Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit



Unit rationale, description and aim

This unit examines the concepts and practices of the profession including systems, structures, legislation and teacher standards that impact on teaching practice; current political and sociocultural trends in education that shape pre-service teachers’ understandings and preparedness as they transition into the teaching profession. A range of curriculum perspective will be explored including, literacy, numeracy, ICT, indigenous and intercultural understanding. Students will consolidate evidence of their professional work practice in a substantive body of work and develop a critical investigation of their practice as a teacher.

This unit aims to assist pre-service teachers to critically investigate professional practice, roles and responsibilities, professional partnerships, and concepts of accountability in teachers’ work.

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 - identify and critically examine key influences that impact on teachers’ professionalism and practice, and issues that will prepare them for transition from student to beginning teacher (GA4, GA5; APST 6.1, 6.2, 6.4, 7.2; ACECQA F3)

LO2 - demonstrate an advanced understanding of the roles and responsibilities of early career teachers and how these roles and responsibilities relate to required professional and ethical standards and codes of practice. (GA4; APST 4.4, 6.1, 6.2, 6.4, 7.1, 7.2; ACECQA E3, F3)

LO3 - critically reflect on collaborative strategies to engage with parents/carers, professional teaching networks and communities ( GA4, GA5; APST 5.2, 5.3, 7.3, 7.4; ACECQA D1)

LO4 - critically examine the relationship between education, curriculum change and teachers work and apply this to a philosophy of continual professional learning (GA4, GA5; APST 6.2, 6.4; ACECQA F3)

LO5 - demonstrate advanced knowledge and understanding of effective strategies to support the use of literacy, numeracy and ICT, indigenous and intercultural understanding in their teaching practice. (GA4, GA5, GA10; APST 1.4, 2.4, 2.6, 4.5)

LO6 - collate a body of evidence of professional practice and critically evaluate this against the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (GA5, GA10; APST 6.1; ACECQA E3).

Graduate attributes

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

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

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


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

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.

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

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

4.4 Describe strategies that support students’ well-being and safety working within school and/or system, curriculum and legislative requirements.

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.

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

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

6.4 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.

7.3 Understand strategies for working effectively, sensitively and confidentially with parents/carers.

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


On successful completion of this unit, students should have progressed in the development of the following ACU graduate attributes:

D. Families and community partnerships      

D1. Developing family and community partnerships

E. History and philosophy of early childhood

E3. Ethics and professional practice

F. Early childhood professional practice       

F3.  Identity


Topics will include:

Practices and process for recruitment into teaching and early career teaching

  • Exploration of concepts of the roles and responsibilities of teachers
  • Career development and pathway for teachers
  • An understanding of the mentoring relationship and processes in developing proficiency for early career teachers
  • Exploring teacher networks and communities of practice
  • Accountability and quality standards for practice, with particular reference to codes of conduct and professional standards relevant to local contexts.
  • Explore strategies to engage with parents and carers
  • Student protection, cyber-safety and cyberbullying, ethical use of online media and resources
  • Information from employing bodies and teacher registration agencies
  • Support information for job application and interview process

Systems and structures that impact on teaching identity and practice

  • Duty of care and ethical behaviour
  • The role of political practices in education
  • Australian Professional Standards for Teachers
  • Educational innovation and curriculum change

Current political and cultural trends in education

  • Examination of Indigenous knowing
  • ICT integration
  • Numeracy/literacy into practice or design
  • Intercultural perspectives
  • Consideration of current issues and trends in education
  • Sustainability

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

Pre-service teachers will be involved in a variety of teaching-learning strategies to progress and demonstrate their understandings in this unit. Participants will be involved in a variety of teaching-learning strategies to support learning, including: lectures, student presentations, and group work. Collaborative enquiries and critical approaches to learning will be used. 


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 with a normal expectation of 36 hours of directed study and the total contact hours should not exceed 36 hours. Directed study might include lectures, tutorials, webinars, podcasts etc. The balance of the hours then become private study.

Assessment strategy and rationale

The assessment tasks and their weightings are designed to allow pre-service teachers to progressively demonstrate achievement against the unit learning outcomes and demonstrate attainment of professional standards.

Minimum Achievement Standards

The assessment tasks for this unit are designed to demonstrate achievement of each learning outcome.

There will be two assessment tasks equivalent to 5,000 words.

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Assessment Task 1:

Submission of a critical examination of a body of evidence that represents student professional practice evaluated against the Australian Graduate Teacher Standards. (For example a digital portfolio).


LO1, LO2, LO3, LO5, LO6

GA4, GA5, GA10

Assessment Task 2 :

Professional Learning Plan

Drawing on the content of this unit and your engagement with units (both on campus and PEP) throughout your course:

  • Identify the skills attributes and professional strategies you feel you need to continue to develop to enhance your capacity as a professional teacher and to ensure you are able to demonstrate all required professional standards.
  • Based on the above task, provide an analysis of value of ongoing professional learning and outline a plan for your own ongoing professional learning as a practicing teacher.
  • Identify the support networks you will draw on to effectively support your career long learning strategies and articulate what support you feel they will be able to provide to you.


LO2, LO4

GA4, GA5, GA10

Representative texts and references

Ball, S. (2012) Policy and policy making in education. Library Editions: Routledge.

Churchill, R., Ferguson, P., Godinho, S., Johnson, N., Keddie, A., & Letts, W., et al. (2011). Teaching: Making a difference. Milton, Qld: John Wiley & Sons.

Groundwater-Smith, S., Ewing, R., & Le Cornu, R. (2011). Teaching: Challenges and dilemmas (4th ed). South Melbourne, Vic: Cengage Learning.

Hargreaves, A., & Fullan, M. (2012). Professional capital: Transforming teaching in every school. New York: Teachers’ College Press.

Hinde McLeod, J. & Reynolds, R. (2007). Quality teaching for quality learning: Planning through reflection. South Melbourne, Vic: Thomson Social Science Press.

Killen, R. (2013). Effective teaching strategies: Lessons from research and practice (6th ed.). South Melbourne, Vic: Cengage Learning Australia.

Marsh, C. (2010). Becoming a teacher: Knowledge, skills and issues. (5th ed.). Frenchs Forest, NSW: Pearson Australia.

Roffey, S. (Ed) (2013). Positive relationships: Evidence based practice across the world. New York: Springer Publications.

Tait, G. (2013). Making sense of mass education. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Yates, L., Collins, C. & O’Connor, K. (2011). Australia’s curriculum dilemmas. State cultures and the big issues. Academic Monograph Series: Melbourne University Publishing.

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