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The current and official versions of the course specifications are available on the web at https://www.usq.edu.au/course/specification/current.
Please consult the web for updates that may occur during the year.

SPE3003 Teaching Learners with Moderate to High Support Needs

Units : 1
School or Department : School of Education
Grading basis : Graded
Course fee schedule : https://www.unisq.edu.au/current-students/administration/fees/fee-schedules
Version produced : 27 September 2023


Pre-requisite: BEDU(Primary+SpecialEduc) and BEDU(SpecialEduc) and BPED to complete EDC2400 and (EHI3005 or SPE3002) prior to enrolment.
Pre-requisite: BEDU(Secondary+SpecialEduc) and BSED to complete EDC2400 and ESP1200 prior to enrolment.


Regardless of severity, most learners with disability who attend school will attend regular classes in mainstream schools. While representing a relatively small percentage of the school age population, learners with low incidence disabilities and therefore significant support needs can present a major challenge to many educators. Such children require individualised and specialised pedagogical understanding and skills to ensure that they are fully supported to participate, engage, and achieve in appropriate curricula. As Australia endorses inclusive education, learners with significant support needs are often included in regular classrooms. Pre-service teachers need an understanding of the physical, social, and intellectual developmental and learning characteristics of learners with moderate to severe disability, and the professional expertise to work effectively with them. As self-determination and self-advocacy are important qualities for learners with significant support needs, pre-service teachers also need to understand the importance of their role in developing student confidence and ability in these lifelong necessary skills, particularly during educational transition periods.

This course will support pre-service teachers to develop their awareness and understanding of how instruction and environment can influence and improve teaching and learning for learners with moderate to high support needs. Pre-service teachers will be able to articulate the diverse needs of learners with significant support needs and identify appropriate instructional strategies according to individual strengths and challenges. They will develop an understanding and appreciation of underlying theory, and legal obligations, as well as national and state expectations of educators in regards to ensuring the inclusion, participation, engagement, safety, and wellbeing of learners with moderate to severe disability in their classroom whether in special school or inclusive educational environments. Curricular approaches and techniques relevant to the teaching and learning of learners with moderate to high support needs, including the use of ICTs and assistive technologies will be explored. Additionally, an understanding of the different transition times in a learner's educational experience, and support strategies for these times, including the importance of planning and collaboration with relevant stakeholders, particularly parents/carers will be developed.

Course offers

Study period Mode Campus
Semester 2, 2023 Online
Date printed 27 September 2023