ESS515 Preventing Reading Difficulties: A Schoolwide Approach (8)

This subject introduces a school-wide approach to the prevention of reading difficulties in primary schools.  The subject is grounded in the scientifically-based reading research and provides a specific focus on the prevention of reading difficulties applying a three tier model of primary, secondary and tertiary prevention.  The subject moves beyond a focus on individual students and intervention design to examine features of effective school-wide reading improvement models and what school leaders and administrators can do to ensure best practices are adopted and maintained in primary school settings.  Students will apply their understanding of the big ideas in beginning reading, curriculum-based measurement, collaboration and problem solving, leadership and professional development to determine what it takes to establish a school-wide framework for the prevention of reading difficulties in a primary school.

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

No offerings have been identified for this subject in 2018.

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 Teacher Education

Enrolment Restrictions

Master of Inclusive Education or as determined by the course coordinator.

Assumed Knowledge

Students should have an understanding of concepts in ESS518 prior to enrolment.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • critically analyse schoolwide self audit data to establish priorities for goals, assessment, instruction and professional development;
  • articulate appropriate academic goals for the prevention of reading difficulties in primary schools;
  • identify a reliable and appropriate system for monitoring student learning in the primary grades;
  • plan for explicit instruction in the five big ideas of beginning reading considering adequate instructional time, flexible grouping and program emphasis;
  • specify professional learning priorities for school personnel;
  • identify enabling and competing priorities from within the school and broader system to be considered in implementation; and
  • specify resources required to bring the schoolwide model to scale.


This subject will cover the following topics:

- Applying the scientifically based-reading research at the school-wide level.
- The three tier model of primary, secondary and tertiary prevention of reading difficulties.
- Using curriculum-based measurement to determine reading risk school-wide. 
- Determining appropriate instructional goals in reading.
- Explicit and systematic instruction in phonemic awareness, alphabetic principle (phonics), accuracy and fluency with connected text, vocabulary, and comprehension. 
- Allocating prioritized, protected and uninterrupted time for reading across the school.
- Integrating goals, assessment and instruction. 
- Differentiating instruction school-wide.
- Establishing a plan for professional learning in schools. 
- Maintaining leadership during the process. 


Current Students

For any enquiries about subject selection or course structure please contact Student Central or 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.