Faculty of Education

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2015 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.

FacultyFaculty of Education
OfferedBerwick First semester 2015 (Day)
Peninsula First semester 2015 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Prasanna Srinivasan (Berwick); Ms Marie Hammer (Peninsula)


This unit introduces students to the field of early years education through examining both practice guidelines and principles including the professional code of ethics and other curriculum and policy documents. Students explore foundational philosophies (e.g. Dewey, Steiner, Montessori, Pestalozzi) that inform current early years education. Through studying philosophies and contemporary approaches to early years education locally and internationally, students develop insights into programs such as the Golden Key Schools, Forest Schools, the Reggio Emilia approach and Developmental Education in the Netherlands. Understandings of daily practice will be informed by United Nations Conventions on the Rights of the Child to uphold the rights of the child and ethical considerations for respectful, meaningful and quality education and care for children. Through critique and analysis of current local practices, students develop their own personal philosophy of early years education.


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

  1. demonstrate understandings of foundational philosophies and contemporary international programs that have informed current local early years education practices
  2. demonstrate understanding of policy, practice guidelines and principles in key early years education documents
  3. prepare a well-informed personal philosophy that reflects foundational philosophy and contemporary models of early years education.


Group task: poster presentation with individual reflection - contemporary approaches in early years education (1600 words or equivalent, 40%)
Essay: personal teaching and learning philosophy (2400 words, 60%)

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload equals 12 hours per week comprising:

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

  • 2 hours per week

(b.) Additional requirements:

  • 10 hours of independent study per week

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

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