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Special projects credits are designed for work undertaken by students as individuals or in small groups (for example, 2 to 3 students) and should not be used as a means of offering credits for programs or courses offered by organizations external to Alberta Education. Students may enrol in Special Projects 10, 20 or 30. Special Projects 20 and Special Projects 30 do not have prerequisites.


Special projects serve 2 major functions:

  1. Students become involved in the selection, planning and organization of their own programs.
  2. Students pursue activities in which they have considerable interest or ability but which are not within the scope of the regular curriculum or the programs being offered in the school.


The requirements for special projects credits are outlined below.

4-H projects may qualify as special projects as long as they meet the requirements indicated. A student may not present a 4-H finished project for credit without following the requirements indicated:

  • Special projects credits are designed for work undertaken by students as individuals or in small groups to pursue personalized learning.
  • Student participation in a program or course offered by organizations external to Alberta Education is not considered a special project.
  • Each project shall be carried out under the supervision of a certificated teacher in the school.
  • Students are required to submit a clearly planned proposal to the principal for approval, which should include
    • description or outline of the project
    • number of hours of work expected to complete the project
    • method by which the project is to be carried out
    • description of expected learner outcomes
    • evaluation procedures as outlined by a teacher
    • expected completion date
    • name of the supervising teacher
  • The principal shall retain a copy of each special project proposal.
  • The content of the special project need not be related to a specific school subject.
  • If a special project is related to a specific school subject, the content of the project shall be distinct from, and in addition to, regular course requirements.
  • Projects shall be completed and reported to the principal prior to the conclusion of the semester or full term.
  • Where a project takes a student off campus, requirements in the Off-campus Education Handbook must be followed.

Special projects may be offered for 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 credits at each course level, based on 25 hours of work per credit. Credits will be awarded for successful completion in any one semester, or full term, on approval of the principal.

  • Special projects courses accumulate credits at the same course level (for example, 10, 20 or 30). For example, if a student completes Special Projects 10 for 2 credits and later completes a different project using Special Projects 10 for 1 credit, the transcript will display a total of 3 credits for Special Projects 10. Students can only earn a maximum of 5 accumulated credits at each level.
  • School authorities shall develop policies to ensure overall consistency and standardization of procedures governing special projects in their schools. Evaluation and reporting procedures should be included in a school authority’s policy.
  • Special projects credits may be applied toward the Alberta High School Diploma or the Certificate of High School Achievement.

A number of restrictions apply to special projects. Examples where special projects credits cannot be earned include:

  • student activities that would be considered a normal part of extracurricular or co-curricular activities generally offered by a school (for example: school team sports, school newspaper, yearbook, field trips)
  • in-school work experience
  • teacher-developed projects

In instances where a student enrols in more than one special project, credits shall not be approved unless the projects vary substantially from year to year or demonstrate increased levels of proficiency.