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EDLL501 Effective Teaching and Learning

Unit rationale, description and aim

Includes: 15 days of professional experience placement in a secondary school setting

Well-managed learning settings that are engaging, inclusive and safe promote the achievement of learning outcomes. Teachers must be able to apply effective practices to create and maintain positive learning environments that meet learners’ needs and foster participation.

This unit is the first of three that form an Effective Teaching sequence.

This unit develops the communication, management and organisational skills that are needed to create and maintain positive and effective learning environments and to guide learner behaviour. Pre-service teachers will examine contemporary research, policies, theories and practices related to effective communication and interpersonal skills, lesson planning, teaching strategies and classroom management, including the establishment of clear expectations in relation to learning and behaviour. Pre-service teachers will have opportunities to observe and practise introductory planning, teaching and classroom management skills through undertaking a 15-day professional experience placement.

The aim of this unit is to enable pre-service teachers to acquire and develop the knowledge, understanding and skills to effectively plan and implement classroom learning activities that promote positive behaviours and ensure meaningful engagement in learning. 

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.

Learning Outcome NumberLearning Outcome DescriptionRelevant Graduate Capabilities
LO1Comply with legal and ethical requirements of teachers, and describe and apply policies and strategies for providing safe and supportive learning environmentsGC1, GC2, GC8, GC9
LO2Apply knowledge of curriculum, planning, communication and teaching strategies to organise content and design and implement learning activities to engage learners of all abilities and diverse backgroundsGC1, GC2, GC4, GC7, GC8
LO3Evaluate and utilise a range of practical strategies for managing common classroom behavioursGC1, GC2, GC7, GC8
LO4Complete a successful professional experience in a classroom setting engaging in critical reflection and responding to feedback from colleagues and supervisors to improve teaching practiceGC1, GC2, GC3, GC4, GC7, GC8, GC10, GC11, GC12

Australian Professional Standards for Teachers - Graduate Level

On successful completion of this unit, pre-service teachers should have developed the following industry specific knowledge based on the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers - Graduate Level standards:

Industry StandardRelating toRelevant Learning Outcome
APST(GA)1.1Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of physical, social and intellectual development and characteristics of students and how these may affect learning.LO2, LO4
APST(GA)1.3Demonstrate knowledge of teaching strategies that are responsive to the learning strengths and needs of students from diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgroundsLO2
APST(GA)2.1Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the concepts, substance and structure of the content and teaching strategies of the teaching area.LO2, LO4
APST(GA)2.2Organise content into an effective learning and teaching sequence.LO2, LO4
APST(GA)2.3Use curriculum, assessment and reporting knowledge to design learning sequences and lesson plans.LO2, LO4
APST(GA)3.1Set learning goals that provide achievable challenges for students of varying abilities and characteristics.LO2, LO4
APST(GA)3.2Plan lesson sequences using knowledge of student learning, content and effective teaching strategies.LO2, LO4
APST(GA)3.3Include a range of teaching strategies.LO2, LO4
APST(GA)3.4Demonstrate knowledge of a range of resources, including ICT, that engage students in their learning.LO2, LO4
APST(GA)3.5Demonstrate a range of verbal and non-verbal communication strategies to support student engagement.LO4
APST(GA)3.6Demonstrate broad knowledge of strategies that can be used to evaluate teaching programs to improve student learning.LO2
APST(GA)4.1Identify strategies to support inclusive student participation and engagement in classroom activities.LO3, LO4
APST(GA)4.2Demonstrate the capacity to organise classroom activities and provide clear directions.LO2, LO4
APST(GA)4.3Demonstrate knowledge of practical approaches to manage challenging behaviour.LO3, LO4
APST(GA)4.4Describe strategies that support students’ wellbeing and safety working within school and/or system, curriculum and legislative requirements.LO1, LO3, LO4
APST(GA)4.5Demonstrate an understanding of the relevant issues and the strategies available to support the safe, responsible and ethical use of ICT in learning and teaching.LO4
APST(GA)5.2Demonstrate an understanding of the purpose of providing timely and appropriate feedback to students about their learning.LO4
APST(GA)6.3Seek and apply constructive feedback from supervisors and teachers to improve teaching practices.LO4
APST(GA)6.4Demonstrate an understanding of the rationale for continued professional learning and the implications for improved student learning.LO4
APST(GA)7.1Understand and apply the key principles described in codes of ethics and conduct for the teaching profession.LO1, LO4
APST(GA)7.2Understand the relevant legislative, administrative and organisational policies and processes required for teachers according to school stage.LO1


