Master of Teaching (Primary)
Welcome to Master of Teaching (Primary) at Alphacrucis College where we offer graduate teacher training from a Christian perspective as pre-service training and further study for existing teachers. The majority of our students are in fact career changers. In addition to our two year Masters award we offer the Graduate Diploma of Education (Primary) as an early exit point after eighteen months full-time study.
Our program has been designed around three themes; curriculum content, the teacher’s heart and teaching experiences in a variety of settings. We are very proud of our unique teaching style; each subject is studied online combined with a week-long face-to-face fully catered intensive at our Sydney Campus, often referred to as blended learning. To see some of our staff in action watch these excerpts from our program launch.
Dr Jim Twelves
PhD, MEd, Grad Dip Ed Admin, PGCE, BSc(Hons)
Good teaching cannot be reduced to technique; good teaching comes from the identity and integrity of the teacher (Parker Palmer, 2007).
The Master of Teaching (Primary) Award is a two year program (16 subjects [units], full time, four per semester). All students are required to enrol in the Master of Teaching (Primary) however, there is the option to exit after 12 subjects [units] with a Graduate Diploma of Education (Primary), an eighteen month program of full time study. Students taking this option may resume their studies (full time or part time) and complete their Master of Teaching (Primary) within 2 years of exiting.
- Full Time: 2 years
- Part-time: 4 years
- Exit Point: 18 months - 12 subjects Graduate Diploma in Education (Primary)
Locations and Timetables
Each week long intensive is held on our Sydney campus, 30, Cowper Street, Parramatta, NSW, 2150.
Students taking EDU400 Professional Experience complete 60 days schools placements spread over three semesters.
Carefully study the Prerequisites, Admission Requirements and Employability sections, listed under the 'Award info' tab above. Then read these notes which will help with your online application. Individual support is available for any questions about your application.
You are required to attach a number of supporting documents to your online application. (If there are insufficient upload ports, for example if you have multiple transcripts, scan them into multipage PDFs for single upload):
2. Prohibited Employment Declaration – download, print, sign and upload.
3. New Working with Children Check -link complete free online application and submit, print, upload.
4. Academic transcripts and identification documents, upload certified copies.
5. If applicable, Alphacrucis (Higher Ed) Application for Credit –download; applicants who wish to be acknowledged for relevant previous study or experience should complete, sign, upload.
Once your application has been approved you will be sent a Letter of Offer by email. When this is signed and returned you will be invited to submit your online Enrolment Form.
Select the most appropriate subjects (units) for your first semester. Please contact the Program Director, Dr Jim Twelves, by email, phone (02 8893 9000) or by appointment, for academic advice at any stage.
Ps Daniel Thornton (faculty profile)
Daniel Thornton is an accomplished songwriter, musician and worship leader as well as a dynamic communicator. He is the Head of Department, Music and Creative Arts at Alphacrucis College, serves local churches and their worship teams around the globe and is also engaged as a professional composer and performer.
From 2007 - 2010, Daniel served as the Music Pastor at Paradise Community Church (Adelaide, South Australia) and previously as the Worship and Associate Pastor at North Shore Christian Centre in Sydney Australia for over 8 years.
He regularly produces/records and releases Worship CDs/DVDs including Daniel|Piano|Worship Classics 2, It is Well - Instrumentals (2011), Worship Classics (2010), Above All Else (2010), One Heart (2009), Worship Always (2009), Paradise(2008), It is Well - Vol 2(2007), It is Well - Vol 1(2006), Beyond Words (2004), and many more. Some of these recordings/performances are featured weekly on the NSCC TV show LifeSource and the Paradise TV shows.
His songs are sung in churches around the world including “Father”, “Come into the House” and “Presence Beautiful”. Daniel’s passion is to connect people with God and see the church rise to its fullest potential.
Daniel has performed a starring role on in an Off-Broadway premiere at the Duke Theatre on 42nd Street, New York of the new musical "Angels". His recent starring roles in musical theatre productions also include, Godspell, !Hero and The Prodigal.
