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Not Selected? Here are Four Ways to Pursue Studies in PNG: Grade 8, 10 & 12 School Leavers, and even Adults.

Many students meet the requirement set by the universities, and even exceed them by large margins, but still miss out due to limited spaces. At the primary school level (grade 8), and high school level (grade 10) even higher number of students miss out because they do not meet the requirements of secondary schools. In 2019, we reached out to someone who has been assisting students to pursue studies through other pathways. Mrs Simiong conducts awareness called “EDUCATION PARTH WAYS FOR SCHOOL DROP OUTS” where she talks to young women on how they can advance their education. Her advice is helpful for students who may want to pursue their education….

By Mrs Lingewe Peiva Simiong


This article highlights three main ways that are currently available for school drop-outs to continue their education after being rejected from the mainstream. 

  1. FODE –Flexible Open Distance Education.  (Formerly called College of Distance Education-CODE).This system is directly attached to Provincial Education system but independently administered from Waigani. It has centres in all main towns across the country. FODE system provides syllabuses for Grades 6 to Grade 10 with the recent inclusion for Grades 11 and 12. 

FODE centre enrolments:

  1. Enrolment of any Grade six (6) drop outs from formal primary schools to do Grade seven (7) through FODE and continue onto grade ten (10) and obtain grade ten (10) certificate.
  • Enrolment of any grade eight (8) drop outs from formal primary schools to repeat grade eight (8)  and continue onto Grade nine (9) and ten (10) or do Grade nine (9) and continue onto Grade ten (10) and obtain grade ten (10) certificate. There is no age limitation for this partway.
  • Enrolment of any Grade ten (10) drop outs from formal secondary schools to repeat Grade ten (10) and obtain Grade ten (10) certificate with better results and seek space in formal secondary school systems, to do grade eleven (11).
  • With the inclusion of Grade eleven (11) and twelve (12) syllabuses recently, any Grade ten (10) drop outs can enrol to do Grade eleven (11) and twelve (12) and obtain a Grade twelve (12) certificate through FODE and apply for tertiary institutions in the country. Or those who have completed grade ten (10) through FODE can continue to do Grade eleven (11) and twelve (12).

Subjects Offered at FODE

  • Subjects offered at FODE for grades 7, 8, 9 and 10 includes: 
  • English,
  • Mathematics,
  • Science and 
  • Social Science. 
  • Major Subjects offered at FODE for grades 11 and 12 includes: 
  • English,
  • Advance Mathematics
  •  General Mathematics
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Biology
  • Geography
  • History and  
  • Economics

How to enrol at FODE

Following steps will be required to complete the enrolment at ant FODE Centre. 

  1. Present relevant certificate (Grade 6, Grade 8, Grade 10, and Grade 12) to the nearest FODE Centre and request enrolment.
  2. Fill out application form and select numbers of subjects to be done.
  • Participate in the entry test on a scheduled date and issuance of entry test results.
  • Payment of the subject fees at the bank and presentation of the receipt 
  • Issuance of the subject materials, assignment and the schedules for completion of each of the subject.
  • Sit for subject examinations at the end of the year based on schedules issued by the FODE Office
  • Issuance of certificate and transcript based on the cumulative assessments 

For further information, check FODE website by clicking this link.For more information on entry test and other requirements, check this link.For more information on course offered see here, and to contact the respective provincial representatives check this link.

  • DODL UNITECH – “DODL(Department Of Open and Distance Learning) is an adult matriculation centre offered by the University of Technology. The DODL study centres are located in all major centres of Papua New Guinea including:
  1. Alotau Study Centre
  2. Arawa Study Centre
  3. Daru Study Centre 
  4. Goroka Study Centre
  5. Kavieng Study Centre 
  6. Kimbe Study Centre
  7. Kokopo study centre
  8. Kudiawa Study Centre
  9. Lae Study Centre study – Unitech
  10. Lorengau Study Centre
  11. Madang Study Centre
  12. Mendi Study Centre
  13. Mt Hagen study centre
  14. NDC Study Centre – Gerehu Secondary school
  15. Popondetta Study Centre
  16. Wabag Study Centre
  17. Wewak Study Centre

The adult matriculation for University of Technology (Unitech) is now open. You can visit their website to download the application forms by clicking here.

DODL Enrolments

  • DODL enrols Grade 10 school leavers to do Grade 11 and 12 certificates with transcripts. This is called adult matriculation studies.
  • DODL also enrols candidates who have completed Grade twelve (12) in the formal education system to upgrade and better their results before applying for tertiary studies.

Courses or Subjects offered at DODL for adult Matriculation studies (any Grade 10 drop outs with Grade 10 certificate)

Persons interested in doing Grade 11 through DODL can choose either science pathway or social science pathway.

