St Paul’s Blog

Do you have a topic that you would like covered on our blog? Email [email protected]

NCEA results explained

Dissecting your teen's NCEA results can be confusing, particularly if you're more familiar with the old School Certificate system. Here we break down what the grades mean now and what it means for your teen's future.

Academic-3.jpg
The four grades defined 

  • Not Achieved (NA) = Not demonstrating understanding or knowledge of the subject at the depth required
  • Achieved (A) = Demonstrates understanding or knowledge of the subject through describing
  • Merit (M) = Demonstrates in-depth understanding or knowledge of the subject through explaining
  • Excellence (E) = Demonstrates comprehensive understanding and knowledge of the subject through being able to apply, compare, contrast and justify. This is a higher order of thinking.

Level 1 credit requirements

At least 80 credits total across Levels 1, 2 and 3. A minimum of 10 literacy credits and 10 numeracy credits must be included in the total 80 credits.

Level 2 credit requirements

If your teen has completed Level 1 then they are required to complete 60 credits at Level 2 or higher. 20 of the credits they achieved in Level 1 will be rolled over to their Level 2 certificate to help them reach their '80 credit' requirement.

If your teen hasn't completed Level 1 then they must complete 80 credits. 60 credits can be from Level 2 or higher while an additional 20 can be from any of the three levels. They must also pass the Level 1 literacy and numeracy requirements.

Level 3 credit requirements 

If your teen has completed Level 2 then they are only required to complete 60 credits at Level 3 or higher. 20 of the credits they achieved in Level 2 will be rolled over to their Level 3 certificate to help them reach their '80 credit' requirement.

If your teen hasn't completed Level 2 then they must complete 80 credits. 60 credits can be from Level 3 or higher while an additional 20 can be from Level 2 or higher. 

What this means for your teen

  • If they have met the above mentioned credit requirements then this is a great start, they should have passed their level certificate. Now, it's time to look at the quality of your teen's grades. When applying for university or a job the more Merit or Excellence credits a student has the better. This will show universities and employers the student can work at a level above average. The grades issued for unit standards are generally Achieved or Not Achieved so don't be disheartened with Achieved results.

  • If your teen has a particular tertiary degree in-mind, they must look into the minimum grade criteria for this degree. Some degrees require a certain number of Excellence or Merit credits in particular subjects in addition to meeting the University Entrance requirements.

  • They may have passed the above credit requirements for each level but this doesn't necessarily mean they will gain University Entrance. It's important they understand the University Entrance requirements so they can meet this criteria if they would like to pursue tertiary study.

For more useful information to help you better understand NCEA download this free eBook - Getting to grips with NCEA.

New Call-to-action

Comments