Graduation Requirements

Standard Diploma Requirements

Beginning with students who were first-time 9th graders in 2013-2014, students are required to take a virtual, or online, class as part of their graduation requirements. Students must also earn a career and technical education credential in order to graduate. 

Students with disabilities who entered 9th grade for the first time after the 2012-2013 school year are eligible for credit accommodations to assist them in meeting the requirements for a standard diploma. For more information on credit accommodations, please visit the Virginia Department of Education's Standard Diploma Credit Accommodations page at: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/instruction/graduation/credit_accommodations.shtml.

For more information about the requirements for a standard diploma, please visit the Virginia Department of Education's Standard Diploma Requirements page at: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/instruction/graduation/standard.shtml.

Discipline AreaStandard Credits
(Effective with first-time 9th graders in 2011-2012 and beyond)
*Verified Credits (Effective for first-time 9th graders in 2003-2004 and beyond)
English42
Mathematics (Note 1)1
Laboratory Science (Notes 2 & 6)31
History & Social Sciences (Notes 3 & 6)1
Health & Physical Education 
Foreign Language, Fine Arts, or Career & Technical Education (Note 7) 
Economics and Personal Finance 
Electives (Note 4) 
Student Selected Test (Note 5) 1
(In Math, Science, or History)
Total 22 

* Verified credits are obtained by passing the class and the accompanying SOL test.

Note 1: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include at least two different course selections from among: Algebra I; Geometry; Algebra, Functions and Data Analysis; Algebra II, or other mathematics courses above the level of Algebra II. 

Note 2: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include course selections from at least two different science disciplines: earth sciences, biology, chemistry or physics or completion of the sequence of science courses required for the International Baccalaureate Diploma.

Note 3: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include U.S. and Virginia History, U.S. and Virginia Government, and one course in either world history or geography or both.

Note 4: Courses to satisfy this requirement shall include at least two sequential electives as required by the Standards of Quality.

Note 5: A student may utilize additional tests for earning verified credit in computer science, technology, career and technical education, economics or other areas as prescribed by the Board in 8 VAC 20-131-110.

Note 6: Students who complete a career and technical education program sequence and pass an examination or occupational competency assessment in a career and technical education field that confers certification or an occupational competency credential from a recognized industry, or trade or professional association or acquires a professional license in a career and technical education field from the Commonwealth of Virginia may substitute the certification, competency credential or license for (1) the student selected verified credit and (2) either a science or history and social science verified credit when the certification, license or credential confers more than one verified credit. The examination or occupational competency assessment must be approved by the Board of Education as an additional test to verify student achievement.

Note 7: Pursuant to Section 22.1-253.13:4, Code of Virginia, credits earned for this requirement shall include one credit in fine or performing arts or career and technical education.


Advanced Studies Diploma Requirements

Beginning with students who were first-time 9th graders in 2013-2014, students are required to take a virtual, or online, class as part of their graduation requirements.

For more information about the requirements for an advanced studies diploma, please visit the Virginia Department of Education's Advanced Studies Diploma Requirements page at: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/instruction/graduation/advanced_studies.shtml.

Discipline AreaStandard Credits 
(Effective with first-time 9th graders in 2011-2012 and beyond)
*Verified Credits (Effective for first-time 9th graders in 2003-2004 and beyond)
English42
Mathematics (Note 1)2
Laboratory Science (Note 2)42
History & Social Sciences (Note 3)42
Foreign Languages (Note 4)3 or 4  
Health & Physical Education 
Fine Arts or Career & Technical Education (Note 7)1 
Economics and Personal Finance 
Electives 
Student Selected Test (Note 5)

(In Math, Science, or History)
Total 26 or 27  

* Verified credits are obtained by passing the class and the accompanying SOL test.

Note 1: 
Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include at least two different course selections from among: Algebra I; Geometry; Algebra, Functions and Data Analysis; Algebra II, or other mathematics courses above the level of Algebra II. 

Note 2: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include course selections from at least two different science disciplines: earth sciences, biology, chemistry or physics or completion of the sequence of science courses required for the International Baccalaureate Diploma.

Note 3: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include U.S. and Virginia History, U.S. and Virginia Government, and one course in either world history or geography or both.

Note 4: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include three years of one language or two years of two languages. If three years of one language are taken then the required credits will be 3 which means that a total of 26 credits are required for graduation. If two years of two languages are taken then the required credits will be 4 which means that a total of 27 credits are required for graduation.

Note 5: A student may utilize additional tests for earning verified credit in computer science, technology, career and technical education, economics or other areas as prescribed by the Board in 8 VAC 20-131-110.


Modified Standard Diploma Requirements

The Modified Standard Diploma is only available to students with disabilities who entered the 9th grade for the first time in the 2012-2013 school year or before. 

Students with disabilities who entered 9th grade for the first time after the 2012-2013 school year are eligible for credit accommodations to assist them in meeting the requirements for a standard diploma. For more information on credit accommodations, please visit the Virginia Department of Education's Standard Diploma Credit Accommodations page at: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/instruction/graduation/credit_accommodations.shtml.

The student must pass literacy and numeracy competency assessments as prescribed by the Board. For students who entered 9th grade in 2000-2001 and beyond, the literacy and numeracy competency assessments are the 8th grade English Reading test and the 8th grade Mathematics SOL test. The Board also approved 4 additional substitute assessments to satisfy the literacy and numeracy requirements for students pursuing a Modified Standard Diploma. They are WorkKeys: Reading, WorkKeys: Math, ACT: EXPLORE, and ACT: PLAN.

For more information about the requirements for a modified standard diploma, please visit the Virginia Department of Education's Modified Standard Diploma Requirements page at: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/instruction/graduation/modified_standard.shtml.

Discipline AreaStandard Credits 

English4
Mathematics (Note 1)
Laboratory Science (Note 2)2
History & Social Sciences (Note 3)
Health & Physical Education
Fine Arts or Career & Technical Education
Electives (Note 4)
Total 20 

Note 1: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include content from among applications of algebra, geometry, personal finance and statistics in courses that have been approved by the Board.

Note 2: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include content from at least two of the following: applications of earth science, biology, chemistry, or physics in courses approved by the Board.

Note 3: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include one unit of credit in U.S. and Virginia History and one unit of credit in U.S. and Virginia Government in courses approved by the Board.

Note 4: Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include a least two sequential electives in the same manner required for the Standard Diploma.


Standards of Learning (SOL) Tests

The Standards of Learning (SOL) Tests are given in the following classes:
  • Algebra I
  • Geometry
  • Algebra II
  • Earth Science
  • Biology I
  • Chemistry I
  • World History I
  • World History II
  • Virginia and US History
  • Reading (through English 11)
  • Writing (through English 11)

Transfer Students

For more information on the graduation requirements of transfer students, please visit the Virginia Department of Education's Information for Transfer Students page at: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/instruction/graduation/student_transfers.shtml.