How the Scaled Awards are Calculated and Used to Determine the ATAR

  • Step 1
    As has previously been the case, using the subject algorithms that may be found in the subject syllabus statements section of this web-site, allocate subject awards to students.

  • Step 2
    Carry out a Rasch Analysis of the results for all pre-tertiary subjects to identify any anomalous cases. Temporarily remove these cases from the analysis so that they do not distort the results. Anomalous cases may occur if a subject does not 'fit' the Rasch model, ie it is not measuring the same underlying characteristic of "general academic ability". This happens only in a small number of cases. Rasch Analysis identifies these for treatment by a slightly different method.

  • Step 3
    Carry out a Rasch Analysis on the remaining results and determine the award cut-off points for each subject (difficulty values).

  • Step 4
    Adjust the subject difficulty values to be on a scale that is similar to the old 20-point scale by making the average CA equal to 7.0 and average EA equal to 21.0.

  • Step 5
    Apply these results to all of the students who undertook any subjects that were not excluded above.

  • Step 6
    Reintroduce the small number of subjects that had been excluded above by determining their award cut-off points by statistically comparing student performances in other subjects as determined above.

  • Step 7
    Insert the award cut-off or difficulty values obtained in Step 5 and readjust (if necessary) so that the average CA and EA requirements are retained at 7.0 and 21.0 respectively.

  • Step 8
    Produce the required table of award sub-scores (between cut-off points).

  • Step 9
    Apply the sub-score values to students to determine the subject contributions to the TE Score.

  • Step 10
    Aggregate the best 5 scores (including at least 3 from Year 12) to determine the TE Score

  • Step 11
    Use the TE Score to calculate the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR).

The steps above are overseen by a special Scaling Committee to ensure that the process is applied appropriately.

If you have a query about what subjects can be counted towards your ATAR please send your query to the following email address:
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