What is an ATAR and how is it calculated?

Find out how your ATAR is calculated based on VCE scaled study scored and use our ATAR calculator to estimate your rank.

What is an ATAR?

The Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) is a ranking of Year 12 results that measures your overall academic achievement compared with all other final year students in Australia (excluding Queensland).

The ATAR is not a score out of 100 – it's a rank, which can help tertiary institutions determine students' eligibility for their courses.

In Victoria, ATARs are calculated by the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC). They use your Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) results to calculate your ATAR score. To have your score calculated, you need to have completed at least four VCE studies in a recognised combination. Then, you'll be notified of your ATAR.

When you apply for tertiary courses, VTAC forwards your ranking to your chosen institutions. Your ATAR can help determine your eligibility, alongside other course requirements. Each tertiary institution sets the ATAR required for its courses.

Browse Deakin courses by ATAR to explore your study options

What is a study score?

A study score is a ranking (not actually a score) that shows how well you performed in a study (subject) at unit 3 and 4 level, compared to everyone else in Victoria who took that study. Study scores are calculated by the Victoria Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA) and are used by VTAC to calculate your ATAR.

The maximum study score is 50. Each year, and for every study, the mean study score is set at 3. For studies with large enrolments (1000 or more), a score of between 23 and 37 indicated that you are in the middle range of students and a score of 38 or more shows that you are in the top 15%.

Study scores are scaled up or down by VTAC according to the performance of students in a study in a particular year– which means scores change each year, making ATARs difficult to predict.

How is the ATAR calculated?

Your ATAR is calculated based on up to six study scores. It is produced by adding together:

  • your highest scaled study score in one of the English studies (English, English Language, English as an Additional (EAL) or Literature)
  • your highest scaled study scores for three additional permissible studies
  • 10% of the scaled study scores for the fifth and sixth permissible studies.

Students are then ranked and a percentage is assigned to distribute students as evenly as possible over a 100-point scale.

Finally, the percentage is converted to an ATAR, which is an estimate of the percentage of the population that you outperformed. So if you receive an ATAR of 60, it means your performed better than 60% of students that year.

The ATAR is a number from 0 and 99.95 in intervals of 0.05. The highest rank is 99.95, the next rank is 99.90, and so on. The lowest automatically reported rank is 30.00, with ranks below 30.00 being reported as 'less than 30'.

Want to estimate your ATAR? Check out our ATAR calculator. Or if you already know your number, browse Deakin courses by ATAR.