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KSCE New Grading System 2023


We are pleased show you a guide on the KSCE New Grading System for 2023.

KSCE New Grading System
“Understanding the KSCE New Grading System: Opportunities and Implications”

In response to the evolving educational landscape, the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KSCE) will introduce a New Grading System in 2023. This change serves as an essential improvement, aiming to provide fair opportunities for students aspiring to advance their studies into higher education.

Over time, it has become apparent that the prior grading system harboured limitations, critically affecting the progression of students into universities and diploma programmes. The old formula, encompassing five compulsory subjects plus one humanity, often restricted many from qualifying for tertiary education.

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Under the previous system, students were mandated to undertake Mathematics, English, Kiswahili, two sciences, and two additional subjects, making the progression criterion somewhat stringent.


The Revamped Structure

The 2023 grading system takes a different approach. It now requires students to focus on Mathematics and one best-performed language as the only compulsory subjects, with their five other top-performing subjects considered in the final grade. This shift is designed to increase university and diploma qualifiers significantly from the previous years.

Major Changes Highlight

This new structure marks a departure from the five mandatory subjects in the previous system, offering more flexibility and opportunity for students to excel based on their strengths and preferences.


1. For Students

Students now have the liberty to focus and excel in subjects that align with their career aspirations and academic strengths, potentially leading to an increase in the overall performance and university admissions.

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2. For Educators and Institutions

Educational institutions and educators need to adapt their teaching and evaluation methods to align with this new grading criterion, ensuring that students are well-prepared and guided to understand and navigate through this transition successfully.


Public response to the new grading system is mixed. While many celebrate the increased opportunities for university and college admission, others express concerns regarding the potential dilution of educational quality and standards. The public also shared diverse opinions, with some seeing it as a strategy to collect more funds in fees, while others think that lowering the entry to universities would be a better move.


The current KNEC grading system for KSCE has undergone significant modifications, transitioning into a New Grading System in 2023. Under the previous framework, students were evaluated based on five compulsory subjects plus one humanity, with each grade representing a specific point. For example, a student accumulating 45 points might have been categorized under a lower grade. However, the recent changes offer students a more flexible approach for a favorable overall grade, as it primarily focuses on two compulsory subjects – Mathematics and one best-performed language.

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The new system aims at widening access to higher education by increasing the number of students qualifying for university and diploma courses. To secure an A in KSCE, a student needs to excel in the two compulsory subjects and perform exceptionally in their five other best-performed subjects under the new 2023 grading system. This updated system heralds a more inclusive and fair assessment of students’ abilities and potentials, allowing for a broader representation of students’ academic strengths in their final grades.

However, it is imperative for all stakeholders to understand, adapt, and carefully navigate through this change to ensure it meets its intended objectives without compromising the quality of education in the country.


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