Secondary science teacher education in Australia

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Title

Model Science Teacher Preparation Programs


Information Age Publishing

Place of Publication

Charlotte, NC


Pederson, J. E., Isozaki, T., & Hirano, T.


School of Education




Won, M., Hackling, M., & Treagust, D. F. (2017). Secondary science teacher education in Australia. In J. Pedersen, T. Isozaki & T. Hirano (Eds.), Model science teacher preparation programs: An international comparison of what works (pp. 229-248). Information Age Publishing. Available here


This chapter describes and discusses initial teacher education programs in Australia for secondary science as well as professional standards for continuing science teacher education. The chapter begins with a brief overview of secondary science education reforms following with a discussion of administration related topics, such as admission to teacher education programs, program accreditations, and science teacher registrations. The chapter describes the required structure and content of initial science teacher education programs, with an emphasis on content knowledge (CK), pedagogical knowledge (PK), and professional practice. There are five priority areas for Australian teacher education, including the education of Indigenous students, classroom management, literacy and numeracy education, the role of information and communications technologies (ICT) in teaching and learning, and the education of students with special needs. The chapter also describes expectations regarding the content and PK for practicing secondary science teachers and the factors driving changes and enhancements to the knowledge require for effective teaching of science. The chapter closes with consideration of the issue of out-of-field teaching which is a particular challenge for remote and other hard-to-staff schools.

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