Melbourne Graduate School of Education - Theses

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    Supporting English as an Additional Language student wellbeing in secondary schools: Teacher perspectives and a group psychoeducational program
    Lyu, Mengyu Andy ( 2022)
    Objectives: There is increasing recognition that English as an Additional Language (EAL) students need additional support to thrive in an English-speaking country, particularly when adapting to a new country and developing English language skills. Yet, the understanding of their acculturative needs is limited. Further, no targeted interventions for their psychological adaptation or wellbeing are available in secondary school contexts. The present study aimed to address this gap in knowledge and practice. Methods: Mixed methods were used. In Phase 1, semi-structured interviews were conducted with three EAL teachers. In Phase 2, the adapted Coping with Study Abroad (CSA) program was piloted with 25 EAL students in an Australian secondary school. The effectiveness of the program was evaluated using a repeated-measures design (n = 20) and a qualitative feedback survey (n = 6). Results: EAL students experienced pervasive stresses in various aspects of school life, including learning (e.g., language barriers to participating in class activities) and wellbeing (e.g., negative emotions due to difficulty communicating in English). While the adapted CSA program provided an opportunity for EAL students to connect with each other, no significant changes were found between the pre- and post-intervention scores in proactive coping behaviours, psychological wellbeing, and negative stereotype about help-seeker. Conclusions: There are strengths and limitations in the current school practice and the adapted program for EAL students. To effectively support EAL students in secondary school, wellbeing support and English language skills development should work in synergy, with each enhancing the other.
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    Translingual language education: towards the resourceful speaker
    Smith, Hannah ( 2017)
    The aim of this research report is to outline a preliminary guide of how to implement translingual language education. Currently, language education is based on modernist ideas about language. Learners are expected to master the same standard form as a native speaker does. Few language students achieve this goal. Minority language students are particularly disadvantaged, as this approach to education hinders their ability to access the majority language. Their home languages are often ignored or forbidden by teachers which has led to academic failure. The translingual approach is grounded in the work of multilingual education researchers, and poststructuralist sociolinguistic scholarship. This report answers questions about how a translingual approach can support language minority and majority students to adopt new attitudes and skills in line with modern research. These skills include being resourceful speakers who are able to adapt to the communication needs of the moment. This report uses a literature review of published academic works describing the translingual teaching practices of teachers in Western contexts. The analysis revealed possible ways for teachers to model a new attitude towards languages, and utilise their students’ language resources. The report provides recommendations for facing future challenges in the field.
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    Ticking boxes, kicking goals: teacher perceptions of their professional learning within the 2014 Victorian performance and development process
    Allen, Janette Marion ( 2016)
    Australian performance and development processes have been viewed by teachers as having little impact on their teaching and were mainly fulfilled out of compliance, according to a 2009 OECD study. This research details how the current Victorian Performance And Development Guidelines (DEECD, 2014a) represent a change in framing from past policies and how teachers interact with and perceive this new process. This project used a narrative inquiry methodology providing participant teachers with opportunities to articulate and reflect on their learning through a six-month period of their review cycle. The narrative of their experience was analysed using Positioning Theory which was useful in exploring the interplay of factors perceived by teachers to shape their learning over time. These include the negotiation of agreement with leaders, developing understanding of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers, and a focus on the production of evidence within the goal-setting cycle. Factors were also identified that may need addressing to support the full realisation of the policy’s potential in the lives of teachers and students.
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    Just reporting : does the school have a justifiable reporting process?
    Morrison, Caroline Mary ( 2006)
    This thesis titled `Just Reporting' aimed to explore the question: Does the school have a justifiable reporting process that meets the needs of key stakeholders (parents, students and teachers)? Through a critical review of the research literature relevant to reporting, various ethical issues were noted that assisted in the construction of the questions guiding this study. These ethical issues provided the lens through which I explored the reporting practices at the research school. The title Just Reporting emphasises the justice issues surrounding reporting as a communicative action where the integrity of each individual is maintained and relationships strengthened. The research took the form of a case study involving the participation of thirty-three parents, eleven teachers and twenty-one students from the one school setting in a questionnaire that had both quantitative and qualitative questions that gathered their affective and cognitive responses to the school's written report. I also held one focus group interview with parents to clarify information from the questionnaire. An interactive inquiry with mixed methods approach was chosen as the best way to answer the research questions. The aim was to develop a theory about reporting rather than prove an existing theory. This study examines what reporting is, the audience and purpose of reporting, and the imperatives of justifiable reporting. It gathered the opinions and beliefs about reporting at the research school from key stakeholder groups and sought to discover whether the written report met their needs and fulfilled the requirements of justifiable reporting. Final analysis of the data provided understandings about the nature of reporting at the research school and revealed a number of issues that prevented the process from being fully justifiable.
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    The performance of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) students on a high-stakes writing test
    Moore, Jacqueline ( 2016)
    This study considers the performance of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) candidates compared with L1 candidates on a high-+stakes test of argumentative writing. The test is part of a cross-curricular scaling test used to assist in the ranking of Year 12 students for the purpose of university entrance selection. How do the scores of each subgroup differ and why don’t the CALD candidates achieve in the top score range? The rhetorical strategies used by each subgroup will be considered. The results of this study provide insights into the rhetorical features preferred by each group and may inform the work of secondary teachers, language teacher educators and assessment boards.
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    The school production : a study in four parts
    Pilbeam, Susan ( 1991)
    An academic introduction to relevant material and an overview of the major philosophical themes and debates in Drama in Education over the past fifty years. This also provides important background information to the rest of the study, placing the school production, Drama, the teachers and the curriculum development work in a broader context.
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    Student expectations of the future
    Pepper, Laele ( 1992)
    Specific aims of the study To investigate how present-day students view the future and their place in the workforce of the future. To establish whether or not students regard their present educational experiences as an adequate preparation for their future work. To investigate acceptance of unconventional futures scenarios as possible futures.
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    The effect of the employment of an overwhelming majority of lay persons as staff members on the teaching mission of the Sisters of the Faithful Companions of Jesus at Genazzano F.C.J. College, Kew
    Magee, Anne ( 1988)
    This paper will show how the teaching mission of the Sisters of the Faithful Companions of Jesus (F.C.J.) has been influenced by the laicization of staff since the advent of Commonwealth funding following the establishment of the Schools Commission in 1972 and will document the ways in which structures have changed and the composition of staff has been altered.