Much like the GPA used by many other universities, the Weighted Average Mark (WAM) provides an indication of your overall academic performance here at the University.
Last updated: 04.37pm, 4 November 2021
Academic Board has resolved that the WAM adjustments applied in 2020 will also apply to subjects completed in second half-year 2021 (not subjects completed in first half-year 2021). Find out more below.
What is my Weighted Average Mark (WAM)?
The WAM provides an overall indication of your academic performance in your course. The WAM reflects the numeric mark (eg 45%, 87%) and the number of credit points (eg 25 points) for each subject you complete. It is calculated progressively as your subject results are certified and added in my.unimelb. As it is a weighted average mark, this means that a subject worth 25 points will be weighted double that of a 12.5 point subject in calculating your WAM.
What can the WAM be used for?
Apart from providing you with an indication of how you are performing in your course, the WAM is sometimes used to assess applications for further study, employment and scholarships.
You will need to contact a particular organisation for specific information about whether they use your WAM to assess applications:
- If another university or organisation requires information about how the University of Melbourne calculates the WAM, please refer them to this page.
- If they use a different calculation for selection purposes, they can use the information recorded on your University of Melbourne academic transcript. Academic transcripts include the titles of your enrolled subjects, the credit points of each subject, the results you achieved (eg 83%, H1; 48% N) and a detailed explanation of the grading scheme (eg H1, H2A, H2B).
Where can I find my WAM?
The WAM appears in the following places:
- Academic Transcript
- Australian Higher Education Graduation Statement (AHEGS)
- Statement of Results
- Results page in eStudent.
The WAM will only display for your course if you:
- commenced the course after 1 January 2010
- are currently admitted to your course
- have results entered on your student record.
How is my WAM calculated?
The weighted average mark (WAM) is calculated using this formula:
Sum of (Mark x credit points for subjects)
Sum of (Total credit points for subjects)
For example, a student has completed three subjects. Two are worth 12.5 points and the third is worth 37.5. They attained 76%, 67% and 81% respectively. The resulting calculation would be:
(76x12.5)+(67x12.5)+(81x37.5) = 4825
12.5+12.5+37.5 = 62.5
WAM = 77.200%
Do fail grades affect my WAM?
The percentage mark obtained for a failed subject contributes towards the WAM.
How will my continuing subject contribute to my WAM?
A continuing subject is when a subject is completed across multiple study periods.
If the grade code is 'CNT' (Continuing) and there is no numeric mark provided, the subject will not count toward the WAM. When a continuing subject is completed, a final grade and mark are entered against all parts of the subject. All parts of the continuing subject count toward the WAM.
For example, if you study a subject worth 50 points taught over two semesters with 25 points in each semester, the subject will only be included in your WAM once the final result (including a grade and numeric mark) is confirmed at the end of the second semester. The subject will then be weighted as 50 points in your WAM.
Are there any subjects not included in the WAM?
Subjects are not included in the WAM calculation when:
- no mark has been recorded
- they are marked on a pass/fail basis only
- they have a 'withdrawn' status
- you have been awarded Advanced Standing (credit) for a subject studied at another institution - the subject grade you received at the other institution will not be added to your University of Melbourne WAM.
What can I do if my WAM appears to be incorrect?
If your WAM appears to be incorrect, please first check the WAM calculation by:
- Identifying the subjects that should be included in the WAM (see above for subjects that are not included in the WAM calculation)
- Checking that you are viewing the WAM after all your subject results are recorded in Student
- Using the formula to ensure subjects are weighted correctly
If the calculation still appears wrong after following the steps above, please forward your calculation as an online enquiry with Stop 1.
WAM calculation in second half-year 2021
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Academic Board introduced a revised method for including 2020 subjects in the WAM.
