Graduation Requirements

Graduation Requirements

Students may use the courses listed in the Student Curriculum Handbook that have been approved by the MSD Wayne Township School Board when completing the 40 credits required for graduation. The high school will offer courses it deems relevant to the educational goals of MSD Wayne Township. These offerings will be contingent upon budgetary constraints, staff availability, and minimum student enrollment for such courses.

Indiana Core 40 Expectations

In the State of Indiana, students entering the ninth grade are encouraged to work minimally toward  completing the requirement for a Core 40 diploma. All Ben Davis High School graduates are expected to meet the requirements of the Core 40 diploma. Core 40 is a directed set of high school courses that will help prepare students for success, whether pursuing a career that requires four or more years of college, one or two years of post-secondary education in a business or technical college or training through an apprenticeship program.

  • Students must minimally complete the Core 40 to be considered for admission to Indiana’s four-year colleges, and the same courses are strongly recommended for admission to a two-year college or entry into the workplace.
  • Please check specific colleges and universities for their world language and math requirements.

Indiana’s Core 40 includes courses beyond those required for graduation from high school, reflecting the belief that students need more than the minimum to be successful. The option to opt out of the Core 40 diploma is available to students under special circumstances. The student, the student’s parent/guardian, and the student’s counselor must meet to discuss and review the student’s career and courses before opting out of the Core 40 and awarding a general diploma.

Core 40 Diploma

Course Area Credits Required
English/Language Arts 8 Credits
2 Credits: English 9
2 Credits: English 10
2 Credits: English 11
2 Credits: English 12
Mathematics 6 Credits (in grades 9-12)
2 credits: Algebra I
2 credits: Geometry
2 credits: Algebra II or complete Integrated Math I, II and III for 6 credits
All students must take a math or quantitative reasoning course each year in high school
Science 6 Credits
2 credits: Biology
2 credits: Chemistry I or Physics I or Integrated Chemistry-Physics
2 credits: Any Core 40 science course
Social Studies 6 Credits
2 credits: US History
1 credit: US Government
1 credit: Economics
2 credits: World History/Civilization or Geography/History of the World
Directed Electives 5 Credits
2 Credits: Computer Technology
World Language
Fine Arts
Physical Education 2 Credits
PE I and PE II
Health and Wellness 1 Credit
Electives* 6 Credits
(College and Career Pathway courses recommended)
Total 40 Credits
Students must also pass the Indiana state requirement End of Course Assessments (English 10 and Algebra I)

NOTE:  Most four-year colleges are now requiring two years of a world language and a year of PreCalculus/Trig.

Diploma Types

Core 40 with Academic Honors Diploma

The Indiana State Board of Education has established a Core 40 with Academic Honors Diploma. The diploma is intended to bring honor to those students who choose challenging courses and accumulate at least 47 credits in high school. To be eligible for an Academic Honors Diploma, a student must have a weighted grade point average of “B-” (2.67) or above. No grade lower than a “C-“may count towards the diploma. A gold seal is placed on the diploma and the student’s transcript notes the awarding of the Academic Honors Diploma.

Core 40 with Technical Honors Diploma

The Indiana State Board of Education has established a Core 40 with Technical Honors Diploma. The diploma is a special diploma intended for those students who choose a career-technical focus for their high school career path. Students must accumulate at least 47 credits in high school. Students must maintain a grade point average of “B-” (2.67) or better and have no grade lower than a “C-” in order to earn the Core 40 with Technical Honors Diploma. The Core 40 with Technical Honors Diploma designation will be placed on student diplomas and transcripts.

Seventh – Semester Graduation

It is advisable for students to complete eight (8) semesters of high school. Graduation may be achieved, however, after seven semesters if all forty-five (40) required credits have been completed. This must be planned when classes are being selected for the student’s senior year. A mid-year graduate may participate in end-of-the-year senior activities. Participation in graduation exercises requires attendance at the scheduled graduation practice.

Sixth Semester Graduation

Under special circumstances sixth semester graduation is attainable. Students interested in sixth semester graduation should see their counselor for specific details. In those instances where sixth semester graduation is being considered, parents are urged to contact their student’s guidance counselor as soon as possible, preferably as early as their freshman
year. Students who meet all graduation requirements in six semesters may be eligible for the Mitch Daniels’ Early Graduation Scholarship ($4,000).


Core 40 with Academic Honors Diploma

Minimum 47 Credits

For the Core 40 with Academic Honors diploma, students must:

  • Complete all requirements for Core 40.
  • Earn 2 additional Core 40 math credits.
  • Earn 6-8 Core 40 world language credits. (6 credits in one language or 4 credits each in two languages)
  • Earn 2 Core 40 fine arts credits.
  • Earn a grade of “C or above in courses that will count toward the diploma.
  • Have a grade point average of a “B” or better.
  • Complete one of the following:
    • Earn 4 credits in 2 or more AP courses and take corresponding AP exams
    • Earn 6 verifiable transcripted college credits in dual credit courses from priority course list
    • Earn two of the following:
    • 1. A minimum of 3 verifiable transcripted college credits from the priority course list,
    • 2. credits in AP courses and corresponding AP exams,
    • 3. 2 credits in IB standard level courses and corresponding IB exams.
    • Earn a combined score of 1250 or higher on the SAT critical reading mathematics and writing sections and a minimum score of 560 on math and 590 on evidence based reading and writing section.
    • Earn an ACT composite score of 26 or higher and complete written section
    • Earn 4 credits in IB courses and taking corresponding IB exams

Core 40 with Technical Honors Diploma

Minimum 47 Credits

For the Core 40 with Technical Honors diploma, students must:

  • Complete all requirements for Core 40.
  • Earn 6 credits in the college and career preparation courses in a state-approved College & Career Pathway and one of the following:
    • Pathway designated industry-based certification or a credential, or
    • Pathway dual credits from the lists of priority courses resulting in 6 transcripted college credits
  • Earn a grade of “C-” or better in courses that will count toward the diploma.
  • Have a grade point average of a “B” or better.
  • Complete one of the following,
    • Any one of the options of the Core 40 with Academic Honors (listed under the last main bullet above).
    • Earn the following scores or higher on WorkKeys; Reading for Information – Level 6, Applied Mathematics-Level 6, and Locating Information – Level 5.
    • Earn the following minimum score(s) on Accuplacer: Writing 80, Reading 90, Math 75
    • Earn the following minimum score(s) on Compass; Algebra 66, Writing 70, Reading 80.

State Testing Requirements

Information for the most current End of Course Assessments can be found here.

NOTE:  Graduation requirements and additional information can be found in our Curriculum Handbook here.