Study breadth in education

Enrich your undergraduate degree with one of our Melbourne Graduate School of Education breadth subjects.

Offering personalised learning experiences that link theory with practical applications, you will get a taste of another discipline and develop new life skills, such as mentoring and professional communication, that are transferrable to any career.

Our breadth subjects are flexible and most can be taken individually or part of a track, at any level of your degree (subject to degree requirements). They are all 12.5 points and count towards your undergraduate degree breadth study requirements.

Our students come from all areas of the University including the Arts, science, commerce, biomedicine and environments.

87% of our students said they found their breadth subject intellectually stimulating, while 92% said they learned new ideas that could be applied to practice*. We also received the highest undergraduate Student Experience and Satisfaction ranking in 2013, 2015 and 2016.

*2015 Student Experience Survey results.

Arts Practice and Engagement

Explore drama, theatre, music, and the visual arts from the perspectives of artists, young people and the community and in relation to diverse learning settings.

For more information contact track coordinator: Dr Robert Brown r.brown@unimelb.edu.au

Drawing, Painting and Sensory Knowing Sem 1Sem 2 Level 1

Availability: Semester 1 and 2
Contact hours: One 3 hour workshop per week
Level: 1

Exploring a range of drawing and painting methods, you will investigate ‘sensory knowing’ with reference to artful pedagogy, children’s early symbolisation through art, visual perception and visual design.

Through studio practice linked to learning theories, you will develop a folio of work that demonstrates artful skills and expression.

For more information see the Handbook.

Spontaneous Drama: Improv and Communities Sem 2 Level 1

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: One 3 hour workshop per week
Level: 1

Learn about improvised drama and theatre from the perspective of performer and audience, its application in the community and how it can be used in contemporary theatre, as a tool for learning and other life skills.

You will take part in weekly drama/theatre improvisation workshops, culminating in a class presentation, and conduct a research project looking at the work of leading improvisors.

For more information see the Handbook.

School of Rock: Popular Music Learning Sem 2 Level 1

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour workshop per week
Level: 1

Explore the nature of pop, rock, blues and folk musicians' informal learning practices, by forming your own band and selecting, composing/arranging, recording and performing your chosen music.

You will learn how musicians acquire some or all of their skills and knowledge informally, conduct research (including site visits), discuss and analyse music videos, music related digital technologies and selected readings.

For more information see the Handbook.

Printing, Collage and Social Engagement Sem 1 Level 2

Availability: Semester 1
Contact hours: One 3 hour workshop per week
Level: 2

Explore the art making processes of printing and collage, and their diverse purposes as forms of communication and social engagement.

You will experience a range of printmaking techniques including lino printing, etching, screen printing and collographs, as well as collage-making techniques. Drawing on your printing and collage artmaking, you will engage in a collaborative art exchange with children artists from a local school, and in a negotiated community project.

This subject is for students with varied prior experiences in visual arts practice.

For more information see the Handbook.

Pop-up Theatre: Performance in Community February intensive Level 2

Availability: February intensive
Contact hours: 36 hours over five days
Level: 2

Explore the principles of performance-making across a range of different cultures and theatrical traditions.

You will examine how and why theatre is devised and how performance-making affects and is affected by audiences. Along with a teaching artist, you will participate in the development of an ensemble performance for a designated audience and performance venue.

For more information see the Handbook.

Creativity, the Arts and Young People

Explore artistic play, expression and performance in the growth and creative development of children and young people through active and experimental learning in diverse settings.

For more information contact track coordinator: Dr Robert Brown r.brown@unimelb.edu.au

Creativity, Play and the Arts Sem 1 Level 1

Availability: Semester 1
Contact hours: Weekly 3 hour workshop
Level: 1

Focus on the integral connection between play, the arts and engagement for children and young people.

Through practical workshops linked to theory, you will interpret and examine playful, creative and artful experiences, and learn how to plan for and experience direct artful/playful interactions with children.

For more information see the Handbook.

