Gifted and Talented Program

Gifted and Talented Program

What is the Gifted and Talented Program?

The Gifted and Talented program is the Australian Department of Education initiative to provide stimulating and challenging academic learning to exceptional children who outperform their peers of the same age.

The curriculum is specifically designed to provide these children with the environment they require for the best development of their academic capabilities. The courses include language programs, arts programs, and academic programs that help the children engage in intellectual, critical, and advanced thinking skills.

The programs are offered at several public schools, and online programs are available for country students.

Who is Considered Gifted and Talented?

This program caters to the students who regularly outperform their cohort. These children have exceptional learning abilities and can master new skills at a fast rate. Also, they are very creative and have a well-developed understanding and connection-making skills.

They are curious little souls with great empathy and social skills. They follow instructions and complete tasks considered complicated for their age. These children often have advanced language skills. All these qualities distinguish gifted and talented children from their peers.

Which Schools Offer This Program?

The gifted and talented program is offered at about 24 elite public schools, regional schools, and an arts college. New schools to offer the program are selected on a different basis. These programs are also offered online to accommodate as many students as possible. Perth Modern School offers a gifted and talented program based on the Academic Selective Entrance Test (ASET).

In addition to the school, John Curtin College of Art provides the gifted students selectively curated arts and media courses. Students from Western Australia can take the program at Bunbury Senior High School or Albany Senior High School, City Beach Residential College, and Albany Residential College.

How Can You Get Into The Program?

To get into the program, the candidates need to satisfy specific geographical criteria. The applicant must be an Australian or a New Zealand citizen. They must also exhibit the qualities listed above that make them different from their peers.

The entrance exam for the program is called ASET, and it consists of 4 parts. It includes reading comprehension, communicating ideas in writing, quantitative reasoning, and abstract reasoning. The test aims to evaluate all reading, writing, cognition, and reasoning skills of the students and is used to test potential rather than acquired information.

Sample Test For ASET

The entrance exam for the gifted and talented program doesn’t test the textbook knowledge of the applicants. It is focused on evaluating the critical skills and hidden potentials of the applicant. The Department of Education does not recommend any preparation methods or material for the test. However, a sample test of ASET can be downloaded from the website to get an idea about the format and style of the ASET.


Gifted and talented is a wonderful program and it offers a lot of opportunities for children around the globe. Make sure you check out this opportunity so you can do better things with your life.

How to Do a Literature Close Reading?

How to Do a Literature Close Reading?

When it comes to literature, close reading is a technique that helps you understand and master the text in a better way. In other words, it is the art of looking very close within the lines, phrases, and words and understanding the whys of them.

So, here is the step-by-step process of how to do a close reading.

Begin With Annotation 

The first step to start your close read journey is to annotate. It is the process of highlighting and underlying the material that seems important or has a deeper meaning to it or offers insights towards a better understanding of the overall text. The key to this technique is to rely on the hard copy of the text. It will help you connect with the text near almost no electronic screen or e-book.

Make Notes as You go! 

Another thing you should do to understand the text better is to make side notes. The insights of these notes should come from the textual observation and your objective response to the material. For example, what was the first thing you observed that struck you? What are its elements? Is it love, suspense, or revolution? Jot everything down. It will help you draw logical conclusions about the text without even understanding the background.

Establish Patterns of Similarities and Differences 

Another step in close reading is to establish the patterns in the text. Is there a repetition of the same types of the word? Are the sentence structures rhyming or repetitive? What is the structuring in the paragraphs? What kinds of word are used to represent a particular situation? All of these questions can help determine the patterns within the sections as well as sentences. It is an essential step in literature analysis as it can represent the crucial details.

Observe at the Micro-Level 

Observation at a micro level can help you understand the crux of the whole content. Look out for the syntax, pauses, rhetorical devices, sounds, imagery, and tone of the text. For example, if the sentences are short or long? What does the text sound like? Is it harsh or represent turmoil, or is it calm? Do you feel something is missing? Did the writer use analogies or symbolism?

Question the Whys of Everything 

The last and the most important thing is reflecting into the f it. Why does the text use certain words? Why did the writer miss out on details that should be talked about? These questions will help you reflect on all the observations made during the reading up of the passage.


 Literature close reading is not rocket science however without the perfect strategy it is not possible to get the gist of it. While doing the literature close reading follow the above-mentioned points to have a rejuvenating experience.


How to Prepare for IELTS Exam?