Science pathway subjects for Grade 11                                

  • English 1
  • Mathematics 1
  • Physics 1
  • Chemistry 1
  • Biology 1

Science pathway subjects for Grade 12

  • English 2
  • Mathematics 2
  • Physics 2
  • Chemistry 2
  • Biology 2

Social Science pathway subjects for Grade 11                                

  • English 1
  • Mathematics 1
  • Geography 1
  • History 1
  • Economics 1

Social Science pathway subjects for Grade 12

  • English 2
  • Mathematics 2
  • Geography 2
  • History 2
  • Economics 2

Click this linkto learn more about the current adult and grade 12 matriculation program.

Courses or subjects offered at DODL for candidates seeking to upgrade their Grade 12 results 

Persons seeking enrolment to upgrade Grade 12 results are allowed choose either of the two pathways, the Science and the social science based on subject they studied in Grade 12.

How to Enrol at DODL

  1. Adult Matriculation studies
  1. Person interested in adult matriculation studies can present their Grade 10 certificate at the nearest DODL study centres and request for an application form. 
  • Issuance of the application form and a bank deposit form is issued. 
  • On the registration form, you can fill in your details and choose your pathway of studies, either science pathway or social science pathway.
  • You will then be advised to pay up the subject fees for each subject you have indicated to take.
  • There are two semesters each year so you can divide your subjects into the two semesters and complete grade 11 and then you can do the same with Grade 12.
  • When you complete grade 12 at DODL, you will then apply for a grade 12 certificate. Application form will be provided by the DODL study centre you enrolled in.
  • DODL study centre and PNG Unitech liaises with the Department of Education for the issuance of Grade 12 certificate for students who complete their studies at the centre. 
  • Certificate and transcript issued by the DODL study centre can be used in pursuing studies at the UoT as well as other institutions in the country. 
  • Grade 12 School leavers 
  1. Persons interested upgrading their Grade 12 results can present their Grade 12 certificate at any of the DODL centres.
  • An application or registration form will be given to be completed and submitted with the receipt of payment for the subject fee.
  • DODL Program is spread over two semesters therefore a student can have the freedom to enrol in semester 1 or semester 2 to upgrade one or two subjects. At least two subjects are offered per semester and therefore to upgrade two or more subject, a student must enrol for both semesters. 
  • Transcript with upgraded result is issued by the DODL study centre which can be used in pursuing studies at the UoT as well as other institutions in the country. 

Tutors (teachers) of DODL

  • DODL Unitech gives the responsibility to each of its study centres to recruit specialised secondary school teachers to be tutors of the respective subjects offered. These tutors teach two (2) hours of lessons per week, normally over the weekends (that is, Saturdays and Sundays). One semester runs for 15 weeks, 14 weeks of lesson and the last week is the exam week for the semester.


  • During the course of the semester, students are required to do six (6) assignments for the subject they are enrolled for. The only exception is mathematics which is nine (9) assignments. These assignments are prepared by the tutors of the respective subject and makes up 30% of the assessment. At the end of the semester, students do an examination for each subject they are enrolled for, which makes up 70% of the assessment. All examinations are uniformly prepared by the DODL headquarters at Unitech and are delivered to each study centres to be administered.
  • The semester for students is over after the examinations are conducted. Examinations are marked and added onto the assignment marks and sent to Unitech for the final grade to be processed. 

For information on where DODL is offered, including centres and specific locations, click thislink.

  • UPNG OPEN COLLEGE (Formerly Open campus) 

UPNG Open Campusoffers opportunity to Grade 12 school leavers to enrol when their GPA is below the requirement set by the four schools and they are left out of the main selection process of the University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG). Four schools of UPNG are:

  1. School of Law
  2. School of Natural and Physical Science 
  3. School of Business Administration 
  4. School of Social Science and Art 

UPNG Open College Campuses in Papua New Guinea 

Open Campuses.

  1. NCD Open Campus
  2. Kokopo Open Campus
  3. Madang Open Campus
  4. Buka Open Campus
  5. Hagen Open Campus

Provincial University Centers.

  1. Enga University Centre
  2. Mendi University Centre
  3. Simbu University Centre
  4. Morobe University Centre
  5. Oro University Centre
  6. Milne Bay University Centre
  7. West New Britain University Centre
  8. Manus University Centre
  9. New Ireland University Centre
  10. Wewak University Centre

Franchise Sub Centers

  1. Help Resource Centre Wewak.
  2. Institute of Business Studies (IBS).
  3. CDI-Moro Foundation- Moro SHP

The contact for the main office for Open Campus can be found here.

