Scholar Leveling Guide
Guide Info
Last Updated: 30 Dec, 2021
Patch Applicable: 6.01

This guide is intended for the casual player looking for advice on how to play Scholar in leveling dungeons. Below, we’ll briefly describe all Scholar actions, grouped by level, and some general guidelines for when to use them. For more detailed ability descriptions, please consult the in-game tooltips or job guide, and if you’d like to learn more about playing and optimizing Scholar, check out our other guides.

Quick Glossary

  • SCH: Scholar
  • CD (Cooldown): The time it takes before you’re able to cast an action again.
  • GCD (Global Cooldown): Spells that share the same base recast time. On SCH, these are mostly spells with about 2.5s recast time, plus Resurrection. 
  • Instant (Instant Cast): GCD Spells that do not have a cast bar.
  • oGCD (Off Global Cooldown): Abilities that don’t share the 2.5s base recast time and therefore can be used while GCD spells are on cooldown.
  • Weaving: Using oGCDs in between GCDs. To avoid delaying your GCD, you can safely weave 2 oGCDs after an instant cast GCD, or 1 oGCD after your casted damaging GCD.
  • HoT (Heal over Time): Actions that heal the target over a period of time. These actions heal for their listed potency once every 3 seconds.
  • Regen: Another word for HoT
  • DoT (Damage over Time): Actions that damage the target over a period of time. These actions deal damage for their listed potency once every 3 seconds.
  • AoE (Area of Effect): Actions that affect every target in a specified area. AoE heals heal all allies in a circle around their source. AoE damage abilities affect all enemies in an area specified by the ability; enemies can perform AoE attacks too.
  • AF (Aetherflow): The level 45 SCH ability. The resource stacks it grants and the abilities that cost Aetherflow are often called “AF stacks” and “AF abilities”.
  • HP (Health Points): Your life. Don’t let this hit 0.
  • MP (Mana Points): The resource that allows you to cast spells. 

Gear and Job Quests

Make sure to use level-appropriate gear and do job quests as you level. 

Gear

While leveling, use the highest item level healer gear you have. You can easily equip the most suitable gear you own by opening your Character menu and clicking the “Equip Recommended Gear” button. There is no need to manually select gear based on substats while leveling.

You can acquire new gear from dungeons or vendors. When choosing what gear to obtain, you can recognize healer gear by looking for the Mind stat; many healer items are also named “XX of Healing”. 

At levels 50, 60, 70, and 80, visit the Rowena’s Representative in any major city to trade Allagan Tomestones of Poetics for substantially higher item level gear.

Job Quests

Job quests are a series of questlines that unlock as you level Scholar and provide both job gear and actions for you at certain levels. The next job quest for your current job will always be displayed under the Main Scenario tracker when it’s available to do. Always stay up to date with your job quests – they unlock key skills for your job.

Most job quests between levels 30-70 unlock or upgrade a skill. After level 70, job quests do not unlock skills. 

Levels 18-29

Healing

Summary

Heal the tank with Whispering Dawn and your fairy’s passive Embrace. Only use Physick if necessary.

New Skills

  • Summon Eos/Summon Selene (Lvl. 4): Summons your fairy (GCD)
    • The fairy automatically heals people by casting Embrace.
    • The two fairies act identically and only differ in appearance.
    • Use this at the start of the dungeon. If the tank doesn’t do large pulls, Embrace will often be enough healing on its own.
    • If you die, you will need to cast this again to resummon your fairy.
  • Physick (Lvl. 4): Single target heal (GCD)
    • Use only if your fairy can’t keep up with incoming damage.
  • Whispering Dawn (Lvl. 20): AoE regen (oGCD, fairy ability)
    • Use on cooldown to help heal the tank on trash pulls, even if nobody else in the party is taking damage.
    • Use on bosses to heal AoE damage.

