Graduation Requirements

Date came into force or revised

July 2018

Status

Revised

Policy statement

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 and write provincial Graduation Numeracy and Literacy Assessments. The 80 credits include 52 credits for required courses (including 8 credits of Career Education courses) and a minimum of 28 elective credits.

Rationale or purpose of policy

Graduation requirements were revised for students graduating in the 2018/2019 school year or later. This policy describes the requirements that students must meet to be awarded a British Columbia Certificate of Graduation (Dogwood Diploma).

Authority

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 and write the Graduation Numeracy (GNA) and Graduation Literacy (GLA) Assessments. The 80 credits must include 52 credits for required courses (including 8 credits of Career Education courses) and a minimum of 28 elective 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.

Required Courses

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 and Health Education 10 (4 credits)
  • An Arts Education and/or an Applied Design, Skills, and Technologies 10, 11, or 12 (4 credits) 
  • Career Life Education (4 credits)
  • Career Life Connections (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.

Electives

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.

Provincial Graduation Assessments

Students must write a provincial Graduation Numeracy Assessment (GNA) and a provincial Graduation Literacy Assessment (GLA) in order to graduate. The first administration of the Gradution Literacy Assessment will be in 2019/20.

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

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.

International Students

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.