EDST2010 – Practice of Teaching: Introduction to the Early Childhood Context

2021 – Session 1, Special circumstances


As part of Phase 3 of our return to campus plan, most units will now run tutorials, seminars and other small group activities on campus, and most will keep an online version available to those students unable to return or those who choose to continue their studies online.

To check the availability of face-to-face and online activities for your unit, please go to timetable viewer. To check detailed information on unit assessments visit your unit's iLearn space or consult your unit convenor.

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit Convenor
Rebecca Andrews
Contact via iLearn Dialogue
Room 277 29 Wally's Walk or online
By Appointment
Unit Convenor Support and Tutor
Anne-Maree Tonkin
Contact via iLearn Dialogue
By Appointment
Credit points Credit points
Prerequisites Prerequisites
80cp including (ECH113 or ECHE1130) and admission to BTeach(ECE)
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
This unit combines university based early childhood study with practical experience in an early childhood setting. Central to the unit is the exploration of a variety of theories on how children learn. Students are assisted to record thoughtful, reflective observations, to use intentional teaching strategies to plan an appropriate curriculum and to follow the planning cycle. Additionally, a range of teaching strategies for guiding children's learning and behaviour are considered. Students also engage in critical reflection as part of their commitment to teaching through consideration of the Early Years Learning Framework and the National Quality Standards. Students will utilise their coursework knowledge to complete a compulsory professional experience in a prior to school early childhood setting with children aged two to five years.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  • ULO1: Become familiar with the professional environment of early childhood teaching.
  • ULO2: Develop an understanding of the early childhood curriculum and the ways this can be used to support children's learning, development and wellbeing.
  • ULO3: Interact and build relationships with young children.
  • ULO4: Record and interpret observations of individual and small groups of children and identify implications for learning.
  • ULO5: Begin acting in the role of the reflective practitioner.

General Assessment Information

Assessment Presentation and Submission Guidelines 

Please follow these guidelines when you submit each assignment: 

  • Allow a left and right-hand margin of at least 2cm in all assignments. 

  • Please type all assignments using 12-point font and 1.5 spacing. 

  • All assessments must be submitted through Turnitin in .doc or .pdf format  

  • It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that all assessments are successfully submitted through Turnitin. 

  • Faculty assignment cover sheets are NOT required. 

Draft Submissions & Turnitin Originality Reports 

  • Students may use Turnitin’s Originality Report as a learning tool to improve their academic writing if this option is made available in the unit. 

  • Students are strongly encouraged to upload a draft copy of each assessment to Turnitin at least one week prior to the due date to obtain an Originality Report. 

  • The Originality Report provides students with a similarity index that may indicate if plagiarism has occurred. Students will be able to make amendments to their drafts prior to their final submission on the due date. 

  • Generally, one Originality Report is generated every 24 hours up to the due date. 

Please note: 

  • Students should regularly save a copy of all assignments before submission, 

  • Students are responsible for checking that their submission has been successful and has been submitted by the due date and time. 

Assignment extensions and late penalties 

  • In general, there should be no need for extensions except through illness or misadventure that would be categorised as serious and unavoidable disruption according to the University definition of same, see: 

  • Applications for extensions must be made via AskMQ according to the Special Consideration policy. Extensions can only be granted if they meet the Special Considerations policy and are submitted via This will ensure consistency in the consideration of such requests is maintained.  

  • Late submissions: Unless a Special Consideration request has been submitted and approved, (a) a penalty for lateness will apply – two (2) marks out of 100 will be deducted per day for assignments submitted after the due date – and (b) no assignment will be accepted more than seven (7) days (incl. weekends) after the original submission deadline. No late submissions will be accepted for timed assessments – e.g., quizzes, online tests. Late penalties are applied by unit convenors or their delegates after tasks are assessed. 

  • If a student is still permitted to submit on the basis of unavoidable disruption, an alternative topic may be set.  

  • Students should keep an electronic file of all assessments. Claims regarding "lost" assessments cannot be made if the file cannot be produced. It is also advisable to keep an electronic file of all drafts and the final submission on a USB untouched/unopened after submission. This can be used to demonstrate easily that the assessment has not been amended after the submission date. 

