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EDEN291 English Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment 2 (8-12) OR EDEN299 Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment in English Education 1

Unit rationale, description and aim

This unit will address emerging trends and research-informed practices in literacy education. It will build upon previous knowledge to enhance students’ global contextual understanding of critical issues in literacy education and extend understanding of the links between the Australian Curriculum English and other curriculum areas. Issues of particular concern include assessment, especially the role of standardised testing, differentiation, and teacher pedagogic knowledge.

In this unit pre-service teachers will develop an awareness of the importance of a whole school approach to the achievement of the aims of the Australian Curriculum English and the impact of student’s literacy skills across other curriculum areas. This unit will also offer pre-service teachers opportunities to understand current trends in the collection of data and importantly the use of data to inform future teaching and in differentiating the curriculum to accommodate for students working above at and towards the required standard for their desired stage of development. The importance of assessment will be explored not only for stakeholders but to inform future teaching and whole school planning. This unit will also focus on a social justice perspective and the effect of nationwide testing on all students, especially those who maybe disadvantaged by this form of assessment. National and Global trends in literacy education and related technology will also be investigated and their influence on schools and their leadership in relation to assessment and school wide literacy development.

The aim of this unit is to develop in pre-service teachers a more global view of literacy education its effects on key curriculum areas and the impact on all learners and stakeholders in the collection of data and the impact this data and its interpretation has on whole school pedagogical approaches to literacy.

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     Examine how contemporary literary leadership models with primary stakeholders can create a successful school wide culture of literacy to achieve literacy requirements across the curriculum (GA4, GA8; APST 2.1, 3.4, 3.6, 3.7; ACECQA A2, A6, B2, B9, F1, F4, F5)

LO2     Demonstrate an understanding of principles of data, evidence and assessment in relation to a critical issue in literacy education (GA5; APST 2.5, 5.1, 5.3, 5.4, 5.5; ACECQA C7, F1, F5)

LO3     Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the evidence base in relation to a contemporary critical issue in literacy instruction (GA7, GA8; APST 3.4, 3.6, 5.1, 5.4; ACECQA C1, F5)

LO4     Understand global and national trends in literacy education, and their theoretical underpinnings in relation to literacy as a social justice issue. (GA6, GA7; APST 2.1, 3.4, 3.6, 4.1, 7.1, 7.4; ACECQA B9, D4, D5, E2)

Graduate attributes

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

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

GA6 - solve problems in a variety of settings taking local and international perspectives into account

GA7 - work both autonomously and collaboratively 

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


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

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

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

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

3.6 Demonstrate broad knowledge of strategies that can be used to evaluate teaching programs to improve student learning.

3.7 Describe a broad range of strategies for involving parents/carers in the educative process.

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

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

5.3 Demonstrate understanding of assessment moderation and its application to support consistent and comparable judgements of student learning.

5.4 Demonstrate the capacity to interpret student assessment data to evaluate student learning and modify teaching practice.

5.5 Demonstrate understanding of a range of strategies for reporting to students and parents/carers and the purpose of keeping accurate and reliable records of student achievement.

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

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


On successful completion of this unit, pre-service teachers should have developed the following specific knowledge:

A Child development and care

  • A2 language development
  • A6 diversity, difference and inclusivity

B Education and curriculum studies

  • B2 the Australian curriculum
  • B9 curriculum planning, programming and evaluation

C Teaching pedagogies

  • C1 alternative pedagogies and curriculum approaches
  • C7 contemporary society and pedagogy

D Family and community contexts

  • D4 socially inclusive practice
  • D5 culture, diversity and inclusion

E History and philosophy of early childhood

  • E2 contemporary theories and practice

F Early childhood professional practice

  • F1educational leadership
  • F4 advocacy
  • F5 research


Topics will include:

  • Literacy requirements across and within Australian curriculum areas (skills, knowledge & values)
  • Creating a school wide culture of literacy
  • Contemporary literacy leadership
  • Data, evidence and assessment in literacy to improve student achievement Political influences on literacy education
  • Controversial issues in literacy education
  • Emerging national & global trends in literacy education
  • Technological influences on literacy education
  • Teachers’ pedagogic knowledge for literacy across the curriculum
  • Collaborations with key stakeholders to promote and improve literacy (teachers, parents, school leaders)
  • Literacy leadership, equity and social justice

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

The learning and teaching strategies in this unit include (1) lectures which may be delivered in workshop styles to encourage active learning and high level of engagement, (2) tutorials to consolidate learning content and apply knowledge in problem solving tasks and develop analytical and evaluating skills and possible independent online learning tasks to develop GA7. 

This is a 10-credit point unit and has been designed to ensure that the time needed to complete the required volume of learning to the requisite standard is approximately 150 hours in total across the semester. To achieve a passing standard in this unit, students will find it helpful to engage in the full range of learning activities and assessments utilised in this unit, as described in the learning and teaching strategy and the assessment strategy. The learning and teaching and assessment strategies include a range of approaches to support learning such as reading, reflection, discussion, webinars, podcasts, video etc.

