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EDFX532 Graduate Professional Practice 2

Unit rationale, description and aim

Pre-service teachers need to develop their skills and knowledge for teaching in practical teaching contexts which are authentic and professionally supportive environments. Professional experience supports the nexus between theory and practice for developing teachers. 

This professional experience unit comprises a minimum of 20 days placement and supervised teaching in a school context. It is complementary to the work in other units and enables pre-service teachers to apply the theory, skills, techniques, and processes presented and learned in Education Studies and Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment studies. As an employment-based course, professional experience units enable participants to synthesise and situate critical bodies of knowledge of teaching in a genuine context that will enable them to practice and provide evidence of their progression towards the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST.) 

This professional experience unit orientates pre-service teachers to the school community, policies and procedures and current educational trends. Through this unit, pre-service teachers engage in professional learning experiences that provide opportunities for the development of knowledge and skills, deeper cultural awareness, and professional identity. This unit enables pre-service teachers to employ a range of teaching approaches which cater for different learning needs and fosters both independent and collaborative learning. Opportunities are provided to develop and demonstrate effective classroom management which will ensure a safe and effective learning environment. Pre-service teachers will develop their understanding of codes of ethics and conduct and will be required to complete online modules in legal and professional requirements, including Duty of Care, Child Protection and Mandatory Reporting. This includes a module on working with children and young people that will focus on responding to concerns and strategies to keep ourselves and others safe and support children, young people and vulnerable adults. 

The aim of the unit is for pre-service teachers to develop their pedagogical and professional knowledge for teaching. 

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 - Comprehensively explain the complexities of the teacher’s role and the implications for practice, including: Professional Standards; policies and processes; codes of ethics and conduct; legal and professional responsibilities; policies and strategies for building safe and supportive environments for working with children and young people; and the broader contexts of schooling (GA1, GA3, GA5; APST 4.4, 4.5, 6.1, 7.1, 7.2) 

LO2 - apply a range of effective verbal and non-verbal communication and interpersonal skills and strategies to support learner engagement (GA5; APST 3.5, 4.1, 4.2) 

LO3 - apply knowledge of content, curriculum, pedagogy, learning and assessment to plan, implement and evaluate a range of teaching, assessment and feedback strategies, and use of broad range of resources (including safe and ethical use of ICT) in order to engage diverse learners in both major and minor teaching areas (GA1, GA5, GA8, GA10; APST 1.1, 1.3, 1.5, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.6, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 3.6, 5.1, 5.2, 5.4 6.3) 

LO4 - critically analyse, synthesise and develop a range of classroom management strategies and apply in extended lesson sequences (GA8; APST, 2.1, 2.2, 4.1, 4.2,4.3, 4.4) 

LO5 - utilise self-evaluation critiques and reflection in addition to the acceptance of feedback from others to refine and improve professional practice (GA4; APST 3.6, 6.3) 

Graduate attributes

GA1 - demonstrate respect for the dignity of each individual and for human diversity

GA3 - apply ethical perspectives in informed decision making

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

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

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

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


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

1.1 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of physical, social and intellectual development and characteristics of students and how these may affect learning.

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.

2.6 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.

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

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.

4.4 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.

5.1 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.

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

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

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

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.


Topics include: 

  • The complexities of the teacher’s role and the implications for practice, including: Australian Professional Standards for Teachers; organisational policies and processes; principles and codes of ethics and conduct; legal and professional responsibilities including Duty of Care, Child Protection and Mandatory reporting, anaphylaxis training, etc. 
  • Building safe and supportive environments for working with children and young people 
  • Current teaching and learning theories for effective classroom interactions 
  • Development of effective resources, teaching strategies and learning activities, including lesson planning and preparation, which cater for different learning needs and contexts 
  • Implementation of appropriate assessment techniques/processes and feedback and reporting procedures for effective learning 
  • Effective communication and classroom management skills appropriate for creating and maintaining positive, safe and challenging learning environments 
  • Strategies to foster reflective and self-auditing practices to improve learning and teaching 

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

This unit applies a situated, practical approach to develop the pre-service teacher’s understanding of effective pedagogies and professional attributes. Relevant preparation for the school context will be provided in either on-campus or on-line modes, but the work/learning of the unit is that of being a teacher in a school, working with actual students, colleagues and parents. 

Refer to Professional Experience Handbook for detailed guidelines regarding teaching and other requirements. 

Pre-service teachers in this phase of the Professional and Community Experience undertake a minimum of 20 days under agreed supervision arrangements. This experience will involve: 

  • Assisted immersion in school and class contexts to begin to experience aspects of the secondary school teacher’s role and responsibilities 
  • Participation and engagement, as a community of learners with peers, supervising teachers and university staff, in observation opportunities, team and small group teaching, and whole class teaching, observations and analysis of high-quality teaching episodes in both the major and the minor teaching areas. 
  • Observation and analysis of high-quality teaching episodes in both the major and the minor teaching areas.


A variety of learning-teaching strategies may be used including: 

  • Face-to-face lectures for briefing and debriefing 
  • Attendance at all Professional Experience briefing, and debriefing meetings is a unit requirement 
  • Online delivery of content and online quizzes 
  • Completion of all specified preparation and legal modules (including the Child Safe module) is compulsory prior to commencement of the school placement. 
  • Seminars, tutorials, or workshops, which include pre-service teacher-led discussions and group work, provide opportunities for pre-service teachers to reflect on and build on their experiences in the field 
  • Information and communication technologies may be utilised to facilitate an understanding of an educational community of practice. 