Topics will include:

The profession of teaching:

  • 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
  • This unit includes a mandatory module on working with children and young people that focuses on responding to concerns and strategies to keep ourselves and others safe and support children, young people and vulnerable adults.

Introduction to planning:

  • Overview of the Australian curriculum
  • 4 levels of planning – Year/semester, unit, lesson, activity.
  • Setting clear and appropriate learning goals
  • Planning and implementing learning activities linked to curriculum content and learning outcomes

Introduction to teaching strategies:

  • Explicit strategies such as
  • demonstrating and explaining
  • didactic teaching/direct instruction
  • group work
  • discussion
  • problem solving
  • role play
  • Questioning techniques
  • Use of ICTs as an aid to teaching and learning

Professional communication in educational contexts:

  • Characteristics of effective teachers
  • Communication and interpersonal skills in the classroom, school, and other education contexts
  • Teacher behaviours to promote positive engagement: setting achievable and challenging learning goals, giving clear directions, strategies for attracting and maintaining student attention
  • Building positive, safe and supportive learning environments: getting to know your learners; appropriate teacher-learner communication

Introduction to classroom management

  • Theories and practices of classroom management, with particular emphasis on preventative measures and maintaining positive classroom environments for teaching and learning.
  • Establishing clear expectations in relation to behaviour.
  • With-it-ness (whole class awareness),

The Professional Experience:

  • Teacher self-care: physical and mental wellbeing and building resilience
  • Practise introductory planning, teaching and classroom management skills
  • Observation, reflection and applying constructive feedback as strategies that guide professional learning and growth

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

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 teaching period.

This unit applies a social constructivist approach to develop pre-service teachers’ understanding of the complexities of the teacher’s role through engagement in a range of learning activities such as reading, reflection, discussion, and engagement with webinars, podcasts and video resources. Knowledge of curriculum and teaching strategies and planning skills are introduced and developed through designing learning experiences and lesson plans appropriate for the educational context. The placement enables pre-service teachers to observe and engage with experienced practitioners and to make links between theory and its application to the learning environment. The learning and teaching strategies may include:

  • Formal online weekly input by the teaching team
  • Input from guests (e.g., early career teachers, experienced teachers, school leaders);
  • Online activities.


Mode of delivery: This unit may be offered in different modes to cater to the learning needs and preferences of a range of participants.


Learning activities are delivered through a planned mix of online and in-person classes, which may include full-day sessions and/or placements, to enable interaction. Activities that require attendance will appear in a student’s timetable.

Online unscheduled

Learning activities are accessible anytime, anywhere. These units are normally delivered fully online and will not appear in a student’s timetable. 

Online scheduled

All learning activities are held online, at scheduled times, and will require some attendance to enable online interaction. Activities will appear in a student’s timetable.

ACU Online 

In ACU Online mode, this unit is delivered asynchronously, fully online using an active, guided learning approach. Pre-service teachers are encouraged to contribute to asynchronous weekly discussions and receive regular and timely feedback on their learning.


Within this Effective Teaching unit, pre-service teachers will undertake, in pairs where possible, a professional experience placement comprising 15 days in a secondary school setting (with at least 10 days of continuous engagement ie., ‘a block’).

