How the ATAR Is Calculated in Your State

In this article, we enter the mysterious world of aggregate scores and subject requirements to reveal how the ATAR is calculated in each state.

Matthew Bassat
Education Analyst

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles. ‍

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles. ‍

How is the ATAR calculated in your state?

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles.

In all cases, ATARs are a percentile rank based on a student's performance relative to the rest of the students in their state. But how does the calculation actually work?

Firstly, students earn a raw score for every subject they study, based on their performance compared to other students in the subject. The raw scores for each subject are then scaled up or down, based on the performance of that subject cohort relative to the general student population - this yields a scaled score.

Finally, the scaled scores are added together (as described below) to generate an aggregate, which is judged against the aggregates of all other students in the state on a bell curve, producing the ATAR ranking.

Below, we'll cover how the ATAR is calculated in each state and territory.

New South Wales

In New South Wales, the ATAR is calculated by the University Admissions Centre (UAC) and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your scaled marks of your top two English units

• Your scaled marks of your eight next best units, which can include no more than two Category B subjects

Many students who achieve success in their ATAR in NSW will use a NSW based tutoring service to support their learning.

Victoria

In Victoria, the ATAR is calculated by the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC) is based on an aggregate of:

• Your scaled study score for your best English subject (English, English Language, English as an Additional Language (EAL) or Literature)

• Your scaled study scores for your next three best subjects

• 10% of your scaled study scores for your fifth and sixth best subjects (if applicable)

There are several factors that need to go right for you to achieve success in your ATAR in Victoria. If you want assistance, perhaps you should consult an expert online tutor based in Victoria.

Queensland

In Queensland, the ATAR is calculated by the Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) and is based on the combination of scaled results that yields the highest mark (out of the following):

• 5 general subjects (Unit 3 and 4)

• 4 general subjects and 1 applied subject (both at Unit 3 and 4)

• 4 general subjects (both at Unit 3 and 4), and 1 Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification (Certificate III or higher)

Western Australia

In Western Australia, the ATAR is calculated by the Tertiary Institutions Centre (TIC) and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your top four scaled subject scores over the previous five years of study

• 10% of your next best scaled score in Mathematics Methods, Mathematics Specialist or any Language Other than English (LOTE)

South Australia

In South Australia, the ATAR is calculated by the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC) and is based on an aggregate of:


• The completion of your Personal Learning Plan

• A Stage 1 or Stage 2 mathematics subject

• A Stage 1 or Stage 2 English subject

• A Stage 2 Research Project

• 150 more credit points, at least 60 of which must be Stage 2

Australian Capital Territory

In the Australian Capital Territory, the ATAR is calculated by the ACT Board of Secondary Studies alongside the UAC, and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your three best scores from major courses

• 60% of your next best course

Tasmania

In Tasmania, the ATAR is calculated by the Office of Tasmanian Assessment, Standards and Certification (TASC) and is based on an aggregate of your five best pre-tertiary subjects, three of which must come from your final year of study.

Northern Territory

Like South Australia, in the Northern Territory, the ATAR is calculated by the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC) . The requirements are analogous:

  • The completion of a Personal Learning Plan
  • 10 credits (one semester) of a Stage 1 or Stage 2 mathematics subject
  • 20 credits of a Stage 1 or Stage 2 English subject

Thanks for reading! For more information on how to achieve your ATAR goals, have a gander at our article on the topic, How to Achieve Your Dream ATAR. For a deep dive into all of the secrets of the ATAR system, check out our other ATAR-related blog posts too.

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Australian student sitting at her desk and trying to calculate her ATAR

How is the ATAR calculated in your state?

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles.

In all cases, ATARs are a percentile rank based on a student's performance relative to the rest of the students in their state. But how does the calculation actually work?

Firstly, students earn a raw score for every subject they study, based on their performance compared to other students in the subject. The raw scores for each subject are then scaled up or down, based on the performance of that subject cohort relative to the general student population - this yields a scaled score.

Finally, the scaled scores are added together (as described below) to generate an aggregate, which is judged against the aggregates of all other students in the state on a bell curve, producing the ATAR ranking.

Below, we'll cover how the ATAR is calculated in each state and territory.

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles. ‍

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles. ‍

New South Wales

In New South Wales, the ATAR is calculated by the University Admissions Centre (UAC) and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your scaled marks of your top two English units

• Your scaled marks of your eight next best units, which can include no more than two Category B subjects

Many students who achieve success in their ATAR in NSW will use a NSW based tutoring service to support their learning.

