This year SATAC will again make offers on 20 December, shortly after SACE and NTCET students receive their year 12 results. But how does the offer round work, and what can you expect?

Last year more than 7500 prospective students received an offer in the late December offer round, and this year we expect that number to be even more.

If you’re a current year 12 student you will likely be focused on your upcoming exams, but you might also be wondering, what happens next?

We’ve put together some frequently asked questions about the 20 December offer round to help demystify the process

Yes, the 20 December offer round is the first offer round for the 2020 admission year that considers all preferences and most courses will make offers in this round. It’s also the first offer round following the release of SACE/NTCET results.

There are some strict quota courses that may not make offers or may only make limited offers in December. These courses will make most of their offers in January.

SATAC will send offers by 5pm on the day. We will send your offer letter by email, and you can also check your offer status by logging into your SATAC application via My Application. You can find out more about offer round dates on the key dates page.

Congratulations! That’s great news. Your first step is to check your offer letter carefully.

If your offer is to your first preference your next step will be to enrol in the course with the institution offering it (you will receive more information from the institution about how to do this), you don’t need to take any further action with SATAC.

If your offer is to a lower preference you will need to respond to SATAC, your offer email will have instructions on how to do this. You cannot be considered for your higher preferences until you respond to your offer.

Some courses also require you to enrol in the course by a certain date to guarantee your place. You must do this even if the offer isn’t to your first preference. Your offer email and letter will provide the information you need if this is the case.

The offer response deadline is the final date to respond to your offer. If you don’t respond by this date you risk losing your place in the course. Some courses also have an enrolment deadline which would be explained in your offer letter.

First of all, if you don't get the offer you want don’t panic! After the 20 December offer round there will be offer rounds throughout January and February 2020, starting with the offer round on 10 January.

The additional offer rounds take into account applications submitted after the equal consideration date, changes of preferences, results that weren't available in December, rejected or deferred offers, and qualifications (such as international qualifications) that may require extra time to assess.

If you do receive an offer but it is to a lower preference, make sure you respond to your offer and your application will be considered again in the 10 January offer round.

If you are concerned that your year 12 results may not be competitive enough to receive an offer to your preferred course, talk to the institution offering the course for advice on the pathways available to you.

If your offer is to your first preference and you change your mind, it is possible to be considered for an offer to another course by changing your preferences.

If you change your preferences your application may be considered again in the offer round on 10 January 2020, but you should be aware that changes of preference after 18 December are not guaranteed equal consideration for selection.  

If your offer is to a lower preference, your higher preferences will be considered again in the 10 January offer round provided you make the appropriate response to your lower preference offer. Your offer email will contain information about how to respond to your offer.

You can change preferences online by logging into your SATAC application via My Application. SATAC can also give you assistance with changing your preferences if you get stuck.

In most cases the answer would be yes. Many courses allow deferment for a period of one or two years, but each institution sets its own rules about deferment. You can find details about the deferment status of individual courses using course search.

Yes, you can change preferences to most courses until midnight on Wednesday 18 December. Some courses with strict closing dates won’t accept changes of preference, see the key dates page for more information.

Yes, you can change your preferences to most courses after the 20 December offer round, however changes of preference after 18 December are no longer guaranteed equal consideration in the selection process. See the key dates page for information about courses with strict closing dates, or check individual course entries for details.

SATAC encourages you to list the courses you are interested in in order of preference, with preference one being the course you most want to study. Use your lower preferences as a “safety net” and list courses you would consider studying if you didn’t get an offer to your first choice.

If your selection rank is below the lowest rank to receive an offer to your first course preference, SATAC will assess your eligibility and rank for your second preference, and if necessary, this process continues until all of your preferences are considered.

The ATAR is a percentile rank that shows how well you performed in year 12 relative to other students in your age group. A selection rank is the rank used to determine how competitive you are relative to other applicants for the same course.

Your selection rank will be based on your ATAR but may also include any adjustment factors you are entitled to, or the results of other selection criteria such as interviews, portfolio presentations or UCAT results.

The lowest selection rank for a course is therefore the minimum year 12 selection rank (equivalent to ATAR plus adjustments) to secure an offer to the course.

The main January offer round is on 10 January 2020. All courses will participate in this offer round.

The selection ranks used in January will not be higher than those used in the 20 December offer round, so applicants are not disadvantaged by the earlier offers. Institutions may lower them depending on how many applicants and places are still available.

You can check your selection rank for each of your course preferences by logging into your SATAC application via My Application.

There will still be opportunities for offers on 10 January, including offers to courses with strict quotas.

For courses where you are guaranteed equal consideration, if you are eligible for an offer and your selection rank is above the lowest rank to receive an offer to the same course in December, there will be no disadvantage to you in January as a result of the earlier offer round.

If you don’t receive an offer by the end of January 2020 then you may be contacted by one of SATAC’s partner institutions to discuss your options or other pathways that may be available to you. You agree to this contact as part of the terms and conditions of application.