Six years at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and a music scholarship to London provided much of Daniel's formal training. During that time, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and other prestigious ensembles performed his compositions. After completing his studies, Daniel was appointed Music Director for Penrith Christian Fellowship Centre, then Penrith City Church and later Worship Pastor at C3 Mt Annan.
Daniel is an ordained minister with the Australian Christian Churches. His formal qualifications encompass a M.Music Technology (Distinction), A.Arts (Religious Studies), LMusA (Theory), Performers Certificate T.C.L. (Piano) and a Cert IV Training and Assessment.
He has owned and run two private music schools, and also lectured for many years at a number of colleges including Hillsong College and the Paradise College of Ministry.
Daniel and his wife Kris have been married for 18yrs and have 3 beautiful children.
Dr Jim Twelves (faculty profile)
As the Program Director, Master of Teaching (Primary) Jim is responsible for the leadership, development and oversight of this exciting new program that was pioneered by Dr Jennie Bickmore-Brand. Jim is currently responsible for EDU400 Professional Practice; EDU401 Foundations in Christian Teaching and Learning; EDU402 HSIE; EDU422 The Educator’s Journey; EDU501/2 Action Research and EDU503 Challenges in 21st Century Christian Education. Prior to Jim’s emigration to Australia in 1995 he was Head of Geography in Aldenham School, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom for nearly 20 years where his passion for teaching and learning were formed. Since arriving in Australia he has held Deputy and Principalship roles in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. As Board Chair in Victoria, Jim led the foundation of a new Christian primary school. In New South Wales, as school Principal, he saw his school nearly double in enrolments over five years and in the last two years, as Director of Twelves Consulting, with a team, he developed national policy frameworks and subsequently a suite of policies for three schools in different states. As a reflection of his passion for clean and efficient administration, after two decades in the classroom, Jim returned to university and enrolled in a Graduate Diploma in Educational Administration at The University of Melbourne. He followed this with his Masters of Education, specialising in staff appraisal, the founding of new schools and marketing. Finally Jim embarked on his doctoral research; Putting them in the hands of God: A successful Australian Christian School. This unique study combined qualitative research with quantitative tools devised by the Victorian Department of Education Employment and Training for their triennial review of state schools. The research demonstrated that successful Christian education, in the community being examined, combined consistent clear articulation of the vision, a faculty whose teaching was their calling and a vital integration of their Christian faith into every aspect of the life of the school. Follow the link to read the full text.
Academic Entry Requirements
Entry into the Master of Teaching (Primary) program requires an appropriate completed Bachelors degree from a recognized University or equivalent tertiary education institution. The Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) Program Standards require:
- 1. For primary teaching, the applicant's first degree must include at least one year of full-time equivalent study relevant to one or more learning areas of the primary school curriculum. The Primary Key Learning Areas (KLA) are: English; Mathematics; Science & Technology; Human Society and Its Environment (HSIE); Creative and Arts; Personal Development, Health & Physical Education (PDHPE); Languages. Applicants may complete a self assessment of relevant areas of academic study that meets subject content requirements; see Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards - Subject Content Requirements (abridged).
- 2. All entrants to initial teacher education will successfully demonstrate their capacity to engage effectively with a rigorous higher education program and to carry out the intellectual demands of teaching itself. To achieve this, it is expected that applicants’ levels of personal literacy and numeracy should be broadly equivalent to those of the top 30 per cent of the population.
Applicants for admission to the program must:
- a. hold Australian citizenship, have permanent residency, or apply as an international student.
- b. have an acceptable level of English language proficiency. If English is not the applicant’s first language they will be required to show proficiency in the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) (or equivalent). Students admitted to our programs must attain an overall IELTS (or equivalent) score of 7.5 (with no score below 7 in any of the four skills areas, and a score of no less than 8 in speaking and listening), either on entry to or on graduation from the program.
IELTS (or equivalent) is not required for applicants who have undertaken the full four years of required higher education study (or qualifications assessed as comparable) in the English language in either: Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland), the United States of America, Canada or the Republic of Ireland.
For full details of the policy on the English language proficiency of teachers for provisional or conditional accreditation, see the Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards - English Language Proficiency Policy. Testing and locations can be found at IELTS.
