Please note that this blog is intended for the students and parents associated with Gordonvale State High School, Cairns. Please check areas of interest as seen on the blog to confirm dates and other information as there will be occasions when dates will change and the information may not be included in the blog as it may not have been received by the school. Posts prior to July 2017 may have reference to Smithfield State High School as this blog was initially developed for students when I was the Guidance Officer at that school.

Monday, 28 May 2012

Officer Training with the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA)

Selection Criteria in the Australian Defence Force Officer Selection Board
At the Officer Selection Board, the ADF look for the following qualities in candidates applying to join the Defence Force:
  • academic achievement
  • accepting criticism
  • conformity to rules
  • initiative
  • motivation towards the ADF
  • oral communication
  • performance under stress
  • perserverance
  • physical endurance
  • team-work
  • learning potential
  • leadership skills
For more information about the Australian Defence Force Academy, please click here.

Studying@the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA)
The ADFA allows students to study at one of the world's leading universities (UNSW) while undertaking military training. The military training consists of two key components:

  1. Academic Military Education and Training (AMET): AMET includes Leadership Studies, Drill and Ceremonial, First Aid & Health, Field Craft, Military Law, Physical Training, Weapons Training, etc.
  2. Single Service Training (SST): Single Service Training is designed and implemented by the Army, Navy and Air Force.
The following diagram details the time that you spend in the ADFA if you are joining different sectors (Air Force, Navy and Army) of the ADF.

As it is a competitive process to apply for the ADFA, which can take up to 12 months to complete, we advise you start your application to the Defence Force at the beginning of year 11.
If you sit the YOU Session test in year 11, you will have time for a second attempt if you failed at the first time.

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Australian Defence Force Visit

The Australian Defence Force will be visiting Smithfield High School on Tuesday 29th May, 2012. They will be presenting an information session at 11:00am in the E-Learning Room in the Library.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Pilot Apptitude Training

The following information has been sent to the school from a company that prepares students for pilot training.
ADF Pilot Overview
Candidates applying to become aircrew for all three branches of the ADF must achieve a pass in the Aircrew Aptitude Test (AAT) or sometimes called RAAF Pilot Selection Test. 

This test is commonly sat by candidates applying to become
  • Pilots in the three services (RAAF pilot, Army pilot and Navy pilot)
  • RAAF Air Combat Officers
  • RAN Observors (Naval Flight Officers)
  • Australian Army Loadmasters
  • Air Traffic Controllers
  • Fighter Controllers
Before an applicant can attend the Aircrew Aptitude Test, the required score must first be achieved in the YOU Session test. In PATS you can do a combined course for the YOU session test and the Aircrew Aptitude Test.

For more information about ADF Pilot and its selection process, please click here.

Key factors

  • Apply and sit testing in year 11. That way you will have time for a second attempt if you do not get the required grades first time. Also you get testing done prior to the academic pressures of year 12.
  • The ADF strongly prefers school leavers to go to ADFA (Australian Defence Force Academy) to complete a degree prior to going to Pilot School.
  • Test scores are graded as a band one, two, or three pass - and will constitute a significant component of overall score. Candidates achieving higher test passes will proceed to flight screening more quickly.
  • The AAT can only be attempted three times - with a higher pass score being required in subsequent sittings.
  • There is also a twelve month suspension period following a testing failure.
After you have passed both selection tests, you will be invited to attend an Officer Selection Board.

How are ADF Pilots selected in the Officer Selection Board?

  • Team experience
  • Leadership role experience - e.g. school captain
  • Strong academic result
  • Aptitude test scores
  • Motivation (Aviation & Military)
  • Self- funded training - e.g. flying/ gliding
PATS can fully prepare you for the YOU Session test and the Aircrew Aptitude test. Our clients have achieved a 100% passing rate in 2011.

For information about our aptitude test preparation course, please click here.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Interested in a career in Information Technology?

Are you interested in a career with Information Technology? If so, please visit the following web site for up-to-date information including the vast range of tasks that professionals working in the area can be called upon to carry out, and the skills that these professionals need.


Central Queensland University Information

Apply now to study SUN in July 2012

Start Uni Now (SUN) allows Year 11 and 12 students to study CQUniversity courses whilst still in high school. It’s an excellent opportunity for students to be more prepared for the transition to university, gain QCE credit and gain direct entry* into an undergraduate degree at CQUniversity.
Applications for study in Term 2, 2012 are now open. To find out more attend the upcoming Mid Year Information Drop-in Session.
When: Tuesday, 22 May 2012
Time: 4pm – 7pm
Where: All campuses or join us for a chat on-line at www.cqu.edu.au/study
For further information about SUN, visit www.cqu.edu.au/sun.