How to apply for UPNG Open College  

Follow these six (6) steps 

  1. Get the Application Form for the University of Papua New Guinea.

You can get the Student Application form from the following places: At any of the Open Campuses and Provincial University Centres. All Centers location and contact details are listed on Step 5: Go for Registration below.If you have access to Internet, you can download the form in PDF format from the UPNG Website.

  • Choose your desired Program which is available through the UPNG Open College.

The Study Programs are offered by the University of Papua New Guinea Academic Schools. The Schools that have Programs on offer through Distance Learning are from the following Schools. The programs the school offers are listed under it. 

  • School of Business Administration (SBA). 
  • Diploma in Accounting 
  • Bachelors Degree in Accounting 
  • Bachelors Degree in Business Management 
  • Bachelors Degree in Public Policy Management 
  • School of Humanities & Social Sciences (SHSS). 
  • Bachelors Degree in Education. 
  • Bachelors Degree in Arts. 
  • School of Natural & Physical Sciences (SNPS).
  • Bachelors of Science (Foundation Year only and offered only at the 4 Open Campuses. NCD, Kokopo, Buka, Madang).
  • Launch your application Form. 

Once you have got the Application Form and chosen your program you can launch the Application. To launch the application; 

  1. Fill the Application Form with all the required information. 
  2. Make sure all the required attachments are intact, such as copies of certificates and etc. 
  3. Pay the Registration Fee of K20.00 into the UPNG Account indicated on the Form. 
  4. Attach the Registration to your filled Application. 
  5. Bring it to the Open Campuses or University Centre closest to you. Or you can post it.          direct to; 

The Executive Officer 


P.O.BOX 341 

University, NCD, Papua New Guinea. 

  • Confirm your acceptance.

The University of Papua New Guinea receives so many applications academic year and it publishes all the accepted Applicants in a list in the local newspapers as the official Acceptance List. The University may respond to individual students notifying them of the application outcome not to all. Acceptance listed published in the newspapers is often regarded as the official notification. The list is published mid-December for the following academic year and around June for 2nd Semester applicants.

  • Go for Registration at your desired UPNG Open Campuses or Provincial University Centres.

Accepted students can report to the Open Campuses and Provincial Universities of choice to register on the official registration week. The Registration Date and other related details are published with the Acceptance list. 

  • Contact appropriate people for assistance during your study.

Successful applicants must make it their responsibility to contact appropriate people and follow up on their own progress. 

  • TVET AND COMMUNITY COLLEGES Technical Vocational Education training and community colleges.

These refer to institutions like vocational schools and community colleges set up by the government and non-governmental organisations like churches.

The motive for these institutions is to train any Grade 6, Grade 8, grade 10 and Grade 12 school leavers in any trades and graduate them with trade certificates to better their lives by seeking employment or use these skills to do something for themselves.

Some examples of trade certificates to be obtained from these institutions are

  1. Trade certificate in motor mechanics
  2. Trade certificate in carpentry
  3. Trade certificates in brick laying
  4. Trade certificate in cookery
  5. Trade certificate in sewing
  6. Trade certificate in tourism and hospitality
  7. Trade certificate in panel beating
  8. Trade certificate in office management
  9. Trade certificate in plumbing

For more information about TVET, including the email addresses of each of the centres, check this link.

For Grade 12 students who missed out on selections to tertiary institutions in PNG, and adults who may want to pursue studies, University of Technology’s DODL and University of Papua New Guinea’s Open College may be the best option. For Grade 8 students who were not selected for Grade 9, and Grade 10 students who were not considered for Grade 11, the best option would be FODE. For anyone interested in technical education, TVET is the best choice. 

About the Guest Contributor: Lingewe Peiva Simiong

Lingewe Peiva Simiong holds a Bachelor of Education (B-Ed) from the University of Goroka (UoG) specialising in Science and Home Economics and a Diploma in Science (DSc) from the University of Technology (UoT) specialising in Biology. She has taught in a number of high school and secondary schools in the country including Sogeri National High School. She is currently teaching Biology at Port National High School. Apart from teaching in the classroom, Lingewe is a passionate advocator for female education. She maintains that education is the principal factor that determines liberation of women in PNG. She advices all young female Papua New Guineans who are out of the mainstream education system to pursue life through other education pathways created by the Government.

“The race is not to the swift or battle to the strong…. but time and chance happen to them all” Ecclesiastes 9:11 

Comment on the comment section below and let us know if the information was helpful or if you have any questions. Also, subscribe to the blog so you can read articles published by Academia_Nomad.


Published by Academia Nomad

Blogs on politics, economics and social issues in simple language.

55 thoughts on “Not Selected? Here are Four Ways to Pursue Studies in PNG: Grade 8, 10 & 12 School Leavers, and even Adults.

