Assessment Matters


2016 Assessment Specifications for NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship External Assessment
A2016/008 - 04 May 2016


Principal's Nominee
All Teachers

2016 Assessment Specifications for NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship External Assessment

Assessment specifications provide the assessment parameters for each externally assessed achievement standard. They should be read alongside the applicable standards.

For examinations they cover information such as the:

  • format of the paper;
  • equipment students can bring and use; and
  • context for questions, where appropriate.

For portfolio subjects they cover the:

  • format of the assessment;
  • portfolio submission date;
  • portfolio specifications including the type and volume of materials that may be submitted as evidence; and
  • requirements for authenticity.

2016 Assessment Specifications

These were published in December 2015. For NCEA standards they are available from the NCEA subject resources pages and for Scholarship they are available on the Scholarship subject pages on the NZQA website.

The following assessment specifications have been updated in March 2016:

Subject Level 1 Level 2
Level 3
New Zealand Scholarship
Cook Islands Maori 90873, 90876 91113, 91116 91538, 91541  
Dance 90861, 90005 91211, 91212 91594, 91595  Yes
Drama 90011 91219 91514, 91518  Yes
Earth and Space Science        Yes
Health 90972, 90975      
History        Yes
Korean 90898, 90901 91138, 91141 91558, 91561  
Lea Faka Tonga 91669, 91672 91674, 91677 91679, 91682  
Mathematics and Statistics 91027, 91028, 91031, 91037      
Physical Education       Yes
Physics     91523, 91524, 91526  
Technology 91048, 91049, 91050, 91053, 91070, 91074 91358, 91359, 91360, 91363, 91371 91612, 91613, 91614, 91617, 91632, 91636, 91638 Yes

'(Updated March 2016)' is written beside the year on the front page of the assessment specifications.

Teachers should not need to alter their teaching programmes as a result of this update.

Level 1 Digital Pilots 2016

NZQA is conducting a series of pilot digital examinations in Level 1 English, French, Media Studies and Classical Studies.  The format of the digital examinations will be similar to that of the paper based examinations and NZQA will be providing access to a series of sample digital assessments in June for each of the four subjects.

Further information about how to be involved in the digital pilots and specific information about individual pilot subjects will be sent to Principal’s Nominees.


Please refer any enquiries relating to your School Relationship Manager.

School Relationship Manager
School Quality Assurance and Liaison
Telephone: 04 463 3000

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