Horsham College dux Iman Ali (98.20 ATAR) was surprised by her ATAR, but with a study score of 44 for mathematics methods in 2022, she had a solid foundation for success. That didn't stop the nerves from setting in on Monday morning. "I got up at 7.30am to see my score, but I couldn't press the button for 15 minutes," she said. "I was too nervous. I was a bit surprised (with my ATAR) but it was near my target." With an ATAR that puts her in the top two per cent of her cohort, Iman should get to pick which course she studies. "I want to study advanced mathematics with honors at the University of New South Wales," she said. "I want to thank Mr Gutteridge; he inspired a lot of physics and made me want to do well." Warracknabeal Secondary College dux Ellen Bish (96.90 ATAR) was lost for words when she received her score; however, she isn't letting the good news go to her head. "I was very pleased with the results, but it was pretty much business as usual afterwards," she said. "Honestly, I was surprised to get such a high score. I plan to get into a science and engineering course at Monash Uni. Ellen received a study score of 46 in Chemistry and similar high scores in English and mathematics, something she attributes to a balanced workload and knowing when to take a break. "When things were too stressful, I would take the dog for a walk," she said. "I also took a lot of naps during the study period." In Wycheproof, Kate Thompson (97.85 ATAR) learned she was dux of her school, Wycheproof P12 College when she was presented with a cake bearing her entry score written in icing. The school's youngest students asked if it was her age. "We are hoping the oldest of our students acts as a source of inspiration for our youngest of students," a Wycheproof P12 College spokesperson said. More than 45,000 students have received an ATAR with an average rank of 69.31 for the 2023 cohort, a slight drop from 70.33 in 2022. And 39 students achieved the highest possible rank of 99.95. The ATAR is not a score out of 100 but a student's ranking compared to others. It's calculated to allow universities and tertiary institutions to compare students' achievement. The ATAR is calculated by adding the Victorian Tertiary Admission Centre (VTAC) scaled scores of the students' English subjects with their next three best-performing subjects and 10 per cent of the fifth and sixth best-performing subjects if available. Victorian Premier Jacinta Allan said she was thinking of the 57,601 students waiting for their VCE results. "Your VCE is a big deal, but it's not everything. Trust me: I got a B in politics," she said in a Facebook post. "Your results today don't have to define your future, so if you didn't get what you'd hoped for, don't panic. "Whether it's uni or TAFE or something else entirely, there are so many doors open to you, no matter what. "Above all, I really hope you're proud of what you've achieved this year. I am." Deputy Premier and Education Minister Ben Carroll congratulated all secondary school graduates. "Remember this is just one step in your life and educational journey and that there are all kinds of options available to you," he said on X. "A big thank you to all the teachers and families for their support!" Year 12 students can find their scores through the VCE Results and ATAR website online or app. After receiving their results, students have until 4pm on December 13 to update their tertiary course preferences if they are applying. The first round of tertiary offers is in December, followed by further rounds in January and February.