o egzaminie

About the examination

The information provided below is intended for:

  1. upper-secondary school and art school students who will graduate in academic year 2018/2019;
  2. general upper-secondary school graduates who graduated in academic years 2014/2015 to 2017/2018;
  3. supplementary upper-secondary school graduates who graduated in or before academic year 2012/2013;
  4. technical upper-secondary school and art school graduates who graduated in academic years 2015/2016 to 2017/2018;
  5. graduates from pre-reform secondary schools;
  6. holders of certificates or other documents issued abroad that confirm the completion of secondary education but do not entitle the holders to begin university studies in Poland; and
  7. individuals who have obtained or will obtain general upper-secondary school leaving certificates on the basis of extramural examinations after 1 September 2016.

Information for general upper-secondary school graduates who graduated in academic years 2004/2005 to 2013/2014 and technical upper-secondary school graduates who graduated in academic years 2005/2006 to 2014/2015 (whether or not they have taken their matriculation examinations) is available here.

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION? WHAT DOES IT TEST?

The matriculation examination (egzamin maturalny) serves three main purposes:

  1. It determines the extent to which the examinees fulfil the requirements of the curriculum for the subjects in which they have taken their examinations.
  2. It certifies the examinees’ achievement of the legally required standard of knowledge and skills in Polish, Mathematics and a selected foreign language when all compulsory examinations have been passed in the written part (at the basic level) and in the oral part (no level specified).
  3. It replaces university entrance examinations by enabling universities to use the results of the matriculation examination in a given subject or subjects (primarily at the extended level) as criteria in the admission process.

All questions in examination papers test the extent to which the examinees fulfil the requirements specified for each subject in the core curriculum for general education. The core curriculum defines the scope of knowledge and skills which, on the one hand, must be incorporated in the education process and, on the other, are tested by examination questions.

WHAT EXAMINATIONS MUST BE TAKEN?

A graduate is required to take:

  1. two examinations in the oral part; and
  2. four examinations in the written part.

The compulsory examinations in the oral part are:

  1. Polish (no level specified); and
  2. a modern foreign language (no level specified).

The compulsory examinations in the written part are:

  1. Polish (basic level);
  2. Mathematics (basic level);
  3. a modern foreign language (basic level); and
  4. a selected additional subject (extended level).

Graduates from schools or school sections with a national minority teaching language are also required to take an examination in that minority language, both in the oral part (no level specified) and in the written part (at the basic level).

WHAT CONDITIONS MUST BE FULFILLED TO PASS THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION AND OBTAIN THE CERTIFICATE?

To obtain the certificate, the candidate must:

  1. Achieve a score of at least 30% in each of the compulsory subjects in the oral part.
  2. Achieve a score of at least 30% in each of the compulsory subjects in the written part.
  3. Take an examination in a selected additional subject at the extended level in the written part (no passing score is specified for that subject).

WHAT ADDITIONAL SUBJECTS CAN BE TAKEN AS PART OF THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION?

In addition to one compulsory examination in an additional subject at the extended level, examinations in up to five other subjects can be taken.

The subjects can be selected from the list provided below.

In the written part:

  1. Biology (extended level)
  2. Chemistry (extended level)
  3. Philosophy (extended level)
  4. Physics (extended level)
  5. Geography (extended level)
  6. History (extended level)
  7. History of Music (extended level)
  8. History of Art (extended level)
  9. Computer Science (extended level)
  10. English (extended level OR bilingual level)
  11. French (extended level OR bilingual level)
  12. Spanish (extended level OR bilingual level)
  13. German (extended level OR bilingual level)
  14. Russian (extended level OR bilingual level)
  15. Italian (extended level OR bilingual level)
  16. Latin and Classical Civilisation (extended level)
  17. Belarusian as a national minority language (extended level)
  18. Lithuanian as a national minority language (extended level)
  19. German as a national minority language (extended level)
  20. Ukrainian as a national minority language (extended level)
  21. Lemko as an ethnic minority language (extended level)
  22. Kashubian as a regional language (extended level)
  23. Polish (extended level)
  24. Mathematics (extended level)
  25. Civic Education (extended level)

