"Anyway, it's a nightmare of a year, the fifth."
George Weasley[src]
File:OWLS 1996.jpg

A fifth year is a student at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry who is in their fifth year of magical education. Fifth Years are typically fifteen to sixteen years of age.

During the fifth yearEdit

The fifth year is enormously important for students due to the fact that it is the year in which they must sit their O.W.L. exams, which will determine what N.E.W.T. courses they will be permitted to take later on in their education. O.W.L.s determine what job opportunities they can pursue in the future. The fifth year is also the year in which students receive career counselling from their Heads of House. It is during this meeting that they will be advised as to what N.E.W.T.-level classes they should take in order to qualify for their desired career.


Fifth year students must take Transfiguration, Charms, Potions, History of Magic, Defence Against the Dark Arts, Astronomy and Herbology. They must also take at least two of Divination, Arithmancy, Study of Ancient Runes, Care of Magical Creatures, and Muggle Studies.[1]


Period Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
First History of Magic




Second (first half)
Second (second half) Potions


Third Transfiguration




Fourth Divination/
Study of Ancient Runes[2]


Fifth Defence Against the Dark Arts


Care of Magical Creatures


Sixth Herbology


Care of Magical Creatures


Defence Against the Dark Arts


Evening Astronomy


Period unknownEdit



"There's been a mistake. No one in their right mind would make Ron a prefect..."
Fred Weasley[src]

Every year, one male and female Fifth Year student per House is selected to become a Prefect by the professor who was appointed Head of the House in which they are, though the Headmaster may intervene, as with Harry Potter's case (Professor Dumbledore thought he had enough responsibilities to go with). They would likely continue to be Prefects in their sixth and Seventh years. Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley became Prefects for Gryffindor house in Harry's Fifth year.

Harry Potter's fifth year (1995-1996)Edit


When Harry, Ron, and Hermione returned to Hogwarts, they were surprised to hear that Dolores Umbridge, Senior Undersecretary to the Minister (and who was at Harry's hearing) was the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher. During their first lesson they discovered that Umbridge refused to teach practical defence methods and that they would not be performing any spells, only learning Ministry of Magic-approved theory (learning in a "risk-free way"). It became clear she was really there to spy on and take control of the school from Dumbledore. She was soon appointed Hogwarts High Inquisitor, arbitrarily imposing rules and regulations (known as "Educational Decrees". She also harboured racial hatred for "half-breeds," such as centaurs, werewolves, and similar creatures. She considered Rubeus Hagrid (a half-giant) and Sybill Trelawney incompetent and sacks Sybill Trelawney (Hagrid was dismissed later). Although Dumbledore was unable to prevent Trelawney's dismissal, he invoked his authority to allow her to remain in the castle and appointed a new Divination teacher - a centaur, Firenze.


File:Snape teaching Occulemency.jpg
Harry had been having disturbing dreams about running down a hallway and attempting to open a door in the Ministry of Magic's Department of Mysteries. He also dreamt he was a snake attacking Ron's father. Mr. Weasley was indeed found injured at the Ministry, suffering from severe venomous snake bites. Harry feared he was being possessed by Voldemort. In response, Dumbledore ordered Severus Snape teach Harry Occlumency to block his mind from intrusion, but their mutual animosity ended their lessons prematurely.

The QuibblerEdit

Due to high number of students who were sceptical to Voldemort´s return, Hermione Granger blackmailed journalist (and unregistered Animagus) Rita Skeeter into writing a favourable article about Harry witnessing Voldemort's return. Ravenclaw student Luna Lovegood, a close friend of Ginny, convinced her father to publish the story in his paper, The Quibbler. Furious, Umbridge banned the tabloid from the school, but the story spread rapidly, gathering support for Harry. Many in the wizarding community also now believed Harry.

