How are VCE study scores calculated, and what do they mean?

Do you know how VCE study scores are calculated, and what it means to get a certain score? Read on to learn about what makes up your raw study score, which then gets scaled, then gets turned into an ATAR.

How is a study score calculated?

A study score indicates how you’ve performed in relation to all other students who took the Units 3&4 study. It is calculated using your statistically moderated SACs (which are called Graded Assessment 1 [GA1] for Unit 3 SACs and Graded Assessment 2 [GA2] for Unit 4 SACs) and exams [GA3] for each study.


The weighting of each Graded Assessment depends on the study, but the most important assessment is always the final exam because it moderates the value of your SAC scores – read ACED’s post about SAC scaling here

So what does a study score actually mean?

Now let’s get a bit technical. The maximum study score is 50. If 1000 students are enrolled in a subject, only 3 will be awarded a study score of 50. Each year, and for every study, the mean (average) study score is set at 30 with a standard deviation of 7. This means that a score between 23 and 37 shows that you are in the middle range of students (approximately 68% of the population); a score of 38 or more indicates that you are in the top 16%.

Approximately 8% of students will get a score on or above 40, and 2% of students will get a score on or above 45. Basically, you’ve done very well if you get a study score above 40. 

The next step is to scale these raw study scores.

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ACED wishes you the best VCE exam success!

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