Pre-service teachers will develop the habit of critically reflective practice through guided reflection upon their observations of their class and the educational setting. In collaboration with their supervising teachers and other professional colleagues, they will develop basic teaching skills through assisting in the delivery of high-quality teaching episodes and teaching small groups and whole classes. They will critically reflect upon their teaching, and self-audit their progression and attainment of key teaching skills and standards.

Required Teaching Experience

The following engagements are recommended across the 15-day placement for pre-service teachers undertaking professional experience placement in a primary or secondary school.

School settings: DAYS 1–5: Single days (e.g., once per week) OR incorporated into the block of 15 days

  • Days 1-3 Proposed Teaching Expectations
  • Assisted immersion in school and class contexts to begin to experience aspects of the secondary school teacher’s role and responsibilities
  • Structured observation and small group/team teaching
  • Assisting the supervising teacher in the teaching and learning process
  • Self-auditing and evaluation

  • Days 3-5 - Proposed Teaching Expectations
  • Structured observation and small group/team teaching
  • One – two lessons/learning experiences per day, leading to whole class teaching
  • Self-auditing and evaluation

School settings: DAYS 6–15: Block practicum

  • Days 6-10 Proposed Teaching Expectations
  • Planning for teaching; Observation and small group/team teaching;
  • Assisting the class teacher in the teaching and learning process;
  • One – two lessons/learning experiences per day plus management of class routines; Self-auditing and evaluation

  • Days 11 - 15 Planning for teaching;
  • Two - three whole class lessons/learning experiences per day;
  • Management of class routines;
  • Extra-curricular activities;
  • Self-auditing and evaluation

Assessment strategy and rationale

The assessment load and weighting of the assessments in this unit have been designed to incorporate the professional experience. The written assessment load in this unit has been adjusted accordingly.

A range of assessment procedures are used to help the pre-service teacher to progressively demonstrate achievement of the unit learning outcomes and develop graduate attributes and academic standards consistent with University assessment requirements. The Effective Teaching units in this course focus on developing understanding of, and skills across the domains of professional knowledge, practice and engagement needed to meet expectations of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST): Graduate level.

The assessments in this unit focus on understanding the profession of teaching and the facilitation of pre-service teachers’ development of their communication and teaching skills.


Minimum Achievement Standards

The assessment tasks and their weighting for this unit are designed to demonstrate achievement of each learning outcome. In order to pass this unit, students are required to submit all assessment tasks, meet the learning outcomes of the unit and achieve a minimum overall passing grade of 50%.   

In addition, pre-service teachers must attain a Pass in the two hurdle tasks. The first hurdle comprises a collection of preparatory tasks that must be completed to a high standard prior to commencement of the placement. The second hurdle task is the Professional Experience Placement – which is assessed on a pass/fail basis.

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate CapabilitiesStandards

Assessment Task 1: Lesson planning

To demonstrate a positive and engaging learning environment which caters for the diverse learning needs of all students, develop a sequence of learning activities in the pre-service teacher’s subject area. The sequence will include:

  • reference to curriculum/state-based syllabus
  • learning goals and success criteria
  • strategies to support inclusive student participation
  • a range of teaching strategies to meet the needs of students of all abilities and from diverse backgrounds (including linguistic, cultural, religious and socio-economic)
  • a variety of resources to engage students
  • instructions on the implementation of the learning activities in a classroom and provide examples of clear directions for students
  • <


LO1, LO2GC1, GC2, GC4, GC7, GC8, GC9APST(GA)1.1, APST(GA)1.3, APST(GA)2.1, APST(GA)2.2, APST(GA)2.3, APST(GA)3.1, APST(GA)3.2, APST(GA)3.3, APST(GA)3.4, APST(GA)3.6, APST(GA)4.2, APST(GA)4.4, APST(GA)7.1, APST(GA)7.2

Assessment Task 2: Classroom management

Pre-service teachers will be provided with a scenario (or series of scenarios) that will describe a commonly encountered form of ‘off-task’ or low-level classroom misbehaviour. Pre-service teachers will need to explore a variety of approaches to handling the situation and present their findings. 