- c. have a competent range of computer skills relevant to the profession. An assessed, diagnostic screening, test is a compulsory component of EDU412 Education, Science, Technology and Change after which remediation solutions are explored with students as necessary.
- d. comply with all the requirements as set out in the Policies and Procedures of Alphacrucis College.
While our program is fully accredited to New South Wales and Australian Initial Teaching Standards, applicants are still advised to approach particular teacher employing authorities as early as possible, preferably before applying for the Master of Teaching (Primary), to clarify their specific requirements. It is the responsibility of the student to determine their future employment prospects with the school system(s) of their choice in Australia or overseas; as acceptance into our program does not guarantee employment in any particular schooling system.
Applicants from overseas intending to seek accreditation to teach should seek clarification of accreditation requirements with their intended employing authority prior to undertaking our program. Responsibility for clarification of suitability of undergraduate qualifications for employment with an employing authority rests with the applicant; see Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards - Overseas Trained Teachers .
Complete Fee Schedules and FEE-HELP information (where appropriate) for all Alphacrucis courses can be found in our Documents section, under the Fees and FEE-HELP Information link.
Accreditation Details for International Students
- CRICOS Provider Trading Name: Alphacrucis College
- CRICOS Provider Codes:
- NSW: 00958A – Details on the Australian Government's DEEWR site
- CRICOS Award Name: Master of Teaching (Primary)
- CRICOS Course (Award) Codes:
- NSW: 073124F – Details on the Australian Government's DEEWR site
Units offered as part of this Award:
- EDU400 - Professional Practice Part A, B and C
Description: Note: Enrolment in each part is sequential and each part takes one semester to complete Unit detail page >>
- EDU401 - Foundations in Christian Teaching and Learning
Curriculum objective: This unit is a foundational unit and introduces the Philosophical foundation for the MTeach Program. This is encapsulated in the Teacher’s Transformational Helix model of Christian education, and supported by a set of teaching and learning principles, integrating the NSW model of pedagogy, which underpin the whole approach to the program. Whilst it explores the teaching of religion in schools, this unit is focused on the role and function of the Christian teacher and on the relationship of Christian schools with the Church and the community and particularly with the family and the state. The NSW Board of Studies K-10 Curriculum Framework will be introduced including an overview of the competing agendas embedded within Curriculum Design and Reform. The main intent is for the Pre-service Teacher to develop a clear rationale for their own philosophy as a Christian educator, exposing them to a range of models of teaching and learning, pedagogies and behavior management information from which they can begin to apply strategies and establish a positive classroom climate. Unit detail page >>
- EDU402 - Human Society in the Environment: Platforms and Perspectives of the Christian Educator
Curriculum objective: This unit introduces the Human Society in the Environment (HSiE) Learning Area. It provides pre-service teachers with an opportunity to critically evaluate the broad conceptual framework of the syllabus (Early Stage(s) 1-3), the key learning processes and skills associated with learning the concepts and the key values of HSiE. It supports the pre-service teacher to expand their worldview by analysing different worldviews, represented in the ethnic mix of Australian citizens including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. It provides an examination of the Judeo-Christian paradigm and heritage and its impact on society and the environment. It recognises the importance of teaching studies of Indigenous history and consultation with Indigenous people to learn to implement and evaluate appropriate teaching resources and strategies. The unit examines how to develop the learning of children aged 5-12 in relation to the concepts, skills and values in HSiE (including the overall HSiE continua, and focus on links between Stages 3 & 4) with reference to a range of socially just and culturally responsive pedagogical strategies and teaching resources as well as examination of assessment strategies in HSiE Unit detail page >>
- EDU403 - Language and literacy acquisition and development
Curriculum objective: This unit enables students to develop important communication skills necessary for academic and professional life, especially in regard to the teacher’s relationship with parents and the community. To this end, this unit will assess and support prospective teachers in their own ability to write grammatically correct and coherent English for a range of purposes. This unit presents a range of theoretical models for the acquisition and development of language and literacy from early childhood to adult learners. It will look at factors effecting acquisition and proficiency. The unit will analyse different theories for the teaching and learning of reading and writing. Pre-service Teachers will become proficient in using a range of assessment strategies and be clear about their role in assessment, record keeping and reporting. The role of the teacher will be examined in diagnosis and support for students with language and literacy acquisition needs, second language learners and the integration of inter agency support. A focus on the literacy needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in the classroom will be addressed. This unit is a pre-requisite for the unit EDU413 Teaching and Learning English. Unit detail page >>
