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EDCU519 Extension Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment 3

Unit rationale, description and aim

Pre-service teachers will study the junior secondary Drama curriculum, including general capabilities, cross-curriculum priorities and other allied materials. They will critique their prior knowledge and experience in the field and how these connect with the scope of the curriculum, identifying opportunities, challenges and responsibilities of Drama teaching. Pre-service teachers will explore theoretical frameworks associated with teaching and learning in Drama education. They will learn evidence-based approaches to plan for effective teaching and learning, including embedded literacy and numeracy, and the use of digital technologies. They will learn approaches for engaging learners and to meet the learning needs of diverse students. They will learn to compose good questions, to assemble productive assessment tasks and develop skills to shape the dialogic talk of the classroom. Focussing on the detailed planning of a short series of lessons, pre-service teachers will learn to structure lesson sequences within units of work in order to demonstrate a knowledge of curriculum and learning theory. They will engage in microteaching to practice engaging students and guiding the classroom discourse.

The aim of this unit is for the pre-service teacher to develop their pedagogical content knowledge through becoming familiar with the knowledge, understanding and skills necessary for teaching Drama at a junior secondary level.

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Plan and devise a structured learning program in junior secondary Drama, showing a mastery of the concepts, substance and structure of the junior secondary Drama curriculum and assessment principles (GA4, GA5, GA8; APST 2.1, 2.3, 5.1. 5.2)

LO2 - Critically analyse and develop a range of approaches to planning and delivering engaging and purposeful teaching/learning sequences for junior secondary Drama and including the selection of appropriate resources, informed by and understanding of how students learn in Drama (GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9; APST 1.2, 1.4, 2.1, 2.2, 2.5, 2.6, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 4.1, 4.2, 4.5)

LO3 - Describe, design and evaluate a variety of pedagogical approaches in junior secondary Drama which allow the specific learning strengths and needs of students to be met (GA4, GA5, GA7, GA8, GA9; APST 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 2.4, 3.1, 3.3, 4.1, 4.3)

LO4 - Identify and explain the use of linguistic resources to provide directions, explanations and support student learning (GA4, GA5, GA7, GA8, GA9, GA10; APST 1.3, 2.1, 2.4, 3.3, 3.5, 4.1, 5.2)

LO5 - Synthesise and critically reflect upon the professional responsibilities of the Drama teacher, including the provision of a safe and supportive learning environment (GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9, GA10; APST 1.3, 1.5, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.6, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 4.3, 4.4, 4.5, 5.1, 6.1, 6.2, 6.3, 6.4, 7.1, 7.2, 7.4)

Graduate attributes

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA7 - work both autonomously and collaboratively 

GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information 

GA9 - demonstrate effective communication in oral and written English language and visual media 

GA10 - utilise information and communication and other relevant technologies effectively.


On successful completion of this unit, pre-service teachers should be able to:

1.2 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of research into how students learn and the implications for teaching.

1.3 Demonstrate knowledge of teaching strategies that are responsive to the learning strengths and needs of students from diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds.

1.4 Demonstrate broad knowledge and understanding of the impact of culture, cultural identity and linguistic background on the education of students from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds.

1.5 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of strategies for differentiating teaching to meet the specific learning needs of students across the full range of abilities. 

2.1 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the concepts, substance and structure of the content and teaching strategies of the teaching area.

2.2 Organise content into an effective learning and teaching sequence.

2.3 Use curriculum, assessment and reporting knowledge to design learning sequences and lesson plans.

2.4 Demonstrate broad knowledge of, understanding of, and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and languages.

2.5 Know and understand literacy and numeracy teaching strategies and their application in teaching areas.

2.6 Implement teaching strategies for using ICT to expand curriculum learning opportunities for students.

3.1 Set learning goals that provide achievable challenges for students of varying abilities and characteristics.

3.2 Plan lesson sequences using knowledge of student learning, content and effective teaching strategies.

3.3 Include a range of teaching strategies.

3.4 Demonstrate knowledge of a range of resources, including ICT, that engage students in their learning.

3.5 Demonstrate a range of verbal and non-verbal communication strategies to support student engagement.

4.1 Identify strategies to support inclusive student participation and engagement in classroom activities.

4.2 Demonstrate the capacity to organise classroom activities and provide clear directions.

4.3 Demonstrate knowledge of practical approaches to manage challenging behaviour.

4.5 Demonstrate an understanding of the relevant issues and the strategies available to support the safe, responsible and ethical use of ICT in learning and teaching.

5.1 Demonstrate understanding of assessment strategies, including informal and formal, diagnostic, formative and summative approaches to assess student learning.

5.2 Demonstrate an understanding of the purpose of providing timely and appropriate feedback to students about their learning.

6.1 Demonstrate an understanding of the role of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers in identifying professional learning needs.

6.2 Understand the relevant and appropriate sources of professional learning for teachers.

6.3 Seek and apply constructive feedback from supervisors and teachers to improve teaching practices.

6.4 Demonstrate an understanding of the rationale for continued professional learning and the implications for improved student learnings. 

7.1 Understand and apply the key principles described in codes of ethics and conduct for the teaching profession.

7.2 Understand the relevant legislative, administrative and organisational policies and processes required for teachers according to school stage.

7.4 Understand the role of external professionals and community representatives in broadening teachers’ professional knowledge and practice.


