ESA509 Advanced School Leadership (8)

This subject is designed to buiild a strong understanding of school leadership with a critical emphasis on instructional leadership. The subject focuses on developing advanced knowledge, skills, and understanding through an exploration of current research in legal, human and ethical issues. Students will develop strategies and capacities to deal effectively with such issues and their impact on school improvement. The subject critically examines the role of the principal as 'lead learner' and the impact that leadership models have on enhancing learner outcomes, both academic and social. To ground this learning, students will investigate, debate, discuss and reflect on the impact professional learning communities have on school improvement with a view to formulating a conceptual understanding of the potential of educational action research in various situations. The subject will involve students in exploring case studies, developing and implementing an Action Research project that will develop their ability to analyse, synthesise, apply and extend the theoretical frameworks presented within the subject modules.


Session 1 (30)
Bathurst Campus
Session 2 (60)
Bathurst Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: ESA509. 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

Available to students in the Master of International Education (School Leadership) and Master of Education.

Assumed Knowledge

It is advisable students will have completed ESA510 or ESA501 prior to completing this subject.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to critically analyse the interrelationships between the school leader's role, professional ethical standards and standards of practice;
  • be able to apply effective strategies for ethical decision making and the collaborative engagement of others;
  • be able to assess the theoretical and conceptual frameworks for developing shared vision, alignment and a sustainable culture within the organisation;
  • be able to evaluate the role of leadership in shaping and sustaining the culture of an organisation;
  • be able to explain the interrelationships between instructional leadership, curriculum implementation and assessment theories;
  • be able to explain the theory and skill requirements required for action research in educational settings;
  • be able to assess the place of action research practice and theoretical concepts to changing and sustaining the culture of an organisation; and
  • be able to critically apply the action research model to organisational problem solving, with particular reference to student achievement.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Human Resources: Ethical Issues in Education
  • Instructional Leadership: Moving From Theory to Practice
  • Shaping and Sustaining Professional Learning Communities
  • The Theory and Practice of Action Research

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of ESA509 in Session 1 2019. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Action research project plan (preliminary)
Action research project literature study
Action research interim report
Reflective journal

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: October 2020. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.