Curriculum in South Australia

South Australian government schools teach a comprehensive curriculum which is organised into eight essential learning areas. Individual schools offer a broad range of subjects within each of these learning areas:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Arts
  • Design and Technology
  • Health and Physical Education
  • Languages
  • Society and Environment

When a student successfully completes and graduates from high school in South Australia, they will have achieved their South Australian Certificate of Education, or SACE. Read our post about SACE to find out what students need to do to achieve their SACE.

In making your choice of school, consider what subjects you would like to study and other interests you may have such as sports, music, or technology. Since there are too many to mention, here is an example of the range of subjects offered by South Australian government schools:

  • Curriculum in South AustraliaScience and mathematics: robotics, forensic science, nanotechnology, astronomy and viticulture
  • Sports: aquatics (swimming, sailing, kayaking, windsurfing, surf lifesaving), outdoor education (rock climbing, bushwalking, orienteering), football (International, Australian Rules, Touch), softball, baseball, golf, tennis, cricket, basketball and cycling
  • Performing and visual arts: music (instrumental, orchestras, bands, choirs), dance, drama and visual arts
  • Information Technology: multimedia, broadcasting, graphic design, web design and animation

Special Interest Programs

Some high schools offer more specialised programs called Special Interest Programs. These programs are usually a strong focus area of the school and a selection process, or audition, applies to students wishing to enrol in these programs.

  • Curriculum in South AustraliaLanguages: Adelaide High School
  • Music: Brighton Secondary School, Marryatville High School, Woodville High School
  • Performing Arts: Charles Campbell Secondary School
  • Physical Education and Sport: Henley High School, Wirreanda High School
  • Sport (cricket and rowing): Adelaide High School
  • Sport (volleyball): Brighton Secondary School, Heathfield High School
  • Sport (tennis): Marryatville High School, Seaview High School
  • Sport (baseball): Grant High School, Seaton High SchoolCurriculum in South Australia
  • Sport (netball): Blackwood High School
  • Sport (cricket, Australian Rules football, netball): Mt Gambier High School
  • Sport (Rugby League football): Reynella East College
  • Sport (basketball): Pasadena High School
  • Sport (soccer): Underdale High School

Gifted and Talented Education

Curriculum in South AustraliaSome high schools are recognised as centres of Excellence in gifted and talented education and offer the IGNITE program. A number of other high schools offer individualised programs to support students who have demonstrated outstanding ability or potential in a specific area including mathematics and science.

The schools offering the IGNITE program for gifted students are:

Co-curricular clubs and competitions

Schools also offer the opportunity to participate individually or as a team member in any school based activities including music bands, drama productions, sports and adventure activities.

A variety of state, national and international competitions provide a further challenge, testing the abilities, skills and knowledge of students in many areas including academic excellence, sports, enterprise and leadership.

Taking part in co-curricular clubs and competitions helps international students develop new skills and interests and make friends with local students.


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