Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit



Unit rationale, description and aim

This unit focuses on the theory and pedagogy of language and literacy education in primary classrooms. A range of literary, non-literary and multi-modal texts, including picture books, children’s literature novels, factual and media texts, will be studied as resources for literacy pedagogy. Students will develop their understanding of how to implement relevant syllabus documents through a range of teaching/learning strategies which promote children’s composing and comprehending of spoken and written language. The role of assessment in planning for teaching will be demonstrated.

This unit aims to assist pre-service teachers in examining different theories of language and reading and understand how to apply a variety of practices to suit the needs of diverse learners in K-6 classrooms.

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 - display an understanding of theories of children’s literacy development as these apply to the primary years of schooling (GA8; APST 1.2)

LO2 - demonstrate knowledge, appreciation and critical reading of a variety of literary, non-literary, media and multi-modal texts (GA4, GA8; APST 2.1)

LO3 - critically understand various approaches to promoting oracy and teaching literacy in the primary years (GA4, GA8; APST 2.5)

LO4 - show a critical awareness of a range of approaches to assessing primary-age students’ composing and comprehending of spoken and written language (GA4, GA8; APST 2.3, 5.1)

LO5 - plan and implement teaching/learning experiences to promote children’s language and literacy learning, based on theoretical understandings and the relevant syllabus requirements (GA5; APST 2.2, 2.3)

LO6 - understand the pedagogic consequences of linguistic, cultural, EAL/D and gender differences and how to use the cultural and language knowledge that students bring to the classroom to support their language and literacy learning (GA8; APST 1.3, 2.4)

LO7 - understand ways of organising the classroom to teach literacy (GA8, GA5; APST 4.2)

LO8 - use appropriate technologies to facilitate and enhance learning in the classroom (GA5, GA9; APST 4.5).

Graduate attributes

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 

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


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.

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.

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

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.


Topics will include:

  • past and current theories of children’s literacy development and how these theories become effective literacy practices in classrooms
  • theories of teaching and learning to read and to write
  • literary, non-literary, media and multi-modal texts, including those intended for young students who are learning the reading and writing processes and for those students who are developing and extending as readers
  • the grammatical and phonological structures of written and spoken English and how to implement this knowledge in literacy and oracy teaching
  • ways of planning tasks to promote students’ language and literacy learning, including attention to phonological knowledge, literal and critical comprehension, text structures and spelling
  • strategies for monitoring, assessing and organising children’s language and literacy learning, with regard to relevant syllabus requirements
  • how to recognise and accept different language patterns, and different socio-cultural, EAL/D and gender experiences, together with strategies for addressing the literacy and learning needs of these students
  • ways of implementing strategies for including information technology in the language and literacy framework of the classroom.

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:

  • Online modules – which will include student readings and activities
  • Online discussion forums – which will include interaction with other students.

This 10-credit point unit is generally taught fully online across a 12 week semester. Students should anticipate undertaking 150 hours of study for this unit including a variety of flexible teaching and learning strategies, dependent on the needs of the particular group and the technologies available. These may include Learning Management System (LMS) access, self-paced readings, online discussions, experiential learning, problem solving, and an exploration of content through a broad range of technologies.

Assessment strategy and rationale

A range of assessment procedures will be used to meet the unit learning outcomes and develop graduate attributes consistent with University assessment requirements. Such procedures may include, but are not limited to, journal/workshop folio, written assignment (essay), seminar or oral presentation, case study /field work assignment, tests or examinations.

Minimum Achievement Standards

The assessment tasks for this unit are designed to demonstrate achievement of each learning outcome. The total of assessment tasks will amount to the equivalent of 4,000 words

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Assessment Task 1

Discussion board response and participation


LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4

GA4, GA8, GA9

Assessment Task 2:

Lesson series


LO5, LO6, LO7, LO8

GA5, GA8, GA9

Representative texts and references

Campbell, R., & Green, D. (2006). Literacies and learners: Current perspectives (3rd ed). Sydney: Prentice Hall.

Christie, F. (2005). Language education in the primary years. Sydney: University of New South Wales Press.

Christie, F., & Derewianka, B. (2009). School discourse: Learning to write across the years of schooling. London: Continuum International Publishing Group.

Derewianka, B. (2011). A new grammar companion for teachers (2nd ed.). Newtown, NSW: Primary English Teaching Association.

Droga, L., & Humphrey, S. (2003). Grammar and meaning: An introduction for primary teachers. Sydney: Target Texts.

Gee, J. (2007). What video games have to teach us about learning and literacy. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. 

Hammond, J. (Ed.). (2001). Scaffolding teaching and learning in language and literacy education. Newtown, NSW: Primary English Teaching Association.

Harris, P., Turbill, J., Fitzsimmons, P., & McKenzie, B. (2005). Reading in the primary school years. South Melbourne, Vic: Thomson - Social Science Press.

Unsworth, L. (2001). Teaching multiliteracies across the curriculum: Changing contexts of text and image in classroom practice. Buckingham, Phil: Open University Press.

Winch, G., Johnston, R.R., March, P., Ljungdahl, L., & Holliday, M. (2014). Literacy: Reading, writing and children's literature (5th ed). South Melbourne, Vic: Oxford University Press.

Have a question?

We're available 9am–5pm AEDT,
Monday to Friday

If you’ve got a question, our AskACU team has you covered. You can search FAQs, text us, email, live chat, call – whatever works for you.

Live chat with us now

Chat to our team for real-time
answers to your questions.

Launch live chat

Visit our FAQs page

Find answers to some commonly
asked questions.

See our FAQs