Discover Engineering at CQUniversity Bundaberg*

Commencing in 2013, CQUniversity will offer students the opportunity to study the first year of the Bachelor of Engineering and Bachelor of Engineering (Coop)/Diploma of Professional Practice on-campus at CQUniversity Bundaberg. Students will benefit from staying close to home in their first year with the choice to continue their study by distance education** or on-campus at CQUniversity Rockhampton.
Click here for more information.
*Offering at CQUniversity Bundaberg subject to final University approval.
**Bachelor of Engineering (Coop)/Diploma of Professional Practice not available by distance education.

GECon Junior Delegate Program

CQUniversity invites year 12 students who may be considering a career in engineering to attend the morning session of CQUniversity's Graduating Engineers Conference. During the conference, junior delegates will have the chance to view our graduating students project presentations and posters, meet the Engineering academic team and talk with key industry stakeholders. Registrations are due by Friday, 1 June 2012. For more information or to register please visit www.cqu.edu.au/keydates.

CQUniversity Science Camp 2012

Tuesday, 26 June to Friday, 29 June 2012 -  CQUniversity Rockhampton
The 2012 Science Camp will be an opportunity for year 12 science students to meet like minded students from outside their own school, get a taste for university life, learn from the scientists at CQUniversity and participate in lots of fun activities. The four-day, three-night program will incorporate workshops and demonstrations exploring a range of topics within science, engineering and health. Registrations are due by Friday 1 June 2012. Please visit www.cqu.edu.au/keydates to download your registration pack today.

The Science Experience

Tuesday, 26 June to Thursday, 28 June 2012 - CQUniversity Rockhampton, Mackay & Bundaberg
Now hosted at three campus locations, including CQUniversity Bundaberg for the first time in 2012, The Science Experience is designed for students in year 9 and 10 to experience a three day program incorporating science, health and engineering related activities, presentations and workshops. This will be a great opportunity for students to come on-campus during the schools holidays and explore a wide range of career options, meet like minded students and learn about all that the University has to offer.
Registrations are due by Friday, 1 June 2012. Please visit www.scienceexperience.com.au to register.

GECon The CQ Engineering Link Project

Tuesday, 26 June to Thursday, 28 June 2012 - CQUniversity Rockhampton
The Central Queensland Engineering Link Project is a three-day program for year 11 and 12 students who are considering a career in engineering. The program includes a range of hands-on activities, workshops and talks from industry representatives and CQUniversity Engineers. Students also have the opportunity to stay on-campus at the
Student Residences and experience all that CQUniversity Rockhampton has to offer.
Registrations are due by Friday, 8 June 2012. Please visit www.telg.com.au to register.

STEPS Information

STEPS (Skills for Tertiary Education Preparatory Studies) can assist students who may not meet the prerequisite subjects for entry into their desired degree or need some additional support to gain the knowledge, confidence and skills to successfully undertake university study.

School leavers may consider STEPS if they have not qualified for an OP and can enter the program in the year that they turn 18. The standard full-time completion of STEPS is one term of 12 weeks.

If you or your students would like additional information on the STEPS program please visit  www.cqu.edu.au/steps or contact 13CQUni (13 27 86).

News from The University Of Queensland

Careers that Shape the World – REGISTRATIONS NOW OPEN

Registrations are now open for the Careers that Shape the World experience day to be held on Thursday 12 July at UQ’s St Lucia campus. Developed specifically for Year 11 and 12 students, this university-wide initiative provides a wide variety of workshops focusing on career outcomes across all fields of education. To avoid disappointment please ensure your students enrol early. Students must register online.

For information, contact:
(07) 3365 8820

FEAST – July 2012

FEAST is a five day residential program designed to help students discover the huge range of exciting and rewarding science careers in the agriculture, animal and food industries. With more than 2000 unfilled jobs available each year for university graduates in the agriculture, animal science and food sectors, students will find out more about these careers and the study pathways available to become part of this exciting future. FEAST is open to year 11 and 12 students and will be held at the UQ Gatton Campus from 01-05 July 2012. Registrations close on 18 May 2012.

For information, contact:

PACE Open Day – August 19

The UQ School of Pharmacy will be hosting its annual Pharmacy Open Day on Sunday 19 August, 2012. This is a fantastic opportunity for secondary school students and staff to tour the brand new Pharmacy Australia Centre of Excellence and find out more about UQ’s Bachelor of Pharmacy program. Guests can talk to current students about their experiences and discover more about the exciting field of work.

