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ECL3100 Intercultural Communication in Early Learning Contexts

Semester 3, 2021 Online
Short Description: Intercultural Communication
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts
School or Department : School of Education
Student contribution band : Band 1
ASCED code : 070101 - Teacher Education: Early Child
Grading basis : Graded
Version produced : 11 April 2021


Enrolment is not permitted in ECL3100 if EDE4012 has been previously completed

Other requisites

Students enrolling in courses which do not follow the recommended enrolment pattern cannot be assured of a developmental learning experience or program completion within their preferred timeframe.


Successful two-way communication is central to effective learning and teaching in early learning contexts and participation in the community. Typically, the curriculum is delivered in the English language but in mainstream learning contexts many children, including those from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) backgrounds, have home or first languages/dialects different from the language of instruction. Understanding the nature of language as a system operating within different socio-cultural contexts and how to teach English as a second language or dialect is key for diverse learning contexts.

While learners who have English as an Additional Language or Dialect (EALD) need to learn the language of instruction, learning about the culture of the target language is also important. Similarly, for effective intercultural communication, culturally competent educators understand their own language and culture, and focus on respectful interactions and interpretations of histories, cultures, languages, traditions and child rearing practices of the families attending the learning context.


This course examines the relationship of language, culture and communication in early childhood and early learning contexts.

The course engages pre-service educators in critical reflection pertaining to their own culture and intercultural experiences. Reconciliation work in the field of early childhood will underpin an examination of relevant curricula, pedagogical beliefs, values and practices.

The course also provides an introduction to EAL/D teaching and EAL/D learning, development and assessment. Strategies to support effective intercultural communication in early years learning contexts, and EAL/D children's English language development, are explored with a particular focus on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) and South-East Asian cultures. Criteria for selection and production of materials designed to develop children's communicative skills, including the use of ICTs in EAL/D programs are considered.


The course objectives define the student learning outcomes for a course in accordance with the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership’s (AITSL) Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST). On successful completion of this course pre-service educators should be able to:

  1. critically analyse and discuss the impact of language, culture, cultural identity and linguistic background on communication and learning, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander learners (APST 1.4);
  2. design and implement strategies to support intercultural communication with young children and their families from diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds, and evaluate these in terms of an holistic program (APST 1.3, 3.5, 3.6, 3.7);
  3. plan for and assess children's EALD learning and development, and understand the purpose of sharing accurate and reliable evidence with parents/carers to collaboratively modify practices at home and in the formal learning environment (APST 5.1, 5.2, 5.4, 5.5);
  4. evaluate and create materials and resources supportive of language and cultural needs to develop children's functional language skills, including use of ICTs (APST 2.6);
  5. reflect with colleagues on inclusive teaching and learning practices and produce a formal declaration of intent to promote reconciliation and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and languages (APST 2.4, 4.1).


Description Weighting(%)
1. Culture: re-examined, rediscovered, renewed 10.00
2. How you teach is who you are: cultural competence and intercultural understanding 15.00
  1. EALD learning, development and assessment: research and theory
  2. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers and contemporary knowledges and understanding
  1. From theory to practice: pedagogies, principles and practices of EALD teaching and learning
  2. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander ways of knowing
5. Curriculum materials and ICT resources, for practice inclusive of EALD 15.00
6. Exploring reconciliation in early childhood – practices which promote reconciliation 20.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

There are no texts or materials required for this course.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Directed Study 80.00
Private Study 85.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
ASSIGNMENT 1 40 40 13 Dec 2021 (see note 1)
ASSIGNMENT 2 60 60 11 Feb 2022 (see note 2)

  1. Inquiry task
  2. Portfolio of work

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    It is the students' responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them, to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks for that item.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the aggregate of the weighted marks obtained for each of the summative items for the course.

  6. Examination information:
    There is no examination in this course.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    There is no examination in this course, there will be no deferred or supplementary examinations.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. Referencing in assignments must comply with the APA referencing system. This system should be used by students to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The APA style to be used is defined by the USQ library's referencing guide. This guide can be found at

  2. Students are required to demonstrate competence in and appropriate use of academic language and literacy, including spelling, grammar, punctuation, and referencing in all assessment responses. Marks allocated to the aforementioned criteria will be specified in the criteria for assessment of all assessment items.

  3. Students are required to submit ALL assignments to evidence meeting or exceeding the mandatory requirements of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APSTs).

Evaluation and benchmarking

In meeting the University’s aims to establish quality learning and teaching for all programs, this course monitors and ensures quality assurance and improvements in at least two ways. This course:
1. conforms to the USQ Policy on Evaluation of Teaching, Courses and Programs to ensure ongoing monitoring and systematic improvement
2. forms part of the Bachelor of Education and is benchmarked against the:

  1. internal USQ accreditation/reaccreditation processes which include (i) stringent standards in the independent accreditation of its academic programs, (ii) close integration between business and academic planning, and (iii) regular and rigorous review
  2. Queensland College of Teachers
  3. Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST) of the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL).

Other requirements

  1. Participation: Students can expect it will be necessary to participate in and contribute to a range of learning opportunities in this course including online study activities, lectures, tutorials, seminar presentations, group discussions and self-directed study activities in order to apply the coursework that will enable quality assessment tasks to be submitted as evidence of professional development.

Date printed 11 April 2021