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EDM8008 Inquiring through the Humanities

Semester 2, 2021 Online
Short Description: Inquiring through Humanities
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 : 079999 - Education not elsewhere classi
Grading basis : Graded
Version produced : 14 April 2021


Examiner: Karen Peel


Pre-requisite: EDM5001


The Australian Curriculum requires F-6 students to engage in the subject of Humanities and Social Sciences (HASS) through inquiry pedagogy. In the Masters of Learning and Teaching program, pre-service teachers in this course are required to develop an understanding of the key ideas in relation to each sub-strand (History; Geography; Civics and Citizenship; and Economics and Business) by engaging in pedagogical strategies that articulate the interrelated strands (knowledge and understanding; inquiry and skills). This course builds on the foundation of previously studied courses in this program to develop informed, active citizens committed to shaping sustainable futures – a goal that is as relevant to future teachers as it is to school students. This will ensure that teachers have acquired the specialised knowledge and skills for research, an intellectual framework on which to develop their professional practice as educators, and for further learning (AQF 9). In addition, this course will provide a framework for teachers to inculcate in their students a strong sense of identity (EYLF 1), ensure that they are connected with and contribute to their world (EYLF 2), are confident and involved learners (EYLF 4), and that they are effective communicators (EYLF 5)


Investigating inquiry pedagogy, as the signature pedagogy associated with the Humanities and Social Sciences, is the focus of this course, both in theory and in practice. Preservice teachers in this course will develop an understanding of the sub-strands of Humanities and Social Sciences (History; Geography; Civics and Citizenship; and Economics and Business) that draw on students' growing experience of community and the wider world. Preservice teachers will also integrate the Australian curriculum Cross-Curriculum Priorities and General Capabilities in their planning and classroom delivery. In addition they will develop their knowledge and skill in the humanities consistent with the Australian curriculum and modern pedagogical approaches. To reflect on their teaching of the Humanities and Social Sciences, preservice teachers in this course will also identify and contribute to professional learning networks in order to improve practice.


On successful completion of this course students should be able to:

  1. display knowledge and understanding of the concepts, substance and structure of the content and teaching strategies of History, Geography, Civics and Citizenship, and Economics and Business (Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST) 2.1);
  2. know how to organise content into an effective learning and teaching sequence and to use curriculum, assessment and reporting knowledge to design learning sequences and lesson plans for Foundation to Year 6 (APST 2.2, 2.3);
  3. plan, implement and justify effective teaching and learning by setting learning goals that provide achievable challenges for students of varying abilities and characteristics, planning lesson sequences through the planning of a sequence of teaching and learning for Foundation to Year 6 using knowledge of student learning, content, and a range of effective teaching strategies, within an inquiry learning framework (APST 3.1, 3.2, 3.3);
  4. demonstrate knowledge of teaching strategies that respond to the learning strengths and needs of all students, including those with diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds and demonstrate a broad knowledge of, understanding of and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and languages and the impact of culture, cultural identity and linguistic background on the education of students from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island backgrounds (APST 1,3, 1.4, 2.4);
  5. understand the rationale for continued professional learning and the importance of reflecting on the knowledge of teaching, learning and assessment as part of improving professional practice and student learning and understand the relevant and appropriate sources of professional learning for teachers and the role of external professionals and community representative in broadening teachers’ professional knowledge and practice (APST 6.2, 6.4, 7.4);
  6. display expert cognitive, literacy and communication skills, including spelling, grammar, punctuation and bibliographic referencing.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Humanities and Social Sciences in the Australian Curriculum including reference to Australian curriculum, Alice Springs Declaration, and the Early Years Learning Framework, focusing on how children contribute to their world through the groups and communities to which they belong (Outcome 2) 20.00
2. Inquiry pedagogy for Humanities and Social Sciences including learning sequences (APST 2.2) that align with legislative requirements to support participation and learning of students with a different learning styles and/or different physical and intellectual needs. This will contribute to the maintenance of socially inclusive and safe learning environments which are informed by contemporary theory and practice and which meet specific student needs in Humanities and the Social Sciences 20.00
3. Planning for teaching and learning Humanities and Social Sciences sub-strands (History, Geography, Civics and Citizenship, and Economics and Business) 25.00
4. Integrating the Cross Curriculum Priorities and General Capabilities for learning into the Humanities and Social Sciences, demonstrating an understanding of the impact of culture, cultural identity and linguistic background on the education of the students from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds 10.00
5. Critical reflection on practice: Teaching, learning and assessment within the Humanities and Social Sciences 20.00
6. Professional Educator 5.00

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. (

Pendergast, D & Main, K 2019, Teaching primary years: rethinking curriculum, pedagogy and assessment, Allen & Unwin, Crows Nest, New South Wales.

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.
Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) 2020, F-10 curriculum > Humanities and Social Sciences, Australian Curriculum,
Department of Education, Skills and Employment 2019, Belonging, Being & Becoming - The Early Years Learning Framework for Australia, Australian Government,
Department of Education, Skills and Employment 2020, The Alice Springs (Mparntwe) Education Declaration, Australian Government,
Reynolds, R 2014, Teaching humanities and social sciences in primary school, 3rd edn, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Vic.
Gilbert, R. (2016). Humanities and social sciences in the Australian curriculum. In R. Gilbert, & B. Hoepper (Eds.), Teaching humanities and social sciences: history, geography, economics and citizenship in the Australian curriculum (6th ed.). South Melbourne, Vic.: Cengage Learning Australia.

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Directed Study 80.00
Independent Study 85.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Objectives Assessed Notes
QUIZ 1 20 20 06 Sep 2021 1,3 (see note 1)
QUIZ 2 20 20 20 Sep 2021 1,3 (see note 2)
ASSIGNMENT 60 60 18 Oct 2021 1,2,3,4,5,6 (see note 3)

  1. Multiple-choice questions
  2. Multiple-choice questions
  3. Planning of a sequence of teaching and learning

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    There are no attendance requirements for this course. However, it is the students’ responsibility 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. (Depending upon the requirements in Statement 4 below, students may not have to satisfactorily complete each assessment item to receive a passing grade in this course.)

  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 Master of Learning and Teaching and is benchmarked against the [choose one or all of the following]
o 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.
o professional accreditation standards of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST), Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) and Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF).

Other requirements

  1. Students are required to have access to a personal computer, e-mail capabilities and Internet access to UConnect. Current details of computer requirements can be found at

Date printed 14 April 2021