Victoria

In Victoria, the ATAR is calculated by the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC) is based on an aggregate of:

• Your scaled study score for your best English subject (English, English Language, English as an Additional Language (EAL) or Literature)

• Your scaled study scores for your next three best subjects

• 10% of your scaled study scores for your fifth and sixth best subjects (if applicable)

There are several factors that need to go right for you to achieve success in your ATAR in Victoria. If you want assistance, perhaps you should consult an expert online tutor based in Victoria.

Queensland

In Queensland, the ATAR is calculated by the Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) and is based on the combination of scaled results that yields the highest mark (out of the following):

• 5 general subjects (Unit 3 and 4)

• 4 general subjects and 1 applied subject (both at Unit 3 and 4)

• 4 general subjects (both at Unit 3 and 4), and 1 Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification (Certificate III or higher)

Western Australia

In Western Australia, the ATAR is calculated by the Tertiary Institutions Centre (TIC) and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your top four scaled subject scores over the previous five years of study

• 10% of your next best scaled score in Mathematics Methods, Mathematics Specialist or any Language Other than English (LOTE)

South Australia

In South Australia, the ATAR is calculated by the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC) and is based on an aggregate of:


• The completion of your Personal Learning Plan

• A Stage 1 or Stage 2 mathematics subject

• A Stage 1 or Stage 2 English subject

• A Stage 2 Research Project

• 150 more credit points, at least 60 of which must be Stage 2

Australian Capital Territory

In the Australian Capital Territory, the ATAR is calculated by the ACT Board of Secondary Studies alongside the UAC, and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your three best scores from major courses

• 60% of your next best course

Tasmania

In Tasmania, the ATAR is calculated by the Office of Tasmanian Assessment, Standards and Certification (TASC) and is based on an aggregate of your five best pre-tertiary subjects, three of which must come from your final year of study.

Northern Territory

Like South Australia, in the Northern Territory, the ATAR is calculated by the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC) . The requirements are analogous:

  • The completion of a Personal Learning Plan
  • 10 credits (one semester) of a Stage 1 or Stage 2 mathematics subject
  • 20 credits of a Stage 1 or Stage 2 English subject

Thanks for reading! For more information on how to achieve your ATAR goals, have a gander at our article on the topic, How to Achieve Your Dream ATAR. For a deep dive into all of the secrets of the ATAR system, check out our other ATAR-related blog posts too.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles. ‍

How is the ATAR calculated in your state?

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles.

In all cases, ATARs are a percentile rank based on a student's performance relative to the rest of the students in their state. But how does the calculation actually work?

Firstly, students earn a raw score for every subject they study, based on their performance compared to other students in the subject. The raw scores for each subject are then scaled up or down, based on the performance of that subject cohort relative to the general student population - this yields a scaled score.

Finally, the scaled scores are added together (as described below) to generate an aggregate, which is judged against the aggregates of all other students in the state on a bell curve, producing the ATAR ranking.

Below, we'll cover how the ATAR is calculated in each state and territory.

New South Wales

In New South Wales, the ATAR is calculated by the University Admissions Centre (UAC) and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your scaled marks of your top two English units

• Your scaled marks of your eight next best units, which can include no more than two Category B subjects

Many students who achieve success in their ATAR in NSW will use a NSW based tutoring service to support their learning.

Victoria

In Victoria, the ATAR is calculated by the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC) is based on an aggregate of:

• Your scaled study score for your best English subject (English, English Language, English as an Additional Language (EAL) or Literature)

• Your scaled study scores for your next three best subjects

• 10% of your scaled study scores for your fifth and sixth best subjects (if applicable)

There are several factors that need to go right for you to achieve success in your ATAR in Victoria. If you want assistance, perhaps you should consult an expert online tutor based in Victoria.

Queensland

In Queensland, the ATAR is calculated by the Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) and is based on the combination of scaled results that yields the highest mark (out of the following):

• 5 general subjects (Unit 3 and 4)

• 4 general subjects and 1 applied subject (both at Unit 3 and 4)

• 4 general subjects (both at Unit 3 and 4), and 1 Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification (Certificate III or higher)

Western Australia

In Western Australia, the ATAR is calculated by the Tertiary Institutions Centre (TIC) and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your top four scaled subject scores over the previous five years of study

• 10% of your next best scaled score in Mathematics Methods, Mathematics Specialist or any Language Other than English (LOTE)

South Australia

In South Australia, the ATAR is calculated by the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC) and is based on an aggregate of:


• The completion of your Personal Learning Plan

• A Stage 1 or Stage 2 mathematics subject

• A Stage 1 or Stage 2 English subject

• A Stage 2 Research Project

• 150 more credit points, at least 60 of which must be Stage 2

Australian Capital Territory

In the Australian Capital Territory, the ATAR is calculated by the ACT Board of Secondary Studies alongside the UAC, and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your three best scores from major courses

• 60% of your next best course

Tasmania

In Tasmania, the ATAR is calculated by the Office of Tasmanian Assessment, Standards and Certification (TASC) and is based on an aggregate of your five best pre-tertiary subjects, three of which must come from your final year of study.

