ELS504 Understanding Writing (8)

This subject aims to give students an in-depth understanding of practical and theoretical aspects of written language and the teaching of writing. Students will be encouraged to explore differing perspectives on writing in order to extend and enrich their current beliefs and approaches. Students will consider case-studies of writing and writers, across a range of learning and education contexts, and draw on their own experiences as writers and teachers of writing in order to examine the linguistic, sociocultural and ideological complexities of writing and learning to write.

Subject Outlines
Current CSU students can view Subject Outlines for recent sessions. Please note that Subject Outlines and assessment tasks are updated each session.


Session 2 (60)
Wagga Wagga Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: ELS504. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Education

Enrolment Restrictions

Available to student in the Master of Education

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • demonstrate understanding of a range of theoretical perspectives on writing
  • consider seminal case-studies and their contribution to writing instruction
  • discuss literature that has informed influential approaches to writing instruction
  • use frameworks and concepts central to writing and writing instruction as analytic tools
  • use writing as a tool for reflecting on own experiences of writing and writing education
  • employ writing frameworks for critiquing and enhancing pedagogical practices
  • articulate their position on the nature of writing and learning to write


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • theoretical perspectives on writing (e.g. cognitive process, sociocultural, poststructuralist)
  • historical and contemporary approaches to writing policy and practice (e.g. balance, critical)
  • binaries in writing pedagogy (implicit/explicit; acquisition/learning; immersion/instruction)
  • the social construction of writers and writing development
  • methods for examining writers and writing in and across contexts (e.g. naturalistic observation)
  • changing writing education through written reflection and action (e.g. autoethnography)


Current Students

For any enquiries about subject selection or course structure please contact Student Central or ask@csu.edu.au or phone on 1800 275 278.

Prospective Students

For further information about Charles Sturt University, or this course offering, please contact info.csu on 1800 275 278 (free call within Australia) or enquire online.

The information contained in the 2018 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: August 2018. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.