Senior students are all encouraged to log into NZQA regularly to track their progress towards their certificate. They should know how many credits they have earned, how many they still have available and be proactive about following up any issues.
NCEA Levels and Certificates
There are three levels of NCEA certificate, depending on the difficulty of the standards achieved. At each level, students must achieve a certain number of credits to gain an NCEA certificate. Credits can be gained over more than one year.
80 credits are required at any level (level 1, 2 or 3) including literacy and numeracy.
60 credits at level 2 or above + 20 credits from any level
The Level 1 literacy and numeracy requirements must also be met.
60 credits at level 3 or above + 20 credits from level 2 or above. Literacy and numeracy requirements must also be met.
Credits gained at one level can be used for (or count towards) more than one certificate. They may also be used towards
other qualifications. For example, unit standards in the domain ‘generic computing’ might be used towards a Level 2 NCEA certificate, as well as towards a National Certificate in Computing (Level 2); or 20 credits gained at Level 1 can also count towards a Level 2 NCEA certificate.
University Entrance (UE) is the minimum requirement to go to a New Zealand university. To be awarded UE you will need:
- NCEA Level 3
- Three subjects – at Level 3, made up of:
- 14 credits in each of three approved subjects
- Literacy – 10 credits at Level 2 or above, made up of:
- 5 credits in reading
- 5 credits in writing
- Numeracy – 10 credits at Level 1 or above, made up of:
- achievement standards – specified achievement standards available through a range of subjects, or
- unit standards – package of three numeracy unit standards (26623, 26626, 26627- all three required).
Once you have met the requirements for University Entrance, it will appear on your Record of Achievement.
NCEA Change Package
The NCEA changes will make our senior secondary qualification more robust, consistent, inclusive and accessible for students of all abilities and backgrounds. This provides an overview of the NCEA changes, and what they mean:
Make NCEA more accessible
Zero fees, fewer barriers for all learners, including those with disabilities and learning support needs by minimising the need for Special Assessment Conditions.
Mana ōrite mo te mātauranga Māori
Equal status for mātauranga Māori in NCEA. Develop new ways to recognise mātauranga Māori, build teacher capability, and improve resourcing and support for Māori learners and te ao Māori pathways.
Strengthen literacy and numeracy requirements
Ensure students with an NCEA have functional literacy and numeracy skills to ensure they are well-prepared to transition into
further education or the workplace. JHC are piloting these new standards in 2022.
Have fewer, larger standards
New achievement standards and resources will be developed to replace existing standards and ensure the qualification credentials demonstrate the most significant learning in a learning area or
Simplify NCEA’s structure
Credits can no longer be carried over to the next level and resubmissions will only be allowed where they take students from
a Not Achieved grade to an Achieved grade. Sixty credits will be required to pass each NCEA level.
Show clearer pathways to further education and employment
Develop a Vocational Entrance Award to clearly signal when a student is ready to transition into higher level vocational education and strengthen vocational pathways through NCEA.