1 x 3-hour workshop weekly
1 x 9-hour intensive workshop per semester
12 x 7-hour independent studies per semester
1 2 of EDUC2324, EDUC2424
2 2 of EDUC3658, EDUC3640
Must Satisfy: ((1) or (2))
Enrolment not permitted
EDUC4704 has been successfully completed
Assumed knowledge
High level of literacy competence assumed, including computer literacy.
Topic description
Critical pedagogies for a changing world explores the key concepts of critical and transformative education - social justice, equity, ecological/social sustainability, identity & values - within the context of the early years. The topic draws on Humanities and Social Sciences knowledge to examine the key theoretical ideas of place, space, time, continuity and change that underpin The Early Years Learning Framework and The Australian Curriculum documents and pedagogical practices. The topic develops a sense of professional autonomy in students, challenging them to find creative and novel ways to support young children in their participation in their social worlds, within and beyond the classroom. Using a social and critical pedagogies approach, it addresses practical dilemmas faced by teachers in the modern world, exploring the ethical questions underlying relevant issues. The topic enables students to develop a critical understanding of the social and environmental changes that are occurring in global society, and build a sense of expertise and competence in responding to these pedagogically.
Educational aims
The topic aims to:

  • use critical pedagogical strategies to provide students with opportunities to broaden and deepen their knowledge and understanding of the ethical issues involved in early childhood education in a changing world.
  • examine a repertoire of critical pedagogical approaches to social and environmental education, and how these can be mobilised effectively in early years settings.
  • build skill-levels of students in planning and developing curriculum that promotes more just and inclusive educational environments.
  • support students in analysing the ethical issues presented by a changing world, and developing their own critical and professional approach to these issues.
  • strengthen students' communication and research skills, to help them become skilled practitioners, able to manage complex and sensitive ethical issues, and support children and families from a diversity of backgrounds.
Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic students will be able to:

  • articulate and justify their pedagogical approach based on a critical analysis of theory and practical experiences.
  • understand the key theoretical concepts of this topic, and interpret them within the context of early years education in a global and diverse world.
  • use a repertoire of theoretically-justifiable planning and evaluation tools which which draw on the Early Years Learning Framework and the Australian Curriculum to engage, enhance, and evaluate young children's learning in regard to social and environmental change.
  • understand an educator's personal responsibility in evaluating difficult ethical issues, and the legal and professional frameworks which may guide and delimit this responsibility.
  • apply creative and meaningful strategies in response to evolving ethical dilemmas within early years settings.