- EDU411 - Personal Development, Health and Physical Education
Curriculum objective: This unit provides a comprehensive overview of key researchers and writers in the field of child and adolescent development (building on EDU403 Language and Literacy Acquisition) providing models of instruction and resources in the health and physical education arena. It specifically focuses on physical, cognitive, linguistic, social and emotional, moral and spiritual development and the application to classroom content and support. This unit provides a comprehensive overview of key researchers and writers in the field of child and adolescent development. Lectures and readings will focus on the philosophical and ethical theories impacting on teaching and promoting health and behavioural change. Students will be encouraged to critique their own Christian worldview and denominational emphases and personal approach to health and fitness. Students will access and critique the health and physical education literature, including research, journals, government documents, computerized data bases, and identify sources and evaluate Internet information. Current and future trends in personal, physical and health developments across societies and cultures, and the role of Christian schools will be addressed. As a Christian teacher, issues around the development and management of children’s moral and spiritual development will be explored. Students will be encouraged to articulate their preferred behavioural management strategies in line with their Christian worldview. Unit detail page >>
- EDU412 - Education, Science, Technology and Change
Curriculum objective: This unit focuses on the Key Learning Area of Science and Technology with a special emphasis on the use of technology. Pre-service Teachers will explore relevant science and technology content and strategies to develop in primary students: science and technology knowledge, understandings, skills, attitudes and values. The medium for teaching will be through the practical approach, modeling state of the art practice with opportunities for the Pre-service Teacher to research into past and present views of living and non living things, to investigate, collect and record data, as well as manipulate using design and technology skills. It will explore various software applications, such as desk top publishing, multi media production, digital art and design, as well as the Internet, and its application to classroom settings. Pre-service Teachers will be challenged to frame an ethical and responsible approach to emerging technologies. It is anticipated that the they will have an enriched view of society, the environment and the future, and an enthusiasm for teaching and lifelong learning in science and technology. Christian worldview issues discussed in other units (e.g. EDU401 Foundations in Christian Teaching and LearningEDU402 Human Society in the Environment: Platforms and Perspectives for the Christian Educator) will be drawn upon when critiquing syllabus content, methodology and teaching resources. Unit detail page >>
- EDU413 - Teaching and Learning English
Curriculum objective: This unit builds on the constructs of EDU403 Language and Literacy Acquisition and Development and pedagogical frameworks introduced in EDU401 Foundations in Christian Teaching and Learning. The unit introduces Pre-Service Teachers to the social construction view of language. A holistic approach is taken to the teaching of language and literacy, where explicit teaching of grammar within a rich language environment will enable the Pre-service teachers to not only compose texts with critical understanding of social contexts but plan and program for the NSW English syllabus Stages 1-3: specifically… how to teach listening and speaking; reading and viewing; writing and the conventions of English language such as spelling; grammar and word usage; punctuation and handwriting as well as literacy learning across the curriculum. Students will also develop a critical theory approach to fiction, non fiction and multimodal texts which may differ from their own Christian worldview. Developing higher order thinking skills in classrooms and critical thinking particularly as it relates to consumer literacy will be addressed. Access to schools through the EDU400 Professional Practice will enhance the Pre-service Teachers resource collection and build their skills in the implementation of the concepts in this unit. Pre- Service Teachers will reflect on how globalisation and societal changes have impacted on the language and literacy skills needed to make meaning and how multiliteracies are influencing the future of teaching. Unit detail page >>
- EDU414 - Learning Mathematics Part A