Damage

Summary

Help your party out by doing damage when you don’t need to or can’t heal. Apply your DoT to enemies while running. If Level 25 or below, cast Ruin as soon as you’re able. If Level 26+, finish applying your DoT to all enemies, then cast Ruin. 

New/Upgraded Skills

  • Ruin (Lvl. 1): Single target damage (GCD)
    • Use this to do damage if you don’t need to apply your DoT (below).
    • Because Ruin has a shorter cast time than your GCD recast, you can use that window to move and/or use a single oGCD. This also applies to other spells with the same cast time as Ruin, such as its later upgrades.
  • Bio (Lvl. 2): Single target DoT (GCD, instant cast).
    • Use Bio on as many mobs as you can while the tank is pulling (since you can’t cast spells while running).
    • Never apply your DoT to an enemy that is immediately about to die.
    • For dungeon pulls, do not use once you have stopped moving – use Ruin instead.
    • For bosses, use every 30s to keep the DoT active until the boss dies. Try not to reapply the DoT early.
    • Because Bio is an instant cast GCD, you can move freely and/or use two oGCDs before your next GCD. This also applies to other instant cast GCDs, including Bio’s upgrades.
  • Bio II (Lvl. 26): Single target DoT (GCD, instant cast, replaces Bio)
    • Use on all mobs before switching to Ruin.

Other

Summary

Use Swiftcast + Resurrection if someone dies. Use Lucid Dreaming to regain MP if below 8000 MP. Esuna is rarely used, and Repose is never used.

New Skills

  • Repose (Lvl.  8): Puts the target enemy to sleep (GCD)
    • Almost never useful – don’t use this spell.
  • Esuna (Lvl. 10): Removes a single debuff from the target party member (GCD)
    • Only removes cleansable debuffs (debuffs with a white bar above them) – don’t waste your time on debuffs without the white bar.
    • Typically, you don’t need to remove DoT debuffs such as Poison and Burn because your fairy can heal enough to prevent the party member from dying, but you can Esuna them if you’re unsure if they’ll survive. 
    • The Doom debuff must be removed with Esuna if it is cleansable.
    • Most other debuffs (Paralysis, Slow, Heavy) are a mild annoyance at worst and can be ignored.
  • Resurrection (Lvl. 12): Revives a dead player (GCD, very long cast)
    • Use Swiftcast (below), if available, to reduce the long cast time.
  • Swiftcast (Lvl. 18): Makes your next GCD spell instant cast (oGCD)
    • The buff is not consumed when you use GCD spells that are already instant cast, like Bio.
  • Lucid Dreaming (Lvl. 24): Regenerates your MP over time
    • Use this when your MP drops below 8000.

Levels 30-44

Healing

Summary

Use Adloquium to shield the tank before pulling, and use Succor if AoE healing is needed. Use Fey Illumination to buff prepull shields. Don’t use Physick anymore. 

New Skills

  • Adloquium (Lvl. 30, Job Quest): Single target heal + shield (GCD)
    • Use it on the tank before every pull
    • Use it instead of Physick if you need to use GCD heals. From now on, only use Physick if out of MP.
  • Succor (Lvl. 35, Job Quest): AoE heal + shield (GCD)
    • Do not use on dungeon trash pulls because the shield does not stack with Adloquium’s stronger single target shield.
    • Use before pulling bosses to shield the party.
    • Use during bosses to heal AoE damage if Whispering Dawn isn’t enough healing.
  • Fey Illumination (Lvl. 40): AoE mitigation and healing buff (oGCD, fairy ability)
    • Use it if available to help buff your prepull shield casts.
    • Note: this buff increases GCD healing done by people with the buff – it does not affect oGCD heals or fairy heals. Therefore, the only SCH heals this buff affects are Physick, Adlo, and Succor.
    • The mitigation from this buff is for magic damage only. Use it on bosses to help mitigate AoE attacks.

Damage

Summary

As before, keep applying Bio II before switching to Ruin. Only use Ruin II if you need to move.

