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Assessing and reporting student achievement


What assessment method(s) are used for the senior secondary school leaving credential in Victoria?


For Units 1 and 2 (Year 11) and Units 3 and 4 (Year 12) students must demonstrate achievement of the outcomes as stated in the study design. In achieving the outcomes, students will have developed the knowledge and skills of the areas of study in a unit.

Each unit of study has between two and four outcomes. For all studies, the school decides whether by demonstrating the outcomes of the study, a student has satisfactorily completed a unit. This is reported on the Statement of Results as an S for satisfactory or an N for not satisfactory.

Most students in Units 3 and 4 also sit external examinations which are set by the VCAA and held in June for some studies, October and November for all studies (including VCE VET). Students can graduate with the VCE on satisfactory completion of all the outcomes in a minimum of sixteen units (at least three of them from the English group but usually if they wish to apply for tertiary entrance they must also sit and pass the examinations for the studies, receive study scores and thereby obtain an ENTER (Equivalent National Tertiary Entrance Rank).

VCE VET studies can contribute to satisfactory completion and to the ENTER. Up to 13 of the minimum 16 required units can be from VCE VET. Apart from English, there is no prescription on the number of VCE VET study scores that can contribute to the calculation of the ENTER.

For all forms of assessment, both school assessment and examinations, the VCAA has careful procedures to ensure that all schools throughout the state are marking to the same standard. They involve statistical procedures and multiple checks on each aspect of the assessment.


The curriculum components in a VCAL learning program must be assessed in accordance with the requirements and guidelines outlined in the curriculum documents for the units, units of competence or modules delivered in the learning program to ensure validity, reliability, flexibility and fairness. Thus components which are

The VCAL provider carries out and coordinates the assessment and collection of results for all curriculum components within the VCAL learning program. The satisfactory completion of curriculum components must be in accordance with the assessment guidelines for the accredited curriculum.

Students will receive a satisfactory complete (S) or not complete (N) result for each unit and accredited course/module/unit successful outcome.

When assessing students with particular needs the validity of assessment must be maintained. Flexibility in assessment methods should be used to ensure alternative methods are utilised to allow the demonstration of competence without disadvantaging to the student.

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How are the marks determined in the senior secondary school credentialling program in Victoria?


For Units 3 and 4 (Year 12) students’ levels of performance in assessment tasks are the basis of grades awarded A+ to E. These assessment tasks are either school-based assessments or examinations. Each VCE study has three assessments over Units 3 and 4, either two school assessments and one examination or one school assessment and two examinations. School assessment may be coursework assessment or school-assessed tasks.

VCE VET programs have two assessments over Units 3 and 4, one for coursework comprising three tasks and one examination.

School-assessed Coursework measures performance on the assessment tasks specified in the study design. These tasks are mainly done in class time and schools determine the type of task within the specified parameters of the study design.

School-assessed Tasks are set for Art, Design and Technology, Food and Technology, Media, Studio Arts, Systems Engineering and Visual Communication and Design. The specifications for the school-assessed task are the same for all schools and are set by the VCAA.

External examinations (written, oral, performance or electronic) are set by the VCAA. Most are held in November but a small number of studies have examinations in June or October.

Study Scores A study score (relative position) uses a single index on a 50 point scale to show a student’s performance in that study relative to student performance across the state. The mean study score is calculated to be 30; 65% of study scores will fall within the range of 23-37.

Statistical Moderation is a process for adjusting the level and spread of each school’s assessment of its students in a particular study, to match the level and spread of the same students’ scores on the common external examinations in that study.

Because the examination is done by all students across the state, it is the common standard against which schools’ assessments can be compared in the particular study.

General Achievement Test (GAT)
The General Achievement Test is a test of general knowledge in written communication, mathematics, science and technology, humanities, the arts and social sciences. The GAT does not form part of the graduation requirements of the VCE and does not count towards VCE results or the ENTER. The VCAA uses the GAT scores as a basis for;


Assessment within the VCAL should be based on the following principles.

Teacher judgements on assessment of VCAL unit outcomes are verified through a quality assurance process. Quality assurance panels appointed by the VCAA carry out a review of assessment task design and student portfolios of evidence submitted by providers against the curriculum purpose statement and the learning outcomes for the unit.

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