Your Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR) score is disappointing – what happens now?
Don’t panic. There are people, and on-line information, to help you find different pathways to achieve your objective. As soon as you can, make an appointment with the head of careers at your school or go to online information, such as Victoria’s Department of Education Career Options After School website, and the independent site, UniOptions.
It is not necessary to remove courses from your Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC) application just because your ATAR does not seem high enough. ATARs sometimes come down and you can have up to 12 courses listed. Ensure that some of the 12 are comfortably within your ranking.
You could consider studying a related university course with a lower ATAR; if you do well you might be able to transfer to your desired course later. Alternatively think about applying to a university country campus where ATARs are often lower. Most have accommodation but you need to be able to afford to move away from home.
There are other universities, courses and pathways that will accept a lower ATAR, such as a Diploma of Tertiary Studies at Monash University in arts, business, education, health promotion, nursing, science or social welfare. The Australian Catholic University has certificate and diploma courses that can lead to degrees.
TAFEs offer higher education with low cost ease of entry and are local although courses might not be available at some campuses. If your ATAR is less than you hoped TAFE could be a pathway to university.
Deakin at Your Doorstep offers a TAFE course that can be accepted to study for a degree at Deakin. Swinburne University guarantees a university place if you complete the required TAFE course. Two years at TAFE often equals one year at university. A TAFE Diploma of Liberal Arts is a pathway into arts, social science and the humanities.
While you are thinking about your future, consider your priorities and how these match your strengths, skills and personality and ask yourself whether your university choice is realistic.