Topics will include: 

  • The pre-service teachers’ prior experience of, and engagement with, Drama education 
  • The Australian junior secondary Drama curriculum, including general capabilities and cross curriculum priorities, focussing on appropriate state/jurisdictional expectations, syllabi and guidelines 
  • Theoretical frameworks associated with Drama teaching and learning 
  • Pedagogical approaches emblematic of Drama teaching and learning 
  • Planning and curriculum alignment 
  • Planning for effective teaching and learning in junior secondary Drama education  
  • Differentiated teaching in Drama 
  • Needs of learners from diverse cognitive, physical, social, cultural backgrounds 
  • Needs of learners from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds 
  • Incorporating literacy and numeracy in Drama teaching 
  • Digital technologies for teaching/learning in Drama education  
  • Conversational, questioning and scaffolding techniques to shape dialogic classroom talk in Drama education  
  • Teacher-presented explanations 
  • Assessment in junior secondary Drama education  
  • Learning beyond the classroom 
  • Student welfare and safety in Drama education classrooms and typical Drama teaching/learning environments 
  • Professional responsibilities and relationships 
  • Professional associations and continued professional learning 

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

This unit applies a social constructivist approach to develop the pre-service teacher’s understanding of effective pedagogies through active engagement and collaborative learning. It is designed to build the pre-service teacher’s understanding of teaching strategies through critical reading, lecturer modelling, discussion, and practice in tutorials. The pre-service teacher’s skills of professional communication and ability to work collaboratively will be practised through group activities and culminating in micro-teaching opportunities. Her/his teaching skills of planning and assessing, and his/her ability to locate and synthesise information, will be developed through designing Drama lessons. The pre-service teacher will continue to gather and reflect upon evidence of attainment of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers: Graduate.

The teaching and learning strategy described above will use an appropriate selection of approaches, including, for example:

  • Weekly face-to-face lectures and / or online lectures (synchronous and asynchronous)
  • Hands-on tutorials and discussions that promote peer learning
  • Microteaching opportunities
  • Self-directed reading and research
  • Collaborative learning opportunities

Assessment strategy and rationale

The assessment tasks and their weightings are designed so that the pre-service teacher can progressively achieve the course learning outcomes and the professional standards. The Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment units in this course focus on pre-service teachers acquiring content knowledge and developing the skills to assimilate conceptual knowledge in order for that knowledge to inform skills that will be applied in practice.

The three assessment tasks are sequenced to allow feedback and progressive development. Through completing Task 1, the pre-service teacher will analyse and reflect on his/her prior knowledge of the junior Drama curriculum and perform a skills audit to develop a professional learning plan. Through completing Task 2, the pre-service teacher will demonstrate an understanding of how to sequence appropriate learning experiences in a junior Drama lesson. In Task 3, the pre-service teacher locates appropriate video excerpts to support an evidence-based microteaching portfolio. These tasks reflect ‘real world’ school contexts and teaching responsibilities, thereby preparing the pre-service teacher for professional experience placement and one’s role as a teacher.

Assessment in this unit includes a Critical Task for Initial Teacher Education (CTITE)CTITE 4: Observation and Targeted Lesson Plan. Pre-service teachers must demonstrate mastery of every summative Graduate Teacher Standard identified in this CTITE (refer to the CTITE guidebook) and attain an overall score of at least 50 per cent in the CTITE in order to pass the CTITE assessment task.

In order to pass this unit, pre-service teachers are required to demonstrate achievement of learning outcomes by submitting all assessment tasks, obtaining a combined score of at least 50 per cent, and receiving a passing grade in the CTITE task.

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Assessment Task 1: Analysis of the Curriculum: analysis, skills audit and professional learning plan

Analyse the secondary 7-10 Drama curriculum and associated content and skills. Use this analysis to then conduct a self-audit of pre-service teacher’s own knowledge and skills in order to identify potential gaps or weaknesses in the required knowledge and skills to teach junior secondary Drama education.

In the context of this analysis, position yourself as a Drama teacher within contemporary Australian society and then describe the unique professional position, influence and responsibilities that one has. 

Commence the design of a professional learning plan to address potential gaps or weaknesses (the plan will be elaborated in later units). 

Artefacts and reflections may provide evidence of attainment of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers: Graduate and can be included in the ePortfolio.


LO2, LO3, LO5

GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9, G10

Assessment Task 2

Students must complete Option 1 in their first teaching area CPA unit to meet the CTITE requirements and should complete Option 2 in their second teaching area CPA unit.

Option 1: Critical Task for initial Teacher Education (CTITE) 4 - Lesson Planning

Develop a teaching and learning plan outlining a sequence of learning experiences in Drama education

Artefacts and reflections may provide evidence of attainment of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers: Graduate and can be included in the ePortfolio.


Option 2: Teaching challenging topics

Write a research report that explores the Pedagogical Content Knowledge in relation to 1 - 3 concepts or topics in Drama that would be considered complex and typically difficult for students to grasp.

To do this, interview 3 experienced teachers to gain their insights into which topics or concepts they have found students to struggle with. 

Report your findings by firstly giving an introduction and brief overview of each concept or topic. Discuss any implications for the teaching of each concept and a summary of possible pedagogical adaptations that could be made to assist students to learn them. Finally, prepare an overview of a teaching sequence of the topic/concept.

Artefacts and reflections may provide evidence of attainment of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers: Graduate and can be included in the ePortfolio.


LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4

GA4, GA5, GA7, GA8, GA9

Assessment Task 3: Microteaching portfolio

A selection of 3-4 video excerpts that illustrate a capacity to present explanations and also provide clear instructions and ask meaningful questions interactively.

Artefacts and reflections may provide evidence of attainment of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers: Graduate and can be included in the ePortfolio.


LO2, LO3, LO4

GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9

Representative texts and references

Australian Curriculum 

Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) 

Relevant jurisdictional curriculum documents

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