In the oral part:

  1. English (no level specified OR bilingual level)
  2. French (no level specified OR bilingual level)
  3. Spanish (no level specified OR bilingual level)
  4. German (no level specified OR bilingual level)
  5. Russian (no level specified OR bilingual level)
  6. Italian (no level specified OR bilingual level)
  7. Belarusian as a national minority language (no level specified)
  8. Lithuanian as a national minority language (no level specified)
  9. German as a national minority language (no level specified)
  10. Ukrainian as a national minority language (no level specified)
  11. Lemko as an ethnic minority language (no level specified)
  12. Kashubian as a regional language (no level specified)

Depending on the choices made in the compulsory part of the examination, the choice of additional subjects (in the written part and/or the oral part) may be restricted. All applicable rules are described in detail here (Sections C and D).

IS THE CHOICE OF SUBJECTS IN THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION DETERMINED BY THE SUBJECTS THE STUDENT HAS LEARNED IN SCHOOL?

No. Every examinee can take the examination in any subject (with the exception of the compulsory subjects, i.e. Polish, Mathematics, national minority language and one selected modern foreign language).

WHAT QUESTIONS MAY APPEAR IN THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION IN THE VARIOUS SUBJECTS?

Sample questions (with answers) which may appear in examination papers can be found in:

  1. guides to the matriculation examination in the different subjects;
  2. sample question sets;
  3. mock matriculation examination papers; and
  4. examination papers from previous years.

WHAT IS THE FORMAT OF THE ORAL PART OF THE EXAMINATION IN POLISH, NATIONAL MINORITY LANGUAGE, ETHNIC MINORITY LANGUAGE AND REGIONAL LANGUAGE?

  1. The oral part of the examination in the above languages tests the ability to deliver an oral presentation on a specific topic, inspired by a cultural text.
  2. The candidate draws a previously unknown examination question that contains a cultural text (a literary text, pictorial text or popular science text in the field of language science) and the associated instructions.
  3. The examinee is given 15 minutes to prepare a monologue presentation of approx. 10 minutes, and is then asked to discuss the presentation with the subject team for approx. 5 minutes.

Sample questions and presentations can be found in the Guide to the matriculation examination in Polish (pages 23 to 42). Sample questions, videos and comments on the oral part of the examination in Polish are available here.

WHEN WILL THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION TAKE PLACE IN 2019?

Main session — 6 to 25 May 2019

  1. Oral part in Polish, national minority languages, Lemko and Kashubian — 9 to 22 May (excluding 12 and 19 May)
  2. Oral part in modern foreign languages — 6 to 25 May (excluding 12 and 19 May)
  3. Written part (all subjects) — 6 to 23 May

Additional session — 3 to 19 June 2019

  1. Oral part (all subjects) — 3 to 8 June
  2. Written part (all subjects) — 3 to 19 June

The additional session will be conducted for examinees who are unable to take the examination in May due to documented health reasons or fortuitous events and receive approval from the Director of the Regional Examination Board to take the examination in June.

Retake session — 20 to 21 August 2019

  1. Oral part (all subjects) — 20 to 21 August
  2. Written part (all subjects) — 20 August

The retake session will be conducted for examinees who take their examinations in all mandatory subjects and at least one additional subject in May/June and fail one mandatory subject only in the written part or in the oral part. A detailed examination timetable is provided in an announcement made by the Director of the Central Examination Board.

HOW DO CANDIDATES ENTER THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION?

