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Introduction to the School Certificate


The School Certificate is awarded by the Board of Studies NSW to eligible students at the end of Year 10.

To receive the School Certificate, students are required to study courses in each year in Years 7-10 in English, Mathematics, Science, Human Society and its Environment and Personal Development, Health and Physical Education.

At some time during Years 7-10, students are also required to study courses in Creative Arts, Technology and Applied Studies and Languages Other Than English.

Each year all students in Year 10 sit for statewide tests in November in English-literacy; Mathematics; Science; Australian History, Geography, Civics and Citizenship; and Computing Skills. The tests assess individual achievement in the foundation knowledge and skills needed to successfully undertake subjects in Years 11 and 12 and to participate effectively in the wider community. Students receive their own test results for these tests.

Students also are awarded a grade for each of the courses they have studied in Years 9 and 10. The grades are based on a set of Course Performance Descriptors developed by the Board of Studies. They indicate a student's full range of achievements in each course, providing a detailed report of the student's overall performance. The Assessment Resource Centre website describes this aspect of the School Certificate in more detail.

The School Certificate Tests results and the School Certificate grades are not directly comparable.



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