Faculty of Education

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2014 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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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Education
OfferedNot offered in 2014


In this unit students explore philosophies and theories of learning of early childhood education from around the world, encompassing Steiner, Montessori, Froebel, Pestalozzi, Dewey, as well as international programs such as Reggio Emilia, Golden Key Schools, Forest Schools and Developmental Education in the Netherlands. Key foundational concepts are explained such as: agency, social situation of development, meaningful learning, involvement, and leading activity. The overarching perspective is to explore the underlying principles of these philosophies in practice through the lens of the cultural contexts that inspired the development of these different educational approaches.


Upon successful completion of this unit students should be able to:

  1. analyse the foundational principles of early childhood learning
  2. demonstrate an understanding of contemporary theories of learning that influence children's learning and development
  3. reflect on, evaluate and improve their knowledge of a range of educational theories
  4. have the capacity to recognise initiatives in design of program approaches consistent with the intent of enhancing children's learning and development.


Essay study of local and global theories of learning and development (2000 words equivalent, 50%)
Research based poster presentation demonstrating a personal philosophy of children's learning (2000 words equivalent, 50%)

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload equals 12 hours per week comprising:

(a.) Contact hours for on-campus students:

  • 2 contact hours per week

(b.) Additional requirements:

  • independent study to make up the minimum required hours per week

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study