Why is 12th grade important

The high school: advantages and procedure

For some, a recommendation for high school is like winning the lottery. The highest type of school in Germany ends with the Abitur and opens the way to a university.

According to the classic G9 principle, the grammar school is divided into lower secondary level I (secondary level I - grade 7 to 10) and secondary level II (secondary level II - upper secondary level) and concludes with the general higher education entrance qualification. With the introduction of the shortened G8 high school training path, the breakdown into sec. I (grades 5 to 9) and sec. II (grades 9 to 12) has been shifted.

In order to be allowed to attend a grammar school, the students usually need a recommendation from the elementary school. In order to get this, you need, among other things, good to very good grades on the fourth grade certificate.

According to the G9 principle, secondary level I is divided into a lower level (grades 5 to 7) and an intermediate level (grades 8 to 10). There is a change of teachers between the two levels. This is followed by lessons in the upper level (grades 11 to 13).

In principle, the compulsory subjects up to the 7th grade are taught in a class, which in most cases comprises around 30 students. From the 7th grade onwards, first profile subjects and specializations can be chosen. For example, the students can independently choose another foreign language. In the G8 system, students choose a second foreign language as early as the 6th grade.

From the upper level onwards, the fixed class groups are dissolved and courses are taught. In the orientation phase (grade 11), basic and advanced courses are chosen. There are fixed combination specifications. The lessons in the two advanced courses take up more hours per week than the basic courses, and the advanced courses in the Abitur examination are examined more intensively. The curriculum also increases. For the first time, students in the upper school are also regularly taught in the afternoon.

The course content at the grammar school

The grammar schools in Germany have in many cases specialized in certain subjects or offer certain areas of focus. For example, there are economics high schools in which basic knowledge of business administration is taught. Other grammar schools offer specializations in the social sciences, music-artistic, mathematical-scientific, technical or also in the sporting area.

Other special forms of grammar school are the vocational grammar schools, such as technical grammar schools or business grammar schools, and the upper level of the second educational path, such as the evening grammar school or the college.

When attending secondary level I at a grammar school, the following knowledge and skills are in the foreground:

  • Imparting an in-depth general education
  • Ability to learn and work independently
  • Development of emotional and creative skills
  • Developing social and humane behaviors
  • Social integration

The lessons at the grammar school are strongly influenced by theory. Since only the grammar school enables access to the universities, it is a duty to prepare separately for this further educational path - this happens above all in the secondary level.

High school - learning and learning control

One aspect that is given special attention at a grammar school is the ability to acquire knowledge independently. As part of their homework, the students should regularly deal with research in a library or the Internet and prepare smaller written elaborations and essays. These achievements then flow into the student's grading together with the oral achievements in the classroom and the results of the learning controls.

The learning controls are carried out at regular intervals. Their number depends on the number of hours per week and in the school half-year. The duration of such an examination at the grammar school increases, as does the difficulty in the course of schooling. In the fifth to tenth grade, the tasks are usually created by the respective subject teacher. In certain cases, however, a central test can also take place for the entire federal state, for example to query and ensure the comparability of teaching at schools. In addition, such exams are a preparation for the Abitur after the end of secondary education, which is also centralized in many federal states.

In order to prepare for a possible university degree, group work is increasingly carried out, and presentations are made and lectures are given, especially in the upper level.

Author: Miriam Bax
Published on February 3, 2011

Tags: Abitur, G8, high school