New Skills

  • Ruin II (Lvl. 38): Single target damage (GCD, instant cast).
    • Use it when you can’t cast Ruin because you need to move and it’s not time to reapply Bio II. Otherwise, if you are able to cast before moving, keep using Ruin because it does more damage.

Levels 45-50

Healing

Summary

Use Aetherflow on cooldown and keep using Adlo for prepull shielding. During pulls, your healing priority is: Fairy heals (Whispering Dawn) > Aetherflow heals (Lustrate) > GCD heals (Adlo). Use extra AF stacks on Energy Drain, and don’t use Sacred Soil.

Note: At Level 50, you will also be able to start doing content such as Trials and Alliance Raids where each party has two healers. Be aware that if your cohealer is a Sage or another Scholar, you cannot stack GCD shields with them – one will always overwrite the other. 

New Skills

  • Aetherflow (Lvl. 45): Grants 3 Aetherflow (AF) stacks and restores your MP (oGCD)
    • Use whenever available, but make sure to spend all your stacks first.
    • AF stacks allow you to use AF abilities, which are oGCD and cost one stack per use. Your AF abilities in this level range are Lustrate, Energy Drain, and Sacred Soil.
  • Lustrate (Lvl. 45, Job Quest): Single target heal (oGCD, AF ability)
    • Use AF heals, if available, before using GCDs for healing.
    • Now, your healing priority becomes: put up Adlo on the tank before pull, then during the pull, prioritize Fairy heals (Whispering Dawn) > Aetherflow heals (Lustrate) > GCD heals (Adlo).
  • Sacred Soil (Lvl. 50, Job Quest): Creates a bubble that provides mitigation for anyone in it (oGCD, AF ability).
    • Do not use at this level because spending the stack on Lustrate heals more than Soil can mitigate for.

Damage

Summary

Use Art of War on 2+ targets instead of Ruin (see below for more detailed priorities). Use Energy Drain to spend AF stacks if you don’t need to use them to heal. 

New Skills

  • Energy Drain (Lvl. 45): Single target damage (oGCD, AF ability)
    • Use this only if you don’t need to use AF stacks on healing because it’s more efficient to use AF stacks instead of GCD heals if necessary.
    • If Aetherflow is about to come off cooldown and you have stacks remaining, spend them on Energy Drain.
  • Art of War (Lvl. 46): AoE damage to enemies in a circle centered on you (GCD, instant cast).
    • In dungeon pulls, put up Bio II while running as usual. After you stop running, your priority is based on how many enemies there are:
      • One target: Maintain Bio II, then use either Art of War (if in range) or Ruin – they do the same damage at this level.
      • Two targets: Maintain Bio II on both, then use Art of War instead of Ruin.
      • 3+ targets: Only use Bio II if you can’t hit 3+ targets due to movement; otherwise use only Art of War.

Other

Summary

Use Surecast to avoid being knocked back. Only use Rescue to pull someone to you if you’re confident that you’re helping them.

New Skills

  • Surecast (Lvl. 44): Stops you from being moved and/or having casts canceled (oGCD)
    • Use this to avoid losing casts to boss mechanics that knock you back or tilt the arena (such as Leviathan).
  • Rescue (Lvl. 48): Pulls a target party member to your location (oGCD)
    • Use this to save someone from failing a mechanic if you’re confident and have quick reflexes.

Levels 51-60

Healing

Summary

You now can spend AF stacks on AoE healing (Indomitability). The healing priority is still: Fairy heals (Whispering Dawn) > AF heals (Lustrate/Indomitability) > GCD heals (Adloquium/Succor).

Deployment Tactics and Emergency Tactics are situational abilities – don’t use them on cooldown.

Use Dissipation for additional healing or additional damage, depending on your playstyle.

