News

Celebrating 20 years of a ground-breaking contribution to Australian teacher education


29 March 2017

MTeach (Early Childhood) graduates celebrate the 20th anniversary
MTeach (Early Childhood) graduates celebrate the 20th anniversary

Representing a significant innovation for initial teacher education in this country, the Sydney School of Education and Social Work recently hailed the 20-year anniversary of its innovative, Master of Teaching (MTeach).

Staff past and present as well as MTeach graduates across all streams including Primary, Secondary, Early Childhood and School Counselling and stakeholders in all sectors gathered together for a special cocktail party to mark the occasion.

“The University of Sydney was the first Australian university to introduce a two-year graduate degree qualification for teacher accreditation,” said former Dean, Emeritus Professor Kenneth Eltis AM, who oversaw the introduction of the MTeach in 1996.

Former Dean, Emeritus Professor Kenneth Eltis, AM
Former Dean, Emeritus Professor Kenneth Eltis, AM

“It marked a significant shift away from the one-year Diploma of Education and positioned the institution as a leading provider for future trailblazers in teaching.”

The Dean, Professor Diane Mayer added that the ongoing success of the MTeach signified a new era in the University’s leadership across the profession.

“It created a rigorous and reputable qualification for teachers across all disciplines that now offers an effective and highly-regarded alternative pathway to teaching alongside our flagship Bachelor of Education (BEd) and Combined Degrees,” she said.

The Dean, Professor Diane Mayer
The Dean, Professor Diane Mayer

“It is testament to the University’s reputation for world-class teaching and the high employability of its graduates.”

Professor Robyn Ewing AM, who was heavily involved in the establishment of the MTeach, said its graduates often report that its key principles (inquiry and case based learning, collaboration, criteria based assessment, teacher research) have equipped them well for the profession.

Professor Janette Bobis and Professor Robyn Ewing
Professor Janette Bobis and Professor Robyn Ewing

The current program directors, Associate Professor Jackie Manuel and Dr Callow have recently overseen a review of the MTeach to prepare the qualification for the current and future challenges facing teacher education.

Atttendee and graduate, Claudia Harris (’08) said her MTeach combined the valuable experience of learning, research and professional experience placement including an internship to ensure she was well prepared for the field of teaching and education.

“The subjects undertaken during my studies allowed me to be a reflective learner and teacher,” she said.

“I was encouraged to work collaboratively with colleagues and utilise relevant and contemporary research to improve my pedagogy.

“Unlike other secondary teaching qualifications, the large blocks of time spent on practicum placement allowed me to become more confident in teaching and these experiences have shaped the teacher I am today.”