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Glossary and Acronyms


Australian Curriculum Assessment & Reporting Authority.

Accreditation Period

The period during which a course or certificate is accredited. 

Assessment Task

A task set by the teacher to assess students’ achievements of unit outcomes for School-assessed Coursework (see also Outcomes). 


Apart from satisfying various subject outcomes to gain ‘S’ (satisfactory), students are also required to attend 100% of class time per subject. All absences must be satisfactorily explained or the student could risk an ‘N’ (not satisfactory) for that unit.Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF): The national framework for all qualifications in post-compulsory education and training. 

Australian Qualifications Framework

The national framework for all qualifications in post-compulsory education and training.

Australian Quality Training Framework

The nationally agreed set of regulatory arrangements that ensure high quality vocational education and training services in Australia. 

Australian Tertiary Admission Rank

The overall ranking on a scale of zero to 99.95 that a student receives, based on his/her study scores. The ATAR is calculated by VTAC and used by universities and TAFE institutes to select students for courses. 


The process of ensuring that the work submitted by students for assessment is their own. 


The certificate that the student is awarded on successful completion of all course requirements by the VRQA. 

Credit (VCE VM)

In the VCE VM, students are awarded one credit for completion of accredited curriculum in accordance with the course requirements for VCE VM.


The specific guidelines/descriptions for assessment tasks within all units of study.

Derived Examination Score

Provision available for students who have missed an examination or whose examination performance has been impaired due to illness or other extenuating personal circumstances. 

Distance Education

A print based, audio and visual learning materials distance education program.


English as an Additional Language

Enhancement Studies

A standard first year university subject as part of a Year 12 VCE program.


The opportunity to extend and challenge students with advanced units of work.


External assessments set and marked by the VCAA. All VCE Units 3 and 4 studies have at least one examination. Most written examinations are held in October and November. Performance examinations and oral components of Languages examinations are held in October. 

Extension Studies

First-year university studies recognised by the VCAA for contribution to the ATAR for students who are academically very able.

General Achievement Test

A test of knowledge and skills in writing, mathematics, science and technology, humanities and social sciences and the arts. All students enrolled in VCE Unit 3 and 4 sequence must sit the GAT. It is used by the VCAA to check that schools are marking School-assessed Tasks to the same standard, as part of the statistical moderation of School-assessed Coursework and as a quality assurance check on the VCAA’s marking of examinations and School-assessed Tasks. 

Graded Assessment

All VCE studies have three Graded Assessments for each Unit 3 and 4 sequence, except for scored VCE VET programs, which have two. Each study includes at least one examination, most have School-assessed Coursework, and some have School-assessed Tasks. 


Students are graded ‘S’ or ‘N’ for satisfactory completion of set VCE/VCAL tasks and ‘Performance graded’ for SATs and SACs.

Horizontal Timetable

The traditional way of organising the delivery of a curriculum based on year levels.

Internally Assessed

School based assessment - School Assessed Tasks (SATs) and/or School Assessed Coursework (SAC).


Formerly known as Languages Other Than English (LOTE).

Learning Areas

Formerly known as Domains, these are discipline-based content areas as outlined in the Victorian Curriculum F-10. 

Learning Program

Curriculum selected for delivery by the VCE VM provider to meet each student’s interest and abilities and to meet minimum VCAL course requirements. 

Local Learning and Employment Networks

Networks established across Victoria to support young people’s connections with local education and training organisations, employers and community groups. 


What a student must know and be able to do in order to satisfactorily complete a unit as specified in the VCE study design or VCAL unit. 


A suggested partial package of combinations of Study Units, optional additional studies and/or methods of study, as a guide for the development of a programme or course of study to suite the student’s needs.


VCE studies listed by TAFE and university institutions which students must have attempted all or some of within their VCE program in order to qualify for entry into particular courses.


The recorded outcomes of a student’s progress for each unit of study. The recorded outcome for the completion of the student’s VCE.


Australian Curriculum Assessment & Reporting Authority.

