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VCE English as an Additional Language (EAL)


VCE English and English as an Additional Language (EAL) prepare students to think and act critically and creatively, engaging with the beauty and challenges of their contemporary world with compassion and understanding. Students learn to collaborate, communicate widely, and confidently connect with our complex, plural society. By engaging with texts from different times, cultures, forms, and genres, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander knowledge and voices, students gain insight into a wide range of ideas. They enhance their skills in responding to and creating texts, using language that accurately reflects the purpose, audience, and context of their work. By developing broad skills in communication and reflection, the study of English enables students to participate in their diverse, dynamic and multicultural world productively and positively.

EAL (English as an Additional Language) Status

Students from non-English speaking backgrounds are eligible for EAL status if they satisfy both of the following conditions:

  1. The student has been a resident in Australia for a period of not more than seven calendar years prior to 1 January of the year in which the VCE is attempted.

  2. English has been the student’s major language of instruction for a total period of not more than seven years.

Under certain circumstances, students who do not meet the criteria fully may be awarded EAL status. Enquiries should be directed to the VCE Coordinator. Students who are eligible for EAL status should select EAL English Unit 3 & 4 in Year 12.

VCE English and English as an Additional Language Study Design (updated August 2023)


Units 1 and 2: 

Demonstration of achievement of outcomes and satisfactory completion of a unit is determined by evidence gained through the assessment of a range of learning activities and tasks.

Units 3 and 4: School Assessed Coursework (50%)

End-of-year Examination (50%)

UNIT 1: Reading & Exploring Text


Students engage in reading and viewing texts with a focus on making personal connections with the text. They discuss and clarify the ideas and values presented by authors through character, setting, plot, and the exploration of the text's point of view or voice. They enhance their inferential reading and viewing skills, considering how vocabulary, text structures, and language features create meaning on multiple levels.

Through reading and exploring texts, students enhance their reading and viewing skills, particularly their ability to infer deeper meanings. This also helps to expand their writing in response to texts. Building on the skills from Unit 1, students will explore a different text type in this unit.

Area of Study 2 - Crafting Texts:

Students engage with and develop an understanding of effective and cohesive writing. They apply, extend and challenge their understanding and use of imaginative, persuasive and informative text through a growing awareness of situated contexts, stated purposes and audiences.

Area of Study 2 - Exploring Argument:

Students examine how arguments are developed and presented across various media forms. Focusing on a contemporary and significant local or national issue, they read, view, and listen to a range of texts designed to position an intended audience in a specific context. They analyse the structure of these texts, including their contentions, sequence of arguments, supporting evidence, and persuasive strategies. They closely study the language and visuals used by the authors and analyse their intended effects on the audience. Students then apply their understanding of arguments to create an oral presentation expressing their own point of view.



Area of Study 1 – Reading and Responding to Texts:

Students use reading and viewing strategies to critically engage with texts, considering their dynamics and complexities while reflecting on character motivations. They analyse how authors construct meaning through vocabulary, text structures, language features, conventions, and ideas. Students explore the historical context and the social and cultural values of a text, understanding how these elements influence interpretation and audience positioning.

Area of Study 1 – Reading and Responding to Texts:

Students further enhance their reading and viewing skills developed in Unit 3. They consolidate their ability to critically analyse texts and deepen their understanding of the ideas and values conveyed.

Area of Study 2 – Creating Texts:

Students build on the knowledge and skills developed in Unit 1 by engaging imaginatively and critically with mentor texts and effective writing within identified contexts. Through close reading, they deepen their understanding of how vocabulary, text structures, language features, conventions, and ideas can interweave to create compelling texts. They also consider how purpose, context (including mode), and specific audiences influence and shape writing, using mentor texts to inform their own creative work.

Area of Study 2 – Analysing Argument:

Students analyse arguments, language, and visuals in texts debating contemporary and significant national or international issues. The texts must have appeared in the media since September 1 of the previous year. Teachers should help students select a relevant issue. Students engage with various media texts, including print, digital, audio, and audiovisual, to understand how arguments and language work together to position an intended audience regarding the selected issue.

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