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Ontario Diploma

Why are High School Credits so Important to get an Ontario Diploma?

If you’re a Toronto high school student, studying in a public school or in a Canada private school, and aiming for an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD), let’s have a look at the requirements for graduating from high school and getting the diploma.

Requirements for Students to Earn the OSSD

The students have to ensure the fulfillment of three below listed criteria to earn the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD)

  • Earn 30 credits- 18 credits are compulsory which means that students have to compulsorily take these 18 courses from the list of subjects required and the remaining 12 credits are optional. Students can choose the optional courses from the complete range of courses offered by the school.
  • They need to pass the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test also known as OSSLT or the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Course or OSSLC.
  • Students also need to complete 40 hours of community service or volunteer work compulsorily.

High school programs in Canada are based on a credit system where students get 1 credit for every 110-hour course that is completed successfully. Students have the option of taking 8 credits per year and complete their secondary school studies in 4 years.

Many students opt for a fifth year or an extra semester thereby extending their studies which allows them to take lesser courses in a year and explore their interest in various other school subjects.

Credits Required to Obtain the OSSD

In order to obtain the Ontario Secondary School Diploma or OSSD, students must earn the below listed compulsory credits:

  • 4 credits to be earned in English (1 credit granted per grade)
  • 3 credits to be earned in math (1 credit earned in Grade 11 or 12)
  • 2 credits to be earned in science
  • 1 credit to be earned in Canadian history
  • 1 credit to be earned in Canadian geography
  • 1 credit to be earned in arts
  • 1 credit from health and physical education
  • 1 credit from French as a second language
  • 0.5 credit from career studies
  • 0.5 credit from civics

Additionally, the student will need to earn one credit from each of the following groups:

Group 1

  • English/French as a second language
  • From a Native language
  • From a classical/international language
  • From social sciences & humanities
  • From Canadian and also world studies
  • From the guidance and career education as well
  • From cooperative education

Group 2

  • From health and physical education
  • From arts
  • From business studies
  • French has to be a second language
  • From cooperative education

Group 3

  • From science in Grade 11 or 12
  • From technical education
  • French has to be a second language
  • From computer studies
  • From cooperative education

Students must complete the below in addition to the compulsory credits listed above:

  • Obtain 12 optional credits
  • Must have provincial literacy requirement
  • Must have minimum of 40 hours of community involvement

Requirements of 40 Hours of Community Service or involvement

For a fast high school diploma Ontario / Mississauga, students are required to have 40 hours of community involvement or service in order to obtain the OSSD. The community involvement is designed to give students the opportunity to develop social awareness and understand their civic responsibility. They can participate in activities which support and strengthen their communities and also provides them a chance to learn more about their individuality and also explore career opportunities.

Key points for students looking out for volunteering opportunities:

  • The student must keep checking the school website for ways to help record hours and find activities for volunteers.
  • Students must visit the Ontario Volunteer Centre Network to find volunteering activity opportunities.
  • Students must get involved in “Change The World” which is open to students from the ages of 14-18, during the months of April and May every year.