YEAR 13 - NCEA Level 3

Year 13 students will enter NCEA Level 3, or a combination of Levels 1, 2 and 3 depending on their individual progress to date. Students will study 5, 6 or 7 subjects for NCEA Level 3. In order to qualify for a Level 3 National Certificate students must gain at least 80 credits, at least 60 of which must be at Level 3 or higher, with the remaining 20 credits at Level 2 or higher.
Students aiming to complete a Bachelor’s Degree at a University or Polytechnic are strongly advised to take 5 NCEA ‘Approved Subjects’ at Years 12 and 13. This will ensure that students are well prepared for the rigours of tertiary study. Some Degree courses have specific requirements for entry, so please check with your Career Advisors regarding these.
If you are unsure of what course you might undertake when leaving school make sure you take a variety of approved subjects to keep your options open.


If there is a possibility that a student will go to University or Polytechnic to complete a degree course, or if he/she has the ability and desire to study at the highest level, they should consider the following guidelines:

  • Students study a total of 5 to 6 subjects, but must select 8, in order of preference to ensure timetable fit with your first subject being the one that you most want to do.
  • 5 subjects must be from the ‘Approved Subject list’ (refer to the University Entrance page).
  • If Level 2 Literacy requirements have not, or will not be met, please discuss your English options with the English Leader of Learning.
  • Study Lines will be allocated as required.

If students are considering attending Polytechnic or Private Tertiary Providers to complete Diploma/Certificate courses, applying for Traineeships/Apprenticeships or seeking Employment, they should consider:

  • Students study a total of 7 subjects, but select 9 subjects to ensure timetable fit.
  • Please select in order of preference, with your first subject being the one that you most want to do.
  • Students selecting any ‘School’ National Certificate Course must complete ENG22 or ENG32. These courses offer standards required to complete National Certificates AND meet NCEA Level 2 Literacy requirements.
  • As a guideline, students will not be able to take more than 3 subjects from the same learning area.
  • Students can complete Level 2 and 3 single line ‘Schools’ in one year e.g. ECE22 & 32, TOU22 & 32.

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