Faculty of Education

Monash University

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2013 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

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FacultyFaculty of Education
Monash Passport categoryInternship (Act Program)
OfferedPeninsula First semester (extended) 2013 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Avis Ridgway


Contemporary theories of child development discuss learning as a cultural and social process whereby programming of learning is always "above'" what the child can do independently and thereby positions the educator as a pedagogical leader. Cultural ways of learning are fore-grounded. In addition, learning content and learning processes are viewed as contested, and subject to power relations. Child development is understood as representing not a single truth, but as diverse. Child development underpins the work of all early childhood educators. However, developments in this field of research and theory development are not matched with current practices within the field. An overview of child development theory helps to contextualise the contemporary focus.


On completion of this unit, students will have developed

  • In depth knowledge of contemporary concepts of child development and learning,
  • The capacity to link this knowledge to pedagogy and curriculum design,
  • An appreciation of their own position as a pedagogical leader leading children's learning,
  • The capacity to discern and analyse the ways in which various cultural contexts influence both content and modes of learning,
  • Understanding of the contested power relations influencing perspectives on child development, learning, pedagogy and curriculum, and
  • The ability to apply key concepts in the unit to mandatory curricula.


15 days in a range of early childhood settings across the 3 to 5 years age range


Task 1: written report (3500 words, 40%); and
Task 2: research project (4500 words, 60%)

Chief examiner(s)

Contact hours

Equivalent to an average of 24 hours per week including 3 contact hours