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High School Academics, Non-Academics, & Activities
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Many parents inquire about what types of coursework or activities should be included on the high school transcript. High school education typically includes a mix of academic courses, non-academic courses, and extracurricular activities. Academic and non-academic courses are included on the Kolbe transcript, but activities are not. In this article, we have provided an overview of the key differences.


Educational Content

High School Academic Classes

High school academic courses cover core subjects like English, Literature, Theology, History, Math, Science, or Foreign Language. These courses provide students with a foundation of knowledge and academic skills through formal instruction. The content will be high school level (or above) for high school credit.

High School Non-Academic Classes

Non-academic courses in high school cover a range of subjects that may not fall within the traditional academic disciplines. This includes Physical Education, Drama, Music, and Art at the high school level.

Note: Some courses in the subject areas of Physical Education, Drama, Music, and Art may qualify as academic courses. To qualify as an academic course, the course educational content, curriculum, goals, and assessment would all need to be of an academic nature. Examples of possible academic courses in these areas might be: Health, Art History, Music History, etc.


High school activities, or extracurricular activities, are voluntary and are not part of a student’s formal curriculum or course of study. They encompass a wide range of clubs, sports teams, student organizations, work and volunteer experiences, and opportunities to build relationships with friends and mentors. Activities are not required to earn a high school diploma.



High School Academic Classes

Academic courses follow a structured curriculum that is high school level (or above) with specific learning objectives and outcomes. This curriculum is designed to provide a comprehensive education in traditional academic disciplines. Examples of academic courses on a student's transcript are Algebra 1, U.S. & Modern History, Spanish 2, and Intro to Sacred Scripture. Academic courses offer a minimum of 60 hours spent on the subject/semester of credit.

High School Non-Academic Classes

Non-academic courses can have more flexibility in their content and curriculum. They may focus on physical fitness, artistic pursuits, and some skills. Examples of course titles for non-academic classes you might see on a student's transcript would be Physical Education, Music, or Art. Non-academic courses offer a minimum of 60 hours spent on the class/semester of credit.


Extracurricular activities do not follow a standard curriculum in the same way academic and non-academic courses do. Instead, activities provide opportunities for students to pursue their interests and passions outside the classroom. Activities also offer students valuable life experiences beyond the classroom. Work training, for example, is useful for skill and leadership development, but does not meet the criteria for the type of coursework that is recorded on a high school transcript. 



At Kolbe Academy, we see salvation as the ultimate goal of education. You may read more about our educational philosophy here. High school academic, non-academic, and activities work together to support a child's intellectual, spiritual, and physical development. Although not every endeavor will earn high school credit on the student's transcript, we support families in their desire to form their children as whole people through a robust education.

High School Academic Classes

The primary goal of high school academics is to impart knowledge, and critical thinking skills, and prepare students for further education, such as college or university. 

High School Non-Academic Classes

The primary goals of non-academic courses are often to provide students with personal development.


Extracurricular activities are designed to promote personal growth, teamwork, leadership, and skill development. They also provide an avenue for students to explore their hobbies and interests or gain important work/volunteer experience. 



High School Academic Classes

Students are assessed through various means, including exams, quizzes, essays, projects, and grading. Academic coursework will include high school-level written assignments. Academic performance is measured through grades, which are calculated in the student’s GPA.

High School Non-Academic Classes

Assessment in non-academic courses may involve practical demonstrations, skill proficiency, and real-world application rather than traditional tests and exams. At Kolbe Academy non-academic courses are awarded pass/fail grades and are not included in a student’s GPA calculation.


These activities are not assessed in the same way as courses. Participation, commitment, and achievement within the activity are often recognized and rewarded, but there are no traditional grades. Although extracurricular activities provide worthwhile opportunities for learning, formation, and growth, extracurricular activities are not recorded on a student's transcript.


High School Resume/Activity Sheet

We encourage families to keep an activity sheet and/or resume throughout high school. Extracurricular activities should not be listed on a student's transcript.



High school academics focus on traditional academic subjects, non-academics encompass a broader range of subjects and skills, and activities offer opportunities for personal development and pursuing interests. A well-rounded high school education includes a combination of all three components to support the growth of students as whole people with a comprehensive educational experience. Generally, coursework included on the transcript will comprise the type of courses required to earn a high school diploma.


Please explore the following Help Center articles to learn more about:

Physical Education Credit

Visual/Performing Arts Credit




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