Date came into force or revised
Issued January 2004; in effect July 2004
In order to meet graduation requirements and be awarded a British Columbia Certificate of Graduation (Dogwood Diploma), students must earn a minimum of 80 credits. These must include 48 credits for required courses, a minimum of 28 elective credits, and 4 credits for Graduation Transitions.
Rationale or purpose of policy
The graduation requirements were changed in 2003 for students entering Grade 10 beginning in the school year 2004/2005. This policy describes the credits students must earn to be awarded a British Columbia Certificate of Graduation (Dogwood Diploma).
See Ministerial Order 302/04, the Graduation Program Order (PDF)
Policy in full
In order to meet graduation requirements and be awarded a British Columbia Certificate of Graduation (Dogwood Diploma), students must earn a minimum of 80 credits. (See notes below for information concerning adult students, French Immersion and Programme Francophone students seeking graduation certificates in both English and French, international students, and students unable to meet graduation requirements.) These must include 48 credits for required courses, a minimum of 28 elective credits, and 4 credits for Graduation Transitions.
Credits must be earned in the following subject areas or courses:
- a Language Arts 10 (4 credits)
- a Language Arts 11 (4 credits)
- a Language Arts 12 (4 credits)
- a Social Studies 10 (4 credits)
- a Social Studies 11 or 12 (4 credits)
- a Mathematics 10 (4 credits)
- a Mathematics 11 or 12 (4 credits)
- a Science 10 (4 credits)
- a Science 11 or 12 (4 credits)
- Physical Education 10 (4 credits)
- a Fine Arts and/or an Applied Skills 10, 11, or 12 (4 credits)
- Planning 10 (4 credits)
A list of all courses that may be used to satisfy these requirements is found in the online Course Registry. Information about options for satisfying the requirements for Fine Arts and/or Applied Skills (4 credits) is found in the Fine Arts and Applied Skills Requirements in the Graduation Program Policy and in the Handbook of Procedures for the Graduation Program.
Students must complete a minimum of 28 elective credits. These 28 credits may be from Ministry-authorized or Board/Authority Authorized (BAA) courses, post-secondary courses or external credentials, but not Locally Developed courses. Once the credits for required courses have been met, additional courses in that subject area count as elective credits.
Students must earn 4 credits for Graduation Transitions. The standards for evaluating students, and guidelines for reporting, are contained in the Program Guide for Graduation Transitions (PDF).
Other requirements and options for earning credits
Students must complete a minimum of 16 credits at the Grade 12 level, 12 credits in addition to a required Language Arts 12 course. These twelve Grade 12 credits may be for required courses, electives, Independent Directed Study, External Credentials, or dual credit post-secondary courses (see the Earning Credit through Equivalency, Challenge, External Credentials, Post-Secondary Credit and Independent Directed Studies Policy for additional information).
Adult students wishing to earn a Dogwood Diploma have the choice of satisfying the above graduation requirements, or the requirements for earning an Adult Graduation Diploma (Adult Dogwood). See the Adult Graduation Program for further information.
French Immersion and Programme Francophone Students
British Columbia students enrolled in a francophone education authority and students enrolled in French Immersion programs are entitled to be issued British Columbia graduation certificates, in French and English, provided they meet specific requirements. See the Graduation Credentials for Francophone and French Immersion Students policy for further information.
Special rules concerning options for satisfying graduation requirements apply to most international students. See the International Student Graduation Credit Policy for further information.
Students Unable to Satisfy Graduation Requirements
Some students may earn a School Completion Certificate (also called an Evergreen Certificate) for meeting the goals of their education program other than graduation. See the Student Credentials Policy and the Handbook of Procedures for the Graduation Program for further information.
Procedures related to policy
Schools should ensure that students understand the requirements for graduation, and provide them with guidance in planning and course selection.
Schools must report credits earned by students to the Ministry for entry on student transcripts at the end of Grades 10, 11, and 12, and for calculation of graduation eligibility.