Researchers at Charles Sturt University (CSU) have received a national research grant to examine the impact of classroom practices on students' oral language and literacy development.
The research team based at the Research Institute for Professional Practice, Learning and Education (RIPPLE) at CSU in Wagga Wagga has received a $75,000 grant from the Primary English Teaching Association Australia (PETAA) to complete the project 'Researching dialogic pedagogies for literacy learning across the primary years'.
The PETAA Research Grant was awarded for the first time this year to Dr Christine Edwards-Groves and Dr Christina Davidson from CSU's School of Education. Stage one, two and three teachers from New South Wales primary schools will collaborate with the researchers to identify, describe and represent quality teaching of English, oral language and literacy.
"The project has the potential to spark a new era in evidence based practice in Australia by allowing teachers to use their own research to develop practical classroom tools which will directly impact on student's oral language and literacy development," Dr Edwards-Groves said.
"The explicit and learning-focused teaching practices developed with teachers will improve student literacies by building both students' practical knowledge and high level communication skills."
The project will involve working closely with 12 teachers from regional and metropolitan NSW schools representing diverse geographical, cultural and socio-economic settings.
"The teachers will work with the research team to achieve two goals," Dr Davidson said.
"Firstly, teachers will develop pedagogies which will support students to develop their oral language through acquiring and communicating knowledge with clarity and a high degree of intellectual focus.
"Secondly, we will produce digital examples of the pedagogies to share results with other teachers and for us to use at Charles Sturt University to support the development of quality teacher education graduates."
Dr Edwards-Groves and Dr Davidson will be supported by CSU PhD student Ms Brooke Scriven, Mr Mark Diamond, Ms Monica Cheung and Ms Tina Roworth from the Department of Education and Communities, and Mrs Carey Menz-Dowling from the Catholic Schools Office in Wagga Wagga.
The PETAA Research Grant will be offered annually to enable researchers to study the teaching of English in primary classrooms and aims to involve teachers and schools as research partners. For more information about the grant visit the PETAA website.