Your QTAC Preferences

With the closing date for early-bird QTAC applications closing at the end of the month, we asked our Associate Dean (Academic) in the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences, Sarah Roberts-Thomson for some tips on completing QTAC preferences. As Associate Dean (Academic), Sarah is responsible for the strategic oversight of all matters relating to teaching and learning, academic and student administration in the faculty.  


Applying to go to university can seem like a daunting task. However, once you narrow down the field of study you’re interested in there are a few things you can do to help make it easier.

You probably already know that you can list up to six preferences. Break it down like this:

  • List your two most preferred courses – these are the ones you really want to study.
  • Then chose two back-up courses – these are courses you want to study if you don’t get into either of your preferred courses.
  • Finally pick two pathway courses – these are courses that are easy to get into that you can use to upgrade into one of your preferred courses.

If you change your mind after you apply, don’t worry – you can change your preferences at any time. Just remember that you get three free changes and then it will cost $35 each change after that. Once you have decided on all the courses you want to apply for, it is time to arrange them in the correct order.

There are two important things to consider:

  • List them in order of their main offer round - It is important to list your preferences in order of their offer round, as QTAC will consider your first preferences in this order. For example, sometimes you can apply for the same course with different start dates. If you have a first preference with a May 2018 offer round (mid-year start date) and a second preference with a January 2018 offer round (February/March start date), the first preference will be considered before the second preference, which may result in no offers in January.
  • List them in OP order - OP cut-offs can change from year to year based on the demand for a program, which means there are no guarantees. However, it is important to remember that you will be given an offer based on the order of your preferences. This means they will be considered in the order that you have listed them and you will be given an offer to your highest eligible preference. For example, you have a predicted OP of 2 and you really want to study Occupational Therapy, if you have listed a number of Occupational Therapy programs from a range of different institutions you will only be assessed on one preference at a time. So if your first preference has the highest OP cut-off of all of your preferences that you are eligible for (e.g. OP 5), it is likely you will be given an offer for that program and therefore you will not be considered for any of your other preferences, even if they have a lower OP (e.g. OP 3) and you receive an OP 2.

Other important tips for your QTAC application:

  • If you have your heart set on a program but you’re worried you won’t get the OP you need, speak to the UQ Admissions team about possible pathway options into that degree.   (07) 3365 2203
  • List an email address that you check regularly and have access to after graduation - sometimes your eq. or high school email address will become inactive after you leave school. This might mean you won’t be notified if you are sent an offer.
  • If you think you might not have internet access during the offer rounds, you can nominate someone to accept offers on your behalf.
  • If you’re confused about the process you can always contact QTAC directly to ask them your questions about the application.


Visit the QTAC wesbite for more information 

Important dates:

Friday 29 September - Early-bird QTAC application closing date 

Friday 8 December - Late QTAC application closing date 

Friday 16 December - QCAA publishes Year 12 results and OPs in student learning accounts on the Student Connect Website

Monday 18 December - UQ OP Results Advice Night 

Tuesday 9 January - Final changes to preferences 

Last updated:
28 September 2017