For information, contact:
(07) 3346 1926

Bachelor of Applied Science update

The Bachelor of Applied Science has recently been reviewed and now offers four majors and six extended majors. Majors include Agronomy, Animal Production, Equine Management and Horticulture and there are extended majors in Crop Production, Urban Horticulture, Equine Science, Production Animal Science, Veterinary Technology and Wildlife Science.
All specialisations are offered exclusively at the Gatton Campus where students may choose to live in Halls of Residence or off-campus. The review highlighted industry requirements for highly skilled, science trained graduates and the new majors will provide excellent career paths in the agricultural sector. Entry requirements remain the same and the program can be combined with the Bachelor of Agribusiness. The program includes 30 days of approved Industry work practice.

For information, contact:
(07) 3365 1888

Experience Science – register now!

School registrations are now open for Experience Science 2012 and for the first time, the event will be offered at UQ’s Gatton Campus. At Experience Science, students in Years 10 - 12 can discover what studying science is like at UQ and how science is applied in industry and everyday life. Students will gain hands-on experience through interactive science workshops facilitated by experts from both UQ and industry. Now in its 9th year, the 2012 program will run on 13 July at the Gatton campus and on 12, 13, 16, 17 and 18 July at the St Lucia campus. Places at Gatton are limited so register now.

For information, contact:
(07) 3346 1629

School Holiday Campus Tours

Students do not have to wait until they are studying at UQ to visit one of our first-class campuses. A guided on-campus tour is a fantastic opportunity to get a closer look at University life, ask questions, talk to current students and see the facilities first-hand. Tours generally take about an hour and information packs are provided for all visitors.
The next school holidays campus tours will be held from Monday 25 June – Friday 29 June, and from Monday 2 July – Friday 6 July.
For more information, and to book a tour, visit uq.edu.au/campustours

The Good University Guide

The following information has been taken from the home page of The Good Uni Guide web page. According to the web site:

The Good Uni Guide is the only comprehensive and independent information source about tertiary education pathways, including postgraduate courses like the MBA , and career options in Australia. If you are choosing an education course or career pathway, you have come to the right place.

To help you make informed choices about your future, you can:
·                 Search a huge range of courses , institutions or careers in Australia and online
·                 Compare these options through our university ratings and MBA ratings
·                 Search for scholarships
·                 Read about how to decide and what to expect on the next leg of your education journey.

International students may find the ratings and course information on this site useful. However, this site has been designed specifically for domestic students. Information relevant to international students and general advice about studying in Australia are available at www.studiesinaustralia.com

For further information please visit: http://www.gooduniguide.com.au/

The University of Queensland Medical Degrees

Alert - Changes to UQ’s MBBS Fast Track Dual Award Programs
With the possible introduction of the Doctor of Medicine (MD) program scheduled to replace the existing Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) in 2015 The University of Queensland will no longer be offering the three fast tracked duals Bachelor of Arts/MBBS, Bachelor of Health Sciences/MBBS and the Bachelor of Science/MBBS from 2013 onwards. All applicants, including Year 12 applicants will now be required to complete a minimum three year bachelor degree. Provisional entry into the proposed MD program will still be available for current school leavers.

Students should be aware that the MD program may have a number of prerequisites courses (e.g. anatomy, physiology and biochemistry) or at least recommendations, for study prior to the MD. The University is currently examining the issue of prerequisites, but acknowledges the possibility that it may not mandate them, choosing instead only to make recommendations about prior study subjects. Never the less, students are urged to consider a choice of first UQ degree that is likely to cover ‘pre-medical’ material that will assist with their MD studies.

Students wanting to undertake a program without any pre-medical content are not precluded from doing so. However, if any prerequisites or recommended prior study are approved for the MD, it is strongly recommended that students undertaking programs without any pre-medical material complete some anatomy, physiology and chemistry courses as electives in their undergraduate program. It is recognised that, due to the timing of the approval of these prerequisites or recommended prior study for the MD program, the first one or two years of entry into the new MD program (2015 and 2016) will require close, and possibly case by case management in regards to assessing the satisfaction of prerequisites or recommendations by applicants.

UQ Admissions information is available via: http://www.uq.edu.au/study/?page=73953. Further information regarding the proposed MD program is available via:

QTAC - Qld Tertiary Admissions Centre

Students can apply for courses commencing Semesters 1 & 2, 2013 from 1 August 2012. Information on courses, fees, key dates will be published in the new QTAC Guide and on the website from June 2012. The QTAC Guide 2013 listing courses and application information will be available to purchase from QTAC and newsagencies from June 2012.

EAS - Educational Access Scheme

EAS helps applicants who have experienced difficult circumstances while studying to gain entry to university. Click here for documentation requirements.

ATAR - Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank

Since 1996, Australian states and territories have certified their students for tertiary entrance via measures of overall achievement known as the Interstate Transfer Index (ITI). For many years, the ITI had been known as the UAI in NSW/ACT, the ENTER in Victoria, and TER in other states and territories of Australia. As of 2011 the ITI has one common nomenclature across Australia: the Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR). The ATAR is a number between 0 and 99.95 with increments of 0.05.

