Graduation Requirements

Elementary School Requirements

Regulation and Guidance

R277-700-4: Elementary Education Requirements
Utah Office of Administrative Rules


A. The Board shall establish a core curriculum for elementary schools, grades K-6.

B. Elementary school education core curriculum content area requirements:

  • Grades K-2:
    • a. Reading/Language Arts;
    • b. Mathematics;
    • c. Integrated Curriculum.
  • Grades 3-6:
    • a. Reading/Language Arts;
    • b. Mathematics;
    • c. Science;
    • d. Social Studies;
    • e. Arts:
      • i. Visual Arts;
      • ii. Music;
      • iii. Dance;
      • iv. Theatre.
  • f. Health Education;
  • g. Physical Education;
  • h. Educational Technology;
  • i. Library Media.

C. It is the responsibility of the local boards of education to provide access to the core curriculum to all students.

D. Student mastery of the general Core Curriculum is the responsibility of local boards of education.

E. Informal assessment should occur on a regular basis to ensure continual student progress.

F. Norm-referenced tests shall be given to all elementary students in grades 3 and 5.

G. Provision for remediation for all elementary students who do not achieve mastery is the responsibility of local boards of education.

Middle School Requirements

Regulation and Guidance

R277-700-5: Middle School Education Requirements
Utah Office of Administrative Rules

R277-700-5: Middle School Education Requirements Guidance


A. The Board shall establish a Core Curriculum for middle school education.

B. Students in grades 7-8 shall earn a minimum of 11.5 units of credit to be properly prepared for instruction in grades 9-12.

C. Local boards may require additional units of credit.

D. Grades 7-8 Core Curriculum requirements and units of credit:

  • General Core (11.5 units of credit):
    • a. Language Arts (2.0 units of credit);
    • b. Mathematics (2.0 units of credit);
    • c. Science (2.0 units of credit);
    • d. Social Studies (1.5 units of credit);
    • e. The Arts (1.0 units of credit from the following):
      • i. Visual Arts;
      • ii. Music;
      • iii. Dance; or
      • iv. Theatre.
    • f. Physical Education (1.0 units of credit);
    • g. Health Education (0.5 units of credit);
    • h. College and Career Awareness (1.0 units of credit); and 
    • i.  Beginning no later than the 2018-2019 school year, Digital Literacy (0.5 units of credit).

E. Norm-referenced tests shall be given to all middle school students in grade 8.

High School Requirements

Regulation and Guidance

R277-700-6: High School Education Requirements
Utah Office of Administrative Rules

R277-717: High School Course Grading Requirements Frequently Asked Questions


Current Graduation Courses
Meets the criteria for graduation requirements.

A. The Board shall establish Core Standards and a Core Curriculum for students in grades 9-12.

B. Students in grades 9-12 shall earn a minimum of 24 units of credit through course completion or through competency assessment consistent with the Utah Office of Administrative Rule R277-705: Secondary School Completion and Diplomas to graduate.

C. Grades 9-12 Core Curriculum credits from courses approved by the Board, as specified:

  • English/Language Arts (4 Credits)
  • Mathematics (3 Credits):
    • Successful completion of Secondary Mathematics I, II, and III or higher.
    • Parents may request that students replace Secondary III with a course from the Applied or Advanced approved course list.
    • Students who successfully complete Calculus have met graduation requirements regardless of the number of credits they have taken.
  • Science (3 Credits):
    • 2 Credits (from the four science foundation areas; Earth Systems, Biological Science, Chemistry, AP Computer Science, or Physics).
    • 1 Credit (from the foundation courses or the applied or advanced science core list).
  • Social Studies (3 Credits):
    • 1 Credit (United States History)
    • 0.5 Credit (Geography)
    • 0.5 Credit (Civilization)
    • 0.5 Credit (United States Government and Citizenship)
    • 0.5 Credit (Local Education Agency (LEA) Discretion)
  • Directed Coursework (3.5 Credits):
    • 1.5 Credit (Fine Arts)
    • 1 Credit (Career and Technical Education (CTE))
    • 0.5 Credit (Digital Studies)
    • 0.5 General Financial Literacy
  • Physical Education Health (2 Credits):
    • 0.5 Credit (Health)
    • 0.5 Credit (Participation Skills)
    • 0.5 Credit (Fitness for Life)
    • 0.5 Credit (Individualized Lifetime Activities)
    • Optional: 0.5 Credit Maximum (Team Sport/Athletic Participation*)
      * Can be used in place of Participation Skills or Individualized Lifetime Activities only.
  • Required Electives (5.5 Credits)
  • Total Credit Hours (24)

