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Alberta Education Accredited High School Courses

The core courses that are offered at CIA are required to obtain a high school diploma for the student. These courses include, Social Studies, English, Science, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics, CALM, ESL English, and Physical Education.
Depending on the initial assessment of the student’s academic ability, they will be offered specific courses based on their transcripts, readiness and capability.  


All courses are leveled according to grade level and academic level.

The course name, followed by 10, 20, 30 indicates the grade level that this course is for.

Grade 10 takes -10, Grade 11 takes -20, Grade 12 takes -30

*Students may take a course level that is above their indicated grade level if academic readiness is shown.

Courses for grade levels are specific to academic level as well:

-1 marks the highest academic level for the course, -2 and -3 are the other options for academic levels.

The entire identification of the course could look like the following example:

Ex: English Language Arts 30-2


In order to graduate from the Secondary School program at Commonwealth International Academy you are required to complete the following requirements in order to attain an Alberta High School Diploma.

The requirements below are the minimum requirements for a student to attain an Alberta High School Diploma. Entry into post-secondary institutions and workplaces may require more/additional courses. (Alberta Education)

Students must complete 100 credits including the following:

  • English Language Arts—30 Level (English Language Arts 30-1 or 30-2)
  • Social Studies—30 Level (Social Studies 30-1 or 30-2)
  • Mathematics—20 Level (Mathematics 20-2 or Mathematics 20-3)
  • Science—20 Level (Science 20, Science 24, Biology 20, Chemistry 20 or Physics 20)
  • Physical Education 10 (3 credits)
  • Career and Life Management (CALM) (3 Credits)
  • 10 Credits in any combination from:
    • Career and Technology Studies (CTS)
    • Fine Arts courses
    • Second Language Courses
    • Physical Education 20 and/or 30
    • Knowledge and Employability courses
    • Registered Apprenticeship Program courses
  • 10 credits in any 30-level course (in addition to a 30-level English language arts and a 30 level social studies course specified above). 
    Further Notes:
  • for 30 level courses that have a diploma examination, the final course mark consists of a blend of the school-awarded mark (70%) and the diploma examination mark (30%).


In order to receive an Alberta High School Diploma you must complete 100 credits from the course requirements already mentioned in the previous section.

Courses can be 3, 4, or 5 credits.

Students must receive a passing grade of 50% to pass a class. If a grade below 50% is received, such as 49%, the student has failed the class and will not receive credit.

Academic courses that are not “options” are usually 5 credits.

“Options” courses range in credits, they can be 3 or 5 credits.

‘Options’ Courses

These are required courses offered as part of the ‘Options’ curriculum. Students can choose from variety of classes that qualify for high school credits, depending on their interests and schedule. Students must complete a minimum number of these courses to obtain an Alberta High School Diploma. These Options include Career and Technology Studies (CTS), Fine Arts, and Second Languages.

CTS includes Photography, Fashion Studies, Foods, and Computing Science.

Fine Arts includes Art, Drawing, Art History, and Music.

Second Language includes French and Spanish.


Upgrading means that you are able to take anywhere from a single to all of your High School Level courses individually. Upgrading is an option for students who have completed certain courses in their home countries that correspond to the Canadian equivalent course. Upgrading is also an option for individuals who have completed courses but require a higher grade to pass, or qualify for entrance into a Canadian post-secondary institution. Typically, students who enroll in an upgrading program are over 18 years of age.

English as a Second Language

There is a strong focus at CIA to ensure that every student develops an exceptional proficiency in English. The Academy strives to provide the best English Language Proficiency education to every student from international homes. Our team will assess the student’s English speaking, writing and reading levels. Any supports that the student requires can be made available to students while attending classes, as well as outside of school hours. Our results-driven recommendations and supports ensure that students graduating from CIA will have a high level of English competency and will be prepared for a post-secondary education in Canada. Students who have never taken an English course may be required to take the following courses before registering for English 10, 20 and 30; ESL Courses, ESL Expository English 15, ESL Expository English 25.  

Tutoring/IELTS prep/A-Level prep/SAT prep Services

CIA is affiliated with several local groups that can provide additional support services for students, either on campus, or nearby. These supports are available for students to access outside of school hours, and on occasion during their lunch hour. These courses are available for students who wish to expand their understanding or require additional assistance outside of the classroom setting.
CIA can coordinate one-on-one or group tutoring for students. These services can be scheduled during the day or immediately following school. These services are offered to ensure that all student have the opportunity to access the assistance they require and continue to strive for excellence.  
Tutoring is available for every subject in the Alberta High School curriculum, and for every course offered at CIA. Contact a member of our team (hyperlink to contact us) for further information about Tutoring Services and how to schedule them. 


The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is a test of English language proficiency. It is designed to determine the level of English language ability of non-native speakers who intend to study or work in Canada. It tests four abilities – listening, reading, writing and speaking. Increasingly high IELTS scores are required to obtain work, study permits, or Permanent Residence in Canada. CIA focuses its preparatory courses on teaching students effective methods to advance language skills quickly in all categories.  


Content to come. 

SAT Prep

Content to come.

Extra-Curricular Programs

CIA is committed to providing an inclusive environment for all students to feel welcomed, and fulfilled with their education in Canada. Our after-school programs and activities are opportunities for students to take part in community activities and with their peers. CIA values the development of the student and adopts an approach that broad

All of the extracurricular programs at CIA are ran and overseen by professionals and experts in their fields. CIA provides options in music, art, athletics and career counselling as extra-curricular activities.  

These after school activities require additional material and supplies costs for students, and are opportunities for students to develop language and social skills in the community. These programs do not count towards high school credits.  

Some of the programs we offer are:  

  • String Program (Individual and group lessons, as well as opportunities for planned performance)
    • Designed to promote a student’s interest and love in music
    • Curriculum designed and coordinated by a music professional
    • Courses are offered in music history, theory, harmony and composition.
    • Interested students will have the opportunity to participate in Royal Conservatory of Canada exams and the Edmonton Kiwanis Music Festival.
  • Art History/Global Learning (Art, Design and Visual Culture. Lectures, Discussions, Field Trips and Community Outings)
    • Students of CIA will have an opportunity to encounter art history lessons and discussions with an instructor with an Art History Bachelor’s Degree.
    • Students who wish to participate will get to explore the Canadian art landscape, as well as art movements in Europe, South American and China. This cultural exploration reflects the values of CIA and the vested interest in including all international backgrounds and experiences.
    • Exploring Edmonton’s art scene and culture will also be a part of this after school program
  • Fencing (Lessons)
    • An Olympic Medalist Fencer teaches for CIA’s Fencing Club for beginners or experienced fencers.
    • Athletics are an important part of students experience in school and out of school. For a great after school activity the students who want to be more active will get lessons from a very skilled individual.
  • Conversation Club (Group activities)
    • Conversation Club will occur in a group setting and focus on building listening and speaking skills in various languages (English, French, Spanish.)
    • Led by a native speaker in each language, Conversation Club will include exposure to films, literature, music and popular culture in each language.
  • Career Counselling and Planning
    • Career planning is an important part in any students’ life. At CIA we are committed to helping every student find a path for their future. Our Department of Career Counselling and Planning assists students find possible sources of interest, discover skills, and find success in the future.
    • CIA emphasizes the importance of a post-secondary education in fields with labor market potential. Our Career Counselling and Planning services will ensure that each student will find a University, College, or institution that will best help them succeed in their future career.
    • This program involves one-on-one counselling, interview skills, group discussions and activities, resume, and life skills.