Read what attending teachers had to say:

“My thanks for an excellent day of perfectly pitched presentations. My students were enthused and their interest in ideas beyond the classroom truly ignited. You got inside their heads, messed with their minds and left them wanting more. A really refreshing and uplifting day – we’ll be back!”

Jo Forbes, Sackville School, London

“Thankyou for the absolutely fabulous set of lectures at the Oxford conferences – interesting and inspirational.”

Sherbourne Girls School

“Thankyou for superb, inspiring lectures”

Shiri Heffetz, St Clares College

“Thank you for providing not only the gifted and talented students of St. Laurence’s College, but G&T students across Brisbane, with the opportunity to immerse themselves in the arena of philosophy and critical reasoning. My students were fascinated by Julie’s presentations and your own; and, on behalf of the College, I would like to congratulate you on a highly successful event.”

Katherine Alpert, Director of the Gifted and Talented Education Centre, St Laurence’s College, Qld.

“I had no idea how important it was to be here today – I have a lot more thinking to do now!”

Student, Leys Schools, Cambridge.

“The students and staff we took this year were most impressed and challenged by the presentation – it certainly improved the quality of their thinking and academic engagement. “

Anne Armstrong, St Francis Xavier College, canberra

“I wanted to give you some feedback from your day. The students LOVED your sessions and found the day very engaging. I was delighted to be able to host you here at our school and in a few years please think of us again. “

Mrs D Morrow, Headmistress St Ritas Roman Catholic School Brisbane

“The value of your work is plain for all to see. When I see how much the students gain from this one single day it makes everything worthwhile. My boys absolutely love the cerebral nourishment you provide for them.”

Paul K Double, Head of Learning Support, Camberwell Grammar School, VIC

“My congratulations on your tour de force! I thought that your presentation was absolutely outstanding. So did the boys. You have stimulated a great deal of THINKING at Brighton Grammar School on
a wide range of subjects.

Your work joined many of the threads that we have covered in the courses I have constructed at BGS and then explored new territory.”

Peter Smith, Brighton Grammar, Vic

“Conversations on the way home indicated that you had certainly made students think hard about some amazingly complex issues. I too, was challenged and extended by what I heard and appreciated the opportunity to take the measure of some of these issues, how to present them, and precisely what constitutes higher order thinking.

In particular, I appreciated the way you exposed the fog of utilitarianism prevailing in our current cultural thought processes and offered students other models and possibilities.”

Louise Thomas, Concordia College, SA

My students have done nothing but buzz about you and the day and their interest in things Ethical, Philosophical (and yes, even Theological) has been multiplied.”

NIGEL SCHOFIELD-MATTHEWS, Religious Education Samuel Marsden Collegiate School NZ

‘I am so thrilled we had the opportunity to attend. My students are still talking about it! I look forward to participating again next time!’


“Just wanted to say thank you for organizing the conference last week. It was absolutely fantastic!
We look forward to attending next year.”


“I just wanted to pass on many thanks for the recent Sydney Conf, it was an incredible experience that myself and my students thoroughly enjoyed, the Girls first response was when can we go again!”


“This conference is a program of fast-paced, rigorous and challenging lectures specifically designed for gifted year 10,11 & 12 students.”

“Pupils acquired a sense of how to appraise ideas as well as increasing their knowledge and skills. This is not about exams; it is about helping students to see all subjects as part of one body of knowledge.”

What did you like about the event?

“Great speakers and topics. Julie is always excellent and the first lecture particularly was good.”

“The format of the event is good, the speakers were excellent, the topics are mostly engaging and it is an excellent venue. The topics do challenge our young bright minds and this is what makes the conference very worthwhile.”

“Loved the speakers. Interesting.”

“The level of intellectual challenge.”

“The stimulating and challenging ideas that encouraged deeper more introspective thought. Certainly worth attending again.”

“The opening session encouraged students to really think outside their realm.”

“Professionally presented and quality speakers with interesting topics.”

“The range of presenters. Each is unique and offers variety of manner and method.”

“The lectures were very interesting and engaging.”

“We enjoyed the time to think about topics that aren’t necessary related to curriculum.”

“Got students thinking.”

“1. The variety of subjects covered! 2. The visiting fellow from overseas giving his presentation.”

“Julie Arliss does a great job.”

“Our students and we as teachers thoroughly delight in the opportunity to immerse ourselves in fascinating, new and deep ideas. Julie always puts such complex thinking into creative and accessible presentations.”

“I like the way the students were treated as mature young people and given an experience of lecture style learning.”

“Relevant to teenagers now and in the future.”

“The topics, loved the interaction in the debate, the venue, the communication.”

“Very interesting and thought provoking lectures.”

“Gives students the opportunity to participate in a different style of learning.”

“Julie is an exceptional speaker. I like how she and the guest speakers combine the different subject areas within the one speech. Eg, ethics, arts, science, philosophy is included within the one speech. It’s great for students to be exposed to this kind of experience as it happens rarely within the school environment unfortunately.”

“It brought different ideas to the students. The students really liked the session highlighting the attributes which lead to outstanding achievements. They thought that this practical session was something they could really use.”

“This event is really useful for our senior students studying Theory of Knowledge in the IB Diploma program. We really appreciated the opportunity to attend. Many thanks.”

“Challenging students to consider what is true and correct in the world. Questioning their own beliefs and the beliefs of others. Promoting reflection yet providing students with the tools to assess their thinking.”

“As a teacher, I appreciate the professionalism of the event. The organisation is superb, the catering wonderful, the opportunity to network invaluable and the discussions which ensue with the students stimulating.”

“It had a good variety of topics and speakers.”

“Challenged the students to think – they had debates all the way home in the bus.”

“Was good to have many schools there.”

“All of the sessions were interesting and worthwhile.”

“The exposure to higher order thinking.”

“Speakers were all excellent and challenged students views, generating some excellent conversations, whether they agreed with them or not.”

“Bringing schools together.”

“The Presenters were capable and deeply involved with their subject/topic – their enthusiasm shone through. The venue was excellent, for our Decile 1 students it was a glimpse into a world they rarely encounter.”

“Varied content. Engaging speakers.”

“Engaging speakers, interesting material.”

“The students and I thoroughly enjoyed the lectures. They were really engaging and well-presented.”

“The topics explored were interesting and diverse. Just right for the calibre of students I brought with me. The presenters were knowledgeable and their content informative. Lunch for the teachers was also great.”

“The speakers, who changed thinking.”

“Well organised. Interesting and challenging topics. Great, coming from a girls school to hear from a highly educated, eloquent and intelligent woman such as Julie.”

“It is a great event all round particular enjoy the guest speakers the past two years, it keeps things fresh.”

“Like the way the conference gets students to think about issues from a different perspective. Our students do not do any philosophy – great introduction to this.”

“The speakers were very good.”

“The challenge for student to engage with difficult content that goes beyond the curriculum they are currently studying.”

“The speakers presented well, they had interesting and provocative content. It was at a great venue, St Hilda’s Performing Arts Centre is fantastic.”

“A good range of topics and the topics were challenging.”

“That such broad concepts were explored in such a relaxed manner. A real skill in presenting difficult material in a manner that is engaging and comprehensible. So good to see young people engaged in deeper thinking about such important topics.”

“Challenging and thought provoking deliveries.”

“That it expands and challenges the thinking of our gifted and talented young people.”

“Fresh ideas and good pace. The lecture by Christopher O’Neil was particularly relevant and interesting. It would be great to have that repeated at the junior event.”

“The depth and breadth of ideas – and how relatable the students found it”