Around this time of the year, as year 11’s begin to think about year 12 and what subject to drop, the discussion of ‘scaling’ returns to the surface.
Scaling is the term used to describe the weighting of courses in the HSC and how this affects the overall ATAR. At its most basic, it rewards harder courses (such as the extension subjects, physics and chemistry) and ‘scales down’ simpler subjects – like creative or trade subjects.
I see a lot of students get stressed about this, because they want a good ATAR and they don’t want their subjects to affect them. Often a student will consider dropping Music which they love, in favour of keeping Physics which they hate, because the perception is that keeping physics will ‘scale up’ their ATAR.
But here’s why scaling doesn’t matter.
Scaling is only relevant if you receive the same mark in every subject. So for example, if you got an overall mark of 95 in every subject, then you may get to see the impact of scaling. For most people, this is not going to be the case.
Too many students push themselves through subjects they hate in order to bump up their scaling. But 9 times out of 10, students will always perform better in subjects they enjoy. If you enjoy something, you will work hard at it. If you work hard at it, you’ll get good at it.
Don’t choose a subject just because it ‘scales well’. Choose subjects you enjoy – because there is nothing more true in the HSC than this; hard work gets results. You will find it one thousand times more difficult to work hard at a subject you don’t like or struggle with than to commit that energy to something you are passionate about.Considering a tutor for your child? We can help! We have amazing tutors ready to go that will help your child grow in confidence, love the learning experience and ultimately realise what they are capable of. Learn more here and book their first lesson online today!