  1. Students who intend to take their matriculation examinations immediately after leaving school in 2019 must submit their preliminary entry applications to their respective home schools’ head teachers by 1 October 2018 (Appendix 1a to the “Notice regarding the organisation and conduct of the matriculation examination in academic year 2018/2019” — see the “appendixes” file).
  2. If a student’s examination plans change during the first semester of academic year 2018/2019, the change can be made in the final entry application by 7 February 2019.
  3. General upper-secondary school graduates from academic years 2014/2015 to 2017/2018 and technical upper-secondary school graduates from academic years 2015/2016 to 2017/2018 must submit their matriculation examination entry applications to their respective home schools’ head teachers by 7 February 2019; these students may also submit preliminary entry applications by 1 October 2018 (Appendix 1a).
  4. General upper-secondary school graduates from academic years 2014/2015 to 2017/2018 and technical upper-secondary school graduates from academic years 2015/2016 to 2017/2018 who intend to seek permission to take their matriculation examinations in schools other than the schools from which they have graduated (as designated by the Director of the Regional Examination Board) must submit their matriculation examination entry applications to their respective home schools’ head teachers by 31 December 2018 (Appendix 1a and Appendix 2).
  5. The following candidates must submit their matriculation examination entry applications to the Director of the Regional Examination Board by 31 December 2018:
    • general upper-secondary school graduates who graduated in academic years 2014/2015 to 2017/2018 and technical upper-secondary school graduates who graduated in academic years 2015/2016 to 2017/2018 whose schools have been closed or reorganised (Appendix 1b);
    • supplementary upper-secondary school graduates who graduated in or before academic year 2012/2013 (Appendix 1b);
    • holders of certificates obtained abroad — only if the certificates do not entitle the holders to begin university studies in Poland (Appendix 1b);
    • graduates from pre-reform secondary schools who have not received matriculation certificates (Appendix 1b); and
    • graduates from pre-reform secondary schools who have received pre-2005 matriculation certificates (Appendix 1c).
  6. When submitting the preliminary and/or final entry application, the candidate receives a copy with receipt confirmation from the head teacher.
  7. A candidate who is required to pay a fee for the matriculation examination (see the answer to the question “Is a fee charged for taking the matriculation examination?”) must enclose a photocopy of the proof of payment (in the required amount) with the entry application.

IS A FEE CHARGED FOR TAKING THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION?

A fee is charged for the matriculation examination in the following cases:

  1. When a graduate takes the examination in the same compulsory subject or the same additional subject at the same level for the third or subsequent time (one take = one year).
    • Example 1: Graduate X took the compulsory matriculation examination in Mathematics at the standard level for the first time in 2016, first in May and then during the retake session in August, failing to achieve the minimum passing score of 30% in both cases. In 2017, graduate X did not take the examination. In 2018, graduate X took the matriculation examination in Mathematics at the basic level for the second time, again in May and in August, and again failed to achieve the required minimum of 30%. In 2019, graduate X decides to take the compulsory examination in Mathematics for the third time, which means that the graduate is required to pay a fee of PLN 50.
    • Example 2: Graduate Y took the examination in Biology (as an additional subject) at the basic level for the first time in 2011. In 2014, the graduate took the same examination (Biology, basic level) to improve his/her marks. In 2019, graduate Y intends to take the examination in Biology, but at the extended level. No fee is required for the examination since the graduate is taking the examination in Biology at the extended level for the first time.
  2. When a graduate who applied to enter the examination in a given subject at a given level in previous years (2005 to 2018) failed to take the examination (i.e. did not attend the examination). In this case, if the candidate specifies the same subject at the same level in his/her matriculation examination entry application for 2019, a fee will be charged for the examination.
    • Example 3: Graduate Z applied to enter the examination in History of Art at the extended level in 2007, but did not attend the examination. In 2019, the graduate wishes to take the same examination. This means that a fee of PLN 50 must be paid for the examination.
    • Example 4: Graduate V applied to enter the examination in Computer Science at the basic level in 2014, but did not take it. In 2019, the graduate wishes to take the Computer Science examination at the extended level. Since the examination is at a different level, there is no requirement to pay a fee.