Creative Projects: Digital Technologies Sem 2 Level 1

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour workshop per week
Level: 1

Even with little formal arts background you can explore creativity, design and innovation in video and film, drama, music, digital storytelling, web design, blogging and the visual arts, using digital technologies in workshops, seminars and during fieldwork.

You will develop skills in project planning and management, create your own multimedia presentations and investigate themes such as online arts communities and artistic collaboration, remix cultures and the digital revolution.

For more information see the Handbook.

Youth Arts: Expressing Cultural Identity July intensive Level 2

Availability: July intensive
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 5 hours of workshops each day
Level: 2

Explore how young people create their social and personal identities through the arts. Investigate companies, organisations and individuals who provide or facilitate visual and performing arts works and experiences for youth.

You will visit various cultural sites around Melbourne and develop your own arts ‘artefact’.

For more information see the Handbook.

Story, Children and the Arts Sem 2 Level 2

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour workshop per week
Level: 2

Examine how story and storytelling engage children and young people, focussing on how artful, imaginative and narrative experiences enrich and expand personal and social awareness, and connectedness.

Through-based arts workshops linked to theory and site visits, you will learn how to critique, compose and present stories appropriate for young audiences.

This subject is suitable for students with little formal arts or writing background.

For more information see the Handbook.

Deafness and Communication

With a focus on visual communication and Auslan, the language of the Australian signing deaf community, you will explore issues related to deafness and communication from a wide range of perspectives including social, cultural and technological.

For more information contact track coordinator: Ms Sharon Klieve sharon.klieve@unimelb.edu.au

Analysing Professional Communication Sem 1 Sem 2 Level 2

Availability: Semester 1 and 2
Contact hours: 2 hour lecture and 1 hour workshop per week
Level: 2

Explore how people use talk at work to get things done and learn the rules of effective communication in workplaces: how we explain what we mean to students, clients, patients or audiences while trying to avoid uncertainty, misunderstanding or offending others.

You will study interactions in education, medicine, law, counselling and journalism and understand how it is that people manage professional conversations.

For more information see the Handbook.

Deafness and Communication Sem 2 Level 2

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour seminar per week
Level: 2

Investigate the impact of deafness on communication, literacy, social development, access and equity, and consider how technology impacts the lives of deaf people.

You will explore the impact of technology for people with a hearing loss, be introduced to Auslan and Deaf culture, and learn about some of the causes of deafness.

For more information see the Handbook.

Auslan and Visual Communication July intensive Level 2

Availability: July intensive
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 5 hours of seminars each day
Level: 2

Explore visual communication and be introduced to Auslan, the language of the Australian signing Deaf community.

You will delve into the social and cultural aspects of Auslan and develop skills in communicating using this visual language. Learn about the unique linguistics of signed languages and be guided in your study by fluent users of Auslan from the Deaf community.

For more information see the Handbook.

Explore the nature of knowledge and how we learn.

For more information contact track coordinator: Dr John Quay jquay@unimelb.edu.au

Learning and the Digital Generations

Sem 1 Level 1

Availability: Semester 1
Contact hours: One hour lecture and two hour workshop weekly
Level: 1

Deepen your understanding of the potential for digital communication to enhance learning and produce new knowledge, and discuss how digital communications open up new opportunities for learning in both formal (e.g. schools) and informal (e.g. leisure) settings, challenging traditional ideas about where and how young people learn.

Through interactive workshops, you will engage with a wide range of resources, both text and digital, to open up your understanding of ways in which digital communications blur the boundary between teacher and learner, producers and consumers of knowledge.

Handbook

Understanding Knowing and Learning

Sem 2 Level 1

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour seminar per week
Level: 1

Connect theory with practice and enhance your understanding of how knowing and learning works to support your own learning and that of others.

Alongside your lectures and seminars, you will join a homework club and tutor children and young people who need your assistance to improve their school work, automatically putting theory about learning to the test.

View Handbook entry

Knowledge, Learning and Culture

Sem 1 Level 2

Availability: Semester 1
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour tutorial per week
Level: 2

Engage with amazing collections of art works, rare books and prints and archaeological, scientific, medical and archival material through tutorials held in a range of the University’s cultural collections and museums.

