So you've got your HSC results, now what?

You've been dreaming of this moment since Year 10. You've done the study, finished your exams and you've been to your formal. Now comes the hard bit (hint: it's not schoolies week!)

It's results time.

Plenty of students will achieve the results they were hoping for. Plenty won't. Whatever your results, the bigger question is now what?

Big picture goals

Many of us spend more time choosing our morning coffee than we do working out what our professional and career goals are. Your goals are unique to you and are your aspirations for your future (the keyword being your). So try and make time for this important choice.

When trying to discover what your goals are our careers counsellors often ask the following questions:

  • What subjects did you enjoy at school?
  • What do you enjoy outside of school? Did you do any extracurricular activities?
  • Do you have a part-time job?
  • What don't you like to do? (This can often be the most telling question!)
  • Pro tip: Try and make sure they are SMART goals; specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely.

    Also recommended is a bit of research. There are plenty of resources out there for you to use.

    Here are a couple to get you started:

  • Career Quiz
  • How to choose a career
  • Careers Counsellors at TAFE NSW
  • Careers Advisory Service
  • While no learning is ever lost, it is an important investment in time and money. We advise checking out the future of work. This website will give you a great idea of what careers will experience the largest growth over the next five to ten years and help you make your decision.

    Study vs Gap Year vs Work

    Do you keep studying, do you join the workforce or do you take a gap year? They are all great choices depending on the goals you have set.

    If you are considering further study, there are plenty of places that can help you achieve your goals. TAFE NSW, university or other registered training organisations have a range of options.

    At TAFE NSW we've just launched TAFE Digital, where you can study over 250 courses online, in your own time, in your own space and at your own pace. You can still choose to study face-to-face, on campus, part-time, full-time or online. Or mix it up with a blended learning delivery.

    You may need a break from study and decide to take a gap year. This can clear your mind and refocus your decision making. You could choose to take a job and begin your career.

    Or you could study online with TAFE Digital, travel and work part-time.

    The point is whatever you decide there are options for you.

    Just keep talking

    Over 70,000 students have just sat for the HSC in 2017. You are not alone. Talk to your friends, talk to your parents, talk to a careers counsellor. Talk to anyone that has the expertise to guide you in the right direction while allowing you to map out your goals and a future that suits you.

    Whatever you decide, learning or work experience is never wasted. If you don't jump into the exact career you want immediately remember there's always this statistic – "when a young person trains or works in one job, they acquire skills for a further thirteen jobs." (FYA research)

    Be whatever you want to be.

    For more information visit

  • Year 13
  • HSC and beyond