In consideration of concerns about the disruption to study caused by unexpected and prolonged COVID-19 restrictions in Victoria in second half-year 2021, these arrangements will once again apply in second half-year 2021. In 2021 results from second half-year 2021 subjects will not be included in the calculation of a student’s Weighted Average Mark (WAM) unless the mark achieved for the subject was equal to, or higher than, the WAM that the student achieved at the beginning of second half-year 2021.
First half-year 2021 subjects will not be included in the revised calculation and will continue to count towards the normal WAM calculation. See below for further details including advice around year-long subjects.
Resolution on WAM Calculation for second half-year 2021
Second half-year 2021 Subjects and the Calculation of Weighted Average Marks - Academic Board Resolution - made by the President of the Board under the Academic Board Regulation s(7)(1)(b), on 25 August 2021.
Results from the second half-year (SHY), 2021 subjects will not be included in the calculation of a student’s Weighted Average Mark (WAM) unless the mark achieved for the subject is equal to or higher than the WAM the student had achieved prior to SHY 2021.
The revised WAM calculation will apply as follows, noting the following arrangements and exceptions:
- The WAM for programs that comprise 50 points or less in total will be calculated using normal practice, as a benchmark WAM based on prior study in that program cannot be established.
- No SHY 2021 subject will be included in the WAM calculation for a student who has yet to complete 50 points of study in their enrolled program prior to SHY 2021, as a benchmark WAM for the student in that program cannot be established (this applies to students not covered by exception (1) above).
- For Bachelor (Honours) programs, subjects that receive a weighted mark below a student’s entry WAM for that program will be excluded from the WAM calculation. For the avoidance of doubt, a student’s entry WAM, in this context, is the WAM presented by the student to meet the selection resolution for that program, not the minimum WAM required for selection into the program
- All subject scores will be recorded on the transcript. Where the result does not contribute to the WAM, it will be recorded against the code “^”. This code makes it clear that the subject is excluded from the WAM because of the disruptions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
- At the conclusion of their studies, students can request that all results recorded against the COVID-19 code be included in the WAM calculation. Any such subjects will then be coded as per usual practice.
- The revised WAM calculation does not apply to any subjects in Higher Degrees by Research courses.
- Yearlong subjects are exempt from this Resolution, unless otherwise approved by the Dean and reported to the Academic Secretary, and subsequently reported to the Board.
WAM calculation in first half-year 2021
The normal WAM calculation as per the Assessment and Results policy (MPF1326) applied in first half-year 2021. This means that the adjusted WAM calculation applied in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and again in second half-year 2021 in response to the sudden and prolonged reintroduction of restrictions in Victoria, does not apply to any subject completed in first half-year 2021.
See Academic Board Resolutions for the 2020 resolutions.
If you are experiencing difficulties with your academic performance, there are resources and services available to assist:
Calculating the Benchmark WAM
Alternative WAM Calculation 2020 - The benchmark is your WAM at the beginning of 2020. The benchmark WAM is calculated using all subjects undertaken in 2019 and earlier for which you have results. A benchmark is only calculated if you have results for at least 50 points prior to 2020. Read more about WAM Calculation above.
Alternative WAM Calculation SHY 2021 - The benchmark is your WAM prior to SHY 2021. The benchmark WAM is calculated using all subjects undertaken prior to this point for which you have results. A benchmark is only calculated if you have results for at least 50 points prior to SHY 2021. Read more about WAM Calculation above.
Results excluded from your WAM appear on your academic transcript, Australian Higher Education Graduation Statement (AHEGS) and published in my.unimelb. The results show the numeric mark and standard grade. The grade is flagged with a ‘^’ to denote that the result is excluded from the WAM (for example, 75 H2A^). A comment appears on your transcript with information on how the WAM has been calculated. Find out more about the Grading schema.
Information for prospective employers
If you have COVID-19 grades, your academic transcript will include this comment to explain why some grades are flagged with a ‘^’:
‘If a ^ appears after a grade, the % mark recorded for that subject is excluded from the Weighted Average Mark in recognition of the impact of the 2020 COVID-19 Pandemic.’
