HSC Minimum Standard

Students need reading, writing and numeracy for everyday life after school.

This is why students in NSW are being supported to meet a minimum standard of literacy and numeracy to receive the HSC from 2020.

To show they meet the HSC minimum standard, students need to achieve Level 3 or 4 in short online reading, writing and numeracy tests of skills for everyday life.

Students do not need to sit the reading, writing or numeracy test(s) if they achieved Band 8 or above in the respective 2017 Year 9 NAPLAN test(s).

Some students with disability may be exempt from meeting the minimum standard to receive their HSC testamur.

Together with the NSW Literacy and Numeracy Strategy, the HSC minimum standard is part of an effort to improve the literacy and numeracy outcomes for students.

Timetable

2019 HSC

Students do not need to meet the HSC minimum standard to receive the HSC.

2020 HSC

Students need to meet the HSC minimum standard to receive the HSC.

To show they meet the standard students need to:

  • achieve Level 3 or 4 in the online reading test or have achieved Band 8 or above in reading in Year 9 NAPLAN in 2017 and
  • achieve Level 3 or 4 in the online writing test or have achieved Band 8 or above in writing in Year 9 NAPLAN in 2017 and
  • achieve Level 3 or 4 in the online numeracy test or have achieved Band 8 or above in numeracy in Year 9 NAPLAN in 2017.

2021 HSC or later

Students need to meet the HSC minimum standard to receive the HSC.

To show they meet the standard students need to:

  • achieve Level 3 or 4 in the online reading test and
  • achieve Level 3 or 4 in the online writing test and
  • achieve Level 3 or 4 in the online numeracy test.

What happens if a student doesn’t meet the HSC minimum standard?

From 2020, only students who meet the HSC minimum standard will receive a Higher School Certificate testamur.

Students do not need to meet the HSC minimum standard to:

  • study HSC courses
  • sit HSC exams
  • receive HSC assessment and exam results
  • receive an ATAR
  • receive a Record of School Achievement.

Want to know more?

Read about the level of skills required.

Read about the online tests.

Read about disability provisions and exemptions.

View resources for students, parents and teachers.