Latvia Grading System

High School Grade Scale

The grading system in Latvia for high secondary education (vidusskola) typically follows a 10-point scale. Below is a table that compares Latvia grades with their English terms, equivalent percentage range, and a general GPA comparison for understanding:

Latvia GradeTerm in EnglishPercentage RangeEquivalent GPA
9Very Good81-90%3.7
7Almost Good61-70%2.7
6Satisfactory Plus51-60%2.3
4Almost Satisfactory31-40%1.7
1Very Poor0-10%0.0

In some schools, ‘+’ and ‘-‘ variations are used to further differentiate performance within the same grade category, adding nuance to the grading system. For example, a grade of “7+” might be used to indicate performance on the higher end of the “Almost Good” category.

College Grade Scale

At the college or university level, Latvia also typically uses a 10-point grading scale, which is quite similar to the high school scale but applied in a more rigorous academic context. The table below outlines this scale:

Latvia GradeTerm in EnglishPercentage RangeEquivalent GPA
9Very Good81-90%3.7
7Almost Good61-70%2.7
6Satisfactory Plus51-60%2.3

It’s important to note that while the basic structure of the grading system remains consistent, the specific criteria and application can vary somewhat between institutions. Some universities might have their own detailed interpretations of each grade level, especially when translating grades into GPA or considering plus/minus variations.

Understanding Grades in Latvia

Grades in the Latvian education system carry specific meanings, reflecting a student’s level of achievement in a given subject. Let’s delve into what each grade typically signifies:

🌟 10 – Excellent (Izcili)

A grade of 10 is the pinnacle of academic achievement, indicating that the student has demonstrated outstanding understanding and mastery of the subject matter. This grade suggests not only that the student has met all the required standards but has also shown exceptional analytical skills, creativity, and the ability to apply knowledge in novel situations.

📈 9 – Very Good (Ļoti Labi)

Receiving a 9 is a testament to a student’s strong grasp and high-level performance in the subject. It means the student has exceeded most of the expected standards, showing thorough understanding and the ability to tackle complex topics with confidence.

👍 8 – Good (Labi)

A grade of 8 signifies a solid performance and a good understanding of the subject. Students with this grade have met the required standards and demonstrated the ability to analyze and synthesize information effectively.

✅ 7 – Almost Good (Gandrīz Labi)

Earning a 7 indicates that the student has a satisfactory understanding of the material, with some minor areas for improvement. It shows that while the student meets the basic criteria, there’s room to deepen their comprehension and skills.

➕ 6 – Satisfactory Plus (Apmierinoši Plus)

A 6 is a clear pass, suggesting a fair understanding of the subject, but with noticeable gaps in knowledge or skills. This grade points to the student’s potential to improve with additional effort and guidance.

✔️ 5 – Satisfactory (Apmierinoši)

This grade means the student has achieved a basic level of understanding. It indicates a minimum competency in the subject, where the essential criteria have been met, but the performance is far from thorough.

➖ 4 – Almost Satisfactory (Gandrīz Apmierinoši)

A grade of 4 is on the lower edge of passing, signaling that the student is struggling with the subject. It denotes marginal performance, where the student has barely met the minimum requirements.

❌ 3 – Unsatisfactory (Nav Apmierinoši)

Receiving a 3 indicates a significant lack of understanding or failure to meet the basic criteria. It suggests that the student has considerable difficulties with the subject matter.

🚫 2 – Poor (Vāji)

A grade of 2 shows very poor performance, with almost no understanding of the essential content or skills required for the subject.

⛔ 1 – Very Poor (Ļoti Vāji)

The lowest possible grade, a 1, signifies an almost complete absence of knowledge or skill in the subject area. It reflects a critical need for improvement and possibly a different approach to learning.

Understanding these grades is crucial for students, parents, and educators alike, as they provide a clear framework for evaluating academic performance and setting goals for improvement.

Latvia Grade Comparison

Comparing the Latvian grading system to those of other countries provides valuable insights for international students, educators, and anyone involved in academic exchanges. This table offers a broad comparison across several countries, including the US, UK, India, Australia, Canada, and China. Note that grading systems can vary significantly, so this comparison aims to give a general idea rather than an exact equivalence.

High School Grade Scale Comparison

Latvia GradeUS GradeUK Grade (A-Level)India Grade (Percentage)Australia GradeCanada GradeChina Grade (Percentage)

College Grade Scale Comparison

The comparison for college/university levels largely mirrors the high school scale, with adjustments for the specific grading policies of higher education institutions in each country. However, the principle remains similar: grades reflect a range from excellence to insufficient mastery of subject matter.

It’s crucial to recognize that these comparisons are approximations. Different educational institutions and countries may apply these grades differently based on their specific academic standards and criteria. Especially in higher education, where coursework and assessment standards can greatly vary, these equivalences should be used as a general guide rather than a strict rule.