New Skills

  • Indomitability (Lvl. 52, Job Quest): AoE heal (oGCD, AF ability)
    • Use for AoE healing if Whispering Dawn isn’t enough.
    • Your healing priority is still: Free oGCDs (fairy heals) > AF heals > GCD heals.
  • Deployment Tactics (Lvl. 56, Job Quest): Copies your shield on your target onto everyone near them (oGCD).
    • In dungeons, you can Adloquium both yourself and the tank prepull, then use Deployment Tactics to copy your shield onto the tank when theirs breaks. 
    • For bosses, you can cast Adloquium + Deployment Tactics on the tank prepull or during downtime to give the party a bigger shield than Succor’s shield. Don’t use it to heal instead of Succor during the pull – the healing plus the shield from Succor is more total HP. 
    • Note: This ability only works on Adloquium or Succor shields that you put on the target, and it does not copy the extra shield (Catalyze) from a critical Adloquium.
  • Emergency Tactics (Lvl. 58, Job Quest): Converts your next cast of Adloquium or Succor into a pure heal instead of a heal + shield (oGCD).
    • This is a very niche ability and should rarely be used.
    • The most common use that you might see is to save a DRK from Living Dead if you are out of AF stacks because shields don’t count as healing for this purpose.
  • Dissipation (Lvl. 60, Job Quest): Removes the fairy for 30s but gives you 3 AF stacks and a GCD healing buff (oGCD).
    • While Dissipation is active, the fairy is gone. It does not Embrace and you cannot use fairy abilities. Be sure to use fairy abilities before using Dissipation.
    • The healing buff follows the same rules as Fey Illumination. 
    • Use Dissipation in dungeons near the end of a pull to refresh your AF stacks and buff your prepull shields for the next pull. You can also use it mid-pull as an emergency cooldown if having 3 AF stacks will help you heal. 
    • In 8-person content, use Dissipation as an emergency cooldown in case you need AF stacks for healing, or if feeling confident, use it for damage by spending the stacks on Energy Drain.

Damage

Summary

From Level 54 onwards, your GCD damage spells are now stronger but your priorities remain the same.

New/Upgraded Skills

  • Broil, Ruin II, Art of War (Lvl. 54, Job Quest): Damage (GCD, upgraded)
    • Ruin becomes Broil and these spells do more damage but their usage and priority remains the same:
      • One target: Maintain Bio II, then use Broil (or Art of War/Ruin II if you need to move).
      • Two targets: Maintain Bio II on both, then use Art of War instead of Broil.
      • 3+ targets: Only use Bio II if you can’t hit 3+ targets due to movement; otherwise use only Art of War.

Levels 61-70

Healing

Summary

Use Excogitation instead of Lustrate, if possible, when you need to use AF stacks on single target healing. Use Aetherpact to spend Faerie Gauge on focused healing, but make sure your target stays in range. 

New Skills

  • Excogitation (Lvl. 62): Delayed single target heal (oGCD, AF ability).
    • The heal triggers either when the target’s HP goes below 50% or when the buff expires. The heal does not trigger if the target is killed in one hit from above 50% HP.
    • Use at the start of a dungeon pull and/or in place of Lustrate since it heals for more.
  • Aetherpact (Lvl. 70, Job Quest): Single target HoT consumes Faerie Gauge (oGCD, fairy ability).
    • Your new Faerie Gauge gains 10 resources every time you use an AF ability while the fairy is active and can store up to 100. Note: if you haven’t summoned the fairy or have Dissipation active, you will gain no gauge.
    • Using Aetherpact consumes 10 Faerie Gauge to heal the target every 3s.
    • Use it to focus healing onto a single target, such as the tank – it’s stronger than Embrace and prevents the fairy from healing other people.
    • Note: 
      • The fairy won’t cast Embrace, move, or do anything else when Aetherpact is active.
      • Aetherpact can be canceled by either using the skill a second time or by using any other fairy ability.
      • If the target moves out of range, the Faerie Gauge will not drain, but the fairy won’t heal anybody.

Damage

Summary

From Level 64 onwards, stop using Art of War in all single target situations. Otherwise, the priority remains the same.