You will explore the significance of culture and context in the development and transmission of knowledge, and in approaches to learning.

View Handbook entry

Literacy, Power and Learning

July intensive Level 2

Availability: July intensive
Contact hours: 36 hours
Level: 2

Explore the nexus between literacy, power and learning through a study of ways in which literacy education can empower individuals and groups and facilitate positive social change.

You will gain an understanding of the concept of multiple literacies in contemporary education and cultures, and analyse a range of contemporary and historical text types including written, visual, oral and digital media.

View Handbook entry

Knowledge and Learning in Professions

July intensive Level 3

Availability: July intensive
Contact hours: 36 hours
Level: 3

Learn about professions that have emerged in the last 50 years and those that have an older lineage, and explore the differences.

Debates about professional education will be considered and you will be asked to contemplate how these apply to your own future career development.

View Handbook entry

Leading Community Sport and Recreation

Examine the educational significance of sport and physical activity, and gain the knowledge and skills required to lead physical activity in your community.

For more information contact track coordinator: Ms Melanie Nash mjnash@unimelb.edu.au

Sports Coaching: Theory and Practice February intensive Sem 1 Sem 2 Level 1

Availability: February intensive, Semester 1, Semester 2
Contact hours: 36 hours
Level: 1

Paralympic athlete Milly Tapper standing with a sports coaching student
Meet Olympic and Para Olympic Athletes, such as Milly Tapper.

As an introduction to the practical and theoretical aspects of sport and exercise coaching, you will develop leadership, organisational, communication and analytical skills used in coaching and learn how to evaluate and improve your own coaching performance.

You will lead and participate in physical activity sessions, reflect on your own and other people's coaching practices, and create and present a session plan and a six-week training program.

At the end of the course you will achieve the Australian Sports Commissions Community Coaching General Principles certificate.

For more information see the Handbook.

Learning via Sport and Outdoor Education Sem 1 Sem 2 Level 2

Availability: Semester 1 and 2
Contact hours: 18 hours of workshops, plus field trips
Level: 2

Learning does not just happen in classrooms or lecture theatres. You will explore the close connections between learning and experience – particularly though two events: a fun run and a bushwalk.

By participating in these events and exploring theory in class, you will investigate how learning occurs as experience.

For more information see the Handbook.

students at Wilson's Prom
Students enjoy a trip to Wilson’s Promontory

Sport, Education and the Media Sem 1 Sem 2 Level 2

Availability: Semester 1 and 2
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour workshop per week
Level: 2

A group of students look at paintings inside the MCG
Students on a field trip to the MCG.

Examine young people’s connection with sport and physical education by considering the tension between sport’s traditional role as a form of moral and social education, and its emergence as a commodity.

You will learn what constitutes a sport, how we define it and how we determine what’s relevant to children’s sporting education. You will also analyse the many issues to do with race, socio-economic status, culture and gender in connection with sports in Australia and internationally.

This analysis is informed by an investigation of the growing role and responsibilities of the media in shaping sports, focusing on current events in sport and how these issues impact on teaching and learning.

For more information see the Handbook.

Sport, Leadership and the Community Sem 1 July intensive Level 3

Availability: July intensive, Semester 1
Contact hours: 36
Level: 3

Explore some of the key issues surrounding sport and its relevance to the school curriculum and broader society, including elitism in sport, equal opportunity, gambling, the increasing commodification of sport and its changing role.

You will have the opportunity to visit a range of community sporting facilities and hear from experts about what they are doing to address these issues and the leadership roles they have taken on.

Please note: while it is not a prerequisite, places are limited so preference will be given to those students applying who have completed sport, education and the media.

For more information see the Handbook.

Applying Coaching Science Sem 2 Level 3

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 36
Level: 3

Explore the complex educational relationship between coach, athlete, coaching program and social context, and develop an open and reflective approach to your own coaching practice.

You will gain a deeper insight into the theory and practice of sports coaching, highlighting the decision-making, learning process and scientific concepts underpinning good coaching practice.

