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April 22, 2021, 08:45:52 am

Author Topic: Question about academic difficulty at uni  (Read 670 times)  Share 

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Question about academic difficulty at uni
« on: January 13, 2021, 06:46:02 pm »
Summary: Did really well in HSC this year, want to continue it. Want 85+ WAM. Is this unrealistic or attainable? Trying to get an idea of the academic environment at uni, bc right now I have no idea.

Hi guys, I'm a 2020 HSC grad who will be going to UNSW to do eng/com this year. I mostly slacked off during the junior years, but I knew that I was nowhere near my potential and made it a mission of mine to achieve my potential in year 12. Having completed that, I really enjoyed learning and pushing myself to the best I can be. I also enjoyed doing really well and being at the top of my school. I still want to be at the top during uni. After some research, I think this is the HD WAM category.

However, I know uni is a completely different environment, with different teaching styles, different content, and different students. Also, I don't want to damage my mental and physical health in doing so. Ultimately, my question is: how achievable is my goal? Is it unrealistic, or can it be attained with hard work? Is the reason for a minimum amount of people crossing that 85 threshold simply a lack of time spent on academics, or is it because the work is genuinely difficult? I have no idea about the academic environment at uni, so if someone could please shed some light on that, I'd really appreciate it!

Thank you very much!


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Re: Question about academic difficulty at uni
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2021, 07:04:26 pm »
85+ is achievable. I wouldn't say it is super common to be scoring that highly (although AN results threads will say the opposite).

At uni, not everyone is really trying to ace everything so a lot of people will be happy to go through with marks in the 70s/80s which is fine. A lot of people also have other commitments such as work which means they can't really put in the same amount of time as they did in high school. Another difference would be the sheer volume of the content that you learn in a semester.

In short, your goal is definitely achievable, realistic and can be attained. 


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Re: Question about academic difficulty at uni
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2021, 07:33:32 pm »
Want to second Sine's comments re: having to balance life with uni. I did really well in HS too but found uni to be quite different and not something where you can just rely on being academically gifted to breeze through. I finished uni with a WAM in the high 70s and felt much prouder of that and worked much harder for it than I did for my ATAR (which was 97, I think?) or indeed any grades in HS.

Suddenly in uni I found myself being fully responsible for everything, with no reminders about due dates, and less guidance on how to do things. Because I moved out, I also had to work so I could afford to live, and had to do a lot of non-uni life tasks which take up time. I think another reason grades change is the style of learning is often quite different too, and it's a huge adjustment when you go from 6 years of one system to then being thrown in the deep end! Plus, for me, I found my goals shifted away from the academic excellence I wanted in HS (don't get me wrong, I wanted to do very well, but it was no longer the end of the world for me) and more towards other stuff in life.

Long story short, it's not unachievable, but be prepared to work hard (harder than in HS) for it. Good luck!

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Re: Question about academic difficulty at uni
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2021, 12:20:18 am »
It's all about being top of the curve. So if you have a super big cohort with however many people, you'll need to be in the top 10-20% to get a 70-85.

If you think you can make it, go for it!
But if you don't at first, that's also totally cool cause you can work your way up slowly. It's a long time at uni, so you can take your time improving yourself too!  ;)
ATAR: 89.55
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