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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Professional Preparation and Practice 1
Module Code ED1950
School 78
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Aideen Cassidy
Semester 2: Aideen Cassidy
Autumn: Aideen Cassidy
Module TeachersAideen Cassidy
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 5
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None
Repeat the module
Professional Placement Assessment (incorporating TOP1 and MT1) as set out in the Professional Placement Handbook 2023-2024 and the BREHM Programme Specific Regulations 2023-2024

(1) Module Objective: Student teachers will be able to research, plan, teach/re-teach, assess, reflect on, and peer evaluate lessons in Religious Education and in the Elective subject (English/History/Music) in an online synchronous peer teaching forum (TOP1) and in a face-to-face microteaching forum (MT1) with Year 1 post-primary pupils in order to develop the skill sets intrinsic to the module with a specific focus in the theme of 'Teacher Identity as a Communicator'. (2) Mode of Delivery: Face-to-face delivery in the main with supporting online input. (3) Description of period of supervised professional placement: The theme for Year 1 professional placement is the 'Teacher as Communicator'. Semester 1-2: Teaching Online Programme 1 (TOP1) Professional Placement (4 weeks) Students partake in a Teaching Online Programme (TOP1) with a focus on post-primary Year 1 content in Religious Education and in the Elective subject (English/History/Music). The components of the programme consist of: (a) An online investigation of a school context to inform preparation and planning for lessons. Activities undertaken on the Loop Reflect platform include an investigation of the context and mission statement of the chosen school; an exploration of the school culture and values; a review of the school approach to partnership and communication with parents; an examination of school assessment and approaches to inclusion, diversity, literacy and numeracy; an initial research exercise to inform the investigation; and the compilation of a short video about the student teacher role and identity as communicator. (b) Student teachers will prepare Units of Learning for each subject area which will be reviewed by the TOP1 tutors and oral feedback given. (c) Student teachers will research content and plan Year 1 lessons on set topics in Year 1 post-primary Religious Education and in the Elective subject (English / History / Music) informed by the contextual investigations at (a) above. (d) Each student will peer teach a 30 minute synchronous lesson on Zoom to their peer group on a prepared topic in Religious Education and in the elective subject (English/History/Music) which will be observed by the TOP1 tutor. (e) Student teachers will engage in professional conversations with their TOP1 tutor in reflective feedback sessions which will inform future planning. Written feedback is provided on the assessment formative feedback document TSOI1. (f) Student teachers will evaluate resources created by their peers for online synchronous lessons in both Religious Education and in the elective subject (English/History/Music) and complete a reflection exercise following the evaluation. (g) Student teachers will engage in lesson plan annotated reflective practice and weekly reflective practice. (h) The creation and maintenance of the Taisce (E-portfolio) and associated work (Loop Reflect Taisce activities) for all materials relating to TOP1 professional placement (4 weeks) is an essential requirement as is the professionalism of the student teacher in all matters relating to the TOP1 professional placement. Semester 2: Microteaching 1 (MT1) (1 week) Students partake in a Microteaching Programme (MT1) with a focus on post-primary Year 1 content in Religious Education and in the Elective subject (English/History/Music). The components of the programme consist of: (a) Group review and reflection of all feedback from the Semester 1 synchronous peer teaching individual lessons. Group research and planning to re-teach one of the topics from semester 1 in Religious Education and one of the topics in the Elective subject (English/History/Music) to a class group of Year 1 post-primary pupils. Progression from the synchronous peer teaching, learning and assessment is now re-focused on face-to-face teaching, learning and assessment of first year pupils. (b) Collaborative group planning in preparation for each group member to teach a segment of the 30-minute lesson to 1st year pupils in a face-to-face setting. (c) Individual and Group reflection exercises (d) The creation and maintenance of the MT1 section of the Taisce (E-portfolio) and associated work (1 week) is an essential requirement as is the professionalism of the student teacher in all matters relating to the MT1 professional placement work. (4) Percentage grade required to pass the module: Assessment of this module is on a pass/fail basis and the minimum percentage required to pass the module overall is 40%. The elements of the assessment are weighted. TOP1 has an 70% weighting and MT1 has a 30% weighting.

