Topic: Learning and Assessment Position Paper
SUBJECT AREA – SECONDARY ENGLISH.
(Western Australia where applicable)
== Note from the Unit Co-ordinator ==
In your journals you explored readings and research relating to the teaching of secondary English. Many of you were able to apply the ideas suggested in the readings and research to your teaching; a number of you were able to identify challenges, contradictions, and opportunities that exist in the secondary English teaching “space”. Your readings, in other words, have helped you to develop a broad awareness of many issues that secondary English teachers frequently encounter and address.
Your previous (and concurrent) studies also provide a rich and complementary wealth of ideas and information that have informed your understandings about secondary English education and teaching. So, what is it that strikes you about teaching secondary school English?
Remember the position paper asks exactly for that – a position. This suggests that there needs to be a reason or basis for the position.
Here is an example of a line of thinking that might inform a paper’s structure:
a) Australian Curriculum is big on the notion of entitlement
b) this means all students should be able to engage in meaningful learning
c) in secondary English, this means that students can …
d) research and data suggests this isn’t happening for all students, and here’s why (explain)
e) which gives rise to this challenge/issue/opportunity
f) here’s what the research suggests could address this challenge/issue/opportunity
This is NOT an essay plan. You will need to develop this further, of course, to develop a plan. What is shown above is just an overview to help you to get thinking; and to be aware that your paper needs to follow a logical process of argument. (You would, for instance, present your thesis at the start of your paper, whereas in the process example above, the thesis (or position) is hinted at point e).)
As I have stated elsewhere, your position paper needs to be a formally produced piece of writing that displays all elements of scholarly writing. Please do not confuse this with verbose, highly derivative and unnecessarily complex writing. Clear writing reflects clear thinking, and it is the clarity of your thinking (your “position”) that is being assessed in the position paper. This includes your written expression, so please check and proofread your work very carefully before handing it in for marking.
== From the Unit Guide ==
Assessment two: due the week commencing 20 October 2014.
Learning Area Position Paper (2500 words)
Reflect on your learning in the course and prepare a Position Paper summarising the nature, goals, and value of your chosen Learning Area, and setting out your developing philosophy. Consider the nature of the discipline, the theories and philosophies that have shaped it, how current curricula frame the subject, and your own provisional position on the goals, purposes, content, and strategies entailed in the Learning Area.