What to do if you didn’t get the ATAR required for your course

Illustrative representation of What to do if you didn’t get the ATAR required for your course

If you didn’t get the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) required for the course that you want to study, there are alternative pathways to consider.

You may have already thought through some alternative pathways when you were preparing your university course preferences. If so, it’s a simple call to your Tertiary Admissions Centre to re-prioritise your course preferences to those that you have qualified for. Remember to keep track of dates (for submitting course applications, receiving offers, accepting offers and so on) so that you don't miss any cut-off dates.

Who can help me?

If you have anyThe best place to start is the university that you want to attend. The course coordinator or admissions centre at the university will be able to talk you through all the options for alternative pathways into their course. If your ATAR is just slightly below the cut-off score there may be other selection criteria that you can satisfy to gain entry into the course. The other options may be:

  • Studying another course in first year and applying to transfer over to your chosen qualification with credit for second year (this could be the same course at a different university or another course at the same university).  Be aware that you will likely need to achieve good marks in your current course in order to be able to transfer to your preferred course.
  • Completing a bridging course
  • Studying a Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification as a pathway to university.

Consider talking to your career adviser before the end of the school year about a back-up plan. They may be able to help you look into alternative universities or other course options.

These tools can help you:

…Or you can browse Job Jumpstart for other ideas and suggestions of what to do next.