The Ugandan school systems requires 3 national exams for all students.
* Primary Leaving Exam, (PLE) is administered at the end of primary 7.
* Uganda Certificate of Education exam (UCE) is administered at the end of secondary 4.
* Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education exam (UACE) is given at the end of secondary 6.
Pupils who pass their PLE can progress to secondary school. This has two stages; the first four years, senior one (S1) to senior four (S4), constitute the O-level period.
Students who pass their O-level exams may progress to A-levels or the Higher School Certificate (HSC). This lasts for two years, senior 5 (S5) and senior 6 (S6).
Students who pass their A-levels may choose to progress to university, where they can study for degrees, or to other tertiary institutions that award diplomas and certificates.
Students that do not pass PLE, O or A level exams may enroll in vocational or technical trade programs to receive certificates that can lead to viable employment.
The PLE, UCE and UACE annual national exams are all administered between October and December. For the term that a student takes one of these exams, they will not receive a progress report for that term but instead will receive their exam results.