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Home > News > Professional Issues > Professional Issues Volume 12 > Changes made to senior assessment and tertiary entrance requirements

Changes made to senior assessment and tertiary entrance requirements

teacher_with_highschool_students_web_qual.pngThe Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) is overseeing significant changes in regard to the senior assessment and tertiary entrance in Queensland, changing the way teachers must approach senior assessment. 

Issue snapshot: 

  • Significant changes are being made to senior assessment and tertiary entrance in Queensland.
  • These changes impact the profession directly, specifically for teachers with senior students.
  • Our union is committed to working with and supporting members through the changes. 

Under the direction of the Queensland Education Minister and with ongoing input from relevant stakeholders, including our union, the changes that are occurring, and that are planned to occur, will radically change the nature of senior schooling in Queensland.

As part of the changes, the Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE) will still exist and be awarded; however, the manner by which it is achieved and reported will be different.

The curriculum components will be renamed and assessment will undergo significant change for students in Year 11 in 2019. 

Post-2019, the Queensland Core Skills test (QCS) will no longer exist.

Assessment for senior students from 2019 will be significantly different from the current practice that draws on student achievement in internal (school-based) assessment.

Instead, the new QCE expanded range of assessment will include internal assessments as well as (non-scaling) external assessment.

In the case of General subjects, students will complete a total of four summative assessments – three internal and one external – that count towards their final mark in each subject.

Subject results in Applied subjects will be based on student achievement in four internal assessments.

Additionally, in 2020 and beyond, all students who complete Year 12 will receive a Senior Statement, which is a transcript of their results. Eligible students will also receive a QCE. Students will be awarded an overall numerical score and a level of achievement (A-E) for each General subject. Applied subjects will be reported using a level of achievement only.

Major changes will also be made to tertiary entrance requirements and tertiary entrance processes from 2020, including a shift from the Overall Position (OP) system to the Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR)

The changes to Queensland’s senior assessment and tertiary entrance are significant and far reaching, impacting directly on the profession and specifically on teachers in the senior years and their students. All change brings instability and the potential for unintended consequences, and our union is committed to supporting members through these changes.

IEUA-QNT Assistant Secretary/ Treasurer Paul Giles said our union had provided input to the QCAA regarding these changes to ensure our members and their perspectives were considered in the decision making process. 

“It is essential that members’ voices are heard and listened to whenever a decision is made that impacts directly on their profession, such as the change to senior curriculum and tertiary entrance requirements. 

“We as a union are committed to supporting our members through these changes, to ensure intended outcomes are realised without compromising or diminishing the professional judgements of teachers,” Mr Giles said. 

Professional Development sessions are being provided by the QCAA to explain the syllabuses and provide advice and guidance about planning and assessing.

Members with concerns regarding the implementation of changes can contact our union for advice on FREECALL 1800 177 937.

For more information regarding the changes to senior curriculum and tertiary entrance click here


Authorised by Terry Burke, Independent Education Union of Australia – Queensland & Northern Territory Branch, Brisbane.