How to Prepare for IELTS exam

The name ‘IELTS’ scares many students whose aspirations are to land a dream job or study in a foreign land. To get a great score in IELTS, one needs to put in a lot of hard work if not smart work. You need a strategy if you are preparing for something new, be it an exam or something else.

Here are 5 simple tips on how to Prepare for the IELTS exam.

1. Power of a Practise Exam

The best way to start IELTS preparation is to take a practice exam and assess where you are. There are a number of websites that offer free practise tests but we suggest you take the test from the British council website. When you take the test, do it in the exam standards.

Take the listening and reading test as well, check the score and make a note on where you should improve. Make sure you take these exams with a timer. It is better to practise speaking and listening with a teacher or a friend so that you get proper feedback.

2. Daily Goal

Studying consistently every day is the key to crack IELTS. Draft a daily study plan and follow it. Make sure you study at least 2 hours per day, spend equal time on speaking, writing and listening. If not, analyse where you are weak and spend more time on that.

You can download an app to track your time or a daily planner template from google to check your progress.

3. English is the Key

Whether you are a native speaker or not, you have to improve your English, this is an exam to check your English skills after all. First thing you should do to improve the language is to think in this language, and also speak in English with your friends, family and others. Bluntly put, use English in your daily life as much as possible.

There are other effective ways to boost your English skills, listen to podcasts, read newspapers daily, listen to people with a native accent talking in shows or movies and lastly, find a teacher who can guide you with the language’s intricacies.

4. Choose Study Materials Wisely

There are many resources available on the internet, some are good but most resources aren’t reliable. Those who prepare IELTS for the first time will feel overwhelmed by the tips, study plans and materials available. Always go for authentic sources, Cambridge website or the British Council provides you past exam papers with answer keys. Practise it.

English Collocations in Use, English Vocabulary in Use, The Official Cambridge Guide to IELTS are some useful books published by Cambridge.

5. Focus on Writing

Each section is equally important to crack IELTS, however, a low score in writing can seriously affect your band score. Not that only, compared to writing, listening and reading takes a lot of time to master it.

Either it’s task 1 or task 2 writing in the IELTS exam, your vocabulary must be improved. Learn new words, collocations and it’s better to use phrases in your answers.

You will easily miss noticing grammar errors and other mistakes in your writing. That’s why it is wise to get a teacher. You need someone to give you constant feedback throughout the process.


Yes, IELTS is a very difficult exam to crack but it’s not impossible. Any exam can be cracked easily, just keep practising. Take as many as mock tests as possible. Do not panic, give your best shot. Good Luck.

To know more about IELTS exam and tutoring, click here

Share these useful tips to students who are preparing for their IELTS exam.


What is the stat test?

The STAT test is also known as the Special Tertiary Admissions Test, which allows universities to assess whether you are capable of attending and succeeding at university.

The test is suitable for people such as the following: 

  1. Mature-age applicants who don’t have a recent or standard Year 12 qualification
  2. Applicants who completed their previous studies outside Australia
  3. Applicants who did not gain a satisfactory ATAR (for certain courses and universities)

The STAT test is your typical aptitude test that evaluates verbal and quantitative reasoning. Specific curriculum knowledge is not required to be able to pass. In other words, you cannot study “content” for the test, just concepts. 

There are two different STAT tests that you will be required to complete:

  1. STAT Multiple Choice test
  2. STAT Written English test


Requirements vary from state to state within Australia. Individual institutions set their own admission requirements. You will need to refer to the university of choice. 


Candidates should check with the institution to which they are applying to assess whether you are eligible as a stat student. As a general rule, an applicant must be 18 years or over by a certain date in the year of admissions to use STAT results in their application but there may be extenuating circumstances.


Refer to the current university course guide to see what the admission requirements are for that particular university. They are the only people that can advise if they will accept STAT results and which test(s) are required (eg Multiple Choice only or Multiple Choice and Written English).


Candidates may only sit the STAT test once per test cycle. This runs from 15 April to 14 April of the following year. 


The STAT Written English requires written responses to two themes. Four comments (prompts) will be given for the students to respond to. 

The test will offer the following directions to candidates:


  • There are two parts to this test, and four comments are offered for each part. You are required to produce two pieces of writing − one in response to a comment from Part A, and one in response to a comment from Part B.
  • Part A is a more formal public affairs issue that invites argument. Part B is a less formal topic that invites more personal reflection.
  • One hour is allocated for this test, with an additional five minutes reading time.
  • Your responses to the essay comments are written directly on the test paper. You should write your essays neatly and legibly in pen.
  • Circle the comment you are responding to. Do not try to address all of the other comments
  • Give each piece of writing a title that will help orient a reader to the approach you are taking.