Requesting a re-assessment of an assignment 

If you have evidence that your task has been incorrectly assessed against the grade descriptors you can request a re-mark. To request a re-mark you need to contact the unit convenor within 7 days of the date of return of the assignment and provide a detailed assessment of your script against the task criteria. Evidence from your assignment must be provided to support your judgements.  


  • Please do not request a re-mark for a Failed assessment as they are all double-marked as a part of the moderation process.  

  • The outcome of a re-mark may be a higher/lower or unchanged grade.  

  • Grades are standards referenced and effort is NOT a criterion. 

University policy on grading

Criteria for awarding grades for assessment tasks

Assignments will be awarded grades ranging from HD to F according to guidelines set out in the University's Grading Policy. The following descriptive criteria are included for your information.

Descriptive Criteria for awarding grades in the unit 

In order to meet the unit outcomes and successfully pass this unit, students must make a genuine attempt at all assessment tasks. Where any submitted assessment task is considered to be unsatisfactory in this regard, the highest possible final grade that can be awarded for the unit will be 45. 

Students will be awarded grades ranging from HD to F according to guidelines set out in the policy: 

The following generic grade descriptors provide university-wide standards for awarding final grades. 




(High Distinction) 

Provides consistent evidence of deep and critical understanding in relation to the learning outcomes. There is substantial originality and insight in identifying, generating and communicating competing arguments, perspectives or problem solving approaches; critical evaluation of problems, their solutions and their implications; creativity in application as appropriate to the discipline. 


Provides evidence of integration and evaluation of critical ideas, principles and theories, distinctive insight and ability in applying relevant skills and concepts in relation to learning outcomes. There is demonstration of frequent originality in defining and analysing issues or problems and providing solutions; and the use of means of communication appropriate to the discipline and the audience. 



Provides evidence of learning that goes beyond replication of content knowledge or skills relevant to the learning outcomes. There is demonstration of substantial understanding of fundamental concepts in the field of study and the ability to apply these concepts in a variety of contexts; convincing argumentation with appropriate coherent justification; communication of ideas fluently and clearly in terms of the conventions of the discipline. 


Provides sufficient evidence of the achievement of learning outcomes. There is demonstration of understanding and application of fundamental concepts of the field of study; routine argumentation with acceptable justification; communication of information and ideas adequately in terms of the conventions of the discipline. The learning attainment is considered satisfactory or adequate or competent or capable in relation to the specified outcomes 


Does not provide evidence of attainment of learning outcomes. There is missing or partial or superficial or faulty understanding and application of the fundamental concepts in the field of study; missing, undeveloped, inappropriate or confusing argumentation; incomplete, confusing or lacking communication of ideas in ways that give little attention to the conventions of the discipline. 

Note: If you fail a unit with a professional experience component, the fail grade will be on your transcript irrespective of the timing of  the placement. 

Withdrawing from this unit 

If you are considering withdrawing from this unit, please seek academic advice via before doing so as this unit may be a co-requisite or prerequisite for units in the following sessions and may impact on your progression through the degree. 


Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Hurdle Due
Preparation for Professional Experience 40% No March 19th 2021
Professional Experience Documentation 60% No May 24th 2021

Preparation for Professional Experience

Assessment Type 1: Portfolio
Indicative Time on Task 2: 14.5 hours
Due: March 19th 2021
Weighting: 40%

Part A: Professional Experience Folder; Part B: Transitions and Literature Collection; Part C: Observation Records. Word count: 2000

On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Become familiar with the professional environment of early childhood teaching.
  • Develop an understanding of the early childhood curriculum and the ways this can be used to support children's learning, development and wellbeing.
  • Interact and build relationships with young children.
  • Record and interpret observations of individual and small groups of children and identify implications for learning.

Professional Experience Documentation

Assessment Type 1: Portfolio
Indicative Time on Task 2: 21.5 hours
Due: May 24th 2021
Weighting: 60%

Students submit material from their Professional Experience folder (what they did whilst on PE Placement). These are reflective tasks that are completed on PE. Word count: 3000

On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Become familiar with the professional environment of early childhood teaching.
  • Develop an understanding of the early childhood curriculum and the ways this can be used to support children's learning, development and wellbeing.
  • Interact and build relationships with young children.
  • Record and interpret observations of individual and small groups of children and identify implications for learning.
  • Begin acting in the role of the reflective practitioner.

