Contemporary Classroom Research

Subject EDUC90736 (2014)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2014.

Credit Points: 25
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2014.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 36 hours
Total Time Commitment:

240 hours self directed learning in the workplace and the wider school sector. Attendance at all classes (tutorial/seminars/practical classes/lectures/labs) is obligatory. Failure to attend 80% of classes will normally result in failure in the subject.

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge:

It is recommended that participants have previous classroom teaching experience

Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.

The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison website:


Education Student Centre
234 Queensberry Street
Call: 13 MELB (13 6352)

Subject Overview:

This subject provides a thorough review of contemporary approaches to classroom research, including the use of specific tools for the investigation of classroom practice and its consequences, available technologies to support the recording and analysis of classroom activities, dialogue, artefacts, and resources, and methods of analysis drawing on a variety of techniques and theoretical perspectives.

The subject will draw on the expertise of a team of highly experienced classroom researchers from a variety of disciplinary, theoretical and methodological persuasions.

Particular emphases will include:

Research methods
(i) Observational techniques relevant to classroom research: the use of classificatory checklists via direct or remote real-time observation; multi-camera approaches to the recording of complex social processes in classrooms.
(ii) Survey approaches to studying classroom practice: Large-scale studies; Questionnaires; Video surveys; Student achievement measures.
(iii) Interview techniques relevant to classroom research: Structured interviews; Scenario-based interviews; Video-stimulated interviews; Focus group interviews.

Research designs
(i) International studies of classroom practice and student achievement
(ii) National studies of curriculum implementation in the classroom and the factors influencing classroom practice
(iii) Case studies of single classrooms
(iv) Comparative classroom research

Interpreting classroom data
(i) Classroom related measures of teacher and student activity, engagement, participation, language use, teacher quality, and student learning
(ii) Analytical tools relevant to classroom data – text and discourse analysis, analytical software
(iii) Integrating analyses of classroom data, complementary accounts and critical synthesis

Reporting classroom research
(i) Critical examination of existing reports of classroom research: international, cross-cultural, survey, observational, and case study
(ii) Narrative construction in the reporting of classroom research: warrants, validity, comparability, instructional advocacy and other issues.

Learning Outcomes:

To develop student knowledge of:
(i) contemporary methods of classroom research and student ability to (a) critique reports of classroom research and (b) to undertake classroom research using a variety of research methods;
(ii) alternative research designs for classroom research;
(iii) theories relevant to classroom research;
(iv) alternative methods for analysing classroom data;
(v) alternative methods of reporting classroom research.
To develop student expertise in:
(i) the critical reading of reports of classroom research;
(ii) the practical skills of classroom data generation;
(iii) the practical skills of classroom data analysis;
(iv) the reporting and presentation of the results of classroom research.


Written Assignment of 3000 words, mid course, 30%
Oral Presentation of 20 minutes, followed by 10 minutes of discussion, end of course, 10%
Written Research Report of 5000 words, end of course, 60%

Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On completing this subject, participants should be able to:

  • Read and critique contemporary research
  • Undertake contemporary research
  • Report contemporary research

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