Use Chain Stratagem to help your party do more damage to bosses.

New/Upgraded Skills

  • Broil II, Ruin II (Lvl. 64): Damage (GCD, upgraded).
    • These spells do more damage but their usage and priority remains the same, except Art of War is never used in single target from this point forward:
      • One target: Maintain Bio II, then use Broil II (or Ruin II if you need to move).
      • Two targets: Maintain Bio II on both, then use Art of War instead of Broil II.
      • 3+ targets: Only use Bio II if you can’t hit 3+ targets due to movement; otherwise use only Art of War.
  • Chain Stratagem (Lvl. 66): Single target debuff that increases the crit rate of attacks against that enemy (oGCD).
    • In dungeons, if you think it will take more than 2 minutes to reach the next boss, use it on an enemy. Otherwise, save it for the boss. 
    • In raids, use it on cooldown. Check out the other SCH guides if you want to learn about optimal usage.

Levels 71-80

Healing

Summary

In this level range, Scholar gains several strong non-AF oGCD healing tools, and Sacred Soil becomes your most efficient AF heal on both single target and AoE.

With so many free oGCD heals, you shouldn’t need to spend AF stacks on healing very often – your healing priorities now look like this:

  • Non-AF oGCDs:
    • Single target: Recitation + Excogitation, Aetherpact.
    • AoE: Summon Seraph + Consolation, Recitation + Indomitability, Fey Blessing, Whispering Dawn, Fey Illumination.
      • Note: Many of these can, and should, be used for single-target healing as well
  • AF oGCDs:
    • Single target: Sacred Soil (At Level 78+) > Excogitation (non-Recitation) > Lustrate.
    • AoE: Sacred Soil (At Level 78+) > Indomitability (non-Recitation).
  • GCDs:
    • Single target: Adloquium »> Physick.
    • AoE: Succor.

New/Upgraded Skills

  • Recitation (Lvl. 74): Removes the MP or AF cost and guarantees a crit heal for your next use of Adlo, Succor, Indomitability, or Excogitation (oGCD).
    • In dungeons, use this prepull on Excogitation.
    • In raids, using Recitation on Indomitability is generally the most efficient use, but you might also consider using it on Excogitation or Succor in some situations – see the other SCH guides for more details.
    • Since Recitation makes your AF heals free, your healing priority is now Fairy heals = Recitation > AF heals > GCD heals. 
  • Fey Blessing (Lvl. 76): AoE heal (oGCD, fairy ability).
    • Use this with one of the highest priorities for AoE healing because it doesn’t cost AF stacks. 
    • Also use it in dungeons for extra tank healing.
  • Sacred Soil (Lvl. 78): Creates a bubble that provides a HoT + mitigation for anyone in it (oGCD, AF ability, upgraded).
    • Soil is now the highest priority AF heal, even for single target healing – it heals as much as Lustrate and more than Indomitability, while also providing 10% mitigation. Only use Lustrate or Indomitability if Sacred Soil is not available, there isn’t enough time for the HoT to heal your party, or the party cannot remain inside the bubble.
  • Summon Seraph (Lvl. 80): Replaces your fairy with one that heals and shields (oGCD, fairy ability).
    • For 22s, your fairy’s Embrace now heals and shields the target, and you have access to two charges of Consolation (see below). You are unable to use Aetherpact, Fey Blessing, or Dissipation while Seraph is summoned. 
    • In dungeons, use Summon Seraph to boost the healing that the tank receives from your pet. You can alternate Summon Seraph on one pull and Aetherpact on the next to keep your tank healthy. 
    • Because Seraph and her abilities are fairy heals, Summon Seraph is a high-priority healing ability.
    • The animations and buff icons for Whispering Dawn and Fey Illumination change when Seraph is summoned, but the skills still do the same thing.
  • Consolation (Lvl. 80): AoE heal + shield (oGCD, requires Seraph).
    • Use it, even for single target healing, if Seraph is summoned.
    • In bosses and raids, use it to heal AoE damage, ideally when there are multiple raidwides.