1 If you need help with your assignment, please contact:

  • the academic teaching staff in your unit for guidance in understanding or completing this type of assessment
  • the Writing Centre for academic skills support.

2 Indicative time-on-task is an estimate of the time required for completion of the assessment task and is subject to individual variation

Delivery and Resources

Required Texts:

Arthur, I., Beecher, B., Death, E., Dockett, S. & Farmer, S. (2021). Programming and planning in early childhood settings. (8th ed.).Victoria: Thomson

Porter, L. (2016). Young children’s behaviour. Guidance approaches for early childhood educators. (4th Ed.). Marrickville: Allen and Unwin.

Department of Education, Employment & Workplace Relations. (2009). Belonging, Being and Becoming. The Early Years Learning Framework for Australia. Canberra, ACT: Commonwealth of Australia. 


The unit comprises one one-hour lecture and a two-hour tutorial. In the tutorial students will discuss issues and questions arising from the lectures and prescribed readings. They are expected to base their arguments/discussions on evidence from published research and other relevant material. Attendance at all tutorials is expected.  Attendance at on campus days for external students is also expected. There is an online option for tutorials/on campus days. There will be a supporting website for the unit providing additional readings, links and materials. Lectures will also be available through Echo in iLearn from the following website link:  

Students are required to participate in small group activities, whole class discussion, to read the weekly material in advance, and to complete brief tasks either as individuals or in pairs. The weekly program for the course with the accompanying readings/ preparation is available on the following pages or on the unit iLearn site. 

Information about the unit iLearn site   

This unit has a full web presence through iLearn.  Students will need regular access to a computer and the Internet to complete this unit.  Weekly access to iLearn is compulsory for all students. Important assessment information will be posted here, as will other relevant unit notices and materials, including a reading template and guide to lecture note taking to assist your studies. Various activities and materials for discussion and critical reflection are included and external students especially are encouraged to use this web component.  

Weekly lectures are available on the web through the ECHO360 lecture component. You must listen to all lectures.

Access and technical assistance  

Information for students about access to the online component of this unit is available at You will need to enter your student username and password. 

Please do NOT contact the Unit Convenor regarding iLearn technical help.  

No assessment extensions will be given for any technical issues. Allow enough time for your submissions.  

Assistance is available from IT Helpdesk ph: 1800 67 4357, or log a request at OneHelp is the online IT support service for both students and staff. 

This unit requires students to use several ICT and software skills: 

  • Internet access: The iLearn site contains materials for this unit; it is also required for the online submission of all Assessment Tasks, and for the use of Turnitin submission for ALL tasks.   

  • Word processing, visual representations, and document formatting: You are required to use an appropriate form of software to present your assignments.  

  • Uploading of assessment tasks to iLearn. 

Unit Schedule

See iLearn.

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central ( Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Students seeking more policy resources can visit Student Policies ( It is your one-stop-shop for the key policies you need to know about throughout your undergraduate student journey.

To find other policies relating to Teaching and Learning, visit Policy Central ( and use the search tool.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct:


Results published on platform other than eStudent, (eg. iLearn, Coursera etc.) or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit or if you are a Global MBA student contact

School of Education Procedures 

In addition, the following policies and procedures of the School of Education are applicable in this unit. 

Attendance for undergraduate units 

All Internal tutorials begin in Week 1 of Session.  

Activities completed during weekly tutorials (internal) or on campus days (external) are essential for building the core knowledge and/or skills required to demonstrate the learning outcomes of this unit [and to meet the AITSL Graduate Teacher Standards and/or ACECQA requirements]. Attendance at all tutorials or on campus days is expected and the roll will be taken. 

Students are required to attend the tutorial in which they are enrolled. Any changes to tutorial enrolments must be completed officially through e-student. Please do not contact the unit convenor requesting a change. 

 Unit Expectations 

  • Students are expected to read weekly readings before completing tasks and attending tutorials 

  • Students are expected to listen/attend weekly lectures before completing tasks and attending tutorials 

Note: It is not the responsibility of unit staff to contact students who have failed to submit assignments.  If you have any missing items of assessment, it is your responsibility to make contact with the unit convenor. 

