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Home > Years 11 and 12 > Queensland Core Skills (QCS) Test

Queensland Core Skills (QCS) Test

The information on this page relates to students who will be graduating from school in 2018 and 2019, i.e. current Year 11 and 12 students. For information about the new QCE system starting with Year 11 students in 2019, visit the QCAA website.

Each year the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) conducts the Queensland Core Skills (QCS) Test for Year 12 students.

What is the QCS Test?

The QCS Test is:

  • a common statewide test for Year 12 students in Queensland
  • an achievement test — not an intelligence test nor an aptitude test
  • grounded in the Queensland senior curriculum
  • accessible to all Year 12 students, regardless of their subject selections.

What's the purpose of the test?

The QCS Test provides:

  • group results for comparing the achievement of students in different subject groups and different schools in order to calculate OPs
  • group results for calculating FPs — up to 5 per student, depending on subject choice
  • individual results on a 5-point scale (from A to E).

What is tested?

The QCS Test assesses a set of generic skills identified in the Queensland senior curriculum. These skills are referred to as the Common Curriculum Elements (CCEs). It does not test particular knowledge of specific Year 12 subjects.

The QCS Test assumes that students have basic levels of general knowledge and vocabulary, and a Year 10 knowledge of mathematical operations.

What is the format of the test?

The QCS Test comprises four subtests:

  • A Writing Task (of 600 words)
  • A Short Response testpaper
  • Two Multiple Choice testpapers.

Students are asked to respond to a variety of stimulus material, such as prose passages, poetry, graphs, tables, maps, mathematical and scientific data, cartoons and artistic works.

How can I prepare?

The CCEs are generic skills that you work with across all of your subjects. This means that you are preparing for the test all the time and in every subject.

Most schools provide some focused preparation for the test. The QCAA also makes available a variety of test preparation resources, including retrospectives and past test papers. More information about these is available on the QCAA website.

When is the QCS Test held?

The QCS Test takes place each year over two consecutive days late in Term 3.

2018 dates
Date Event
Tuesday 4 September Morning: Writing Task (2 hours)
Afternoon: Multiple Choice I (1 hour 30 mins)
Wednesday 5 September Morning: Short Response (2 hours)
Afternoon: Multiple Choice II (1 hour 30 mins)

Can I apply for special provision?

If you have a medical condition or impairment, or if another factor could make it difficult for you to sit the QCS Test, you may be eligible for special arrangements such as:

  • enlarged test materials
  • restbreaks during the test
  • exemption from sitting the test.

To find out if you are eligible and for closing dates, visit the QCAA website or talk to your guidance officer.

When will I find out my result?

Your QCS Test result (from A to E) will be available in your student learning account from 14 November 2018. It will also be reported on your Senior Statement, which you will receive when you have completed Year 12.

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Last updated: 23-Mar-2018