While Queensland continues to certify Queensland Year 12 students with OPs, the Queensland Studies Authority (QSA) also calculates an ATAR for OP students which can be used:
By interstate tertiary admissions centres for tertiary admissions purposes
Within Queensland for greater discrimination of applicants for a small number of highly competitive courses (ie after OPs and Field Positions have been used) and to select applicants for scholarships

OP ineligible Rank

The OP ineligible schedules for Queensland Year 12 students based on 2011 data are available on the QTAC website at: www.qtac.edu.au/Applying-CurrentYr12/2011NonOP.html.

Features of the OP ineligible rank:
OP ineligible ranks can be calculated with fewer than 20 semester units of subjects
Points values of Authority subjects are weighted according to achievement levels
‘Embedded’ and ‘standalone’ VET subjects are streamlined into one category of VET
Levels of units of competency are taken into account with higher level units contributing higher points values
The relative notional duration (number of hours) of a unit of competency is considered
Units of competency are aggregated to equate to semester units or portions of semesters

Trades and Traineeships

As advised in late 2009, changes were made to the assessment of trades and traineeships for tertiary admission from 1 July 2010.
Trades and traineeships which postdate the introduction of the AQF (ie 1995 onwards) are assessed on the appropriate certificate or diploma schedule for completed awards.

This means that an applicant with a Certificate III traineeship will be assigned a QTAC selection rank of 68 for the Certificate III qualification (not the rank 71 previously allocated for the completed traineeship). A Certificate II traineeship does not receive a QTAC selection rank as QTAC does not assign ranks to Certificate I and II qualifications.

Please note that this assessment practice is applicable for all categories of applicants including current Year 12 students and non Year 12s. QTAC will still be able to use the modules from all AQF certificate levels listed on the student’s Senior Statement in the calculation of the OP ineligible rank as noted above should this advantage the applicant.

Additional Qualifications

In addition to their Senior studies, many Year 12 students complete additional qualifications that may be assessed by QTAC for tertiary entry purposes. These qualifications include: Vocational Education and Training (VET) studies eg Certificate III and IV; Music, dancing and speech and drama qualifications eg AMEB completed 7th or 8th grade or Tertiary study eg START QUT. If students have additional qualifications that they would like considered by QTAC that are not listed on their Senior Statements, they should indicate this in their online application. There will be sections where they can list their qualifications, ie Certificate, Bridging, Tertiary, Professional qualifications.

If a qualification will be recorded on a student’s Senior Statement there is no need to document the qualification. QTAC will receive the information automatically through the Queensland Studies Authority.

If a qualification is not recorded on a student’s Senior Statement or they are completing Year 12 interstate or the IB, the student should submit the relevant documentation to QTAC. Upon lodgement of their application the student will be prompted to print a cover sheet to which they must attach a certified copy of the original document. Documentation must be submitted to QTAC by 17 December 2012 for inclusion in the 17 January 2013 offer round.

Study Costs

Students should refer to section 4 of the QTAC Guide when they receive it, for approximate tuition costs, listed by course. Depending on the institution, these fees may be indicative first year study costs, the entire course cost or cost per subject. The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) Going to Uni website, www.studyassist.gov.au provides information about the Australian higher education system, including information on education providers, courses and assistance provided by the Commonwealth Government such as HECS-HELP, FEE-HELP, VET FEE-HELP, and Commonwealth Scholarships. DEEWR can also be contacted by phone on 1800 020 108.

Twelve to Tertiary Payment Options

Payment can be prepaid, made online with a credit card or paid via BPAY®.
If an applicant would like to use BPAY® as their payment method, they should print out their BPAY® advice slip at the end of the application. Please note, by choosing this payment option applicants can then pay by any method, not only BPAY®. Payment can be made with cash, eftpos, money order, cheque, or credit card. Students who select BPAY® as the payment method should note that their application will not be considered for any offers and they will not have access to QTAC’s online services until payment is received by QTAC.

Year 12 Bonus Ranks

A number of QTAC’s institutions award bonus ranks for successful completion of Year 12 subjects such as Languages other than English (LOTE) and Maths C, and some university-level subjects. A current Year 12 applicant may potentially be awarded a combination of bonus ranks. The maximum number of bonus ranks awarded will depend on the institution. Further information is available on the QTAC website and will be published in the QTAC Guide.


Applicant Fee Category
New Fee 2012 - 2013
Application Processing fee (1 August 2012 to 28 September 2012)
Year 12 - TTT(Twelve to Tertiary)
Application Processing fee (1 October 2012 to 31 January 2013)
Year 12 - TTT
Change of Preference (Made via QTAC’s Current Applicant online service)
First three changes
Fourth and subsequent changes
$17.00 each
Separate document submission charge