  1. I am a current student of the National Polytechnic Institute of PNG. I am studying Diploma in Building. Can I use my transcript as an upgraded academic record to apply into Civil engineering in the University of Technology. What are the chances?


  2. Im interest to continue my education
    I have school frees problems so I didn’t complete my education
    I complete grade 7but grade 8 I didn’t continue,I left school


  3. Im interest to continue my education
    I have school frees problems so I didn’t complete my education
    I complete grade 7but grade 8 I didn’t continue,I left school


  4. Hello there,

    I took all the science subjects except biology in grade 12. Instead I took geology.
    My grade 12’s subjects are as follow.
    *Advanced mathematics
    So now………2023
    Before I make myself eligible to meet 2024 entry requirements for UPNG school of natural & physical sciences (SNPS) via FODE

    I do have a question,
    Is there any possibilities I can change things around?
    When upgrading all my subjects
    I can do Biology grade 11 & 12 instead of upgrading Geology.

    So, I would have something like this on my FODE transcripts
    *L&L =Upgraded
    *Advanced math = Upgraded
    *Chemistry = Upgraded
    *Physics= Upgraded
    *Geology =Same
    *Biology =upgraded (Newly taken subject)


  5. Dear sir my name is Omaljoni Mathew is a grade10 leaver currently living at home Menyamya.I would like to upgrade makes and further education on online study.
    Thank you I ,m looking forward to receive from you.


  6. I have a problem and a little help would mean the world to me.
    I wish to upgrade my Gr12 Marks and the DODL pathway seems to be my best option to study at Unitech, unfortunately I am based in Alotau and the DODL center in Alotau is currently inactive. Is there another way to upgrade my marks and get into Uot


  7. Dear,Sir/Madam,
    My name is Omaljoni Mathew and I’m from Menyamya,Morobe Province, Papua New Guinea,I am Grade 10 school leaver drop out from Menyamya Secondary school in year 2008.
    Sir, I am applying for UPGRADE my marks to persu further grade 11 and onward.
    Thank you so much and looking forward to receive from you.
    Omaljoni M


  8. Very helpful but just confused about the course subject. Therefore my question is, If its possible to enroll for three subjects course in just one semester or no?


    1. Hi Dorothy,

      Open Campus students can only take two courses (courses is the same as subjects). Only students who are registered as internal students can take up to 5 courses. However, you can do two more courses in November during the Lahara Session.


      1. Can you explain the internal students or the statement (only students who registered as internal students can take up to 5 courses)?


          1. Thanks It’s very helpful. Just want you guys to clarify and explain if in any way I could just take three courses in just first semester only in Gerehu DODL centre? Your answer will be very helpful.


    1. Ok

      On Sat, 21 Aug 2021, 9:04 am, wrote:

      > Alphonse Ngat commented: “Can we have our transcript for semester 1” >


  9. I am one of the grade 12 dropout back in 2017 and currently want to pursue my education career. I’ve been studied Block science during my era, therefore I really need to enroll the coming year… For three course subjects;
    1. English
    2. Advance Mathematics
    3. Physics


    1. Hi Marilyn, all the information we gathered are in this article. You can click on the links inserted in the article (in blue) to get more information, or check the department of education or provincial education offices. Good luck


  10. Thanks for the very helpful information. I have my daughter who has completed her NC1 & NC2 at LaSalle last year will she be eligible for grade 11 this year.pls adv


  11. Thank you for your kind heart to help in this very important charper of our education.
    I have a daughter who has her NC1 & NC2 Papers I would like to enroll her at FODE to do her 11. Will she be eligible..pls adv


  12. Sorry what I meant was for the year 2021 and not 2020 since we are in 2020 right now. Would the 2nd semester application for distance learning be available for 2021 is my question.


  13. I am a DODL student who completed this year.I wish to take up communications for development as a distance learner commencing 2021 1st semester, however the applications have since closed, whats the next options, shall I wait for the 2nd semester or 2020,,, Is there any possibility of enrolling for 2nd semester 2021 and if possible when would be it available?


  14. Thanks very much. This Information is very helpful. Am sure these will really help me to pursue my education. I’m currently doing my (grade 11) Adult Matriculation at one of the DODL study centre in Lae, MP, and have decided that after completing my grade 12, I will apply for teachers College. But am not sure about the required GPA to gain in order to enter the College.


  15. Sounds really good.
    I’m interested but I don’t know where the TVET is located in Mt. Hagen. Can please explain?


  16. Hi, interested in enrolling my son who missed out on secondary education. Can you send me fees per subject via email below. Thanks.


  17. I am an adult completed Grade 12 with DODL , and would like to pursue study designing and installing of solar system. Which college or vocational is providing such coarse. ?


  18. Finish my diploma in computing and in Datec learning center inside University of Technology, want to continue to get my degree


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