Global literacy award for University of Sydney educator

20 May 2014

A University of Sydney educator has been awarded for his lifelong commitment to improving literacy and teaching excellence around the globe.

Sydney Teachers College
Study teacher education at Sydney Teachers College

Peter Freebody, an honorary professor at the Faculty of Education and Social Work, has become just the third Australian to receive a William S Gray Citation of Merit from the International Reading Association.
Professor Robyn Ewing, Acting Pro Dean of the faculty, said the Citation of Merit recognises Professor Freebody’s lifetime achievement and leadership contributions to reading and literacy.
“Peter Freebody is very deserving of this award as one of Australia’s pre-eminent scholars in the field of literacy education, educational disadvantage, classroom interaction and research methodology. His research and scholarship span nearly 40 years and his work has been highly significant for educators in Australia and internationally,” Professor Ewing said.
Professor Freebody, who received his citation at a ceremony in New Orleans recently, has produced research that has shaped curricula and policy in Australia and abroad.
His groundbreaking work with Professor Allan Luke in 1990 led to the Four Resources Reading Model, a game-changing framework for classroom literacy programs. It was adopted in all Australian states, and in schools in New Zealand, Britain, the United States, Canada, and Singapore.
“Throughout his career Professor Freebody has generously shared his knowledge, research and expertise with teachers,” said Professor Ewing.
In its citation, the International Reading Association described Professor Freebody as “a scholar, a researcher, a mentor for teachers and academics,” and “Professor Freebody has been a strong advocate for the teaching profession and his close connections with teachers, schools and professional associations has challenged teachers’ thinking about literacy and has resulted in improved professional practice in reading instruction.”
The Master of Teaching at the University of Sydney is a graduate-entry, teacher education degree. Candidates undertake four semesters of study, including a 45-day internship. This teaching program has been designed for people who have a bachelor’s degree and are seeking a teaching qualification.

Master of Teaching (Primary or Secondary)

First offered in 1996, the University of Sydney’s Master of Teaching was the first of its kind in Australia, and remains one of the most successful teaching training programs in the nation. The Master of Teaching Primary program is designed for those who wish to teach Kindergarten to Grade 6. The Master of Teaching Secondary is designed for those who wish to teach grades 7 though 12.
Program: Master of Teaching (Primary or Secondary)
Location: Sydney, New South Wales
Semester intake: March
Duration: 2 years
Application deadline: Round one applications close on October 31, 2014. Round two applications close on January 9, 2015; however, it is strongly recommended that students apply a minimum of three months prior to the program’s start date.

Master of Teaching Primary Applicants

Applicants for the Master of Teaching (Primary) must have completed an undergraduate degree (or equivalent) that included either studies of at least one year (2 units) in each of four different Key Learning Areas (KLAs) listed below or studies of at least one year (2 units) in two KLAs listed plus studies of at least two years (4 units) in a third KLA.

  • English
  • Human Society and Its Environment
  • Math
  • Creative and Practical Arts
  • Science and Technology
  • Health and Physical Education

Applicants who are 1 or 2 units (up to one half of a semester of full-time study) short of meeting the prerequisites for admission to the Master of Teaching may be given special permission to study the deficient units at another faculty or institution while also studying for their teaching qualification.

Master of Teaching Secondary Applicants

First Teaching Method is a core teaching specialization. It corresponds to the “major” area of study completed at undergraduate level. The New South Wales Institute of Teachers requires applicants for accreditation to have met the prerequisites for one first Teaching Method in order qualify for accreditation as a secondary-school teacher.
Second Teaching Method (if any) is an area of (lesser) specialization. It corresponds to a “minor” area of study completed at undergraduate degree. Some areas such as “Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages” and “Classical Hebrew and Judaism” can only be studied as a second Teaching Method.
Some combinations of teaching methods that may be taken as part of the Master of Teaching (Secondary) are as follows:

  • English/History-Modern
  • Math/Science
  • Math only (double method)
  • Science only (double method — e.g., Chemistry/Biology)
  • Business Studies/Legal Studies
  • Languages/TESOL

Entry Requirements
To be eligible for admission into the Master of Teaching program at the University of Sydney, you must have

  • successfully completed, at minimum, a three-year undergraduate degree from a recognized post-secondary institution; and
  • completed undergraduate subject areas that satisfy the subject specialist requirements of the New South Wales Department of Education and Training (the Australian state in which the University of Sydney is located).

Apply to the University of Sydney Teachers College!


Find out more about how you can study in Australia and about teacher education programs at Australian universities. Please contact OzTREKK’s Australian Teachers Colleges Admissions Officer Rachel Brady for more information at, or call toll free in Canada at 1-866-698-7355.