Writing your matric examinations is one of the most exciting periods in a young adult’s life. You’ve put in 12 years of hard work, and now it is time to see the results. While the examination period itself can be very stressful, waiting for your marks after everything is done and dusted is even more stressful. It is easy for worry or self-doubt to creep in as you wait for those much-anticipated results.
If you suspect you didn’t do as well as you could, you may even be worrying about how to plan your future around the results you will receive. And even if you know you have done well, you will be waiting to apply for your tertiary education facilities of choice and hear back where you will get accepted.
Today, we’re looking at how matric results are marked and a little about how the final marks are captured and collated to help reassure you of what happens next.
When Will The Matric Exams Be Marked?
The marking of matric exam papers starts the day after the final matric examination is written, typically in mid-December of the matric examination cycle. Over this period (between the beginning of marketing and the release date for matric marks), the papers are marked and entered into the system.
The overall results are then collated, calculated, and released on the declared matric result release date. They are also carefully verified before release. While this typically takes place in mid-January of the year following the exam session, the matric 2023 results will be released a month later than normal. They are due to be released on 23 Feb 2024.
How are Matric Exams Marked?
Matric exams are marked by a team of selected matric markers. These will all be Grade 12 teachers who have applied for the role. They are required to have taught the subject they apply to mark for at least 2 years in the last 3 academic cycles. They then undergo a series of competency tests set by the Department of Basic Education. Once these applications are finalized, Umalusi Assessment Bodies and the Department assign markers to the received papers. This ensures as consistent and fair a marking process as possible. These matric markers are selected before the current academic cycle.
There are typically around 60,000 appointed matric markers every year. If you have reason to believe there was a mistake in your marks, you can apply for a remark. There is also the opportunity to re-write subjects that you did not pass (or did not pass well enough), or you can look at options like a matric upgrade once you pass 21 years of age.
How Will I Know If I Passed?
You will know you passed matric on the official announcement day when results are released early in the day- typically 6am. There are a variety of ways you can check your matric results:
- Most schools and academic centers will allow you to come in and collect your results afternoon (12 pm) on the day.
- You can consult major newspapers and other news sources for lists of matric results by examination number.
- You can check your results online through the Department of Basic Education’s website.
- You can SMS your exam number and ID to the results service (35658).
- You can use the USSD service (*120*35658#) and follow the prompts.
Remember that while these services exist to help you know your matric results as soon as possible after they are released, they do not count as official proof of your matric results. This you will have to collect from your academic institution (or a Department of Basic Education office by arrangement) to apply for funding or tertiary education.
How is the Matric Year Mark Calculated?
Matric Marks are calculated in two segments. Your final examination papers will account for 75% of your marks. The remaining 25% is taken from your work through the final year (the Matric year mark). It is also called your school-based assessment (or SBA). This comprises results from your projects, tests, portfolios, and assignments throughout the final year. Every school calculates them a little differently, but pay careful attention to the milestone assessments you write through the year to get the best possible mark here.
It is well worth putting in maximum effort through the school year to give you the best possible result on your SBA portion and pad you a little against any struggles during the final exam session itself. Remember, this is your last year, and your matric results will have a big impact on your future education and job prospects, so a little extra effort is worth it- you can power through it!
For many new matriculants, waiting for the results of their matric exam is a strange kind of limbo period. You know you have finished your schooling career, but you need your marks to carry on to the next phase in your adult life. Hopefully, you now understand more about the marking process and feel reassured your exam paper is in good hands.
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