All You Need to Know About ATAR

July 11, 2019

What is the ATAR?

  • It is a rank that measures a student’s overall academic achievement in the NSW HSC in relation to that of other students

How is the ATAR calculated?

  • HSC marks achieved in particular courses cannot be directly compared to each other as it does not take into account the level of difficulty a course might hold
  • Thus, HSC marks are scaled before they are added in order to determine a fair ATAR for all students
  • Although, the scaled marks are generally different from the raw marks, the ranking of students within a course is not changed

What is the scaling process?

  • The scaling process takes the raw HSC marks provided by NESA and estimates what the marks would have been if all courses had been studied by all students.
  • The scaling process is designed to encourage students to take the courses for which they are best suited and which best prepare them for their future studies.
  • The underlying principle is that a student should neither be advantaged nor disadvantaged by choosing one HSC course over another

How do students get an ATAR of 99.95?

  • Each year, students who achieve the highest rank of 99.95 have done a wide variety of subjects
  • Top students do have one thing in common, which is that they were placed at or near the top in all their subjects
  • The best advice for students is to do subjects they enjoy and are good at, rather than choosing subjects because of a belief that they will scale well

Click this link to find out more! ​

Source: Engagement, U. (2019) Fact Sheet: All About the Atar. 8 December 2018

You might also like...

More →