How one gets a 99+ Atar (1 Viewer)

AKONS

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G’day fellow BoSers!
I’ve created this thread to discuss what I’m sure is on everyone’s minds, how does one get a 99+ Atar? Including study habits, levels of extra curriculars, units and more!
Hopefully we can dissect the formula to aceing the HSC.
Good luck!
 

Time&moretime

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It seems like everyone I talked to who achieved a high ATAR does either music or a language. Please feel free to correct me. :rolleyes:
 

jazz519

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First and foremost it is having a solid base in younger years in subjects like maths, English and science (for the most part unless you doing subjects like history etc. that most people don't do). The students that get 99 ATARs perform well in most of their subjects throughout high school because they are more academically focused and therefore when they get to Year 11-12 they don't have these random bursts of motivation and then procrastination. Consistency in studying is very important. In my experience and school when I did HSC no one randomly out of no where goes from getting bad marks in like Year 7-10 to get a 99 ATAR.

It is possible to still get high atars don’t get me wrong even if you didn’t do that good in younger years. But the reason I am saying the above is because getting a 99 ATAR is more than just studying hard. You need to understand the content and material extensively and for that obviously a large aspect of it will be the academic level of the student which is represented by their marks throughout high school, e.g. if you are getting Cs in Math in Year 7-10 you likely won't do well in a maths subject like extension 1 or 2 maths (by well I mean to the extent of getting a mark that equals a 99 ATAR). You can apply the same logic to other things like English.

So what I’m trying to emphasise is studying hard 24/7 just for Year 12, doesn’t equal a certain ATAR as everyone has different levels and abilities. In terms of what I personally did during Year 11 and 12. I studied quite consistently throughout the year by this I mean I was studying in holiday periods while other people were relaxing. One of the most important times in the HSC year in my opinion is between Term 4 and Term 1. That long summer holiday break is very important to being on track for a high ATAR. If I didn't study in that period then I don't think I would have got the ATAR I did. You don't have to study every single day in the holiday but you need to look at it in the perspective of the students who don't really study in that time period they will not have touched any content for like 6-8 weeks and therefore have likely forgotten a lot of the content they learnt in term 4. Now if you compare that to someone who studies during that time, they will likely consolidate all the info they learnt in term 4 so they will have a strong grasp over that 1st module in the syllabus for their subjects and also they will have a head start on the rest of the modules if they go into learning some of the other content. It's also a great time to make notes because you are not restricted by school work and are free to do it at your own pace.

Throughout the year past papers over and over. This is often confused by students for doing full past papers. You don't need to be doing full past papers at that point but if you are going through exams and just engaging with questions you have covered content on so far it will help you down the line. So rather than doing full past papers, I would recommend doing select questions from past papers throughout the year that relate directly to the stuff you have covered or are covering at that point. There's many ways you can do that such as the excel and strive past paper books.

For extra-curricular not gonna lie there didn't really do anything. It's fine if you are someone who has been doing extra-curricular activities throughout high school and you continue them during year 11 and 12, but I wouldn't recommend picking up a lot of new extra-curriculars during Year 11 and 12. If you are doing the extra-curricular activities for the purpose of like a resume or something, unless you are applying for a lot of scholarships then honestly don't even worry about this. Whatever you did for the extra-curricular or didn't do in high school doesn't matter. You will have plenty of time in uni to do those things.
 
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SK101

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Dude my friend was failing from year 7-11 and got a 99.9 ATAR. He just did 2hrs of focused study a day. No distractions, he'd put on headphones and focus straight. He said to focus on the basics and get a good grasp of them. Dude always finished his notes 2 weeks before exams as well and just went around reading them. He taught everyone else how to stuff as well so he could practise getting the content down concise and straight-forwardly.
 

BMWM2

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I holistically agree with Jazz, but I have to bring up an important point elsewhere: I do know someone who was it the bottom 15 at a selective school for maths, english and junior science in yr 10, came out of no where and scored a 99.65 and 97th percentile UCAT. 99 ATARs come in all shapes and sizes, there is no 1 formula for getting there, or 1 method of doing so. Everyone has their own approach/journey

Yr 11 is the time to truly start focussing. I made the mistake of thinking that fantastic marks in maths and english in years 7-9 was important. And yes, having first place certificates and college medals for high school subjects is nice, I found that irrespective of my ATAR, I would have benefitted more from just understanding and being solid on content from year 7-9, and rather forming better time management and study strategies during this period. I felt as if this would have given me more energy to work harder in year 12, as I found I became consistently over-worked and exhausted with my infatuation of coming first, which had really begun for me from the start of year 8.
 

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