Summary

From Level 72 onwards, only skip DoT applications in favor of using Art of War if you can hit 5+ targets. Otherwise, priorities remain the same. 

New/Upgraded Skills

  • Biolysis, Broil III, Ruin II (Lvl. 72): Damage (GCD, upgraded)
    • Bio II becomes Biolysis and these spells do more damage. The breakpoints for your priorities change as follows:
      • One target: Maintain Biolysis, then use Broil III (or Ruin II if you need to move).
      • 2-4 targets: Maintain Biolysis on all targets, then use Art of War instead of Broil III.
      • 5+ targets: Only use Biolysis if you can’t hit 5+ targets due to movement; otherwise use only Art of War.

Levels 81-90

Healing

Summary

Use the new Protraction ability to heal and buff any following heals, and use Expedient for mitigation and/or increased move speed.

Despite upgrades to some healing spells, your healing priorities do not change: non-AF oGCD heals > AF heals > GCD heals.

  • Non-AF oGCDs:
    • Single target: Protraction, Recitation + Excogitation, Aetherpact.
    • AoE: Summon Seraph + Consolation, Recitation + Indomitability, Fey Blessing, Whispering Dawn, Expedient, Fey Illumination.
      • Note: Many of these can, and should, be used for single-target healing as well.
  • AF oGCDs:
    • Single target: Sacred Soil > Excogitation (non-Recitation) > Lustrate.
    • AoE: Sacred Soil > Indomitability (non-Recitation).
  • GCDs:
    • Single target: Adloquium »> Physick.
    • AoE: Succor.

New/Upgraded Skills

  • Various healing spells (Lvl. 85): 
    • Healing and shield potencies are increased. This does not change your healing priorities.
  • Protraction (Lvl. 86): Single target HP increase + healing buff (oGCD)
    • Increases the target’s HP by 10% (and heals that amount) and increases the healing they receive from all healing actions (not just GCDs).
    • Use this to buff prepull Adloquium and Excogitation casts, or during pulls for additional healing. If used during a pull, try to initiate Aetherpact while the buff is active in order to buff its heal. 
    • Since Protraction is a non-AF oGCD, it has the same priority as Fairy abilities and Recitation for healing and should be used before AF oGCDs.
  • Deployment Tactics (Lvl. 88): Spreads target’s shield (oGCD, upgraded)
    • The cooldown of Deployment Tactics is reduced. The effect stays the same. This does not change your priorities.
  • Expedient (Lvl. 90): AoE mitigation and move speed buff (oGCD)
    • The move speed buff is equivalent to Sprint, lasts 20s, and persists during combat unlike Peloton. 
    • In dungeons, use this once the tank has started pulling to help mitigate mob autoattacks while enabling everyone to run to the next pack of mobs faster. By alternating Sprint with Expedient, the party should always be able to have a move speed buff active when pulling. 
    • In 8-person content, use Expedient to mitigate AoE damage and/or to help your party move faster for mechanics.

Damage

Summary

From Level 82 onwards, only skip DoT applications in favor of using Art of War if you can hit 4+ targets. Otherwise, priorities remain the same. 

New/Upgraded Skills

  • Broil IV, Ruin II, Art of War (Lvl. 82): Damage (GCD, upgraded).
    • These spells do more damage. The breakpoints for your priorities change as follows:
      • One target: Maintain Biolysis, then use Broil IV (or Ruin II if you need to move).
      • 2-3 targets: Maintain Biolysis on all targets, then use Art of War instead of Broil IV.
      • 4+ targets: Only use Biolysis if you can’t hit 4+ targets due to movement; otherwise use only Art of War.
  • Have any questions?
    Authors
    potato
    Tonto Draksbane
    Tonto#3064
  • 26 Oct, 2021
    Created page
    30 Dec, 2021
    Updated for Endwalker