Graduation requirements

800 former ASD students eligible to receive diplomas

Graduation capDuring the last legislative session ending in April, the Alaska State Legislature passed HB278. It allows school districts to retroactively award diplomas to students who passed all required coursework and earned the needed credits, but had not yet passed all three portions of the High School Graduation Qualifying Exam.


According to ASD records, there are still 800 former students who are eligible to receive their diploma under this legislation. All of these students received a letter in the mail. If are eligible, or if you have questions, please call Secondary Education at 742-4256.


Read the lettere  here.


Graduation requirements

SubjectCredits required
Language Arts 4 credits – 8 semesters
Social Studies 4 credits – 8 semesters
Mathematics 3 credits – 6 semesters
Sciences 3 credits – 6 semesters
PE/Health 1½ credits – 3 semesters
Electives 7 credits – 14 semesters
Total 22½ credits


Language Arts — 4 credits

English 9-1, 9-2, English 10-1, 10-2, and one semester of Composition during grades 11 or 12 plus three semesters of electives in grades 10, 11, or 12.

Social Studies — 4 credits

World History 9- 1 and 9- 2, U.S. History 10- 1 and 10 -2, one semester of Alaska Studies, one semester of Economics, one semester of United States Government, one semester of a Social Studies elective. Students may waive the .5 credit social studies requirement by completion of Level III of a world language (Latin, French, German, Japanese, Russian, or Spanish); immersion students may waive the .5 social studies requirement by completion of Japanese for Fluent Speaker II or Spanish Immersion: Vistas Juveniles del Mundo Hispano.

Mathematics — 3 credits

Six semesters of Mathematics electives. In order to satisfy the algebra requirements, students must complete one of the following options: Algebra I, semester 1 and 2; or Algebra B, semester 1 and 2; or Algebra Survey, semester 1 and 2; or Credit-by-Choice Challenge by Examination. Students graduating prior to July 1, 2017 will be required to earn 2.5 credits of Mathematics.

Sciences — 3 credits

Three years (six semesters) of science credit are required. Two semesters must be life science. Two semesters must be physical science.

Electives — 7 credits

Fourteen semester courses have not been specified so as to provide students an opportunity to pursue individual educational goals. Electives may include additional courses in Language Arts, Social Studies, Mathematics, Science, Technology, Fine Arts, World Languages, Physical Education and Career Technology.

Physical Ed./Health Ed. — 1½ credits

Three semesters of physical education graduation requirements can be fulfilled by passing the required Lifetime Personal Fitness course plus ½ credit from the lifetime activity courses (noted as such in course listings) plus ½ additional credit from any physical education class.

  1. Students may obtain a waiver of ¼ of the physical education graduation requirement for each full season of ASAA-sanctioned sports participation within the Anchorage School District. Elective credit must be earned to replace the Physical Education/Health Education requirement that is waived. A waiver of the physical education requirement under this section does not affect the overall minimum requirements of 22½ credits.
  2. Lifetime Personal Fitness can be waived by:
    1. successful completion of a fitness and written test administered by Health and Physical Education Department; or
    2. participation in two seasons of ASAA-sanctioned extracurricular sports within the Anchorage School District and successful completion of the computerized knowledge test administered by designated high school building personnel.
  3. Students may also waive a maximum of 1.0 physical education credits through Credit-By-Choice, correspondence, college coursework, or field study programs.
  4. A maximum of 1.0 waiver of the physical education requirement is available upon completion of 2 full years of JROTC.
  5. Healthy Life Skills and First Aid are not repeatable upon receiving a passing grade in a previous semester.


A student may be considered for graduation when he or she has acquired a minimum of 22.5 credits after grade 8 in required and elective subjects. 

Seniors entering the ASD for the first time may graduate by meeting requirements of their previous school when the ASD requirements create hardship.

Related ASD links

Counseling compassThe Counseling and Guidance section provides several resources for preparing your academic plan and exploring college and career options.


Financial aid

Dollar bill Contact your school's Counseling office for financial aid and scholarship information.


Related websites

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Diploma changes

Students who received necessary credits and passed all required course work may be eligible for a diploma following changes to the High School Graduation Qualifying Exam (HSGQE) in 2014. Use the diploma request form to request a diploma if you believe you may qualify.

Diploma request form