NZQA Scholarships, ACT, SAT Subjects, AP's, and IB


I’m a Y12 student taking the IB Diploma.
I am currently taking Math, Physics, Chemistry at HL and History, English A Literature and Spanish Ab Initio at SL for IB, and planning on taking the Calculus, Physics, Chemistry and possibly Statistics Scholarship tests.
I will also be taking the ACT (with essay) in October, Physics, Chemistry, Math 2 SAT Subjects in November, and Biology M and Spanish SAT Subjects in December or early next year.
Also, I am preparing for the Physics (Mechanics and possibly Electricity if I have time), Chemistry and Calculus BC AP exams.

I’m not trying to be arrogant or over-confident, but judging by my performance in past papers and etc, I am pretty confident I will achieve at least a 42 for IB (and for most of my classes, I am ranked first), pass my scholarship exams (aiming for the outstanding though :blush: ), get scores of 780-800 in the SAT Subject tests, a composite of 35 for ACT, and 5’s in my AP’s.

As for my extracurriculars, I am in the Auckland Youth Orchestra - and have been involved in various musical groups representing my school - and plan on trialling for the North Harbour U19 Badminton Rep Team. I may also be volunteering at a church-run programme for children with mental disabilities - helping them out with school work, building their confidence, and just having some fun time with them! Also, I’m not sure if this is of any help at all for my application, but I am a member of Mensa New Zealand.

My goal is to study biomedical engineering at one of the top schools, and I was wondering what schools I may have a chance at getting into with my current grades and extracurriculars! I was thinking UC Berkeley and Imperial College London, but are there any better options for me (or are my dreams just too high)? And one last question - what could I do to improve my chances of getting into these prestigious universities? Thank you so much for your time! :smiley:

Firstly congrats, sounds like your crushing it! Jamie can probably offer the best advice for you. @jamie.beaton (he’ll reply soon)

1 Like


Hi Danni!

Thanks for this detailed summary of current statistics. You mentioned you were trending towards top in most of your classes which is promising. Is this IB score 42 without EE and ToK or before? A major area for improvement will be leadedship and extra-curriculars as badminton, violin, piano and other concert music are some of the most competitive categories. I’m very interested in understand what kind of leadership activities you are aspiring towards over the next 8-10 months.

I appreciate the time you spent summarizing this so feel free to email me at with additional information around IB, leadership, any languages you can speak and any ACT practice test scores so far. Send me also what school you are at. From there, I’ll be able to give you some specific around target schools as this current info isn’t detailed enough just yet. Thanks!