Satisfactory Completion (VCE)

The school or other VCE provider decision that a student has demonstrated achievement of the outcomes for a unit. Students receive an S for the satisfactory completion of a unit. If they do not satisfactorily complete a unit, they receive an N for it. Students qualify for the VCE when they satisfy units which meet the program requirements set out in Section 5. 

Satisfactory Completion 

The school or other VCE VM provider decision that a student has demonstrated achievement of the outcomes for a VM unit. Students receive an S for the satisfactory completion of a unit. If they do not satisfactorily complete a unit, they receive an N for not yet complete. Students qualify for the VCE VM when they achieve sufficient credits to satisfy the course requirements set out in Section 15. 

School Assessed Coursework

A school-based assessment that is reported as a grade for either a VCE Unit 3 and 4 sequence or Unit 3 and Unit 4 individually. School-assessed Coursework consists of a set of assessment tasks that assess students’ achievement of VCE Units 3 and 4 outcomes. 

School Assessed Task

A school-based assessment for a VCE Unit 3 and 4 sequence set by the VCAA and assessed by teachers in accordance with published criteria. Schools’ assessments of tasks are subject to review by a panel appointed by the VCAA. 

School Based Apprenticeship or Traineeship

Is an apprenticeship or traineeship undertaken by a student enrolled in a senior secondary program (VCE or VCE VM), with at least one day per week timetabled to be spent on the job or in training during the normal school week.


The equivalent to a half school year. Most units are completed in one semester. References to VCE semesters equate Semesters 1 & 2 units within a VCE study to approximate the Year 11 level of difficulty. Semesters 3 & 4 Units within a VCE study equate to the Year 12 level of difficulty.

Senior Secondary Qualification

The VCE and the VCE VM are senior secondary qualifications that are designed to be completed in Years 11 and 12. 

Sequence of Units

Units 3 and 4 are sequential units - no Unit 4 study can be undertaken without first completing Unit 3 of the same study.

Special Needs Education

The current process of offering assistance to a small number of students in need of additional academic assistance.

Special Provision

Arrangements that are made to allow students who are experiencing significant hardship the maximum opportunity to demonstrate both what they know and what they can do.

Statistical Moderation

The process used to ensure that schools’ assessments are comparable throughout the State. It involves adjusting each school’s School-assessed Coursework scores for each study to match the level and spread of the external reference scores for the students in that school enrolled in that study. 


The subjects available in the VCE.

Study Design

Each study has specific details (objectives, areas of work, outcomes and assessment tasks) contained in a booklet called the ‘Study Design’. Each school develops courses and appropriate assessment tasks using these ‘Study Designs’ to determine the exact nature of the work to be done to fulfil the purposes of the outcomes.

Study Score

A score from zero to 50 which shows how a student performed in a VCE study, relative to all other Victorian students enrolled in that same study in a result year. It is based on the student’s results in school assessments and examinations. 

Study Score
(Relative Position)

The Study Score (relative position) is a measure of a student’s performance in that study. It is reported on a 50 point scale.

Unit of Competence

The specification of knowledge and skills and the application of that knowledge and skills to the standard of performance expected in the workplace. The RTO assesses competence.  (VCE VM)

Unit Requirement

A given task that monitors the attainment of outcomes within the Victorian Curriculum Framework.

Units (VCE)

The components of a VCE study that are a semester in duration. There are usually four units in a VCE study, numbered 1, 2, 3 and 4. 

Units (VCE VM)

VM units contain accredited learning outcomes that enable content to be developed and/or planned at the local level. 

Victorian Certificate of Education

An accredited senior secondary school qualification. 

Victorian Certificate of Education Vocational Major

An accredited senior secondary school qualification undertaken by students in Years 10, 11 and 12 which focuses on applied learning, to develop personal, social and employability skills and knowledge.

Victorian Curriculum F-10

This curriculum is the common set of knowledge and skills required by students for life-long learning, social development and active and informed citizenship.

Vocational Education and Training

Nationally recognised vocational certificates. These certificates may be integrated within a VCE or VCE VM program. 

Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre

Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre acts on behalf of universities, TAFEs and other providers facilitating and coordinating the joint selection system. VTAC calculates and distributes the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR).

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