Special Grading Considerations

The Latvian education system, like any other, has its unique set of grading considerations that vary across different states, school types, and even among individual teachers. Understanding these nuances can help students and parents navigate the system more effectively.

Variations Across Schools and Teachers

In Latvia, while the basic 10-point grading scale is widely adopted, the application of this scale can differ significantly from one institution to another and from one teacher to another. For instance:

  • Primary vs. Secondary Education: The emphasis on certain grades might differ, with primary schools possibly using a more lenient approach to grading to encourage learning enthusiasm, whereas secondary schools may apply the scale more strictly to prepare students for higher education.
  • Subjective Interpretations: Teachers have some discretion in how they interpret and apply grades. For example, what constitutes a “Very Good” (9) in one class could be considered an “Excellent” (10) in another, depending on the teacher’s standards and expectations.

Grading Practices

Teachers in Latvia are encouraged to use a comprehensive approach to grading, considering various forms of assessment including tests, projects, class participation, and homework. This holistic approach aims to provide a more accurate representation of a student’s abilities and knowledge.

Handling Failing Grades

Failing grades (typically grades below 4) are handled with the intention of supporting the student’s learning rather than penalizing them. Strategies include:

  • Remedial Support: Students who receive low grades may be offered additional help through remedial classes, tutoring sessions, or extra assignments to improve their understanding and performance.
  • Re-assessment Opportunities: Schools often provide opportunities for re-assessment, allowing students to retake exams or complete alternative assignments to improve their grades.
  • Personalized Feedback: Teachers are encouraged to provide detailed feedback on areas of improvement to help students understand their mistakes and how to address them.

Understanding these special considerations is crucial for navigating the Latvian grading system effectively. It’s important for students and parents to communicate regularly with teachers and school administrators to ensure a clear understanding of grading policies and to advocate for support when needed.


Below are some frequently asked questions about the Latvia grading system and scale, designed to provide quick and helpful insights:

Q: What is considered a passing grade in Latvia?
A: In general, a grade of 4 (“Almost Satisfactory”) or higher is considered passing in most Latvian educational institutions. However, for higher education and specific courses, a minimum of 5 (“Satisfactory”) might be required.

Q: Can students retake exams to improve their grades in Latvia?
A: Yes, students often have the opportunity to retake exams or complete additional assignments to improve their grades. Policies on retakes can vary by school, so it’s advisable to check with the specific institution.

Q: How is the GPA calculated from Latvian grades?
A: The GPA (Grade Point Average) calculation can vary between institutions, but generally, it involves converting the 10-point scale to a 4-point scale (or similar) and averaging these values over the number of courses taken.

Q: Are plus and minus grades used in the Latvian grading system?
A: Some schools and universities use ‘+’ and ‘-‘ to indicate the higher or lower end of a grade category, but this practice is not universally applied across all educational institutions in Latvia.

Q: How do Latvian grades compare to those in other countries?
A: While direct comparisons can be challenging due to differences in educational standards and grading practices, the table provided earlier offers a general guide for converting Latvian grades to those in countries like the US, UK, India, Australia, Canada, and China.

Q: What should I do if I disagree with a grade I received?
A: If you believe a grade is unfair or incorrect, it’s important to first discuss the matter with the teacher or professor. If unresolved, you can escalate the issue to the department head or school administration, following the institution’s formal dispute resolution process.

Q: How do variations in grading affect college admissions in Latvia?
A: Colleges and universities in Latvia are aware of the variations in grading practices among secondary schools. Admissions departments consider a range of factors, including standardized test scores, letters of recommendation, and personal statements, alongside grades to make holistic admissions decisions.

These FAQs aim to address common queries about the grading system in Latvia, providing students, parents, and educators with essential information to navigate the educational landscape.

Additional Resources

For those looking to explore more about the Latvia grading system, various official and helpful resources are available online. Here’s a list of recommended websites, primarily focusing on educational institutions and government bodies in Latvia, that can provide further insights and detailed information:

  1. Latvian Ministry of Education and Science ( The official website for Latvia’s Ministry of Education and Science offers comprehensive information on educational policies, including grading standards across different levels of education.
  2. Academic Information Centre ( This portal provides detailed information on the Latvian education system, recognition of foreign qualifications, and specifics on the grading scale used in higher education.
  3. University of Latvia ( As one of the leading universities in Latvia, its official website includes information on admission criteria, including how grades are evaluated for prospective students.
  4. Riga Technical University ( Another premier higher education institution in Latvia, offering insights into its grading policies and how international grades are assessed for admissions.
  5. Latvian Centre for Human Rights ( While not directly related to grading, this site provides information on educational rights, which can be useful for understanding students’ rights concerning grading and assessments.

These websites are valuable resources for students, parents, educators, and international scholars interested in the specifics of the Latvian educational system, grading scales, and academic standards. Each site can offer unique insights, from policy documentation to practical guides on navigating the Latvian education landscape.