The following themes and comments indicate the kind of stimulus material that will be offered in this test



  1. Technology has a destablising effect on humans and should be used with caution.
  2. Technology presents humanity with the greatest opportunity ever known to man. 
  3. Too much of technological advancement is focused on greed rather than on good. 
  4. If we can provide all of humanity with the tools and technology, we will be able to solve the world’s biggest problems. 


  1. Family is the most important part of our lives because it gives us our grounding and stability in life.
  2. Individuals should be able to decide whether they spend time with their family or take their personal space. 
  3. It is important to make our own space in the world rather than fall into the same patterns as our family. 
  4. Having boundaries in our life is the most important thing we can do for our mental health. 

Genre Conventions For Atar Students

Genre Conventions For Atar Students

What are genre conventions?

All of the books and films you study have different elements, themes and some unique features. Each genre has a set of elements that will distinguish them from other genres. See our guide below:

Adventure:A heroic protagonistA journey or questUnusual locationsSense of danger An injustice
Bildungsroman:A struggle for identityA societal conflictA loss of innocenceA journeyMaturity
Comedy:SubstanceExpression and communicationThe originality of humourTiming and rhythmIntelligent writingSetting
Crime:ConflictTime(Unfolding the text within a tight time frame)Foreshadowing, atmosphere
and mood
High stakesContract with the reader.Strong charactersOther limitsRed herrings

Government controlEnvironmental
Technological controlSurvivalLoss of individualism.The totalitarian stateThe use of propaganda
Fantasy:A magic systemA well-developed settingA cast of complex charactersA central conflictA power structure/system
of government
Horror:FearSurpriseSuspenseMysterySpoilersCreepy, crawly things.Scary places
Magical Realism:Fantastical elementsReal-world settingAuthorial reticencePlenitudeHybridityMetafictionHeightened awareness
of mystery
Political critique
Realist Literature:Realistic characters and settingPlausible plotReal dialects of the areaCharacter development important.Importance in depicting
social class
Comprehensive detail
about everyday occurrences
Science Fiction:Time travelTeleportationMind control, telepathy,
and telekinesis
Extraterrestrial lifeformsSpace travelInterplanetaryParallel universes
Western:CowboysSheriffsNative AmericansReferences to the
American Civil War
Bad guys like criminals,
outlaws, or bandits
Descriptions of wilderness
and vast landscapes

The Transition From Year 6 to Year 7

The Transition From Year 6 to Year 7

Waking up on the first day of year seven can be a very daunting experience. There are many different challenges the young people face in high school nowadays including but not limited to cyber bullying, issues with resilience, anxiety and depression and myriad others.

Many of your child’s subjects will change and adapt from a primary school curriculum to high school curriculum. The English curriculum in the transition from primary school to high school changes, however many of those foundational skills will still be tested. Students must be able to use grammar, punctuation, spelling, diction, syntax and many of the other language devices that make our writing soar.

When you are looking at helping your child transition from Year 6 to Year seven and studying English there are a few things that you need to know.

1. Find Your Reading Mojo

There is nothing worse than coming to school on the first day of year seven and not knowing what is going on. Usually your school will give you your booklist in advance of going into year seven and all of the required reading will be on that booklist. This gives your child a chance to get a head start on any of the reading that they will need to do during the year. If not, there are plenty of other options available to students but the most important thing is that they start reading as soon as possible.

Reading is the one skill that you can’t just pick up in your 11 and be really, really good at it. Many of my students wish that they had started reading earlier and many of my parents just don’t know how to make their child read. The biggest thing about choosing a book in the transition from year 6 to 7 is helping your child choose coming-of-age stories to help them navigate this difficult period in their lives. 

2. Learn Your Grammar and Punctuation

There is nothing that a high school teacher dislikes more and students who do not have the basic grasp of English grammar and punctuation. Over the term break, have your child do some simple activities on commas, possessive, apostrophes, contractions, plurals and capital letters and how to structure a good sentence.

There are many sites online that give simple activities for year six year seven level that should be suited to your child. 

3. Get Out There and Have Some Experiences

Having options and activities outside of school work actually helps your child to learn to plan their day and find other experiences to talk about when they are doing. English requires a lot of creative writing in year 7 to year 12 and when they don’t have fulfilling experiences outside of the classroom it can become difficult to imagine what they should write about in their stories in their feature articles and memoirs.