The subject is for students with proven coaching experience and a current association with a sporting club or school organisation.

Please note: Sports coaching: theory and practice or an equivalent qualification is a pre-requisite for this subject.

For more information see the Handbook.

Positive Individuals, Organisations and Communities

Explore the issues relating to the emerging field of positive psychology, with a focus on the relationship between wellbeing, pro-social behaviour and peak performance at individual, group and community levels.

For more information contact track coordinator: Dr Gavin Slemp gavin.slemp@unimelb.edu.au

Wellbeing, Motivation and Performance Summer semesterSem 1 Level 1

Availability: Summer semester, semester 1
Contact hours: 2 hour lecture plus 1 hour tutorial per week
Level: 1

Explore the science of the factors that enable individuals to operate at the peak of their potential, including how to participate in more engaging activities, live healthier, be more resilient, have more satisfying relationships, and lead more productive and fulfilling lives.

You will explore teachable skills and pathways for cultivating wellbeing, apply evaluated interventions to increase your own wellbeing and of those around you, and be exposed to a variety of disciplines including psychology, social science, education, philosophy, sports science, sociology, and organisational science.

For more information see the Handbook.

Performance, Potential and Development Sem 2 Level 1

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 36 hours
Level: 1

Explore the theory and evidence relating to high performance and optimal functioning across a variety of contexts, drawing on the academic literature and real-life experiences.

You will apply evidence-based performance interventions to your personal life and to others, evaluate their effectiveness and identify ways to increase your performance and potential.

For more information see the Handbook.

Positive Communities and Organisations Sem 2 Level 2

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture plus 2 hour tutorial per week
Level: 2

Investigate how theories of wellbeing, ethics and virtues are being applied to education settings, workplaces and communities.

You will explore the relationship between wellbeing and performance in settings like schools, business and societies, considering leading theories of flourishing and trends in wellbeing policy, and discover how wellbeing insights can be applied to a local school, organisation or community setting.

For more information see the Handbook.

Youth, Citizenship and Identity

Explore the issues of youth, citizenship and identity in education.

For more information contact track coordinator: Dr Hernan Ignacio Cuervo hicuervo@unimelb.edu.au

Concepts of Childhood Sem 1 Level 2

Availability: Semester 1
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour workshop per week
Level: 2

Examine changing concepts of childhood through significant 20th century research, with a focus on the rights of the child in contemporary society.

You will explore historical and contemporary theories to understand the construction of 'childhood', and investigate how issues like consumerism, climate change and urban planning affect children.

You will also investigate different experiences of childhood across Australia and internationally, and the reasons behind this diversity.

For more information see the Handbook.

Youth Leading Change July intensive Level 2

Availability: July intensive
Contact hours: Two lectures and two workshops per day, over four days in one week
Level: 2

Explore young people as change-makers and problem-solvers against a backdrop of social transformation in Australia and globally.

Through interactive workshops you will gain an understanding of the significant opportunities and challenges produced by these transformations in our region, proving the thinking tools for addressing local and global problems in everyday life and skills for leadership.

Case studies will be identified and investigated in class, including those related to issues such as education (formal and non-formal), employment, public policy, law, health, justice, mobilities and migration, and use of digital communication and popular culture.

For more information see the Handbook.

Ethics, Gender and the Family Sem 1 Level 3

Availability: Semester 1
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour workshop per week
Level: 3

Towards the end of the 20th century, feminist thinkers challenged the view of the family as a private domain. Using alternative perspectives, such as ethics, gender and childhood studies, you will explore gender issues that affect the lives of families in today’s society and reflect on your own ideas and beliefs, gaining an insight into why and how they developed.

You will also conduct an investigation into the impact of different ethical perspectives on beliefs and actions, and associated policy development and legislation.

For more information see the Handbook.

Education, Politics and Social Movements Sem 2 Level 3

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 36
Level: 3

Explore how education has been utilised for social and policy change through social movements in Australia and internationally, and examine the educational, historical and sociological issues related to power, politics, justice and freedom.

You will gain an understanding of the contested and multifaceted nature of education policy and practice reform, and learn to critically analyse the role of students and educators as agents of change in historical and contemporary social movements.

