For parents: How to support students receiving results

December 12, 2022Learnmate
📝 Across Australia, Year 12 students are starting to receive their Australian Tertiary Admissions Rankings (or ATAR) and it is likely that students are starting to feel a sense of stress and anxiety. Rest assured, this is completely normal. See below a timetable for the release of results by State:
Year 12 Release Dates 2022
  • VCE: Monday, 12 December 2022
  • TCE: Wednesday, 14 December 2022
  • HSC: Thursday, 15 December 2022
  • QCE: Friday, 16 December 2022
  • SACE: Monday, 19 December 2022
  • WACE: Monday, 19 December 2022
As a parent, you will have seen first hand how challenging this year has been for your child or children; from the hours and effort they put in, to the relentless determination, energy and resilience they have displayed to achieve their potential. It is reasonable to over-emphasise or feel like their future depends on four digits. Accordingly, it is important as a parent to offer perspective and be a reassuring presence to them during this daunting and exciting time, regardless of the ATAR result they receive. The team at Learnmate have been in this position before - waiting for the moment to receive our ATAR / Year 12 results and we have rounded up some of our best tips based on our lived experience and what helped us get through.

Tip 1: What they feel is justified

Some students will be ecstatic, some will be measured and others will be frustrated. Perhaps not every teen will be running to their parents expounding their ATAR results. For some, they will have achieved and surpassed their goal, for others disappointment may follow. There is a lot that your child may need to process before they share this news with you or afterwards. Give them time to process their achievements then find the right time to connect. Validate how they’re feeling, acknowledge the effort they put into year 12 and remind them that you're proud at how they have carried themselves all year. For those who are excited and share their results with you, it’s important that you enjoy and feel the excitement too! After all, their milestone is also recognition of the hardwork you have put in to get your child through 13 years of school. It is a big parental achievement!

Tip 2: Support and guide your child’s decision

Your child may have his or her heart set on a dream course or university, which may or may not align to where you would go or what you would do. As much as you might want to help set them on the right track or make a particular choice about their future, they must ultimately decide and own this decision. When your child sets their degree and university preferences, take this opportunity to learn why these in particular are of interest to them and let them know that you’ll support them in considering and deciding on their options. The best role for you to play here is as a guide. Make sure they have all the relevant facts and information to make their decision, whether that's career pathways, university rankings, talking to alumni who have been there and done that. Guide them through their thinking to ensure that the decision they do eventually make is informed one.

Tip 3: Help uncover alternative courses or pathways

If your child does not achieve the ATAR they need to go directly into the university course they want (or does not want to go to university at all), there are alternatives you can explore. Fortunately, universities are often willing to assist students in determining what’s possible for them. Your child can book in-person or phone consultations to learn about different career pathways if they didn’t receive the ATAR they need. Australia is known for having an excellent range of universities and courses. We have included a list of some popular universities with links to their course handbooks below. If a university degree is either not what your child is after, or if they didn’t satisfy the entry requirements they needed, consider alternate courses and training. Universities and online training organisations are now offering a wide range of ‘micro-credentials’ that allow students to pursue certificates and training in specific skills and areas. A good starting place to find micro-credential training courses is on university websites but you can always try Google as well. After a year working at 110%, it is not uncommon for students to take a gap year to rejuvenate and/or determine exactly what career they are interested in pursuing. Taking a year off may seem like a big deal, but it is better to spend a year working out what you are passionate about than 3+ years studying and years in a job to come to the same conclusion.

Bonus Tip: Work Experience & Earning an income

Since 2015, Learnmate has supported thousands of tutors - many of whom joined as high school graduates - to find students to tutor the subjects they excelled in. If your child excelled in a particular subject(s) or overall, we recommend they consider becoming a tutor to help the next cohort replicate their success. There are plenty of great reasons to become a tutor, including to leverage the value of their existing knowledge and skills, gaining work experience and earning an income. As a tutor on Learnmate, tutors can choose to teach online, in person, or both. They can choose where and when they want to teach, how they want to adapt classes to their specific student's requirements and how much they want to charge each hour. It’s an amazing platform and community to help start their professional development and capitalise on their recent academic successes. To learn more about tutoring with Learnmate, visit
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