Course Outline

EDU749 Teaching Junior Secondary Science 1

Course Coordinator:Timothy Strohfeldt ( School:School of Education and Tertiary Access

2023Semester 1

UniSC Sunshine Coast

UniSC Moreton Bay

Blended learning Most of your course is on campus but you may be able to do some components of this course online.

Please go to for up to date information on the
teaching sessions and campuses where this course is usually offered.

What is this course about?


This course builds capacity to design and discern effective pedagogy within Science for Years 7 -10. You organise and plan lessons using the Australian Curriculum for Science, apply your knowledge, understanding and skills to interpret, evaluate and adapt learning, in order to engage Junior Secondary students. You will develop deep knowledge for integrating general capabilities and cross-curriculum priorities including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives into learning activities and critically reflect on your developing teaching practice.

How will this course be delivered?

Activity Hours Beginning Week Frequency
Blended learning
Learning materials – You are required to engage and interact with asynchronous materials and activities accessed through Canvas modules, course readings and required texts. 2hrs Week 1 10 times
Tutorial/Workshop 1 – You are required to attend weekly classroom activities on campus. 2hrs Week 1 10 times
Independent Study/Research – In addition to engaging with the learning materials and workshop sessions and completing the assessable tasks, you are required to engage in self-directed learning using the Canvas course modules and current research/reading via USC library databases and the required/recommended textbooks and resources. 2hrs Week 1 10 times
Seminar – Online 1hr Week 1 6 times

Course Topics

  • Science ‘Big Ideas’ and the nature of science and scientific literacy
  • The Australian Curriculum: Science (ACS): Science Understanding, Science Inquiry Skills and Science as a Human Endeavour
  • Science Pedagogies for Years 7 – 10
  • Representations, ICT, literacy and numeracy in science education
  • Design of practical experiments and active learning activities
  • Differentiating teaching to meet academic diversity
  • Assessment, feedback and reporting in science

What level is this course?

700 Level (Specialised)

Demonstrating a specialised body of knowledge and set of skills for professional practice or further learning. Advanced application of knowledge and skills in unfamiliar contexts.

What is the unit value of this course?

12 units

How does this course contribute to my learning?

Course Learning Outcomes On successful completion of this course, you should be able to... Graduate Qualities Mapping Completing these tasks successfully will contribute to you becoming... Professional Standard Mapping * Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership
1 Apply a deep knowledge of the Australian Curriculum | Science and pedagogical content knowledge to develop science curriculum materials that provide intellectual quality, significance and quality learning environments. Knowledgeable
2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.5, 2.6, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, 3.6, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.5
2 Apply a deep knowledge of scientific ideas and laboratory safety procedures to design classroom activities in Science. Knowledgeable
2.1, 3.4, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4
3 Apply a deep knowledge of diverse student learning needs, and a variety of pedagogical strategies including formative assessment, integration of ICT, literacy and numeracy in learning activities and assessment Knowledgeable
3.3, 3.4, 3.6, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 4.5, 5.1, 5.2, 5.3, 5.4, 5.5
4 Employ effective language, structure and text to communicate curriculum strategies and ideas. Knowledgeable