Curriculum objective: The main focus of this unit is on the Pre-service Teacher as a user of mathematics and their own knowledge, skills, confidence, belief systems and values in the area of processing and communicating mathematically. In particular, it builds on the Pre-service Teacher’s own mathematical skills with a view to appreciating mathematics in everyday life and the role and nature of mathematics as a way of interpreting the world. It traces the growth and development of mathematical constructs in children through Primary school and how this aligns to the NSW K-6 Mathematics syllabus. Pre-service Teachers will be exposed to the socio-cultural and multicultural contexts of mathematics, critique a range of teaching methods including direct instruction, deductive, constructivist and socio-constructivist approaches, with a view to developing their own philosophy and teaching approach. They will investigate gender stereotypes in the maths and sciences, controversial belief systems, both historical and present day, which impact on how maths is taught in Australian schools. Unit detail page >>
- EDU421 - Creative Arts
Curriculum objective: This unit is designed to provide Pre-service Teachers with a range of philosophies and approaches to the teaching of the Creative Arts, which they can adapt for different contexts of Christian schooling. The content targets the primary children age group’s development and equips the Pre-service Teacher with the knowledge and methodologies used in the NSW Creative Arts K-6 syllabus. Students will develop their own skills in the teaching methodology and assessment for the Arts forms and substrands of Dance, Drama, Visual Arts and Music. Students will investigate how each form is connected with society and culture, and in particular looking at the Australian heritage of artists. Students will develop their own criteria for the analysis of appropriate selection of a variety of artworks (visual and performing) from a contemporary and historical context. They will develop a Creative Arts vocabulary using the specific elements and principles of each form of Creative Arts, to be able to discuss and write about their own aspirations for the teaching of Creative Arts in a Christian school setting where there is a range of worldviews. The use of the Creative Arts in the student’s own spiritual journey will be explored as well as its application for children’s creative and spiritual development. Strategies for classroom management, the exhibition of artworks and performance for a variety of audiences, community arts projects, and school productions will be developed. It is expected that EDU400 Professional Practice in school experiences will provide valuable resources, stimulation and opportunities to trial the Pre-service Teachers’ developing expertise in the Creative Arts. Unit detail page >>
- EDU422 - The Educator’s Journey
Curriculum objective: This unit is designed to help the Pre-Service Teacher/ Teacher grow in their knowledge of and relationship with God. Specifically, the unit addresses spiritual formation and the steps of maturing into a Christ-centred Christian. They will be encouraged to reflect on their personal faith journey; understand their beliefs in relation to other denominations and religions; and explore how the construct of their faith as educators can transform their teaching practice and impact their relationships with parents, children and staff.The Teachers Transformational Helix (introduced in EDU401 Foundations in Christian Teaching and Learning), will provide the framework for this unit. Pre-Service Teachers/Teachers who wish to develop a greater knowledge in some of the concepts of this unit such as:- the nature of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, may choose the elective EDU510 Christian Worldview. Unit detail page >>
- EDU423 - Children, families and schooling - Special Needs
Curriculum objective: This unit will review the developmental stages of the child to adolescence (introduced in EDU403 Language and Literacy Acquisition and Development, and EDU411 Personal Development, Health and Physical Education). The impact on families and schools where children have relationship difficulties due to psychological, physical and behavioural ‘at risk’ traits (including gifted and talented) will be explored. It will present a range of strategies and attitudes which foster inclusive education practices in regular and special classrooms in order to: plan, implement assess and evaluate programs which meet the needs of individuals with disabilities, learning difficulties and/or behavioural disorders. The Pre-Service Teacher will become familiar with a range of educational models, including legislature requirements, for students with Special Needs and the support services, available to schools. Diagnostic, instructional (e.g. literacy, numeracy and Life Skills) and behavior management strategies as part of inclusive practices will be examined. Examination by the Pre-service Teacher of their own attitudes about child rearing practices and those of Indigenous and other cultures and their impact on schooling will also be explored. Unit detail page >>
- EDU424 - Teaching and Learning Mathematics Part B
Curriculum objective: This unit builds on EDU414 Teaching and Learning Mathematics Part A, with a focus on the classroom and how learners construct mathematical concepts. It also familiarizes Pre-service Teachers with the possible scope and pathways children might take in their mathematical development further up the stages. It further develops the Pre-service Teacher’s ability to plan, teach and assess in both integrated and streamed teaching contexts. It will investigate numeracy across the curriculum and ways in which programmes can be developed using integration, correlation, isolation and literature. Assessing and reporting, with a focus on the identification of misconstructs will be examined. Planning equitable assessment strategies and learning experiences for students with special needs or circumstances will be addressed. Recent developments in Maths across Australia with regard to ICT, Outcomes based reporting, national curriculum, national testing, Gifted and Talented will be critiqued. Unit detail page >>