One thing you can do is make an effort to sit down with your family every Friday night and watch a film together and discuss the plot and ask them some simple questions after watching the film to encourage your child to think about how films are structured and how narratives are structured this will help come up with fantastic ideas when they are then in their classroom and having to think about a story.

Some other things you can do is send them to drama lessons, coding camp or other classes during the holidays that will give them fresh experiences of the world and allow them to flex their creativity. Finally, a free way to do this is to get out and experience nature – go down to the beach and describe what you say, go into the hills and describe all the nature that’s around you. There are things all around us in our lives and we have to help children open their eyes to the different experiences.

What are Literary Devices and Language Features?

What Are Literary Devices And Language Features?

Language features are the specific language techniques that an author includes to create meaning. Literary elements are aspects of a text that the reader interprets, for example, themes and characterisation. Literary elements and language features both come under the umbrella of literary devices, along with the conventions of other genres (for example, dramatic or poetic conventions). 

Literary elements and language features are closely linked, and it is essential that you are able to discuss how they work together to form complex analysis. A clear example of this is characterisation. Characterisation is how a particular character is constructed and represented – this is a literary element. However this construction is formed through language features, such as the selection of particular words (diction).


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What is Perspective?

What Is Perspective?

A perspective is a position from which things may be viewed or considered. It refers to the lens through which we experience the world of the text being studied.

When we discuss the perspective – or multiple perspectives – offered by a text, we must consider the factors that have shaped that viewpoint. These contextual factors can usually be organised into four main types:

  1. Physical perspective
  2. Temporal perspective
  3. Psychosocial perspective
  4. Ideological perspective


1. Physical perspective refers to the location of the narrator, author or creator in regard to what they are sharing with us. The physical perspective relates to the physical senses, to our bodies, and to the material and natural environments. 

2. Temporal perspective refers to the time frame through which something is being viewed. This is frequently a moment in the past, but can also be a moment in the present. When something is viewed in the past tense, the perspective may be that of someone who has had time to reflect. When something is in the present tense, the perspective may be less certain but more reactionary, emotional and immediate.

3. Psychosocial perspective refers to the personality, experiences and social background of a person. Someone’s perspective might generally be optimistic or pessimistic, nurturing or defensive, kind or cruel, innocent or experienced, open-minded or cynical, fortunate or tragic, privileged or under-privileged, etc. Their perspective might be shaped by the fact that they are a mother, father, widow, widower, grandparent, child, student, business owner, employee, war veteran, refugee, etc.

4. Ideology refers to the ways of thinking about the world that are characteristic of or in the interests of a particular group of people. An ideology is a system of beliefs.

Ideologies can be characteristic of nationalities, social classes, genders or occupational groups. For example, a patriarchal ideology constructs men as superior to women and seeks to promote laws, customs, behaviour, gender roles, texts and language that strengthen and maintain that ideology within a society. Feminism, on the other hand, is an ideology that believes women should be seen as the equal of men. Other well-documented ideologies that influence a person’s perspective include: colonialism, racism, socialism, capitalism, nationalism, and environmentalism. There are potentially many more.


5 Things You Need To Do In Year 11 To Prepare For ATAR English

Many of my students who are currently completing Year 11 ATAR English are struggling to understand how to prepare and study so they can get ahead in Year 11 and Year 12.

I think that studying starts at a young age, but if you are ready to start in Year 11, there is no time like the present.

When I begin to work with students in year 11, one thing is abundantly clear: they have no idea how to go from Year 10 English to Year 11 English with ease.

Jumping from the F-10 syllabus to the ATAR English system can be really difficult. This is especially true as you need to pass ATAR English to receive your WACE certificate.

So… what should you do in Year 11 to prepare for your English exams? I’m glad you asked.

1. Prep Your Notes From Day 1

The allure of Tik Tok videos is real – we all know it. But I have seen many students spend hours at the end of the year pouring through their books and trying to find random pieces of paper with their best essays scrawled across them.

Students who take notes and synthesise those notes at the end of every unit have a much easier time in November when they prepare for their exams.

As a rule of thumb, a one-page A4 should be sufficient to summarise each of the units you complete in English.

2. Learn How to Compare And Contrast

When you start to look through past exams, you will notice that many of the questions ask you to you compare and contrast texts or review two texts.

Throughout the year, you should be thinking about key similarities and differences between all of your texts.

Are two of your texts of the same genre? Do two of them cover the same time period? Do two of your texts offer diverse perspectives on the same issue?

Always think of how you could write about two texts.

