Frequently Asked Questions | GE | VCE | Year 11

What is an ATAR?

ATAR stands for Australian Tertiary Admission Rank. A students ATAR is based on their Year 12 VCE results in comparison to all of the other students across the state who are undertaking their final year of VCE that year. You must complete a scored VCE (standard) program to receive an ATAR. Universities will set a benchmark ATAR result for each of their courses. It is worth noting that receiving an ATAR does not guarantee you entry to University – students who achieve poor results will usually need to pursue University admission via alternative pathway programs at TAFE.


Do I have to do VCE (standard) to go to University?

Direct entry into the vast majority of University courses requires an ATAR. This means if you want to apply to enrol into a university course when you complete Year 12, or even if you want to enrol and defer your commencement, you need to obtain an ATAR by completing a VCE standard program. It is, however, possible to apply for University courses at a later date without an ATAR – this is typically done via alternative pathways through TAFE.


Do I have to sit the exams?

Yes. All VCE (standard) students are required to sit exams in Year 12. Your exam results are used in conjunction with your school assessed coursework to generate your study scores and final ATAR.


What happens if I drop or want to change VCE subjects?

Students can pick up, or drop, VCE subjects after the completion of each unit (semester based). However, alternative subject choices will be limited based on the timetable and class sizes. In addition, the student must be granted approval by the Senior School Leader. A request to change or drop a subject is generally permissible as long as it does not jeopardise the completion of their certificate. Students must complete a minimum of 16 VCE units to obtain their VCE certificate. A minimum of 8 of these units must be completed at 3/4 level. This must include English.


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