Wednesday 08 December 2021

There's less than a week to go until SACE and NTCET students receive their Year 12 results and ATAR.

To help you prepare for the day, here are some of the common questions we get asked about the ATAR!

What is the ATAR?

The ATAR is the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank. It is a rank that shows how students perform in Year 12 relative to other students in their year group. So, an ATAR of 70.00 means you ranked higher than 70% of students in your cohort.

What is the ATAR used for?

Universities and other higher education institutions use the ATAR to rank students for offers to their courses.

The ATAR isn't used to measure individual performance in your subjects. It's a comparative tool used to make impartial decisions about university offers.

How important is the ATAR?

It's worth remembering that the ATAR won't reflect all the skills and experience you have. It also won't define your future.

If you don't intend to go on to university study after school, then you don't need to be too concerned about the ATAR. Its usefulness is in ranking students for entry to university courses.

If you do intend to go on to university after school, ATAR isn't the only option. Each institution offers a variety of pathways to gain entry to its courses.

What is a selection rank?

SATAC uses 'selection rank', not ATAR, when describing entry ranks for courses. This is because the rank we use to create the merit order for offers may include more than your ATAR.

For example, a selection rank might include adjustments from the Universities Equity Scheme or the Universities Language, Literacy and Mathematics Scheme, or a combination of ATAR plus results from auditions, interviews, or other criteria.

Selection ranks determine how 'competitive' you are relative to other applicants for the same course.

Your selection rank may be different from your ATAR. You can log into your SATAC application to check the Year 12 selection rank for each of your preferences.

What if I got my ATAR interstate?

The ATAR is a national system used by every state and territory in Australia. ATARs are transferable to any other state or territory and remain the same.

International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma students will receive a selection rank (equivalent to the ATAR) based on their IB points.

SATAC will assess any non-standard or overseas Year 12 qualifications for eligibility.

I need more information - where can I find it?

A great place to start is the Tertiary Entrance book for SACE/NTCET students. You can read a digital copy on our website.

The book explains tertiary entrance for Year 12 students and covers topics including ATAR, scaling and recognised studies.

If you have questions about your ATAR or need advice about a SATAC application, you can contact us.

Our institutions can also provide advice and information about pathways to study.