Dumbledore's ArmyEdit

Main article: Dumbledore's Army
File:Dumbledore's Army with close-up look at Harry Potter and Nigel (HP5).JPG
Hermione convinced Harry to secretly teach students Defence Against the Dark Arts. Though at first reluctant, Harry finally accepted. They name their clandestine group "Dumbledore's Army", or D.A. for short, to mock the Ministry of Magic, which feared Dumbledore was creating a secret wizard army. When Umbridge uncovered the group's meetings, which was due to Cho Chang's friend Marietta Edgecombe, Dumbledore claimed that he organised it. Confronted by two Aurors, who were John Dawlish and Kingsley Shacklebolt (who was not loyal to the Ministry, but to Dumbledore), Minister Fudge, his assistant Percy Weasley, and Umbridge, Dumbledore easily disabled them and was spectacularly whisked away by his phoenix, Fawkes. Umbridge was appointed as Headmistress and imposed even tighter control. Fed up, the Weasley twins instigated a revolt, causing mayhem throughout the school while the staff pointedly did nothing to help Umbridge regain control. This marked the end of Fred and George's magical education, who now opted to move into their magical tricks and joke shop in Diagon Alley, Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes.

Skirmish in the Forbidden ForestEdit

File:Centaurs Dolores.jpg

Harry received a vision that Sirius was being tortured at the Department of Mysteries, although Hermione suspected it may be a trap. Harry desperately attempted to contact Sirius at 12 Grimmauld Place via the Floo Network in Umbridge's office fireplace, but he was caught. Umbridge revealed it was she who sent the Dementors to attack Harry during the summer (this revelation is made only in the novel, not in the movie). As she was about to use the Cruciatus Curse on him, Hermione claimed that Dumbledore had hidden a powerful weapon in the Forbidden Forest. She lead Harry and Umbridge into the forest where they encountered centaurs. Umbridge foolishly insulted them and an angry centaur picked up Umbridge and carried her off screaming into the woods. When Hagrid's giant half-brother, Grawp crashed onto the scene, Hermione and Harry escaped amid the chaos.

Department of MysteriesEdit


Harry, Ron, and Hermione, along with Luna Lovegood, Ginny Weasley, and Neville Longbottom flew to the Ministry of Magic using the school's Thestrals, unaware they were being lured into a trap. When they arrived at the Department of Mysteries, they were ambushed by Death Eaters. Voldemort sought a prophecy contained in a glass sphere there and needed Harry to retrieve it for him.

The students heroically fought the Death Eaters, but they were outmatched. They were nearly defeated, but Order of the Phoenix members suddenly arrived to help them. During the ensuing battle, the glass sphere was shattered and the prophecy lost. Sirius Black was blasted with a spell by his Death Eater cousin, Bellatrix Lestrange, and falling backwards, disappeared through a mysterious veiled archway. Remus Lupin restrained Harry, who wanted to follow and rescue Sirius Black, telling him that Sirius is dead. Dumbledore arrived and the Death Eaters, except for Bellatrix Lestrange, were captured. Lord Voldemort appeared and duelled with Dumbledore as Ministry of Magic employees arrived in time to see the Dark Lord before he Disapparated, taking Bellatrix Lestrange with him. Cornelius Fudge finally admitted Voldemort had returned, Dumbledore was reinstated as Headmaster of Hogwarts, Umbridge was removed from Hogwarts and Harry's interview with Rita Skeeter was reprinted in the Daily Prophet.


File:Prophecy Record.jpg

Later, Dumbledore apologised to Harry for withholding information over the past year. He revealed the lost prophecy, for it was to him that it was first told: either Harry or Voldemort must die at the hands of the other, for neither can live while the other survives. Dumbledore also revealed that, due to when the boy was predicted to be born, Neville Longbottom could also have been the child in the prophecy. Dumbledore believed Voldemort chose to attack Harry because he is a half-blood like himself; Neville is a pure-blood. In so doing, the Dark Lord marked Harry as his equal.


Notes and referencesEdit

Hogwarts years
First - Second - Third - Fourth - Fifth - Sixth - Seventh
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