The comment will also appear on your AHEGS once your degree has been conferred.
3rd parties can visit the University website for official information about the COVID-19 grades and changes to the WAM calculation and the Assessment and Results Policy which explains the ‘^’.
Academic statements, such as an Evidence of Qualification letter, can be ordered and customised to include information on the revised WAM if required by an external organisation. The information that could be included is from this COVID-19 WAM website. A charge applies and these bespoke statements usually take 10-15 days to prepare.
Frequently asked questions about WAM in second half-year 2021 and in 2020
Can I request to have subjects included in my WAM?
Yes. You can request that COVID-19 grades be included in your WAM at the end of your degree. You can request this at the end of your course and prior to graduating. If all of your 2020 and/or second half-year 2021 grades have been excluded from your WAM (e.g. if you did not have a benchmark WAM comprising 50 or more points at the beginning of 2020 or second half-year 2021 respectively), by waiting until the end of your course, you will be able to calculate whether including the COVID-19 grades will increase your WAM.
Once your request is actioned, all your COVID-19 grades (for 2020 and second-half 2021) be changed back to standard grades and included in the WAM calculation.
Note, some course entry requirements may stipulate specific conditions about the inclusion or exclusion of COVID-19 grades in 2020 or second half-year 2021 in determining the WAM to be used for admission. Please continue to check course entry requirements in the Handbook for specific course entry requirements.
How do I request to have subjects included in my WAM?
You can submit the request to have COVID-19 grades included in your WAM online form. If you are completing your course in second half-year 2021, please submit your request by 5pm Friday 26 November 2021 for your grades to be changed before your academic transcript is issued when you complete your course.
Can I select which subjects are included or excluded from my WAM?
No. You can have either all subjects with the COVID-19 grade code (regardless of year*) in your WAM, or none of these subjects included in your WAM. Choosing which subjects to include or exclude is not permitted.
* ie. It’s not possible for subjects with the COVID-19 grade undertaken in 2020 to be included, and for the second-half year 2021 subjects to be excluded (or vice versa).
Are Year Long subjects assessed for WAM exclusion?
Year Long subjects are not eligible to be excluded from the WAM calculation unless otherwise approved by your faculty dean. Contact Stop 1 if you require further information.
What if I am in the first 50 points of a concurrent diploma?
If you are enrolled in a concurrent diploma and have completed at least 50 points in your main degree, results from your degree will be used as a benchmark WAM, whether you have cross-credited them to your diploma or not.
The honours degree I am enrolled in is awarded with an overall award level based on my WAM? Will results that are excluded from my WAM also be excluded when calculating my award level?
Yes, COVID-19 grades excluded from your WAM will also be excluded when calculating your award level.
Why weren’t these arrangements applied to first half-year 2021 subjects?
In 2020, the impacts of the pandemic were sudden and disruptive, with a rapid and unprecedented transition to online teaching and learning for all students, and as such the University of Melbourne introduced a temporary adjustment to the WAM policy.
In first half-year 2021, while the COVID-19 pandemic continued, we did not experience the same level of disruption to teaching and learning activities due to COVID-19 restrictions. The University worked hard to inform students of subject delivery modes and normal WAM arrangements well before the start of semester, giving students increased certainty when planning their studies.
In second half-year 2021, we once again experienced unanticipated and sudden disruptions in the days before Semester 2 started and this extending throughout semester which impacted teaching and learning activities, meaning the conditions from 2020 are once again applicable in second half-year 2021.
How are 2021 winter subjects managed in the second-half year 2021 revised WAM?
Results for winter subjects will be excluded from your WAM if the result obtained for the winter subject is less than your 2021 benchmark WAM.
Winter subjects are those that are listed Handbook as:
- Winter Term, or
- Subjects offered mid-year (eg. June or July intensives)
Need help with your WAM?
Submit an online enquiry to Stop 1 and we'll get back to you within 3–7 business days.