LO1, LO3GC1, GC2, GC7, GC8, GC9APST(GA)4.1, APST(GA)4.3, APST(GA)4.4, APST(GA)7.1, APST(GA)7.2

Hurdle Requirement 1: Preparation for the Professional Experience Placement

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;
  • Workplace Health & Safety;
  • Legal requirements, including Duty of Care, Child Protection and Mandatory Reporting; and
  • Professional relationships.

Pre-service teachers must also complete and provide evidence of the following:

  • Working with Children Check or a Police Check where this is appropriate or mandated.
  • Mandatory requirements as specified by the pre-service teacher’s state/territory.


  • Completion of these modules does not exempt pre-service teachers from seeking a Working with Children Check or a Police Check where this is appropriate or mandated.
  • Anticipated completion time: 7 hours
  • Multiple attempts at this hurdle task are permitted.


LO1GC1, GC2, GC8, GC9APST(GA)4.4, APST(GA)7.1, APST(GA)7.2

Hurdle Requirement 2: Professional Experience Assessment

Pre-service teachers must demonstrate attainment of the relevant Australian Professional Standards for Teachers: Graduate within a secondary school setting. Refer to Professional Experience Handbook and Report.


A pass grade for this task will be awarded following:

  • the successful completion of 15 professional experience days and,
  • submission of a satisfactory Professional Experience Assessment Report



  • Multiple attempts at this hurdle task are not permitted.
  • Professional Experience is a mandated part of Initial Teacher Education courses. Failing this task will result in a fail grade for the unit overall and pre-service teachers will be required to enrol in a future offering of the unit. 


LO4GC1, GC2, GC3, GC4, GC7, GC8, GC10, GC11, GC12APST(GA)1.1, APST(GA)2.1, APST(GA)2.2, APST(GA)2.3, APST(GA)3.1, APST(GA)3.2, APST(GA)3.3, APST(GA)3.4, APST(GA)3.5, APST(GA)4.1, APST(GA)4.2, APST(GA)4.3, APST(GA)4.4, APST(GA)4.5, APST(GA)5.2, APST(GA)6.3, APST(GA)7.1, APST(GA)7.2

Representative texts and references

Required text(s)

Australian Curriculum

Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA)

Relevant State and Territory curriculum documents. 

Recommended references

Allison, S. & Tharby, A. (2020). Making every lesson count: Six principles to support great teaching and learning. Crown House Publishing.

Call, K. (2018). Professional teaching standards: A comparative analysis of their history, implementation and efficacy. Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 43 (3), 93-108.

Churchill, R., Keddie, A., Apps, T., Batt, J., Beckman, K., Grainger, P., Letts, W., Mackay, J., McGill, M., Moss, J., Nagel, M.C., Shaw, K., & Rogers, J. (2021). Teaching: Making a difference (5th ed.). John Wiley & Sons.

Dawson, V., & Shand, J. (2019). Impact of support for pre-service teachers placed in disadvantaged schools. Issues in Educational Research, 29 (1) 19-37.

Ewing, R., Glass, C., Kervin, L., Gobby, B., & Le Cornu, R. (2019). Teaching: Dilemmas, challenges and opportunities. Cengage Learning Australia.

Gutierrez, A., Fox, J., & Alexander, C. (2019). Professionalism and teacher education: Voices from policy and practice. Springer Singapore.

Kauchak D., & Eggen, P. (2017). Introduction to teaching: Becoming a professional (6th ed.). Pearson. (Only available in print.)

Kennedy, K., Marsh, C. J., & Henderson, D. (2022). Becoming a teacher. (7th ed.). Pearson.

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

Pritchard, A. (2014). Ways of learning: Learning theories and learning styles in the classroom (3rd ed.). Routledge.

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