Structure of the Lower Secondary
In Lower Secondary, we have four year levels: Secondary 1 (S1) to Secondary 4 (S4). According to the European School system, the year levels are divided into cycles. There is the Introduction Cycle from S1-S3, the Pre-Orientation Cycle from S4-S5 and the Orientation Cycle from S6-S7. In Lower Secondary, students will complete the Introduction Cycle from S1-S3 and start the Pre-Orientation Cycle in S4.
Compulsory and elective subjects
In S1, students study L1 (Language 1), L2 (Language 3), L3 (Language 3), Mathematics, Integrated Science, Human Science, PE (Physical Education), Religion, Art, Music and ICT (Information, Computers and Technology). In S2, students have the option to study Latin for two periods a week. In S3, students must choose whether to have Latin or ICT, and Human Science classes are taught in students’ L2 language.
When students begin the Pre-Orientation Cycle in S4, they will have fewer compulsory subjects, more optional subjects and some subjects taught at different levels. In S4 Integrated Science splits into Biology, Physics and Chemistry, which are each 2 periods a week. Human Science splits into Geography and History, both 2 periods a week, and both Geography and History are taught in students’ L2 language. S4s must continue with core subjects such as L1, L2, L3, Mathematic, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, History, Geography, PE and Religion. However, students can also choose different elective subjects, such as ICT, Music, L4, Latin, Art and Economics.
This elective process in S4 begins with the decision of whether the student wishes to study Advanced Math (six periods a week) or Standard Maths (four periods a week). This decision is taken first, so that students can understand how many other periods a week of elective subjects they should choose to reach the minimum requirement of lessons per week. The Maths teachers will guide the students with regards to their Maths level and parents are most welcome to contact Maths teachers if they have questions. If you wish to follow Maths Advanced in S5 you need to follow it from S4. Standard Math is equivalent to Math on “B-level”, which is compulsory in the Danish gymnasium, and B-level qualifies students for the majority of studies in Denmark. Math Advanced is advised if students wish to study STEM-subjects, Medicine, Economics etc.
As S6-S7 students enter the “Orientation Cycle”, they will have more freedom to design their study path. There are few compulsory subjects, many optional subjects, and the choice of standard or advanced level subjects. Students cannot study a subject in S6 or S7 if you have not studied it in S4 and S5.