What Your Study Scores Actually Mean (VCE)

What Your Study Scores Actually Mean (VCE)

This article has been written by Lydia McClelland, a VCE French, Music Theory, Literature & VCE English Tutor at Learnmate. If you’re interested in private tutoring from Lydia then please check out her page here.


Is it true that only study scores over 40 are ‘good’? While a study score over 40 is traditionally recognised by publication in the newspaper, let’s break down what your scores actually mean.

Firstly, study scores are a comparative measure of achievement in a subject. This means that rather than a grade, they actually represent your performance in comparison to every other student who took the same subject. This is why scaling exists, an attempt to account for higher or lower levels of competition in some subjects.

If you take a look at VCAA’s webpages explaining study scores, you can get an idea of where your study score places you. Simply, the mean study score of every subject is 30, with a maximum of 50. In subjects where there are over 1,000 students enrolled, 93% of students score over 20; 53% of students score over 30; only 15% over 38; 9% over 40 and 2% over 45. Thus, the significant middle-range lies between scores of 23 – 37, according to VCAA.

As a tutor, one of the most common goals I hear from my students is, “I just want to get a 40…” However, what is worth remembering is that this means you will need to outperform 91% of the state in that subject, which is no mean feat! Ultimately, what counts is the effort you put in. Everyone begins Year 12 from different starting points, and for some, scoring over 30 in a subject is a significant achievement. As everyone receives their results in little over a week from now, I want my students to remember that whatever they score, I am still so proud of the efforts they have put in this year.

If you loved this article, you will LOVE all of our other articles, such as: 3 Facts You Should Know About Your ATAR, Tips for Supporting Your Child in Year 11 and 12! and Important Things to Remember About Course Preferences

 – LearnMate Tutoring.


LearnMate is Australia’s leading tutoring agency offering private lessons in all primary & high school subjects including English, maths, science, humanities, foreign languages, and so much more. Our mission is simple: to provide professional, engaging and enthusiastic tutors to students, while also ensuring the student feels empowered and confident during their assessments! Ultimately, our goal is to empower students all over Australia to achieve amazing results and make their dreams come true!

LearnMate provides you with tailored, one-on-one lessons for tutoring in a variety of suburbs in MelbourneSydneyGeelongBrisbaneHobartCanberraPerth & Adelaide! With hundreds of tutors on the LearnMate platform, you’re bound to find someone local for any primary or high school year level! You can choose to have lessons in-person or online – whatever is easiest for you!

What Your Study Scores Actually Mean (VCE)