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OSSD Requirements

The Ontario system requires students to earn at least 30 credits to get the Ontario Secondary School Diploma:

Compulsory Credits [Total of 18]

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

Plus one credit from each of the following groups:


  • 1 additional credit (group 1): additional credit in English, or French as a second language, or a Native language, or a classical or an international language, or social sciences and the humanities, or Canadian and world studies, or guidance and career education, or cooperative education
  • 1 additional credit (group 2): additional credit in health and physical education, or the arts, or business studies, or French as a second language, or cooperative education
  • 1 additional credit (group 3): additional credit in science (Grade 11 or 12), or technological education, or French as a second language,or computer studies, or cooperative education
Under special circumstances, and with the approval of the Principal, substitutions may be made for up to 3 of the compulsory credits using courses from the remaining courses offered that meet the requirements for compulsory credits.

Elective Credits [Total 12]

12 elective credits selected from available courses In addition to successfully earning 30 credits (18 compulsories and 12 electives) each student must also complete: - 40 hours of Community Involvement Activities; and - the Provincial Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) or the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Course (OSSLC)

The Ontario Secondary School certificate requirement:

The Ontario Secondary School Certificate will be granted on request to students who leave school before earning the Ontario Secondary School Diploma, provided that they have earned a minimum of 14 credits distributed as follows:

Compulsory credits (total of 7)

  • 2 credits in English
  • 1 credit in Canadian geography or Canadian history
  • 1 credit in mathematics
  • 1 credit in science
  • 1 credit in health and physical education
  • 1 credit in the arts or technological education

Optional credits (total of 7)

7 credits selected by the student from available courses The provisions for making substitutions for compulsory credits (described in section 3.2: Substitutions for Compulsory Courses) also apply to the Ontario Secondary School Certificate.