The University Admissions Centre (UAC)
and the ATAR
Australian Universities have several admission pathways. These include
Early offer schemes - Institutions can make early offers of undergraduate admission to Year 12 students using criteria other than (or in addition to) the ATAR.
Portfolio and audition pathways for visual and performing arts degrees.
Applications through the University Admissions Centre (UAC).
Applications through UAC (ATAR programs)
The Universities Admissions Centre (UAC) processes applications for admission to undergraduate tertiary courses at participating institutions, mostly in NSW and the ACT.
Students applying for undergraduate degrees must check the admission criteria and subjects required or expected for those courses, so they know what subjects to take in Years 11 and 12. These are referred to as prerequisites and assumed knowledge.
Further information on university applications available from the
Careers Advisor: Mr Damien Williams
Eligibility criteria for the Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR)
UAC calculates the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) for NSW HSC students based on HSC scores supplied by NESA. The ATAR is a number between 0.00 and 99.95 that indicates a student’s position relative to all the students in NSW.
Each university sets a minimum rank to receive an offer for each course. This rank is called ATAR. UAC's Lowest Selection Ranks for January Round 2 Offers document illustrates typical ATAR's required for university entry.
Students do not require an ATAR to receive an HSC. An ATAR is only required for students seeking placement at a university. A non-ATAR program of study enables a broader selection of courses more relevant for students entering into employment or vocational training after school.
ATAR courses are Board Developed courses for which there are formal examinations. These courses contribute to an ATAR and are classified as either Category A or Category B courses. Not all of the many HSC courses will contribute to an ATAR. Category A courses are characterised by academic rigour and depth of knowledge. Examples include Aboriginal Studies and Ancient History. Examples of Category B courses are English Studies, Business Services and Hospitality.
To be eligible for an ATAR, NSW students must satisfactorily complete at least 10 units of ATAR courses. These ATAR courses must include:
8 units from Category A courses
2 units of English
three Board Developed courses of 2 units or greater
four subjects .
The ATAR is then calculated from the:
best 2 units of English
best 8 units from the remaining units, which can include no more than 2 units of Category B courses.
Advice from the Universities Admission Centre (UAC)
Check back regularly as UAC updates these documents each year