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Hogwarts subjects

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There are a variety of classes taught at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. These include both the core curriculum and the electives, available from third year forward. In the fifth year, students take the Ordinary Wizarding Level (O.W.L.) exams to determine whether they can achieve a score high enough to continue to N.E.W.T.-level (Nastily Exhausting Wizarding Test) for the class in the remaining two years. Some classes, including the core classes, may be dropped in sixth year. Even though students cannot apply for Time-Turners to take more classes than are able to fit in the timetables, a student's head of house may suggest a Time-Turner to an individual on very rare occasions. All students do, however, have a choice to drop courses if they become a burden (aside from the essential classes).
Hermione potions half blood prince

Hermione brewing a Draught of Living Death in Slughorn's Potions class during 1996

All first-years at Hogwarts must take seven core subjects: Transfiguration, Charms, Potions, History of Magic, Defence Against the Dark Arts, Astronomy and Herbology. Flying lessons (on broomsticks) are also compulsory. Flying is the only one of these that is dropped upon entry into second year.

At the end of their second year at Hogwarts, students are required to choose a minimum of two additional subjects from the following list: Arithmancy, Muggle Studies, Divination, Study of Ancient Runes and Care of Magical Creatures. Students cannot elect to drop any of the core subjects at this time.

During fifth year students have an appointment with their head of house to discuss which job they would like to go into, the teacher will recommend any specific subjects for N.E.W.T. level required for this job, taking into account predicted O.W.L grades based on current performance. The teacher may recommend subjects based on the student's current grades if the student is unsure of what job they would like. These students make provisional choices for N.E.W.Ts at this time and their choices are confirmed or rejected depending on their achieved O.W.L grades.

Very specialised subjects such as Alchemy are sometimes offered in the final two years, if there is sufficient demand. It is unknown if there is an O.W.L. exam, as an O.W.L. is necessary to continue at N.E.W.T. level.

Core classes

Charms first year wingardium leviosa

First years in their Charms class with Professor Flitwick practising the Levitation Charm in 1991

Electives (third years and up)


Harry Potter and Ron Weasley in Divination class in 1993

Extra-curricular subjects


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