EDTE4550 – Curriculum and Teaching in the Primary School 5

2023 – Session 1, In person-scheduled-infrequent, North Ryde

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Convener
John Ehrich
Contact via email
Building X5B 239 Macquarie University
9 am - 5 pm Monday - Friday
Credit points Credit points
Prerequisites Prerequisites
(EDTE354 or EDTE3540) or (admission to BEd(Prim) and (EDTE301 or EDTE3010))
Corequisites Corequisites
EDTE4030 or EDTE403
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
This fifth unit in the primary curriculum methodology series focuses on the key learning areas of Science & Technology and Human Society & Its Environment including History, Geography and Civics and Citizenship. It builds on previous units, emphasising the development of quality teaching through reflective practice, based on the critical study of pedagogical models and the findings of recent research. Students have the opportunity to draw on their professional experiences (with links to EDTE4030), and knowledge of current thinking in curriculum and pedagogy, to plan, implement and critically evaluate a range of teaching and learning experiences.

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: Demonstrate a well-developed knowledge of the relevant syllabuses for Geography, History and Science & Technology.
  • ULO2: Describe and critically reflect on effective pedagogical approaches for effective teaching in the learning areas of Geography, History, and Science & Technology.
  • ULO3: Design a unit of work that extends over one school term and integrates History and Geography.
  • ULO4: Critique and apply a digital learning resource that facilitates teaching and learning for Science & Technology.

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 the correct file has been uploaded, that their submission has been successful, and that it 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.
  • 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.
  • Late Assessment Submission Penalty 

Unless a Special Consideration request has been submitted and approved, a 5% penalty (of the total possible mark) will be applied each day a written assessment is not submitted, up until the 7th day (including weekends). After the 7th day, a mark of ‘0’ (zero) will be awarded even if the assessment is submitted. Submission time for all written assessments is set at 11.55pm. A 1-hour grace period is provided to students who experience a technical issue.   

This late penalty will apply to non-timed sensitive assessment (incl essays, reports, posters, portfolios, journals, recordings, etc.). Late submission of time sensitive tasks (such as tests/exams, performance assessments/presentations, scheduled practical assessments/labs, etc.) will only be addressed by the unit convenor in a Special Consideration application. Special Consideration outcome may result in a new question or topic.

 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
Unit of Work 50% No 23:55 on 26/03/2023
Integrated Unit of Work 50% No 23:55 on 4/06/2023

Unit of Work

Assessment Type 1: Essay
Indicative Time on Task 2: 30 hours
Due: 23:55 on 26/03/2023
Weighting: 50%


Unit of work on Science and Technology (2200 wds)


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Demonstrate a well-developed knowledge of the relevant syllabuses for Geography, History and Science & Technology.
  • Describe and critically reflect on effective pedagogical approaches for effective teaching in the learning areas of Geography, History, and Science & Technology.
  • Critique and apply a digital learning resource that facilitates teaching and learning for Science & Technology.

Integrated Unit of Work

Assessment Type 1: Essay
Indicative Time on Task 2: 30 hours
Due: 23:55 on 4/06/2023
Weighting: 50%


Integrated unit of work on Geography and History, focussed on learning from country and other key concepts taught in the History and Geography Module (2200 words)


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Design a unit of work that extends over one school term and integrates History and Geography.
  • Critique and apply a digital learning resource that facilitates teaching and learning for Science & Technology.

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 and recommended texts

The required textbooks for this unit are:

History & Geography

Harrison, N. & Sellwood, J. (2021). Learning and teaching in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander education (4th ed.). Oxford University Press.

Science & Technology

Skamp, K. & Preston, C. (Eds.) (2021). Teaching primary science constructively (7th ed.). Cengage.

(NOTE: earlier editions okay).


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. Electronic links and suggested references will be included in the Resources section. Please check the iLearn unit regularly.

Weekly lectures are available on the web through the ECHO360 lecture component. 

PowerPoint slides are available in iLearn and/or are available in the Active Learning Tool.

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 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.



The unit structure can be found in the university timetable

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. 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.

Unit Schedule

Please note that this semester the unit is run only in infrequent attendance mode. Hence, there will be two on-campus workshops which run all day instead of weekly tutorials. However, lectures will be posted weekly still as well as set readings.

It is the responsibility of students to ensure that they have listened to the respective lectures and done the set readings before attendance at the workshops. The times for these workshops are:

1st On Campus Day (Geography and History): Saturday 9:00am-5:00pm 11th March at 12 Second Way - 222 Faculty Tutorial Room

2nd On Campus Day (Science and Technology): Saturday 9:00am-5:00pm 13th May at 12 Second Way - 222 Faculty Tutorial Room


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 

Activities completed during on-campus days 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]. Attendance at both on-campus days is expected and the roll will be taken. Make-up tasks may be given if attendance is missed to ensure all content is covered to meet accreditation requirements.  

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. 

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 

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

Academic Integrity

At Macquarie, we believe academic integrity – honesty, respect, trust, responsibility, fairness and courage – is at the core of learning, teaching and research. We recognise that meeting the expectations required to complete your assessments can be challenging. So, we offer you a range of resources and services to help you reach your potential, including free online writing and maths support, academic skills development and wellbeing consultations.

Student Support

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

The Writing Centre

The Writing Centre provides resources to develop your English language proficiency, academic writing, and communication skills.

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

Student Services and Support

Macquarie University offers a range of Student Support Services including:

Student Enquiries

Got a question? Ask us via AskMQ, or contact Service Connect.

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.

5Rs Framework

The 5Rs Framework, developed by the School of Education at Macquarie University, is embedded throughout your teacher education course.

Your use of the 5Rs Framework will help you develop the capabilities that will make your teaching career sustainable and fulfilling.

In this unit, you will learn using the 5Rs framework in the following important ways:

 Resilience practised inside and outside of the classroom.

In order to be more resilient to the stresses of the teaching environment, teachers need to be aware of, and maintain, their holistic health and sense of coherence. They need the confidence and clarity of mind to manage uncertain and complex issues and unexpected events whenever they arise in their career.

Reflexive in their teaching practice.

Teaching is about understanding multiple and changing ecologies of learning. This encompasses individual students’ needs, the affordances of classroom spaces, student and teacher relationships, curriculums, school culture, parental expectations, community demographics and needs and expectations of the profession, and the effects of government policy.

Responsive to students, colleagues, parents and professional communities.

Teaching is a relational profession. The best teachers make deep connections with their students, parents and communities. Most of us remember a great teacher, not because of what they taught, but because they were inspiring. They engaged us through the personal connections they made with us, and their recognisable care for our wellbeing and success.

Ready to learn.

When teachers graduate from university, they are far from the end of their learning journey, but rather just at the beginning. The ongoing pursuit of learning is a mark of a quality teacher. There are always new methods and ideas to try. But in practice, learning needs are not a one-size-fits- all affair. Teachers need to identify their individual learning needs within the context of their career. Then, they can pursue that learning to the benefit of both themselves and their students.

Research engaged throughout their career.

Effective teaching practice is based on evidence. This evidence can come from their own research in the classroom and the latest academic research in learning, teaching, motivation, cognition, curriculum, technologies and spaces, to name a few. A critical understanding of data is essential, allowing it to be analysed and woven back into practice.

Unit information based on version 2023.03 of the Handbook