Exams & Graduation

If students are writing Diploma Exam arrangements can be made for students to write at their community school, If their medical condition prevents this arrangements can be made for the Diploma Exam to be written at Dr. Gordon Townsend School. Some students my qualify for an exemption form diplomas, please contact the main office for information about the exemption process.

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​Diploma Exams

On Nov. 24, 2020, the Alberta government announced that diploma exams would be optional for the rest of the school year. The decision to write diploma exams resides with students and their families. Students will receive an exemption if they choose not to write an exam, however, if an exam is written it will continue to be worth 30 per cent of their final mark.

All students currently taking a diploma course, or planning to take a diploma course in the second semester are exempted from writing the diploma exam. Students must still complete all of the required course work and assignments and will receive a school-awarded mark.

Students who wrote one part of the English Language Arts, French Language Arts or Social Studies exams during the November 2020 diploma examination sitting, must write the other part in order to receive an official mark for the course.

Retroactive exemptions will not be provided to students who wrote diploma exams in previous school years.

Students may choose to write diploma exams in any of the January, April, June or August 2021 administrations if they:
  • have a school-awarded mark; or
  • wish to rewrite a diploma exam. 
Students choosing to write must inform the assistant principal of their school, ideally before the winter break, so the school knows how many students will be writing exams. If students choose not to write diploma exams, no action is required.  There is no penalty if students change their mind and choose not to write.  However, if they do change their minds, they must inform the school before the start of the examination.

All students who choose to write diploma exams will do so at the school where they are registered. Students will be required to wear masks and follow all other health measures while in the school.

If you have any questions, please contact your school.


Provincial tests are part of a balanced, broad-based program of student assessment. The results provide some of the information that guides our educators as they set targets for student achievement and track the results of school improvement initiatives. Visit the CBE website for more information on our students’ provincial testing​​.​​​

Students taking specific Grade 12 core subjects write provincial Diploma Examinations at the completion of the course which count for 30% of the student’s final mark. These courses in the CBE are:

  • English Language Arts 30-1
  • English Language Arts 30-2
  • French Language Arts 30-1
  • Mathematics 30-1
  • Mathematics 30-2
  • Biology 30
  • Chemistry 30
  • Physics 30
  • Science 30
  • Social Studies 30-1
  • Social Studies 30-2

More information on Diploma Exams can be found on the Alberta Education website​.

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