Types of Courses in Grade 11 & 12

In a recent blog, the types of courses available in Ontario to Grade 9 and 10 students were explored. As promised, this blog will focus on options available to Grade 11 and 12 students as outlined in the Ontario Ministry of Education’s Program Planning and Assessment Guide. The new curriculum in Ontario is geared toward providing senior students with learning experiences that suit their individual interests and prepare them for specific post-secondary goals. Students can choose from four ‘destination-related’ course types.

  • University Preparation
  • University/College Preparation
  • College Preparation
  • Workplace Preparation


Each type is designed to teach the skills necessary for students to meet the entrance requirements and expectations for specific post-secondary destination, including post-secondary institutions, apprenticeship and training institutions, and the workplace.

Senior students choose the ‘destination-related’ course type that best suits their learning needs and goals. Students may also choose to take Open Courses, which are intended to develop knowledge and skills in specific subject areas such as Music, Visual Arts, Media Arts, Business, Learning Strategies, etc.

When choosing courses in Grades 11 and 12, it is important that students carefully consider and select the prerequisites that will enable them to pursue the area of post-secondary study or work that interests them. Charts outlining the prerequisite(s) for each course and the progression of courses from Grade 9-12 are available in the Ontario Ministry of Education’s Course Descriptions and Prerequisites (2010): http://bit.ly/arKq9k.

Choosing a post-secondary destination and an academic path to get there is not easy. It is important for students (and parents!) to be well informed and aware of the options available. Take the time to review the curriculum documents in order to effectively plan for post-secondary success!


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