3. Watch a Documentary

You will need to write a persuasive, narrative or interpretive text based on a random prompt.

The best way to prepare for this is to “know things”. My students go into their WACE English exam with four or five different knowledge areas they could pull from in order to write their composing section.

Next time you go to Keep up with Kardashians, try watching a documentary and take some notes – you will thank me later.

4. Know All The Devices!

ATAR English is all about the devices, particularly in the comprehending section.

Please ensure you create (and laminate) a list of narrative, interpretive, persuasive and visual devices that you will be able to identify in the comprehending section.

This will also become useful in Year 12.

5. Find Your Cross-Curriculum Links

Many students of ATAR English don’t realise that a potential Composing response is right in front of them in their other subjects.

Take a look at your course material in your other subjects to see if there is anything to write about in your Composing. This means you are not learning totally new content and you are just using what you already know.

Studying Freud in Psychology? Learning about the Russian Revolution in History? What about Religion?

You will find information on all of your other subjects.


How to choose subjects for Year 11 and 12 ATAR?

It’s the middle of the year (or you are getting a head start) and you have been given your subject selection form for Year 11. It can be difficult to choose – or help your child with the choice – which subjects to use for Year 11.

If your child is preparing to enter their final years of school, it is important that you have answers for some the most common questions about Year 11 and 12 subject selection.

Q: Which subjects are compulsory in Year 11 and 12 for students in Western Australia?

To achieve the minimum requirements for students to receive a Western Australian Certificate of Education (WACE) in 2021 and beyond, you must do the following.

Breadth and depth requirement

  • Completion of a minimum of 20 units, which may include unit equivalents attained through VET and/or endorsed programs. This requirement must include at least: (Explanatory notes 1, 2 , 3, 4, 5)
    • a minimum of ten Year 12 units, or the equivalent
    • four units from an English learning area course, post-Year 10, including at least one pair of Year 12 units from an English learning area course
    • one pair of Year 12 units from each of List A (arts/languages/social sciences) and List B (mathematics/science/technology).

Achievement standard requirement

  • Achievement of at least 14 C grades or higher (or the equivalent) in Year 11 and 12 units, including at least six C grades (or equivalents) in Year 12 units. 
  • Completion of:
    • at least four Year 12 ATAR courses (Explanatory note 5), or
    • at least five Year 12 General courses(Explanatory note 7) (or a combination of General and up to three Year 12 ATAR courses(Explanatory note 5)) or equivalent(Explanatory note 8), or
    • a Certificate II (or higher) VET qualification(Explanatory notes 9 and 10) in combination with ATAR, General or Foundation courses).

Literacy and numeracy standard

  • Demonstration of the minimum standard of literacy and numeracy. (Explanatory notes 11 and 12)

To view explanatory notes, check here.

Some independent and Catholic schools list religious education as a compulsory subject, but you may be able to choose whether you do these as ATAR or general. Students can choose the remainder of their study load as they wish, although schools may also place pre-requisites on certain studies. For example, you might need to achieve a minimum of 60% in a certain subject in Year 10 to be able to do the subject in Year 11.   

Q: Are there any prerequisites for university courses?

A: University courses usually list English as a prerequisite. There are also a number of specialists courses that might have prerequisites or desirables. If your child plans to apply for university, they will need to make sure they are eligible to receive an Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) and complete the required prerequisites. The best place to find this is on the Course Guides for the course that your child want to complete.

Q: How will scaling and moderation affect my child?

A lot of schools will quote “scaling” as a reason to do or not to do a subject. This is an important consideration to make. More details about TISC mark grading, you can click here. However, if your child is above average or thoroughly enjoys a certain subject, it is advisable to do that subject as your child will enjoy Year 11 and Year 12, rather than seeing the two years of study as a chore.

Q: What if my child doesn’t know what they want to do with their lives?

A: In this case, I would advise that your child does a broad range of subjects in Year 11 and Year 12, with as many ATAR subjects as they can manage. Depending on what they like, they will be able to determine which field of study they are better suited for. For example, if you enjoy Economics or Politics and Law, you might consider a Business or International Relations course. If you enjoy Human Biology, perhaps something in the health field?

Q: What if my child changes their mind between Year 11 and Year 12?

A: There are so many different factors that will affect a student in Year 11 and Year 12. Don’t panic if your child wants to drop a subject – this is totally normal. Delve to the bottom of why they want to swap and what their options are. They may be able to pick up another subject, or they may be able to complete a Certificate in lieu of another ATAR subject. Discuss these options with your school guidance counsellor.