In the Senior School we aim to prepare girls for successful participation in a society in which knowledge is a key resource and in an economy which is becoming increasingly globalised. Intercultural sensitivity and competence and responsible citizenship will be important factors in their futures.

At Wilderness, we have taken a deliberate and carefully considered decision to concentrate on providing the South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE) curriculum for our senior secondary students. The SACE - an internationally recognised qualification - challenges our students with appropriate academic rigour as well as providing flexibility and responsiveness, which benefit all of our students.

As a SACE school, our teaching staff are highly experienced specialists in this curriculum. They are actively involved as examiners, markers, subject moderators and curriculum writers so are best placed to ensure Wilderness girls have every advantage to achieve their best.

We regularly review our curriculum offering and believe that the SACE offers an advantage to our students. The SACE:

  • is an internationally recognised certificate of school completion accepted at major universities worldwide;
  • offers a comprehensive and balanced curriculum with a broad and diverse range of subjects;
  • does not constrain student choice by prescriptive subject groupings and thus enables students to specialise in areas of interest such as the sciences or humanities in preparation for entry into specific university programs and fields of study both in Australia and overseas;
  • relates classroom experiences to the real world and encourages students to become informed citizens;
  • places an emphasis on students becoming independent and life-long learners, as well as critical and compassionate thinkers;
  • gives all girls the opportunity to develop independent critical research and analytical skills which are so necessary for success in their tertiary studies and also throughout their lives.

The results students receive at the conclusion of Year 12 are converted into an ATAR (Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank). This is the measure by which students are offered positions in the universities and other tertiary institutions. The ATAR is a measure of a student's academic achievement compared with all other students, both SACE and IB, who complete Year 12. When we compare Wilderness girls' results over time, they are consistently placed at the top of the state. Last year over 68% of our Years 12s achieved ATARs over 90 placing them in the top 10% of the country. 45 merits were gained across 16 subjects. Our graduates study in all the South Australian universities, interstate and overseas.

Teachers at Wilderness have high expectations of each student, regardless of her subject combination, and each girl works hard to achieve her personal best. This ethos creates a positive learning environment which encourages each student to develop her talents and abilities in a course which best suits her interests, learning styles and future ambitions. 
We believe the SACE is a contemporary and dynamic curriculum that develops our students' individual talents while enabling all our girls to achieve at the highest level.

We encourage girls to continue to develop their learning strategies so that they can become responsible for their own learning, an essential feature of successful senior secondary and tertiary study; the thinking curriculum, which is implicit in every girl's course of study includes the development of higher order thinking skills and learning how to interrogate and evaluate information.

We aim to foster a social conscience and sense of personal autonomy in each of our students; girls work side by side with other girls in ways which enhance the learning experience for all. They not only learn to take responsibility for their own learning but participate with, and help, others.

Basically, we want to help students to acquire the skills and personal attributes that will put them in charge of their future. Our understanding of how girls learn best enables us to employ the most effective teaching methodologies. We have a firm commitment to the liberating qualities of education which include the acquisition of the vision and capacity to cope with change. In these Senior School years, girls start to make the academic choices which will set the scene for their future careers.

Senior School Subjects

In the Senior School years girls are further encouraged to develop strategies that will enable them to take responsibility for their own learning.


All girls are encouraged to undertake leadership roles throughout their time at Wilderness School. The academic program is at the heart of our daily activities, but life at Wilderness offers much more.