do US universities prefer IB to ATAR (Australian )
There is no major ‘preference’ for US universities in their analysis of a candidate from Australia.
One thing you can count on is the International Baccalaureate score /45 is instantly recognisable and comparable among candidates from all over the world. The ATAR is less so, and only allows for analysis among fellow AU applicants that actually took the HSC, VCE etc. The ATAR can also be impacted by the school or cohort of an applicant which can skew the academic ability of a student (in a good or bad way).
Overall, US universities have dealt with both curricula when assessing Australian applicants, and for the very top schools you can always see a trend in what IB scores & ATARs are required to get into those institutions. If you are deciding on which curriculum to take, each has their own distinct differences in format which some students may prefer. The stricter IB subject areas and the added Extended Essay / TOK are not for everyone.
I concur! The US knows very quickly what an IB score report looks like because we have plenty of IB schools here. Most schools, however, are going to be at least somewhat familiar with Australia’s curricular options (believe it or not, there are lots of Aussies who have come to college in America! ), and they will take a look at how your personal academic data fits within those expectations.
If you are in a position to pick your school and therefore your curriculum, do the option that seems like it will be best for you, and don’t worry too much about what the US knows or doesn’t know. Ultimately, you want to achieve at a high level in the right surroundings for YOUR academic and intellectual growth, whether that is ATAR or IB or any other option.