Achieving Credits


Helping You - Achieve Credits

Equivalent standing for mature students who:

Started Secondary School before 1999

In addition to diploma credits already accumulated a mature student (anyone who is 18 years of age or older and has been out of high school for a year or more) may apply for additional credits in the following areas:

  • MATURITY ALLOWANCE based on age and experience
  • EQUIVALENT EDUCATION ALLOWANCE for courses taken outside high school that do not count toward college or university credits
  • APPRENTICESHIP TRAINING ALLOWANCE where two credits may be given for the successful completion of each period of an apprenticeship training program.

There could be a maximum of twelve (12) credits granted in this manner but in no case will the total accumulated credits be more than 26( or more than 23 if a student started secondary school before 1984). This means that all applicants for equivalent standing, regardless of previous credit accumulation must complete the final four (4) courses at a senior level (grade 11 or 12) in order to qualify for an Ontario Secondary School Diploma.

Started Secondary School in 1999 or later

Beginning February 1, 2004, PLAR - Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition Policy will come into effect, and will apply to the following two groups of mature students:

  • Mature students who are new to the Ontario Secondary School system as of Feb. 1, 2004 and are working towards an Ontario diploma
  • Mature students who enrolled as regular day students in the Ontario Secondary School system, and were placed in Grade 9 in 1999-2000 or later; and who return to school on Feb. 1, 2004, or later to work towards the OSSD.

Principals will follow the PLAR policy to determine the number of credits, including compulsory credits, that a mature student needs in order to meet diploma requirements . Up to 16 grade 9 and 10 credits may be granted to a mature student at the discretion of the principal following individual assessment. Mature students may earn 10 of the 14 remaining grade 11 and 12 credits needed to meet diploma requirements in 3 ways:

  • they may demonstrate achievement of the required secondary curriculum expectations and receive credit through the challenge process;
  • they may present education and/or training credentials for assessment through the equivalency process; or
  • they may take the course. Mature students must earn a minimum of 4 grade 11 and 12 credits before they will be eligible to receive their diploma. Mature students who have previously accumulated 26 or more credits (or 23 credits or more credits if the start date for secondary school was before 1984)are not eligible for any equivalent credits. They must successfully complete the required number of credits to bring their total to 30 before they will be eligible to receive their Ontario Secondary School Diploma.

Mature Students working towards their diploma will also need to satisfy the diploma requirements with regard to the provincial secondary school literacy test and community service hours. Principals will determine the number of hours of community service that a mature student will have to complete.