Returning to high school would be alarmingly scary for many Aussies.

Not only has a lot of what they learned gone out the window, but their kids are actually outsmarting them.

To coincide with back-to-school preparation, a survey has asked more than 1000 Australians seven questions to see if they could pass high school now.

While 38 per cent thought they were smarter than a high-schooler, 81 per cent didn't know Pythagoras's theorem.


Of the 1040 Aussies who took the test, only 419 passed and a whopping 88 per cent couldn't answer more than three basic high school questions.

Only 13 per cent felt they could confidently answer the questions without Google, even though 42 per cent thought they were important to know.

High school graduate and comedian Kate Wilkins also took to the streets of Sydney to gauge people's knowledge on the spot.

When she asked one man who the last Anzac was he looked confused so she asked, "what is an Anzac?" and the man said he did not know.

One woman said Europe was bigger than Australia when asked to name five countries bigger than ours, and one man swore and walked away.

It comes after radio shock jock Alan Jones recently said it was not good enough that Australians couldn't answer basic questions and something needed to be done to fix our education system.


1. What is the Pythagorean theorem formula?


2. What sorts of signals does the brain use to communicate sensations, thoughts and actions?


3. What is Darwin's theory on the origin of species?


4. What percentage of Earth is covered by water?

A) 65%

B) 71%

C) 80%

D) 50%


5. Which of the following conditions on Mars would be the first to kill a human who is unprotected and unassisted by life support?

A) Low air pressure

B) Low gravity

C) High carbon dioxide content in air

D) All of the above


6. Table salt, NaCl, is made from?

A) Carbon dioxide and oxygen

B) Two toxic gases

C) A highly reactive metal and oxygen

D) A highly reactive metal and a toxic gas


7. Gina estimated that it cost her about $45 per week for petrol for her car. She had the car converted so that it would also run on gas. Gas is much cheaper than petrol so it only cost her about $20 per week for gas. The conversion cost about $1000. How long will it take for the savings in using gas to equal the cost of the conversion?

A) About 15 weeks

B) About 40 weeks

C) About 50 weeks

D) About 65 weeks



1. a2 + b2 = c2.

2. The single cells in the brain communicate through electrical and chemical signals.

3. Darwin's theory of species origination says natural selection chooses organisms that possess variable and heritable traits and that are best suited for their environments.

4. B. 71% of Earth is covered by water.

5. A. Low air pressure. Exposure to the atmosphere on Mars would likely kill a human in within minutes. Cold temperatures would take longer to kill somebody because heat does not transfer away from the body as quickly in a near-vacuum. High levels of solar radiation could lead to skin cancer, but it would not kill somebody immediately.

6. D. A highly reactive metal and a toxic gas. Sodium (Na) is a metal that can explode when exposed to water, while chlorine (Cl) is a toxic gas.

7. B. About 40 weeks.

The survey was conducted by Liquid Ideas to celebrate tomorrow's home entertainment release of Night School starring Kevin Hart and Tiffany Haddish.