For more information see the Handbook.

Youth and Popular Culture Sem 2 Level 3

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: 1 hour lecture and 2 hour workshop per week
Level: 3

Explore how children and young people construct and reconstruct their sense of self against the backdrop of popular culture, a crucial arena for both social control and for exploring the possibility of social transformation.

Interactive workshops will help you gain an understanding of how different approaches (sociological, psychological, post-structural and subcultural) contribute to debate about the place of popular culture and media in the lives of children and young people, in local and global settings.

For more information see the Handbook.

Other single subjects

School Experience as Breadth Sem 1 Sem 2 Level 2

Availability: Semester 1 and 2
Contact hours: Approx. 1 day per week in school, university classes before placement (9 hours) and during placement (6 hours)
Level: 2

Volunteer as a Tertiary Student Assistant (TSA) in a Victorian Government school, and learn about contemporary approaches to teaching and learning.

You will make links between your undergraduate degree and the wider community, and get a taste of working in a school by assisting in one of the two main streams:

  1. Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS)
  2. Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM)

School-based experience is supplemented by university workshops and seminars, to give you further support and ideas you can take back to the classroom. This subject is for students with high level skills in mathematics, science, arts or languages other than English (LOTE).

For more information contact Subject Coordinator Dr Daniela Acquaro d.acquaro@unimelb.edu.au or see the Handbook.

Henry Gardiner, Bachelor of Arts

'School Experience as Breadth' was definitely the most insightful 'breadth' subject I undertook throughout my Bachelor of Arts. The practical nature of the school placements was a great way to gain a real appreciation of what teaching involves. It also reinforced my interest in teaching and is helping me consider my next step post-Arts, which I believe is the outcome of a true breadth subject.

Henry Gardiner, Bachelor of Arts

Introduction to Climate Change Sem 2 Level 1

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: Two 1 hour lectures and one 1 hour tutorial per week, plus eight forums on topical subjects
Level: 1

With a comprehensive and up-to-date introduction to all aspects of the climate change debate, you will have the opportunity to interact with Australian scientific and political leaders with expertise and interests in climate change, and consider information within your own local context.

Concepts covered include the scientific basis of the greenhouse effect, the history of Earth’s climate, energy options, economics and public policy and the effect of climate change on food, water and health.

For more information contact the Subject Coordinator Professor Rachel Webster r.webster@unimelb.edu.au or see the Handbook.

Relating Health and Learning Sem 1 Level 2

Availability: Semester 1
Contact hours: 1.5 hour lecture and 1.5 hour workshop per week
Level: 2

Deepen your knowledge of the relationship between health and learning using the life course model. You will explore current research that explains how health influences your success in educational pursuits and how educational opportunities and life-long learning in turn impact your health outcomes.

In the interactive lectures and workshops, you will engage with sector experts and collaborate with each other strengthening your skills in public speaking, presentation, and thinking strategically, critically and creatively to develop interventions that address health and learning issues.

You will learn how to apply theory to practice using your own experiences and real world examples, improving your ability to approach complex health and learning issues pragmatically.

For more information contact Subject Coordinator Mr Timoci O'Connor timoci.oconnor@unimelb.edu.au or see the Handbook.

Communicating Science and Technology Sem 2 Level 2

Availability: Semester 2
Contact hours: One 2 hour seminar, one 1 hour seminar and one 1 hour tutorial per week
Level: 2

Consider the important role of science and technology in society and explore why scientists must learn to articulate their ideas to a variety of audiences in an effective and engaging manner.

You will learn how to create engaging written and spoken science communication, by tailoring your communication to audience needs and using the right type of media. Other topics include giving talks about science to non-scientists, writing press releases, communicating with politicians, how science is reported in the media, as well as effective communication in the context of employability and applying for jobs, including writing a CV and interview skills.

There will be multiple opportunities to receive feedback and improve their your written and oral communication skills.

For more information contact Subject Coordinator Dr Jenny Martin j.martin1@unimelb.edu.au or see the Handbook.