Learning Outcomes

1. Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of Teaching Council and BREHM programme documentation in relation to the Teaching Online Programme 1 (TOP1) and the Microteaching (MT1) professional placements with a specific focus on professional and ethical behaviour in research, planning, preparation, preparation, practice and assessment during the module professional placement periods
2. Critically analyse website materials and linked documentation of a post-primary school context; engage with the professional placement Taisce activities on Loop Reflect; and utilise the findings in the development of planning for practice.
3. Create and maintain the Taisce (E-portfolio) comprising TOP1 and MT1 folders for Religious Education planning and associated materials; for the Elective subject (English/History/Music) planning and associated materials; Taisce Loop Reflect professional placement activities (e.g. activities investigating school context, mission, values, culture, working with parents, inclusive education, research activities etc.); general professional placement documentation; and individual/group reflective activities and peer evaluation exercises.
4. Demonstrate appropriate core teacher skills (appropriate to the level of the student teacher) in researching and planning for, and executing lessons, synchronously online to peers (TOP1) and face-to-face with first year post-primary pupils (MT1) as set out in the Student Teacher Skills Progression Path (see relevant Professional Placement Handbook and Year 1 Teacher Skills Observation Instrument (TSOI1) and Microteaching 1 (MT1) Assessment Document for full breakdown of Teacher Skills Progression Path)
5. Competently utilise online technology / in-class technology for educational purposes
6. Critically engage in individual and group reflective practice to inform and develop practice
7. Critically engage in individual and peer evaluation to enhance future planning and practice
8. Develop research skills by strategically designing literature searches using the online library search facility and databases and citing sources correctly using an appropriate referencing system
9. Incorporate the principles of child protection and online safety into planning and practice

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture35LO 1-9
Tutorial8Meetings with subject-specific tutors (LO 1-9)
Professional Practice80Preparation and maintenance of Taisce (E-portfolio) and Professional Practice (TOP1 & MT1)
Assessment Feedback2Supervised Teaching Sessions
Total Workload: 125

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Knowledge and understanding of the key documents for professional placement and assessment of professional placement
Knowledge and understanding of key Teaching Council and programme documents relating to professional placement and assessment with a specific focus on the Teaching Council (2016) Code of Professional Conduct.

Ethical and Professional Standards
An introduction to the concepts of teacher professionalism and ethical and professional practice; and the core values inherent to this including trust, integrity, care and respect. An exploration of what it means to work in a collaborative and collegial manner while engaging in individual and collective critical reflection in a respectful and agentic manner. Introduction to the legal and professional and professional aspects of a teacher's position in relation to pupils with an emphasis on child safeguarding and online safety.

Context and Engagement Loop Reflect Research and Taisce Activities
Analysis of research outcomes relating to a school setting and engagement in activities to inform teaching, learning and assessment. A specific focus will be placed on researching school context, mission and values; school culture; cultural and socio-economic factors; post-primary Year 1 curriculum in Religious Education and the Elective subject (English/History/Music); inclusive practice; working with parents/guardians.

Research, Preparation and Planning
Competence in preparatory research and planning for lessons and developing resources with a focus on the post-primary Junior Cycle Year 1 context. Application of theories of lesson structure, learning, curriculum, pedagogy, assessment, inclusive practice, and technology while cognisant of the school research from Context and Engagement Taisce activities.

Key Skills and Competencies
Competence in the application of key skills for online peer teaching and face-to-face microteaching in Religious Education and in the Elective subject as set out in the Year 1 Student Teacher Skill Set of the programme (see relevant Professional Placement Handbook, 2023-2024; TOP1/MT1 Assignment Brief 2023-2024; Teaching Skills Observation Instrument (TSOI1); and Microteaching 1 (MT1) Assessment Document, 2023-2024)

Technology for Educational Purposes
Application of technology for educational purposes in online and in-class teaching, learning and assessment

Reflective Practice
Introduction to the concept of reflective practice. Engagement in individual and group (peer) reflection activities

Self-Evaluation and Peer-Evaluation
Development of a self-evaluation stance in relation to professional preparation and practice. Engagement in peer-evaluation of teaching resources.

Taisce (E-portfolio incorporating Loop Reflect Taisce activities)
The creative and innovative documentation of student teacher engagement with, and enactment of, curriculum, lesson design, pedagogic, assessment and technological theories to practice; the practice of self- and peer-evaluation; and reflections on research, planning and practice (incorporating school context, culture, inclusive education, and working with parents).

Introduction to Research Skills and to linking theory and practice as a method of professional development
Introduction to research skills for literature searching and referencing to include: using library search facilities and databases; refining searches; citing sources using an appropriate referencing system. Engagement with LETS (Library E-Tutorial for Students) modules on types of information sources; locating books and articles; introduction to databases and effective search techniques. Engagement with educational theory and research and liking linkages between this body of knowledge and the development of professional practice.

Post Professional Placement Briefings and Review & Determination of Priority Areas for next Placement
Professional Placement Briefings; Debrief sessions and group reflection; Module Evaluation; Determination of priority areas for next professional placement and research/work on those areas; Preparation for professional placement during the next academic year

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
Professional PracticeProfessional Preparation and Practice and related activities: - Synchronous online peer teaching - 30 minute individual input - Post-primary Year 1 content in Religious Education and in the Elective subject (English / History / Music) - Associated research, planning, reflective and self- and peer-evaluation exercises70%n/a
Professional PracticeProfessional Preparation and Practice and related activities: Face-to-face teaching a 1st year post-primary class in a microteaching setting; Group preparation and planning to re-teach a 30 minute lesson in Religious Education and in the Elective subject (English / History /Music); Associated research, planning, reflective practice (Individual and Group)30%n/a
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 2
Indicative Reading List