* Competencies by Professional Body

Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership
2.1 Content and teaching strategies of the teaching area: Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the concepts, substance and structure of the content and teaching strategies of the teaching area
2.2 Content selection and organisation: Organise content into an effective learning and teaching sequence.
2.3 Curriculum, assessment and reporting: Use curriculum, assessment and reporting knowledge to design learning sequences and lesson plans.
2.5 Literacy and numeracy strategies: Know and understand literacy and numeracy teaching strategies and their application in teaching areas.
2.6 Information and Communication Technology (ICT): Implement teaching strategies for using ICT to expand curriculum learning opportunities for students.
3.1 Establish challenging learning goals: Set learning goals that provide achievable challenges for students of varying abilities and characteristics.
3.2 Plan, structure and sequence learning programs: Plan lesson sequences using knowledge of student learning, content and effective teaching strategies.
3.3 Use teaching strategies: Include a range of teaching strategies.
3.4 Select and use resources: Demonstrate knowledge of a range of resources, including ICT, that engage students in their learning.
3.5 Use effective classroom communication: Demonstrate a range of verbal and non-verbal communication strategies to support student engagement
3.6 Evaluate and improve teaching programs: Demonstrate broad knowledge of strategies that can be used to evaluate teaching programs to improve student learning.
4.1 Support student participation: Identify strategies to support inclusive student participation and engagement in classroom activities.
4.2 Manage classroom activities: Demonstrate the capacity to organise classroom activities and provide clear directions
4.3 Manage challenging behaviour: Demonstrate knowledge of practical approaches to manage challenging behaviour.
4.4 Maintain student safety: Describe strategies that support students’ wellbeing and safety working within school and/or system, curriculum and legislative requirements.
4.5 Use ICT safely, responsibly and ethically: 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 Assess student learning: Demonstrate understanding of assessment strategies, including informal and formal, diagnostic, formative and summative approaches to assess student learning.
5.2 Provide feedback to students on their learning: Demonstrate an understanding of the purpose of providing timely and appropriate feedback to students about their learning
5.3 Make consistent and comparable judgements: Demonstrate understanding of assessment moderation and its application to support consistent and comparable judgements of student learning.
5.4 Interpret student data: Demonstrate the capacity to interpret student assessment data to evaluate student learning and modify teaching practice.
5.5 Report on student achievement: Demonstrate understanding of a range of strategies for reporting to students and parents/ carers and the purpose of keeping accurate and reliable records of student achievement

Am I eligible to enrol in this course?

Refer to the UniSC Glossary of terms for definitions of “pre-requisites, co-requisites and anti-requisites”.


Enrolled in Program ED706 and a Science Teaching area


Not applicable


Not applicable

Specific assumed prior knowledge and skills (where applicable)

Not applicable

How am I going to be assessed?

Grading Scale

Standard Grading (GRD)

High Distinction (HD), Distinction (DN), Credit (CR), Pass (PS), Fail (FL).

Details of early feedback on progress

Task 1 is a group task involving planning and running a science activity suitable for junior secondary students. Your tutor will give you feedback on your one-page activity plan (due Week 3), and your tutor and peers will give you further feedback when you run the activity with your tutorial group (in Week 3 to 8).