Electronic Communication 

It is the student’s responsibility to check all electronic communication on a regular weekly basis.  Communication may occur via: 

  • Official MQ Student Email Address 

  • The Dialogue function on iLearn 

  • Other iLearn communication functions 

External Students 

  • The on-campus sessions are essential to student engagement and learning and attendance on all days is expected. Failure to attend or to have an approved Special Consideration, may result in a Fail grade for the unit. Please see attendance requirements in this unit guide.   

  • Prior to the on-campus sessions, you should have read the prescribed readings and listened to the lectures. Summarise the main points and make a note of the key terms and definitions. Prepare any discussion questions of your own that you wish to share. 

  • Please make effective use of the online component of the unit and access iLearn regularly. Keep up to date with listening to the lectures on a weekly basis. 

Professional Experience Unit Placement Expectations 

  • Students must be able to present evidence of completion of the following prior to session census date (or as otherwise advised) in order to receive a placement for Professional Experience: A Working with Children Check or State/ Territory equivalent. 

For more details re school placement requirements see:  

This includes completing the pre-service teacher acknowledgement: 

Students are responsible for ensuring that their evidence is current.  Please be aware that you may need to update your training or credential during your program of study.  

  • A Working with Children Check or State/Territory equivalent is required by the end of Week 2 to be eligible for a placement. Students may need to withdraw from this unit if this has not been obtained in time.  

  • Students who are completing a unit offered by another department are expected to inform and negotiate with that unit convenor about their professional experience block dates and to discuss how that unit's requirements can be met. For some situations, it may mean that you are enrolled externally for that unit so that your attendance for tutorials for that unit is not impacted.  

  • Feedback from Tertiary Supervisors and/or Supervising Teachers is of a general nature. It is incumbent on the student to check the requirements of any assessments or bookwork prior to submission. 

  • If a Student is identified being in need of additional support for Professional Practice and/or Bookwork, the Department’s ‘Additional Support’ procedure will be activated and they will not be able to withdraw themselves from this Unit. 

  • The timing of placements can vary. For placements early in the Session, Fail grades may be approved by the University prior to the end of Session for students who do not meet the placement expectations of the Unit. 

  Fitness to practice requirements 

  • Macquarie University operates under a ‘Fitness to Practice’ model as specified in the University's Academic Progression Policy.  For this Unit, this means that, when undertaking a placement, a student is declaring that they are able to demonstrate professional competence, acceptable professional behaviour, freedom from impairment, and compliance with program specific requirements needed for a student to practice properly and safely throughout their Practical, Clinical or Professional program or unit. It is the responsibility of the student to determine whether they are fit to undertake a placement. Therefore, if a student is feeling unfit to undertake a placement, they should not do so. For more information 

Twice Fail Rule for Professional Experience Units 

General Coursework Rule 10(7) stipulates that if a student fails a required unit twice in an undergraduate professional program listed on Schedule 2, they may be permanently excluded from further enrolment in that program.  

Students completing a double degree will be able to continue with their other degree program provided they meet the academic progression requirements of the Academic Progression Policy. 

Students completing a single Education degree (such as the BEd) are advised to seek academic advice. 

On-campus sessions 

The on-campus session for this year is April 7th 2021. Further specific details and any updates about times and locations will be posted on iLearn as an Announcement during first half of the semester. 

Professional Experience Unit Placement Expectations  

To be eligible to commence the block placement component of this unit, students 

  • Must have submitted all written assessment tasks and/or associated unit component requirements prior to the commencement of the block 

  • Must meet the participation requirements for the unit - listened to lectures, attended tutorials / oncampus sessions / online sessions.

  • Students may not be able to commence their placement until all alleged academic honesty breaches have been investigated and concluded.  

In order to meet the Professional Experience placement expectations of this unit, students must: 

  • attain a ‘Satisfactory’ grade for their Professional Experience Practical Work in their Evaluation Report, AND 

  • attain a ‘Satisfactory’ grade for their Professional Experience Folder in their Evaluation Report 

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit

Learning Skills

Learning Skills ( provides academic writing resources and study strategies to help you improve your marks and take control of your study.

The Library provides online and face to face support to help you find and use relevant information resources. 

Student Services and Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

Student Enquiries

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at

If you are a Global MBA student contact

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.