Northern Territory

Like South Australia, in the Northern Territory, the ATAR is calculated by the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC) . The requirements are analogous:

  • The completion of a Personal Learning Plan
  • 10 credits (one semester) of a Stage 1 or Stage 2 mathematics subject
  • 20 credits of a Stage 1 or Stage 2 English subject

Thanks for reading! For more information on how to achieve your ATAR goals, have a gander at our article on the topic, How to Achieve Your Dream ATAR. For a deep dive into all of the secrets of the ATAR system, check out our other ATAR-related blog posts too.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles. ‍

How is the ATAR calculated in your state?

Each state calculates ATARs in a slightly different way, however they follow the same general principles.

In all cases, ATARs are a percentile rank based on a student's performance relative to the rest of the students in their state. But how does the calculation actually work?

Firstly, students earn a raw score for every subject they study, based on their performance compared to other students in the subject. The raw scores for each subject are then scaled up or down, based on the performance of that subject cohort relative to the general student population - this yields a scaled score.

Finally, the scaled scores are added together (as described below) to generate an aggregate, which is judged against the aggregates of all other students in the state on a bell curve, producing the ATAR ranking.

Below, we'll cover how the ATAR is calculated in each state and territory.

New South Wales

In New South Wales, the ATAR is calculated by the University Admissions Centre (UAC) and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your scaled marks of your top two English units

• Your scaled marks of your eight next best units, which can include no more than two Category B subjects

Many students who achieve success in their ATAR in NSW will use a NSW based tutoring service to support their learning.

Victoria

In Victoria, the ATAR is calculated by the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC) is based on an aggregate of:

• Your scaled study score for your best English subject (English, English Language, English as an Additional Language (EAL) or Literature)

• Your scaled study scores for your next three best subjects

• 10% of your scaled study scores for your fifth and sixth best subjects (if applicable)

There are several factors that need to go right for you to achieve success in your ATAR in Victoria. If you want assistance, perhaps you should consult an expert online tutor based in Victoria.

Queensland

In Queensland, the ATAR is calculated by the Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) and is based on the combination of scaled results that yields the highest mark (out of the following):

• 5 general subjects (Unit 3 and 4)

• 4 general subjects and 1 applied subject (both at Unit 3 and 4)

• 4 general subjects (both at Unit 3 and 4), and 1 Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification (Certificate III or higher)

Western Australia

In Western Australia, the ATAR is calculated by the Tertiary Institutions Centre (TIC) and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your top four scaled subject scores over the previous five years of study

• 10% of your next best scaled score in Mathematics Methods, Mathematics Specialist or any Language Other than English (LOTE)

South Australia

In South Australia, the ATAR is calculated by the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC) and is based on an aggregate of:


• The completion of your Personal Learning Plan

• A Stage 1 or Stage 2 mathematics subject

• A Stage 1 or Stage 2 English subject

• A Stage 2 Research Project

• 150 more credit points, at least 60 of which must be Stage 2

Australian Capital Territory

In the Australian Capital Territory, the ATAR is calculated by the ACT Board of Secondary Studies alongside the UAC, and is based on an aggregate of:

• Your three best scores from major courses

• 60% of your next best course

Tasmania

In Tasmania, the ATAR is calculated by the Office of Tasmanian Assessment, Standards and Certification (TASC) and is based on an aggregate of your five best pre-tertiary subjects, three of which must come from your final year of study.

Northern Territory

Like South Australia, in the Northern Territory, the ATAR is calculated by the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC) . The requirements are analogous:

  • The completion of a Personal Learning Plan
  • 10 credits (one semester) of a Stage 1 or Stage 2 mathematics subject
  • 20 credits of a Stage 1 or Stage 2 English subject

Thanks for reading! For more information on how to achieve your ATAR goals, have a gander at our article on the topic, How to Achieve Your Dream ATAR. For a deep dive into all of the secrets of the ATAR system, check out our other ATAR-related blog posts too.

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