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High achievers 2014: Actions now pave the way to future success

2014-10-29    source from The Age

High achievers have much to celebrate, but it is important to remember that there is much more to achievement, and career satisfaction and life happiness, than a high VCE score.

Today The Age congratulates Victoria\'s highest achievers, the students who gained study scores between 40 and 50 (the top mark) from the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority in VCE subjects offered in 2014.

Students who gained high results should feel proud, not only of their achievements but of their commitment to their  study in the past year.

For many students, gaining high results means they have a good chance of getting into their first-preference course.

However, it is important that we do not overlook the achievements of other VCE students.

Those who have worked to the best of their ability, whatever the result, should also feel proud of their efforts.

It is important to recognise that not all VCE students start from a level playing field.

Studies have found that factors such as intelligence levels, family background, socio-economic status and attitude to education all contribute to how VCE students perform.

Similarly, some schools are better equipped than others. Some are wealthier, in terms of budgets and facilities, than others. Not surprisingly, a high proportion of VCE top achievers come from these schools.

Some students will be disappointed they are not offered a place in their preferred tertiary course. But it is important to remember there are other study and career pathways.

These include accepting an alternative course and then transferring to a preferred course in second year or starting in vocational study and then moving to university (and vice versa).

Other students may decide to defer their study for a year or move straight into the workforce. There is no reason why they can\'t return to study in two, five or even 10 years.

Regardless of their results, it is important that students who are uncertain about their future consult their school\'s VCE or careers counsellor for advice.

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