Technology Enhanced Learning

Lecture and tutorial materials will be uploaded on LEO prior to teaching commences. Lectures will also be recorded.

Assessment strategy and rationale

The assessment tasks and their weightings allow pre-service teachers to progressively demonstrate achievement against the course learning outcomes by demonstrating academic and professional standards.

A range of assessment procedures are used to meet the unit learning outcomes and develop graduate attributes and professional standards and criteria consistent with University assessment requirements. (

Assessment task 1 gives pre-service teachers the opportunity to express their understanding in a written report of the literature underpinning successful literacy leadership and teaching in schools and support these assertions with the lived experience of their placements in schools.

Assessment task 2 requires a critical response to how data and evidence can improve student achievement and consideration of the political influences on testing regimes and the impact this has on stakeholders. This will be viewed through a social justice lens.

In Assessment 3 the pre-service teacher will demonstrate a critical response in the form of a workshop for teachers that focuses on one aspect of literacy instruction. A review of the literature relating to this practice will inform the workshop with the aim of improving teacher practice. Contentious issues will be explored in Australia and other developed countries. Professional associations that support quality literacy education will be included in the interactive multimodal workshop.

Minimum Achievement Standards

The assessment tasks for this unit are designed to demonstrate achievement of each learning outcome. In order to pass this unit, students are required to complete the hurdle task, weekly readings and homework. A Pass grade in all assessment tasks is also required to meet the learning outcomes of the unit as:

  • learning outcome 1 is only assessed in assessment task 1
  • learning outcome 2 assessed in assessment task 2
  • learning outcome 3 assessed in assessment task 3

Electronic Submission, Marking and Return

Assessment Tasks will be submitted, marked and returned electronically via LEO as appropriate within 3 weeks after the submission date. 

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Assessment Task 1: Contemporary Literacy Leadership

Examine how a contemporary literacy leadership model can improve collaboration with primary stakeholders (parents) to create a successful school wide culture of literacy to achieve literacy requirements across the curriculum. Examine the literature and write an evaluative report on a specific and successful literacy leadership learning and teaching initiative for a primary school in your state or territory based on best practice in literacy learning and teaching. Support with examples from professional experience.

Format: Report



GA4, GA8

Assessment Task 2: Assessment to Improve Student Achievement

Critical essay on how data and evidence are used for assessment in literacy to improve student achievement in standardised testing (NAPLAN, PAT, or other tool). Consider political influence, testing methods, reporting methods and stakeholder interests. Critically reflect on and analyse the strengths and weaknesses within a social justice framework.


LO2, LO4

GA5, GA6, GA7

Assessment Task 3: Contemporary Critical Issue

Identify a contemporary critical issue pertaining to ONE aspect of literacy instruction (e.g. synthetic phonics, spelling, multiliteracies, digital technologies, critical literacies, comprehension OR other contemporary critical issue) informed by the literature. Review the literature and design a workshop for professional learning based on best practice to improve literacy teacher practice and student learning in your area of choice. Include:

  • An explanation of the issue and why it is a critical issue in literacy education
  • Controversies associated with the issue
  • Comparison between Australia and one other developed country in terms of implementation
  • Best practice in literacy leadership relating to the issue
  • Best practice strategies for differentiating teaching and learning to meet the needs of students across the full range of abilities relating to the issue of choice
  • Best practices in assessment relating to the issue of choice
  • Professional associations and resources that support and advocate for professional development in literacy education.

Workshop is 45min.

Audience is teachers

Format: Interactive multimedia presentation with written script.


LO3, LO4

GA6, GA7, GA8

Representative texts and references

Required text(s)


Fehring, H. (Ed) (2017). Assessment into Practice : Understanding assessment practice to improve students’ literacy learning. Newtown, NSW: PETAA

Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) (2019). Australian Curriculum: English. Retrieved from

Relevant State and Territory curriculum documents. 


Recommended references

Barnes, M., Gindidis, M., Phillipson, S. (2018). Evidenced based learning and teaching: A look into Australian Classrooms. London: Taylor and Francis.

Dougherty-Stahl, K.A., Flanigan, K., & McKenna, M.C. (2019). Assessment for reading instruction (4th ed.). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Morrow, L. M., & Gambrell, L. B. (Eds). (2019). Best practices in literacy instruction (6th ed.). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Taylor, B.M., & Duke, N.K. (2014). Handbook of effective literacy instruction: Research-based practice K-8. New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Tompkins, G., Smith, C., Campbell, R., & Green, D. (2019). Literacy for the 21st century: A balanced approach (3rd ed.). Melbourne, Vic: Pearson.


-        The Reading Teacher

-        Research in the Teaching of Reading

-        Reading and Writing

-        Journal of Literacy Research

-        Elementary School Journal 

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