Inter-subject scaling formula is finalised

Education Minister Grace Grace today corrected the public record and confirmed that the formula being used to balance the grades achieved by senior high school students across different subjects is finalised.

“I want to be crystal clear. The inter-subject scaling formula has absolutely been finalised,” Ms Grace said in response to misleading media reports today.

“As scaling is based on actual subject achievement data, it will not be possible to provide scaled subject data until 2020 when the first Queensland students qualify for an Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) in the new system.

“In fact, the Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) itself makes it clear in the public material on its website that it will not be possible to know before December 2020 how individual subjects will scale.

“However, the formula has been finalised.”

Scaling simply allows for performances to be compared across all subjects, and then only for the purposes of including these in the calculation of a student’s ATAR. The student’s ranking relative to other students in their subjects does not change.

Ms Grace said QTAC and the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) had comprehensively engaged with students, parents and schools during 2018 about inter-scaling. Advice is available on the QTAC website and more advice will be provided during 2019.

“Comments made by LNP leader Deb Frecklington demonstrate just how little she knows about the topic,” Ms Grace said.

“Quite frankly, she needs to do her homework before she starts making comments on topics she clearly doesn’t understand. To do so has the potential to confuse students and parents.

“Students should choose subjects they enjoy, think they will do well in and that are pre-requisites for tertiary courses they will be seeking entry to or other pathways they are interested in pursuing after high school.”

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