At its foundation the University was the sole arbiter of who was fit to be admitted to its courses and the professors set the examinations for candidates who wished to matriculate and thereby gain admission but, since by their very nature the content and style of these exams determined the curriculum in the secondary schools, all those involved with secondary education had a powerful interest in how the University made its selection. Until 1910 the rudimentary secondary education system was the province of private providers. At various points, most notably in the 1870s, the heads of these schools, such as former Classics professor Irving (Wesley College, Hawthorn Grammar) and C H Pearson (Presbyterian Ladies' College) were able to exercise some influence over both the University curriculum and the nature and content of public exams.
When in 1910 the Government entered the field of providing secondary education it also acquired a direct interest in the conduct of these exams. To better accommodate and co-ordinate these interests the Schools Board was established in 1912 with equal representation for University, the Government and the private schools. Until the chair of Education was created in 1919, the President of the Professorial Board was ex-officio president. In 1965 this function was handed over to the Victorian University and Schools Examinations Board (VUSEB) which incorporated representatives of Monash University. In 1979 direct control of assessment at the end of secondary school was relinquished by the Universities to the Victorian Institute of Secondary Education (VISE).