Languages Program

One of Bendigo South East College priorities is to expand the global perspective of our students. Learning a Language is a powerful way to gain an understanding of other cultures.

Students starting their secondary schooling will be able to preference one of three languages; Chinese, German or Indonesian, to study at our College.

Our Language teachers are dedicated and enthusiastic learners, as well as teachers of languages. All have a deep understanding and appreciation of their specialist cultures and languages. The arrival of student teachers from China and Germany has further bolstered our team.

The Bendigo South East Secondary College language program develops respectful and internationally minded citizens, who work together towards enriching the local and wider community.

At BSE we pride ourselves on our intercultural school culture and embrace local and global partnerships for learning. We are an outward-looking learning community promoting harmony, participation, friendly competition and opportunities for contribution, recognition and celebration. This is reflected by the diversity of languages we offer: Chinese, German and Indonesian.

Our unique ‘taster’ program allows students the opportunity to sample all three languages as short courses before selecting the language that best suits their learning needs. Students who wish to continue studying a language in Year 8 and beyond can continue studying the language of their choice as an elective.

Language students participate in a range of skill acquisition, application tasks and inquiry learning opportunities, which enhance their personal passions for international mindedness and real-life applications. Students who have studied any of the three languages in Year 10 work towards a Cert. II in applied languages through Vocational Education and Training and will be able to continue studying the language in VCE at Bendigo Senior Secondary College. Language study at Year 12 can entitle students to bonus ATAR scores, which further enhance their chances of getting into the course and university of their choice.


Chinese language study was introduced to our College in 2002 and has since enjoyed increasing popularity. We were the first Bendigo 7-10 College offering an ongoing program in the Chinese language. Study tours/exchange to China, are organised to immerse students in China’s rich culture, as well as sharpen their language skills. The College has been part of the Victorian Young Leaders to China Program for the past three years, with about 100 students having experienced this unique opportunity.

Students learn to cook Chinese meals, they are offered the opportunity to participate in cultural activities, such as learning to play traditional Chinese musical instruments and performing in traditional dances. They have the opportunity to take part in Chinese Speaking Competitions and Language Trials. BSE has worked closely with the Confucious classroom, which is based at Bendigo Senior Secondary College, which has enormous benefits for students, as well as the local Bendigo community, through collaborative sharing of Chinese resources, Mandarin teachers and incursion activities.


The study of German has a long, established history at our College. Students are highly successful in their language acquisition because the shared origins of English and German supports their literacy skills. Students who continue to study German in Years 9 and 10 have the opportunity to participate in our successful Sister Schools’ Exchange program with the Sebastian-Finsterwalder Gymnasium in Rosenheim and the Clemens-Brentano Schule in Lollar. Throughout their German language journey at the College, students also have the opportunity to participate in the German-Art Gallery Day, the Australian Language Certificate Competition, the Goethe Autobahn incursion and the AGTV German Poetry Competition. Year 10 students will finalise their German studies with a nationally recognised Certificate II in Applied Languages (German). The transition to VCE German is complemented through our strong support network with the staff and students at Bendigo Senior Secondary College. Students who continue with their German studies at VCE and tertiary levels believe the start they offered at Bendigo South East College was crucial to their success.


As our closest neighbours, and a country rich in cultural and geographical wonders, Indonesia’s diversity is an asset for young Australians as future global citizens. At BSE, we immerse students in the linguistic and cultural meaning of Bahasa Indonesia as a national language. There are many extra-curricular opportunities for students to participate in outside of the classroom as well. Students learn the language, as well as the culture, through class activities and interactions with students at our Sister-School and local Indonesians. As we progress into the future, we will increase authentic contact through technology and hopefully exchanges. A study tour to Indonesia is conducted every second year, to enhance our students’ ability and understanding of the Indonesian language and culture through this immersion program.