Sarah Armstrong has not been schooled in the traditional way.
She has not latterly attended a Goulburn secondary or TAFE campus, nor boarded at one of many options in NSW or the ACT.
Instead she elected to be home-schooled from Year 8 onwards.
“This was my choice,” she said with a grin that showed satisfaction with the success that transpired.
“I asked my parents if I could do home-schooling and they agreed.”
Stephen and Karen Armstrong enrolled their daughter in the Cambridge Pathway international education program.
Last Thursday evening, Sarah received her examination results with two A levels and an A*. This gave her a converted score of 380 in 360, which is above the possible maximum for the NSW Higher School Certificate, or an ATAR of 99.95.
The timing meant she missed the first round of university entrance offers, which came out on January 6. Sarah had been looking to get into medical science at the University of Wollongong or ANU.
But on Friday, January 11, Sarah accepted an early second round offer at the ANU for a bachelor’s degree in health science.
Sarah’s initial goal was to become a teacher. “I wanted to do a job where I could help children achieve their potential,” she said.
But “when Dad had his back operation, I met Professor Ralph Mobbs and Dr Andrew Lennox and was fascinated with the medical procedures,” she continued.
“Seeing Dad’s x-rays, their work fascinated me, and they encouraged me to look at medical studies as a possible career.
“I feel like I have been blessed and guided in this path.”
Sarah sat her exams, some 14 in all, at the British Council in Edgecliff, Sydney. Her top three subjects were English language, literature, and history.
The English language studies included passages and commentary directed writing, text and conversation, text analysis, and lingual analysis of transcripts.
Her language topics included spoken language and social groups, language acquisition by children and teens, and using research from various specialist in the field. Her studies included Shakespeare’s Richard II and Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights, as well as poetry and prose.
History was the third subject that counted to her ATAR equivalence. She pursued an in-depth interest in the Holocaust, with which she has a family history interest, too.
Sarah also plays tennis with Dave Ridland’s squad and is a member of a Catholic girls’ youth group in Sydney, where traditional beliefs are valued.
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