ESS518 Reading Difficulties: Prevention and Intervention (8)

This subject focuses on the prevention of reading difficulties in the primary school years and in designing interventions for individual children. The subject content is grounded in the scientifically based reading research and provides a specific focus on the teaching of reading integrating the 5 big ideas (phonological awareness, alphabetic principle, fluency, vocabulary and comprehension). Explicit teaching is the pedagogy for instruction used in the teaching of reading in this subject. There is a specific emphasis on assessment and the role of careful instructional design and delivery in the teaching of children who are at risk for reading difficulties. Students will apply their understanding of assessment, explicit teaching, and instructional decision making. Students will be required to work with a child while undertaking this subject.

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 1 (30)
Bathurst Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: ESS518. 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

Incompatible Subjects

ESS407, ESS408

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to identify a child's relative risk for reading difficulties using a reliable curriculum-based measure;
  • be able to administer an assessment of decoding skills and identify a child's present level of performance;
  • be able to match student reading level with appropriate materials;
  • be able to plan a weekly overview of the explicit teaching of reading integrating phonemic awareness, letter-sound correspondence, phonic or structural analysis, word lists, irregular words, vocabulary instruction, passage reading and comprehension;
  • be able to build a direct instruction lesson to teach reading skills;
  • be able to differentiate a direct instruction lesson to teach reading skills; and,
  • be able to reflect upon and justify their design and delivery from a theory to practice perspective. This includes the bigger picture implications for the quality reading instruction at scale in the school or setting.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Reading Risk
  • Assessing Decoding
  • Placement
  • Planning and Designing Instruction
  • Lesson Design
  • Differentiating Lesson Design
  • Theory and Practice


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.