Assessment tasks

Delivery mode Task No. Assessment Product Individual or Group Weighting % What is the duration / length? When should I submit? Where should I submit it?
All 1 Oral and Written Piece Individual and Group 25%
600 word activity plan (individual) plus lead a 20 minute tutorial activity (group).
Refer to Format Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check and in class
All 2 Plan Individual 35%
1000 words plus appendices
Week 7 Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All 3 Essay Individual 40%
2000 words
Week 10 Online Submission
All - Assessment Task 1:Planning and Running a Science Classroom Activity
The goal of this task is to demonstrate your ability to plan and deliver constructive, engaging and inclusive science activities.
Product: Oral and Written Piece
In a small group you will plan, explain and run an activity designed to help junior secondary students deepen their understanding of a science concept. Your presentation activity and written activity plan will include: 
•	Identification of links between your activity and a science concept. 
•	Identification of links between your activity and the Australian Curriculum: Science.
•	Demonstrated teaching strategies that support engagement, inclusivity and classroom management in Years 7-9 science. 
•	Demonstration of organisational and communication skills used to plan, present and run a science classroom activity. 
Submission- Activity Plan: Week 3. Tutorial Activities: Weeks 3 to 8.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Application of deep knowledge of scientific ideas, practices and pedagogy to design classroom activities
Application of deep knowledge to cater to diverse student learning needs using a variety of pedagogical strategies
Effective language, structure and text to communicate curriculum strategies and ideas
All - Assessment Task 2:Creating a Lesson Plan
The goal of this task is to plan a science
lesson and situate it within an ACS lesson
Product: Plan
You will use a provided template to design a lesson plan (1000 words) plus at least two original resources (student worksheets, ppt slides, etc) that integrate a science demonstration or experiment in a 70 minute lesson within a lesson sequence. You cannot repeat any of the same activities you used in your Task 1, and you must use technology-enabled learning at some stage of your lesson. You will:
•	apply principles of constructive alignment to develop and integrate lesson goals, learning activities and assessment strategies into a lesson plan
•	design a constructive learning sequence with strategies (eg. hands-on science, ICT, literacy, numeracy) to support inclusive student participation and engagement in classroom activities. 
•	use knowledge of student learning, science content and effective teaching strategies to situate your lesson in a lesson sequence 
•	plan for classroom management 
•	apply organisational and communication skills
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Application of the Australian Curriculum: Science and pedagogical content knowledge to develop science curriculum materials
Application of deep knowledge and referring to formative data to cater to diverse student learning needs using a variety of pedagogical strategies
Application of scientific ideas and laboratory safety procedures to classroom activities in Science
Effective language, structure and text to communicate curriculum strategies and ideas
All - Assessment Task 3:Lesson Plan Evaluation
The goal of this task is to apply education theory and a given pedagogical framework to evaluate and develop your Task 2 science lesson.
Product: Essay
Your essay will evaluate your Task 2 lesson plan with reference to the Australian Curriculum: Science (ACS), the Quality Teaching (QT) Framework, and current well-informed education literature to demonstrate:
•	a working knowledge of Australian Curriculum: Science General Capabilities (ICT, literacy and numeracy) applied to teaching and learning activities
•	application of the QT pedagogical model and strategies that underpin quality science learning and teaching
•	application of formative assessment strategies to evaluate learning outcomes
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Deep knowledge of the Australian Curriculum: Science and pedagogical content knowledge to evaluate a science lesson plan for intellectual quality, significance and quality learning environment.
Use of formative assessment data to cater to diverse student learning needs using a variety of pedagogical strategies
Effective language, structure and text to communicate curriculum strategies and ideas

Directed study hours

A 12-unit course will have total of 150 learning hours which will include directed study hours (including online if required), self-directed learning and completion of assessable tasks. Student workload is calculated at 12.5 learning hours per one unit.


Period and Topic Activities
Module 1
Weeks 1-4	Science for what?
• The Nature of Science
• Thinking with Science Big Ideas
• Deepening scientific knowledge and understanding
• Misconceptions and alternative conceptions
• The Australian Curriculum: Science (ACS)
• Curriculum Alignment 1: Curriculum Objectives

Ref: The Art of Teaching Science, Chapters 1, 2, 3 & 7; The Australian Curriculum: Science; CANVAS Learning Materials
Module 2
Weeks 5-10	The Art and Science of Teaching Science
• STEM education, Scientific Literacy and Vocational Science
• Curriculum Alignment 2: Lesson Goals and pedagogical decisionsSTEM education, Scientific Literacy and Vocational Science
• Science Pedagogies
• Assessment for Learning
• The Quality Teaching Framework
• ACS General Capabilities: Literacy, Numeracy, ICT, Critical and Creative Thinking, Personal and Social Capacity, Ethical Understanding, Intercultural Understanding
• ACS Curriculum Priorities: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures, Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia, Sustainability
• Challenging Common Education Myths and Misconceptions

Ref: The Art of Teaching Science, Chapters 4, 5, 6, 7, 8; The Australian Curriculum Science; CANVAS Learning Materials

What resources do I need to undertake this course?

Please note: Course information, including specific information of recommended readings, learning activities, resources, weekly readings, etc. are available on the course Canvas site– Please log in as soon as possible.

Prescribed text(s) or course reader

Please note that you need to have regular access to the resource(s) listed below. Resources may be required or recommended.

Required? Author Year Title Edition Publisher
Required Vaille Dawson,Grady Venville,Jennifer Donovan 2019 The Art of Teaching Science 3rd Ed Routledge

Specific requirements

Not applicable

How are risks managed in this course?

