How to change your uni preferences | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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How to change your uni preferences

How to change your uni your preferences

Once you’ve received your ATAR results, you may want to change your preferences if things didn’t go as planned. Changing your preferences allows you to add, remove or re-order your study choices so regardless if your results are better or worse than expected, you can still adjust your program preferences before offers are made.

Changing preferences is really common, and often students decide to adjust their preferences because they’ve had more time to think about what it is they really want to study now that the stress of Year 12 exams is over. Students may also decide to change preferences because their ATAR results were higher or lower than they anticipated and what’s great is there’s flexibility to make changes after ATAR results are released.

Received your ATAR? What’s next?

When you have your ATAR, you can check it against the selection rank for programs from the previous year. Although ranks can change from year to year, it’s still a great indicator for what to expect for this year’s minimum selection ranks.

If you’ve surprised yourself and received a higher score than you expected, don’t just change your preferences because you’re now eligible for different programs. Stick with the programs that you’re most interested in studying as this will put you on the right path for success!

If your ATAR is only slightly below the selection rank for your preference, keep it in your preference list as the lowest selection rank may move up or down and you may still receive an offer.

If your ATAR is lower than you were hoping, it’s a good idea to refine your preferences to ensure you’re still able to get into a university program. Most programs have pathway options to enable you to transfer into the program of your choice later on.

Chancellor State College Guidance Office, Dominic Towler always reminds his students that they can ‘change preferences three times at no cost, so it’s important to keep one of these free changes available for after they receive their results.’

Get informed

Before changing your preferences, it’s important to get advice to make sure you’re making the right decision. Keep an eye on key dates and entry requirements to make sure you meet change of preference deadlines and are eligible for the upcoming offer round.

Attend an information session, like USC’s ATAR Options Information Session to get all of your questions answered about changing your preferences and pathway options available to you.


Despite USC student, Amy Giles’ initial disappointment about not getting into her first preference, she didn’t let it deter her from achieving her goal of going to university.

‘When my ATAR was released, I was pretty devastated that it wasn’t going to get me into what I initially wanted to study. I thought more about myself and what passions and values I held, and this process led me to the area of psychology and my new hopes to become a Psychology Officer in the army. I decided to take the risk and pursue my newfound curiosity, so I changed my preferences to the Bachelor of Psychology (honours) at the brand-new USC Moreton Bay campus and I couldn’t be happier!'

If you need further information or advice about changing preferences or pathway options available, get in touch with our Student Central team on +61 7 5430 2890 or