  • Cohen, L., Manion, L., Morrison, K. and Wyse, D.: 2010, A Guide to Teaching Practice, Revised 5th edition, Routledge, London,
  • DCU Institute of Education: 2023, BREHM Professional Placement Handbook,
  • DCU Institute of Education: 2023, Marks and Standards,
  • DCU Institute of Education: 2023, Programme Regulations - Bachelor of Religious Education and English,
  • DCU Institute of Education: 2023, Programme Regulations - Bachelor of Religious Education and History,
  • DCU Institute of Education: 2023, Programme Regulations - Bachelor of Religious Education and Music,
  • Digman, C. and Soan, S.: 2008, Working with parents: A guide for educational professionals, Sage, London,
  • Ginnis, P.: 2008, The Teacher's Toolkit: reaise classroom achievement with strategies for every learner., Crown House Publishing Ltd., Carmarthen, Wales,
  • Hart, C.: 2001, Doing a Literature Search: A comprehensive guide for the social sciences., Sage Publications Inc., Thousand Oaks, US.,
  • Ko S.S. and Rossen, S.: 2008, Teaching Online: a practical guide, 2nd edition, Routledge, London,
  • Kyriacou, C.: 2018, Essential Teaching Skills, 5th edition, Oxford University Press, Oxford,
  • Leibling, M. and Prior, R.: 2005, The A-Z of Learning: Tips and Techniques for Teachers, Routledge Falmer, Abingdon,
  • Macbeth, A.: 1989, Involving Parents: effective parent-teacher relations, Heinemann Educational, Oxford,
  • Petty, G.: 2014, Teaching Today: A practical guide, 5th edition, Oxford University Press, Oxford,
  • Pollard. A. (Ed.): 2018, Reflective Teaching in Schools, 5th edition, Bloomsbury Academic, London,
  • Salmon, G.: 2002, E-tivities: the key to active online professional practice, 3rd edition, Kogan Page, London,
  • Schuelka, M., Johnstones, CJ., Thomas, G, and Artiles, AJ (Editors): 2019, The Sage Handbook of Inclusion and Diversity in Education, Sage, Los Angeles,
  • Smith, I.: 2014, Assessment and learning pocketbook, 2nd edition, Teachers' Pocketbooks, Hampshire, UK,
  • Spencer, P.: 2011, Surviving your Teaching Practice, McGraw Hill / Open University, Maidehead,
  • Spendlove, D.: 2009, Putting Assessment for learning into practice, Continuum, London,
  • Stern, J: 2003, Involving Parents, Continuum, London,
  • The Teaching Council of Ireland: 2020, Céim: Standards for Initial Teacher Education, https://www.teachingcouncil.ie/en/news-events/latest-news/ceim-standards-for-initial-teacher-education.pdf,
  • The Teaching Council of Ireland: 2016, Code of Professional Conduct for Teachers, Updated 2nd edition, https://www.teachingcouncil.ie/en/Publications/Fitness-to-Teach/Code-of-Professional-Conduct-for-Teachers1.pdf,
  • The Teaching Council: 2021, Guidelines on School Placement, https://www.teachingcouncil.ie/en/publications/ite-professional-accreditation/school-placement-guidelines-updated-march-2022.pdf,
  • The Teaching Council: 2021, Guidance for Registered Teachers about the use of social media and electronic communication, https://www.teachingcouncil.ie/en/publications/fitness-to-teach/guidance-for-registered-teachers-about-the-use-of-social-media-and-electronic-communication.pdf,
  • Thompson, C. and Wolstencroft, P.: 2018, The Trainee Teacher's Handbook, Sage, London,
  • Walsh, B. and Dolan, R.: 2009, Guide to Teaching Practice in Ireland, Gill and MacMillan, Dublin,
  • White, KW: 2016, Teacher communication: a guide to relational, organizational, and classroom communication., Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Lanham,
Other Resources

59904, Website, 0, Department of Education and Skills, https;//www.education.ie/en/, 59905, Website, DCU IoE, 0, Certified online mandatory Child Protection module and assessment on ED1950 Loop page, 59906, Website, DCU Library, 0, LETS (Linrary E-Tutorial for Students), https://www.dcu.ie/library/lets-library-e-tutorial-students, 59907, Website, 0, Junior Cycle for Teachers (JCT), https://www.jct.ie/home/home.php, 59908, Website, 0, National Council for Curriculum and Assessment for Schools, http://www.ncca.ie, 59909, Website, 0, National Council for Special Education (NCSE), https://www.ncse.ie/, 59910, Website, 0, Professional Development Service for Teachers (PDST), https://www.pdst.ie/, 59911, Website, 0, The Teaching Council of Ireland, http://teachingcouncil.ie/en/,
Programme or List of Programmes
BREBachelor of Religious Education &English
BRHBachelor of Religious Education &History
BRMBachelor of Religious Education & Music

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