Health and safety risks for this course have been assessed as low. It is your responsibility to review course material, search online, discuss with lecturers and peers and understand the health and safety risks associated with your specific course of study and to familiarise yourself with the University’s general health and safety principles by reviewing the online induction training for students, and following the instructions of the University staff.

What administrative information is relevant to this course?

Assessment: Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is the ethical standard of university participation.  It ensures that students graduate as a result of proving they are competent in their discipline.  This is integral in maintaining the value of academic qualifications. Each industry has expectations and standards of the skills and knowledge within that discipline and these are reflected in assessment.

Academic integrity means that you do not engage in any activity that is considered to be academic fraud; including plagiarism, collusion or outsourcing any part of any assessment item to any other person.  You are expected to be honest and ethical by completing all work yourself and indicating in your work which ideas and information were developed by you and which were taken from others. You cannot provide your assessment work to others. You are also expected to provide evidence of wide and critical reading, usually by using appropriate academic references.

In order to minimise incidents of academic fraud, this course may require that some of its assessment tasks, when submitted to Canvas, are electronically checked through Turnitin.  This software allows for text comparisons to be made between your submitted assessment item and all other work to which Turnitin has access.

Assessment: Additional Requirements

Eligibility for Supplementary Assessment

Your eligibility for supplementary assessment in a course is dependent of the following conditions applying:

The final mark is in the percentage range 47% to 49.4%
The course is graded using the Standard Grading scale
You have not failed an assessment task in the course due to academic misconduct

Assessment: Submission penalties

Late submission of assessment tasks may be penalised at the following maximum rate: 
- 5% (of the assessment task's identified value) per day for the first two days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- 10% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the third day - 20% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the fourth day and subsequent days up to and including seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- A result of zero is awarded for an assessment task submitted after seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. Weekdays and weekends are included in the calculation of days late. To request an extension you must contact your course coordinator to negotiate an outcome.


UniSC is committed to a culture of respect and providing a safe and supportive environment for all members of our community. For immediate assistance on campus contact SafeUSC by phone: 07 5430 1168 or using the SafeZone app. For general enquires contact the SafeUSC team by phone 07 5456 3864 or email

The SafeUSC Specialist Service is a Student Wellbeing service that provides free and confidential support to students who may have experienced or observed behaviour that could cause fear, offence or trauma. To contact the service call 07 5430 1226 or email

Study help

For help with course-specific advice, for example what information to include in your assessment, you should first contact your tutor, then your course coordinator, if needed.

If you require additional assistance, the Learning Advisers are trained professionals who are ready to help you develop a wide range of academic skills. Visit the Learning Advisers web page for more information, or contact Student Central for further assistance: +61 7 5430 2890 or

Wellbeing Services

Student Wellbeing provide free and confidential counselling on a wide range of personal, academic, social and psychological matters, to foster positive mental health and wellbeing for your academic success.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email or call 07 5430 1226.

AccessAbility Services

Ability Advisers ensure equal access to all aspects of university life. If your studies are affected by a disability, learning disorder mental health issue, injury or illness, or you are a primary carer for someone with a disability or who is considered frail and aged, AccessAbility Services can provide access to appropriate reasonable adjustments and practical advice about the support and facilities available to you throughout the University.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email or call 07 5430 2890.

Links to relevant University policy and procedures

For more information on Academic Learning & Teaching categories including:

  • Assessment: Courses and Coursework Programs
  • Review of Assessment and Final Grades
  • Supplementary Assessment
  • Administration of Central Examinations
  • Deferred Examinations
  • Student Academic Misconduct
  • Students with a Disability

For more information, visit

Student Charter

UniSC is committed to excellence in teaching, research and engagement in an environment that is inclusive, inspiring, safe and respectful. The Student Charter sets out what students can expect from the University, and what in turn is expected of students, to achieve these outcomes.

General Enquiries

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