The difference between HSC exams and the UNSW Law Admission Test (LAT) is that the HSC tests your knowledge in key subject areas, and the LAT looks at your aptitudes and skills that are critical to success in our Law program and will make you a well-rounded law student.
Why is it important to be well-rounded? UNSW Law has a strong ethos of justice for all. We nurture sharp thinkers through immersive experiences, so you’ll be equipped to debate future challenges. We believe that well-rounded students become passionate advocates for the betterment of society.
The LAT assesses your critical thinking and analytical skills, problem-solving and ability to organise and express ideas. These skills are crucial to studying law at UNSW and excelling in your future legal career. Your ATAR alone simply can’t tell us enough, and that’s why you need a LAT score and an ATAR (or equivalent) to study with us. These two components provide us with a more rounded view of your capabilities as a future UNSW Law student.
Do you use the 'percentile' or 'LAT Score' in the selection process?
On your statement of results you will see a percentile and a LAT score. Your percentile rank is not used to assess you for admission to UNSW Law; your LAT score is what we will combine with your academic results in the selection process.
A percentile rank indicates how you performed in relation to all other candidates who sat the LAT in the same year. For example, a percentile of 42 indicates that your overall LAT score is equal to, or better than, that of 42% of candidates who sat the LAT in the same year as you.
How do I know if I have passed or failed?
There is no pass or fail mark for the LAT. We often receive enquiries from students when the LAT results are released as they are worried that their LAT score was much lower than they expected. Because entry to UNSW Law is so competitive students who sit the LAT and who are hoping for admission are often used to getting results at school in the 90s, so when they receive a LAT score of 65 or 70 they are, understandably, upset and confused.
As the LAT was attempted by a very small subset of all students, and this subset is likely to be made up of very high achievers to begin with, LAT scores should not be viewed in the same way as a result for an HSC course. A score of 70 or 80 or 90 in LAT is not like an HSC mark of 70 or 80 or 90. The median LAT score for 2020 entry was 77. UNSW Law determines the lowest acceptable score from year to year and this will vary depending on the applicant pool.
Can I appeal a test result?
Each LAT writing piece has been examined and marked by two expert assessors and results are only released after careful calculation and checking. LAT results are final and no appeals will be allowed.
How long will my LAT result be valid for?
Your LAT result will be valid for two years. For example, if you sat the LAT while you were in Year 11 in 2019, your LAT result will be valid for your application for Law in 2021.
What results will I need to be competitive for an offer?
This will depend on the applicant pool and the strength of applicants’ academic qualifications/LAT performance, so we won’t know exactly what’s required until we have all applicants’ results. Law’s entry requirements fluctuate slightly year-to-year.
It’s likely that requirements for 2021 entry to Law will be similar to entry in 2020 where the following results were required for 2020 admission:
- 2020 Lowest Selection Rank*: 96.00
- 2020 Median Selection Rank*: 98.5
- 2020 Median LAT Score: 77
*Selection Rank = ATAR + Adjustment Factors. The 2020 Lowest ATAR was 88.15 and Median ATAR was 98.10.
I sat the LAT in 2019 and 2020, so I have two different registration numbers. Which one should I include in my UAC application?
When you apply through UAC you should enter your most recent LAT registration number. Both LAT registration numbers are linked to your ACER account. ACER and UNSW have developed procedures to ensure both results will be considered for applicants who have sat the LAT more than once. We will use your highest LAT score in the admission process.
When will UNSW make offers for 2021?
We plan to make the majority of our offers in December Round 2 on Wednesday 23 December and you can change your preferences until midnight 19 December.