- EDU501-EDU502 - Action Research Project Part A and Action Research Project Part B
Curriculum objective: Although these units are primarily designed to support the novice Teacher in their early placements as teachers in order to achieve the NSW Institute of Teachers Professional Teaching Standards- Professional Competence, the research methodology, ethical practices and concepts are applicable to educational practitioners. Graduate Teachers will be challenged to critically apply theories, methodologies and strategies in order to facilitate and further the development of both knowledge and practice in Christian education. They will develop skills in implementing applied, practice-based and ethical research, making use of relevant research tools for data collection, analysis and written presentation. Reflective practice is a feature of these units with Graduate Teachers considering and evaluating their own work in a reflexive manner with reference to academic and professional issues, debates and conventions.These units require participants to develop knowledge about Christian education that is based on both their own research (through primary and secondary data collection) together with reflection on practice. Participants are expected to draw on, develop and synthesise theories and approaches introduced in the content in order to gain insights that will inform research methodologies for the study of problems or issues in their own teaching practice. These units are designed to be flexible in order to support the research interests of participants. Some may select to undertake a traditional research inquiry in order to examine a topic related to their educational interests, and then, having conducted primary research, will conclude with a set of theoretical principles that will contribute to the knowledge base of teaching and/or with practical recommendations for best practice. Others may choose to base these units on action research whereby they will immediately apply their research findings to their teaching practice, concluding with reflections on the effectiveness of implemented strategies for change and development. Participants are expected to study independently under supervision, developing a research proposal to investigate a contemporary phenomenon within their own classroom or educational organisation, then implementing research methods, analysing the findings, reflecting upon the findings in relation to their own role, and writing the study up as a dissertation that concludes with practical recommendations or contributions to the educational knowledge base. The ideas to emerge from research are expected to directly contribute to the further development of the participants’ skills as a Christian teacher and of benefit to the profession. Unit detail page >>
- EDU503 - Paradigms of the 21st century: challenges for Christian Educators
Curriculum objective: This unit is designed to wrestle with the challenging issues facing the 21st century, in particular, the current trends and drivers which shape globalization: be they social, cultural, political, environmental, economic, technological, educational or religious. Analytical tools will be drawn from philosophy, science and linguistics. The influence of the media in shaping both culture and consumer literacy from a values based perspective, is examined. As people of influence in the community, Christian teachers’ awareness of how 21st century paradigms impact students, is vital. Effective communication skill development in the advancement of a biblical response to current issues is emphasised. The degree to which the (novice) teacher’s own context (possibly rural and remote communities) is impacted by global trends will be taken into account. This unit is intended to support the novice teacher in their early placements as teachers in working towards achieving the NSW Institute of Teachers Professional Teaching Standards- Professional Competence. Early placements may include Rural and Remote community settings which are likely to increase the demands on novice teachers in administrative duties and extra curricula commitments. Providing organisational ideas for the demands of extra curricula and administration loads for teachers’ contexts will be explored. Value is placed on the importance of establishing networks with Christian peers and mentoring future generations. On-line forums to address skills and the ability to navigate competing agendas and demands in these more isolated contexts will be provided. The intent of the unit is to scaffold the novice teacher’s development as a proficient practitioner and, together with EDU501 & EDU502 Action Research Project units, develop their autonomy as problem solvers and lifelong learners. Unit detail page >>
- EDU510 - Christian Worldview
Curriculum objective: This unit sets out the theological foundations of a Christian Worldview based on the broad parameters of the gospel. It explores the nature of worldview and the extent to which worldview frames the meanings and values of individual and social life. As in other units in the Masters in Teaching, it is concerned with the way in which Christian faith frames worldview. This unit encourages students to not only examine the lens through which they see the world, but be able to articulate the theology, aligning it with the Scriptures and Christian tradition. This unit provides a valuable base for the teaching of the Religious or Christian Education subject in Schools. Unit detail page >>