Grade 12 final exams are a lot of pressure as they mark a milestone in your 12 years of learning; the National Senior Certificate results are also a gateway to tertiary education. This is what you need to get to pass. Photographer Ayanda Ndamane /African News AGency(ANA)
Grade 12 final exams are a lot of pressure as they mark a milestone in your 12 years of learning; the National Senior Certificate results are also a gateway to tertiary education. This is what you need to get to pass. Photographer Ayanda Ndamane /African News AGency(ANA)

Minimum requirements to pass matric

By Zodidi Dano Time of article published Nov 23, 2020

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Grade 12 final exams are a lot of pressure as they mark a milestone in your 12 years of learning; the National Senior Certificate (NSC) results are also a gateway to tertiary education.

However; knowing the pressure that the Class of 2020 is facing – writing their final exams in the Covid-19 pandemic – experts have warned that this year there would be a dip in matric passes.

The coronavirus pandemic resulted in the loss of over four months of classroom learning. But this loss of time did not affect the standard of the exams, which were set before the emergence of Covid-19.

So what are the minimum requirements to pass matric?

According to the Department of Higher Education, to pass the NSC you need:

To get 40% minimum for your home language and 40% for another 2 subjects. You can fail a subject – even your first additional language – but you must then get 30% or more for the other 6, making a total of 6 passes. If you have an average of 33⅓% you will be awarded with your NSC, but this will not enable you to study at any university.

For Higher Certificate you:

  • Must obtain 40% in your home language.
  • Must obtain at least 40% in two other subjects.
  • Must obtain at least 30% for three other subjects.
  • It is important to note that one of your languages must either be English or Afrikaans to qualify for a Higher Certificate.

Here is the level system used:

  • Level 7: 80 – 100% (Outstanding achievement)
  • Level 6: 70 – 79% (Meritorious achievement)
  • Level 5: 60 – 69% (Substantial achievement)
  • Level 4: 50 – 59% (Moderate achievement)
  • Level 3: 40 – 49% (Adequate achievement)
  • Level 2: 30 – 39% (Elementary achievement)
  • Level 1: 0 – 29% (Not achieved – Fail)

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