D. LEA boards may require students to earn credits for graduation that exceed minimum Board requirements.

E. Additional elective course offerings may be established and offered at the discretion of an LEA board.

F. Students with disabilities served by special education programs may have changes made to graduation requirements through the individuals Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) to meet unique educational needs. A student's IEP shall document the nature and extent of modifications and substitutions or exemptions made to accommodate a student with disabilities.

G. The Board and Utah State Board of Education (USBE) may review LEA boards' lists of approved courses for compliance with this rule.

H. Graduation requirements may be modified for individual students to achieve an appropriate route to student success when such modifications:

  • are consistent with the student's IEP or Student Education Occupation Plan (SEOP) or both;
  • are maintained in the student's file and include the parent's/guardian's signature; and
  • maintain the integrity and rigor expected for high school graduation, as determined by the Board.

I. Courses required for graduation can be retaken in accordance with the Utah Office of Administrative Rule R277-717: High School Course Grading Requirements.

Demonstrated Competency

Competency Measures Project

The Competency Measures Project was created in response to the Utah Office of Administrative Rule R277-705-3: Required Local Education Agency (LEA) Policy Explaining Student Credit, which requires districts to have policies and procedures to award credit based upon demonstrated competency. Districts in collaboration with the Utah State Board of Education (USBE) curriculum section are currently developing competency measures to deploy in a consistent manner statewide to meet the credit awarding requirements of state law and Board rule.

Board Goal:

  • Promote competency and the achievement of high learning standards for each child while partnering with families, educators, and communities in various ways.

Anticipated Results:

  • The Curriculum and Instruction Committee will be provided with an update on the Competency Measures Project and the development of policies and procedures that are currently under way in connection with this project. Discussion will ensure related to the procedures to establish and implement a competency based assessment process for students to obtain high school credit.


  • Credit earned through Demonstrated Competency Assessments will be accepted by all public and charter schools as required by State Law but may not be accepted by some private schools. Students enrolled at private schools should speak with a school administrator before taking a Demonstrated Competency Assessment.
  • The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) does not recognize courses completed through credit-by-exam; Demonstrated Competency Assessments cannot be used to meet NCAA eligibility.
  • Go to StepUp to Higher Education Regents’ Scholarship to learn how competency exams may be used towards fulfilling the requirements for the scholarship.




Testing Centers
Davis Regional Testing Center
Districts Served: All districts north of Davis County
Phone: (801) 402-5385 | E-mail

Granite Regional Testing Center
Districts Served: All districts south of Davis County
Phone: (385) 646-6042 | E-mail

Stephanie Wood
Science Specialist, K-12
Credit Recovery Coordinator
Demonstrated Competency Coordinator
Granite School District
2500 South State Street
Salt Lake City, Utah 84115-3110
Phone: (385) 646-4239 | E-mail


To obtain a Utah High School Diploma a student must successfully complete 24 academic year credits. Districts may add additional credit requirements. 

A student may be awarded a certificate of completion or a differentiated diploma, consistent with state and federal law and the student’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or Section 504 plan.

Helpful Resources

Career and Technical Education (CTE) Pathways
Utah State Board of Education (USBE)

  • Parent-Student Guide: A helpful guide for selecting classes that will prepare you for the future.

Utah Office of Administrative Rules:

A tool designed for education and career planning.

Director's Team

Diana Suddreth
Director, Teaching and Learning
Phone: (801) 538-7739 | E-mail

Jonathan Collins
Administrative Secretary
Phone: (801) 538-7788 | E-mail