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Stage 3: Action plan (gathering evidence against the standards)

When undertaking your Inquiry, an integral part of this process is creating your action plan. Having considered the advice outlined for Stage 2, you will now have settled on a question that is driven by the needs of the learners you work with and the data you have gathered about their learning.  

Having used the SMART Inquiry question tool to thoroughly examine your question, as well as having had discussions with your mentor, you will now need to create an action plan prior to implementing your Inquiry.  

This plan is about how you will undertake the process and modify your practice to achieve the aim of your Inquiry question. Your action plan will be implemented over a period of approximately 4 to 6 weeks (if you are working with your group on a regular basis). If you work part time or only see your learners once or twice a week, then you may want to extend this period so there is sufficient time for learners to demonstrate learning in relation to the Inquiry question. When developing your action plan, you should draw on the professional learning you’ve undertaken in your area of Inquiry. 

This action plan is not a curricular planning document, rather it is a working document to support you throughout the Inquiry process. A thorough action plan will assist you to ensure the strength of your Inquiry question and provide a sound basis for you to move through the phases of your Inquiry. Your action plan should be a working document; it should not be a long and detailed unit plan. We recommend you work with your mentor and or / experienced colleagues to develop your action plan.  

Some key items that should be included are 

  • learning outcomes (this is really important – if you don’t define the learning outcomes, you can’t assess whether your learners have achieved the outcomes) 

  • learning resources, practices and activities 

  • assessment practices, including those that will help you cater for the diversity of learners 

  • practices to provide a safe, respectful and inclusive learning environment. 

These are not the only items that should be included in the action plan. The information you include will be particular to your Inquiry and context.  

There are example resource materials available on the VIT website to support you in developing your action plan. There are two action plan examples which outline the type of information that could be relevant for your context. The examples demonstrate some of the methods that teachers use in developing their action plans.  

We have also developed an action plan template to assist you, but you are free to use a workplace or personal approach if you prefer. We do recommend you refer to these guidance materials if you are unsure what to put in your action plan and to ensure you have included all of the required information.  

If your group of focus learners does not include a learner with a disability or an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander learner, you should detail how you are going to make the learning accessible for them in your action plan.  

If you are having difficulty completing your action plan, you may need to revisit the SMART Inquiry question tool and amend your Inquiry questions. 

Gathering your evidence 

In implementing your action plan and tracking the progress of your focus learners, you will find that you will naturally gather evidence of most, if not all, of the standards. You will do this by collecting your planning documents, assessment data and by documenting collaboration with colleagues and communication with parents / carers.  

If you are delivering content that has been developed in collaboration with other teachers, you do not need to rewrite these, however, it is a good idea to annotate the documents to show how you are differentiating the content for the needs of your specific learners. Annotating any evidence that you are gathering to highlight the impact of your Inquiry and teaching will help you to make connections between your practice and the outcomes of the Inquiry. 

If you find that you do not have evidence of a small number of descriptors, we recommend you consult one of the following guides to support you in identifying what additional evidence you should include.  

The guide that you choose to consult will depend on your context.