Year 12 qualifications

All Australian school Year 12 qualifications

Two femals students chatting on lawn at the Quadrangle

All of our courses require you to have an ATAR or international equivalent, by completing your Higher School Certificate or being home-schooled. Your application will be considered on the basis of your overall result (eg, your ATAR), as well as your performance in any additional selection criteria for your course of choice.

There is no age limit for Year 12 qualifications, so even if you completed your high school qualification many years ago, you can still use it to apply for entry.

If you have done other study since completing high school, the results from that study may also be taken into account. Students who have more than one Year 12 qualification are generally considered on the basis of their overall result in the most recently completed qualification.

How does the University work out the cut-offs for each course?

As a Year 12 applicant, your application is normally ranked on the basis of your overall result (ATAR or equivalent). The University selects applicants by moving down the ranking list for each course and making offers until no more places are available. This process establishes the cut-offs for our courses.

So, essentially, the cut-off for each course is the minimum ATAR you need to get in.

The cut-offs advertised by the University usually refer to the overall result you need to get an offer in UAC’s Main Round, which is when the majority of offers are made. The cut-offs for the later offer rounds are usually different to those from the Main Round.

It is not possible to predict course cut-offs before offers are made, because they are largely determined by the number and quality of applicants, which varies every year. However, in most cases the cut-off for a particular course will be similar to what it was the year before.

The cut-off for a course does not indicate how difficult it will be. Some courses with medium level cut-offs can be very challenging, and those courses may also have special options for students who are academically talented.

Interstate Year 12 qualifications

If you are an interstate student, you can still apply to the University of Sydney as long as you are eligible to be awarded the standard senior secondary qualification offered in your state as well as an overall result which is equivalent to an ATAR.

You will have the same chance of being selected as a student from NSW with an equivalent overall result. The University does not prioritise NSW students ahead of interstate students when offering places in its undergraduate courses.

As an interstate applicant, you are also eligible to apply for consideration under the University's special entry schemes.

International Baccalaureate

If you completed the International Baccalaureate (IB) and qualified for the award of the diploma then you are eligible to apply. If you do not qualify for the diploma then you cannot be considered.

As an applicant with the IB diploma, you will be considered on the basis of your aggregate result, after it has been converted into a rank, which is comparable to the ATAR.

IB students are also eligible to be considered under some of the University’s special entry schemes.

Prerequisites and assumed knowledge

There are no course prerequisites for admission into the majority of our courses. Instead, there are levels of ‘assumed knowledge’ and ‘recommended studies’. These are listed in the course information in Find a Course, the UAC guide, and in University publications such as the undergraduate guide or faculty prospectuses.

Assumed knowledge is what we expect you to have studied or to know before you commence your university course. Recommended studies is previous knowledge of a subject area that may help you in your chosen degree.

You will not be prevented from enrolling if you haven't completed the assumed knowledge specified for your chosen course, but you may find it difficult to manage the work. Bridging courses are available to help you get up to speed.

Further information

Please contact the Admissions Office for further information.

Admissions Office
Level 4, Jane Foss Russell Building (G02)
The University of Sydney
NSW 2006
T +61 2 8627 8209 (general inquiries, including those about overseas qualifications)
F +61 2 8627 8278
E (general enquiries about admission)