Progression of learning within the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) Psycholoy Study Design

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


This study explored the notion of progression of learning of psychology within the VCE curriculum. A directed approach to analyse the document content was employed. Systems theory (Bronfenbrenner, 2001) was used to embrace the conceptual and methodological diversity of psychology and the science practices that build conceptual understandings within systems were considered for analysis. This study assumed that systematic revisiting of concepts in different contexts enables learners to grasp the underlying concepts, understand links between and within topics, and develop ideas of their own (Bruner, 1960) and sophisticated conceptual understandings go hand-in-hand with mastery of understanding the science practices used to construct this knowledge (Duschl, Maeng, & Sezen, 2011). Starting points for developing a notion of progression were found but only to a limited extent. Complexities of each practice and concept were not emphasised and an overarching theme to connect and build on prior learning was missing. The psychology curriculum is in danger of being taught as single, isolated and unrelated topics.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2013
EventAustralasian Science Education Research Association Conference 2013 - Wellington, New Zealand
Duration: 2 Jul 20135 Jul 2013
Conference number: 44th


ConferenceAustralasian Science Education Research Association Conference 2013
Abbreviated titleASERA 2013
CountryNew Zealand


  • psychology curriculum
  • secondary school psychology
  • progression of learning
  • science practices

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