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Assessment Certification Examination (ACE)
NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA)

Higher School Certificate students: study with an outside tutor

ACE 8060

Last Updated: 26 August 2022


An outside tutor is any person, other than a teaching staff member of the school, whom the principal has approved to deliver a specified course of study that is part of the curriculum to a student or students enrolled in the school. The delivery of such a course may take place on school premises or elsewhere. The outside tutor may deliver the course to students during school hours or outside them.

VET courses cannot be studied with an outside tutor. VET courses must be delivered by Registered Training Organisations (RTOs).

Pattern of study

Students who wish to study with an outside tutor must ensure that their pattern of study includes at least eight units in both the Preliminary and HSC courses taken at an accredited school in NSW.

Criteria and conditions for principal approval

The principal may give approval for the student to study additional course(s) with an outside tutor provided that the principal has determined that the proposed tutor is, by qualifications and/or experience and/or expertise, a suitable person to teach NESA's syllabus. The principal has responsibility to ensure that in approving an outside tutor, the school continues to comply with the mandatory requirements under relevant child protection legislation.

In addition the principal must be satisfied that:

  1. the student's study of the course cannot be accommodated within the school
  2. the student will be able to study the HSC course with the outside tutor after completing the Preliminary course
  3. the student and tutor have a copy of, or easy access to, the appropriate syllabus package
  4. the tutor has indicated in writing that the course will be taught in accordance with NESA's syllabus
  5. the tutor will provide to the principal and the student an assessment program for the course detailing:
    1. what will be assessed (ie components)
    2. when tasks have been scheduled
    3. how each task will be assessed
    4. how much weight will be given to each task
    5. what administrative arrangements have been made
  6. the tutor will provide assessment marks determined in accordance with syllabus guidelines but these marks will not be used except in the case of illness/misadventure

Language courses                                                   

The study of languages through a community languages school (not one of the centres of the Department of Education's Secondary College of Languages) may be approved by the principal of the home school, provided that the above conditions are met.