Note:

  1. The matriculation examination fee should be paid between 1 January 2019 and 7 February 2019 to the bank account specified by the Director of the Regional Examination Board.
    The examination cannot be taken if payment is not made during the above period.
  2. A photocopy of the proof of payment for the examination must be submitted with the declaration.

The fee is not refundable if the candidate chooses not to or fails to take the examination.

DO WINNERS AND FINALISTS OF SCIENCE COMPETITIONS ENJOY SPECIAL PRIVILEGES AT THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION?

Yes. Winners and finalists of science competitions for upper-secondary schools who took part in such competitions while attending upper-secondary schools are exempted from taking the matriculation examination in the respective subject, and are awarded a maximum score in that subject in the certificate. All applicable rules are described in detail here (Section H).

CAN THE MATRICULATION EXAMINATION BE ADJUSTED TO THE NEEDS AND ABILITIES OF PEOPLE WITH SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS (INCLUDING PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES)?

Yes. Matriculation examination conditions and/or arrangements can be adjusted (on the basis of appropriate documentation) to accommodate the needs of:

  1. people with deafness;
  2. people with hearing impairments;
  3. people with blindness;
  4. people with visual impairments;
  5. people with mobility impairments and temporary hand disabilities;
  6. people with aphasia;
  7. people with autism, including Asperger syndrome;
  8. people with chronic conditions;
  9. people with temporary conditions or impairments;
  10. people with specific learning difficulties;
  11. people with social maladjustment or at risk of social maladjustment;
  12. people in a crisis or traumatic situation;
  13. people with adaptation difficulties associated with previous education abroad;
  14. people with language communication disorders; and
  15. people referred to in Section 165.2 of the Education Law Act (foreign nationals).

Detailed procedures for making adjustments are listed in the announcement made by the Director of the Central Examination Board.

WHAT INFORMATION IS INCLUDED IN THE MATRICULATION CERTIFICATE? WHEN IS THE CERTIFICATE ISSUED?

  1. A graduate who has passed the matriculation examination receives a matriculation certificate with a certified copy.
  2. The certificate contains detailed results achieved by the examinee. Results of written examinations in the different subjects are presented in two formats: (a) as percentages and (b) as percentiles showing the percentage of examinees who have achieved the same or lower score in comparison to the certificate holder. Oral examination results are only shown as percentages.
  3. While the results of examinations in additional subjects taken by the graduate on a voluntary basis do not count towards passing, they are also included on the matriculation certificate.
  4. Examinees who take and pass the examination in May/June 2019 will receive their certificates on 4 July 2019. Individuals who pass the examination during the retake session in August will receive their certificates on 11 September 2019.

WHAT MATERIALS ON THE EXAMINATION IN THE “NEW” FORMAT ARE ALREADY AVAILABLE?

  1. Guides to the matriculation examination in the different subjects valid from academic year 2014/2015. These guides contain a description of the examination and sample questions with answers.
  2. Sample question sets in the different subjects (including recordings for foreign languages). These question sets contain sample questions with answers and comments. Both standard sets and modified sets (for examinees with disabilities) are available.
  3. Sample questions in Mathematics at the extended level (pages 95 to 120). This set contains more than 20 examples of extended-level mathematical problems with solutions.
  4. Sample examination paper in Polish (basic level). This paper was used to perform preliminary diagnostic testing in Polish before the matriculation examination (the study was conducted jointly by the Educational Research Institute, the Central Examination Board and Regional Examination Boards).
  5. A collection of 50 sample questions for the oral part of the examination in Polish, including sample presentations and comments.
  6. A sample recording of an oral examination in Polish.
  7. A video illustrating the conduct of the oral examination in Polish using a computer.
  8. A video overview of the matriculation examination.
  9. A feature on glaring language errors for teachers of Polish (including examiners).
  10. Mock matriculation examination papers.

Examination papers from previous years.