Gloucester High School students part of new HSC course and first online exam

Three Gloucester High School students were among the over 650 NSW students to sit the first ever online Higher School Certificate (HSC) exam.

Not only was it the first time the State has offered an exam in this manner but it was for the new HSC course, Science Extension. The students sat the exam on Wednesday, October 30 in the school's computer room, instead of the usual school hall.

Minister for Education and Early Childhood Learning Sarah Mitchell said the State's best and brightest students sat the online exam after completing a scientific research project into an area of science that fascinated them.

"Science extension is a new course that has been applauded by the scientific community," Ms Mitchell explained.

"It aims to help students develop real-world research skills for the future and hopefully inspires them to pursue further study or a career in STEM. The exam was a technological achievement for all the staff and students involved in this new course. NSW Education Standards Authority had been well prepared to deal with students logging on to the network at the same time, in multiple locations," she said.

She was pleased to see that high-achieving students across metro, rural and remote NSW had access to the course and were even able to choose areas of study that were relevant to their local or broader community.

"It provides a fantastic outlet for students with a specific scientific passion to research it and have that research count in their HSC no matter where they live," she explained.

The GHS students reported "no issues" with the online exam, with the two hour and 10 minute exam, going off without a hitch.

This year's exam timetable kicked off on Thursday, October 17 with all students sitting the first English exam and will finish on official exam scheduled for Friday, November 8.