete the fun and quick Enrolment quiz also located on our Facebook page.
How does distance education work at NSL?
Our students study their chosen language through blended learning - a mix of online coursework, individual speaking lessons and face-to-face days (when they come to the NSL campus).
The instructional materials and coursework are delivered via an online learning platform (Canvas or Moodle). The instructional materials take the student through each module of work step by step. Students watch videos, complete quizzes and activities, download worksheets and then upload the completed worksheets for marking and feedback.
An important aspect of each module is the weekly speaking lesson. Students meet once a week with their teacher via onscreen technologies or in special circumstances by phone if onscreen technologies are not available. They work interactively with their teacher during speaking lessons via an online shared document and complete speaking activities based on the current module.
Once each term, the cohort comes to the NSL campus for a face-to-face lesson day. This provides students with the opportunity to meet their language teacher and classmates, and to participate in various organised lessons and activities.
My student is highly gifted in languages. Do you offer acceleration?
We do offer acceleration. Please contact NSL for the documentation required for our principal to consider acceleration for your student.
Which course should my Year 11 student enrol in - Beginners? Continuers? In Context? Literature?
Enrolment in a Stage 6 language is dependent on the student’s exposure to the language, not on their ability. When determining the course for which a student is eligible, please refer to our eligibility flow charts. Please also see the NESA eligibility criteria. It is important to note that a student must meet all eligibility criteria upon entry to the course.
The student only speaks the requested language very occasionally with their grandparents. Why can’t they do the Stage 6 Beginners course?
Enrolment in a Stage 6 language is dependent on the student’s exposure to the language, not on their ability. The NESA eligibility criteria states that to be eligible for a Beginners course, “students have little or no previous knowledge of the language”. Year 11 Beginner's students will be asked to complete a Statutory Declaration stating their exposure to the language. In our experience, students who have some background of the language at home usually do not meet the criteria for Beginners courses. Entry into a course is based on the information provided on the enrolment application form and our highly experienced teachers continue to monitor eligibility during the course.
My student didn’t study a language in Year 9 but wants to study one in Year 10. Is that possible?
Yes, if they have no experience in the language, they can complete the first 100 hours of the 2 year stage 5 language course in Year 10. If the student has background in the language and can demonstrate that they have met the outcomes of the Year 9 course, they may enrol in the second year of the 2 year course in Year 10. On successful completion of either course in Year 10, they will receive 100 hours on their RoSA.
My student didn’t study a language in Year 11 but wants to study one in Year 12. Is that possible?
This is not possible for Beginners courses. For other courses, it may be possible if the student is a native speaker of the language or lived in a country where the language is spoken. The student must demonstrate that they have met the outcomes of the Year 11 course, then they can enrol under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). A check will need to be carried out by NSL prior to enrolment to ensure the student has met the outcomes of the Year 11 course. It is important to note that, as a student enrolled in Year 12 with RPL, they will only receive 2 units for the course in the HSC. Please refer to the RPL form on the Enrolment application forms page.
Can a student enrol in more than one language?
It is possible to enrol in 2 or 3 languages with NSW School of Languages following approval from your school.
How do I pay for the course?
The student's school is responsible for payment of course access fees to NSL upon approval of the enrolment application. It is then up to the student's school to negotiate the payment with the student's parent/carer. Please do not pay through NSL’s Parental Online Payment Portal. Please refer to the Course fees page for further information.
The student wants to study a language at NSL but I can’t afford the course access fee.
Most schools have budgetary means to assist students whose families are undergoing financial hardship.
Do you issue refunds?
Any refunds issued are at the discretion of NSL in line with DoE policy. Please refer to the Course fees page for further information.