Professional Experience: Teaching Requirements 

Through school-based experiences, pre-service teachers will examine the nexus between theory and practice as they analyse and reflect upon current practices, develop communication, planning and teaching skills and relate their experiences to the theoretical foundations introduced through lectures and tutorials at university. In partnership with the teachers and school communities, they will practice and develop the content and skills explicitly addressed in other units. 

Assessment strategy and rationale

The unit is designed, within the context of the course as a whole, so that the pre-service teacher can progressively achieve the course learning outcomes and work towards the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (Graduate level) in an in-situ, practical context. 

The assessment tasks ensure that the pre-service teacher has met the minimum requirements for entry into a school context and achieving the sub-set of standards identified for this unit. 

Pre-service teachers, the University and schools collaborate in co-ordinating the school-based experiences of the pre-service teachers as they develop further their appreciation and understanding of the role of teacher. The report completed at the end of this unit covers the following themes: 

  • Professionalism – in conduct, in the execution of teaching and learning and in relationships with all parties 
  • Detailed, clearly expressed, thoroughly prepared and well-presented lessons 
  • Organisation and implementation of a range of learning activities and assessment strategies 
  • Diversity of teaching approaches 
  • Development of knowledge, skills and effective classroom strategies, including ICT, to promote engaging learning environments 
  • Engagement in a range of activities around the teacher’s role, including assisting the class teacher, structured observation and critical reflection, as appropriate to the setting. 

The University will award the final grade based on reports from relevant school personnel. Consistent with University regulations, pre-service teachers who fail this unit may be asked to ‘show cause’, and this may in turn lead to termination from the course. 

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Hurdle Requirement: Online preparation modules 

Prior to commencing the Professional Experience placement, pre-service teachers must complete a series of compulsory online preparation modules, attaining a score of 95% or above in each module. 

The modules cover: 

  • Professional Standards; 
  • Professional expectations and codes of conduct; 
  • Legal requirements, including Duty of Care, Child Protection and Mandatory Reporting. 
  • Professional relationships. 

Prior to commencing the Professional Experience placement, pre-service teachers must also complete and provide evidence of the following: 

  • Anaphylaxis training; 
  • Working with Children Check or a Police Check where this is appropriate or mandated. 
  • Child Safe online module: Online multiple choice or short answer questions in 4 sub-modules. Pre-service teachers will need to attain a mark of 75% or more in each sub-module before progressing to the next sub-module. 

Note: Completion of this module does not exempt students from seeking a Working with Children Check or a Police Check where this is appropriate or mandated. 

Hurdle requirement: a Pass grade only will be awarded. 

Pre-service teachers will not commence the Professional Experience placement until all modules have been passed and all legal requirements have been met. 


GA1, GA5 

Professional Experience Assessment 

Professional Experience requirements include compilation of evidence as required. 

(Refer to Professional Experience Handbook and Report). 

Compilation of evidence will include: 

  • structured observation and analysis of school and classroom contexts 
  • preparation for all teaching episodes including the setting of goals, outcomes, content, assessment criteria catering for a variety of abilities and characteristics 
  • relevant teaching resources 
  • critical reflection on own teaching experiences 
  • feedback from supervising teacher/s and university staff. 

This evidence must be compiled into a well-presented and well-organised Professional Experience folder, which must be updated on a daily basis throughout the placement. 

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

A pass or fail grade will be awarded for the completion of the professional experience 

LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4, LO5

GA1, GA3, GA4, GA5, GA8, GA10 

Representative texts and references

Australian Children’s Commissioners and Guardians (2013). 

Berns, R. (2016). Child, family, school, community: Socialization and support (10th ed.). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning. 

Ewing, R., Kervin, L., Glass, C., Gobby, B., Le Cornu, R., et al. (2020). Teaching: dilemmas, challenges and opportunities (6th ed.). South Melbourne, Vic: Cengage Learning Australia.

Marsh, C.J., Clarke, M., & Pittaway, S. (2014). Marsh’s becoming a teacher (6th ed.). Frenchs Forest, NSW: Pearson. 

Groundwater-Smith, S., Brennan, M., McFadden, M., Mitchell, J., & Munns, G. (2009). Secondary schooling in a changing world (2nd ed.). South Melbourne, Vic: Cengage. 

Henniger, M. L., & Rose-Duckworth, R. (2009). The teaching experience: An introduction to reflective practice (3rd ed.). New York, NY: Pearson Custom Publishing. 

Joyce, B., Weil, M., & Calhoun, E. (2015). Models of teaching (9th ed.). Boston/London: Pearson. 

Killen, R. (2016). Effective teaching strategies: Lessons from research and practice (7th ed.). South Melbourne, Vic: Cengage Learning Australia. 

Lyons, G., Ford, M., & Slee, J. (2014). Classroom management: Creating positive learning environments (4th ed.). South Melbourne, Vic: Cengage Learning. 

Pollard, A., & Black-Hawkins, K. (2019). Reflective teaching in schools (5th ed.). London: Bloomsbury Academic. 

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