Critical and creative thinking in practice

Improves student achievement by building teacher capacity to foster deep learning through critical and creative thinking.


Critical and creative thinking in practice focuses on how students develop deep knowledge and understanding using critical and creative thinking strategies. The professional learning (PL) is focused on developing teaching, learning and assessment approaches that sequence learning using critical and creative thinking. This PL will cater for teachers of Primary K-6 and teachers of Years 7-10 Geography, History, PDHPE, Science and Technology Mandatory. Participants in this PL will:

  • Access direct support from a Teaching Quality Advisor
  • Deepen their understanding of CCT in their classrooms
  • Collaborate with colleagues across the state to share CCT teaching practice and ideas
  • Become part of an online collaborative community supported by outstanding teachers, curriculum experts and academic partners.

This PL is made up of 5 self-paced eLearning modules. It provides the opportunity to engage with subject specific curriculum experts and other teachers through professional learning days held online, in real-time through Microsoft Teams.

The PL designers and facilitators are experienced, high performing teachers from NSW public schools and are supported by Western Sydney University and expert Curriculum Advisors.


  • Primary School
  • High School HSIE
  • High School PDHPE
  • High School Science
  • High School TAS

eLearning modules

Participants will explore how critical and creative thinking can be used to enhance the teaching and learning in their classrooms. These 5 eLearning modules provide a foundational understanding of how CCT aligns to curriculum, how it can be embedded in teaching programs and how teachers can assess student progress in CCT. Begin by completing the Pre-learn module. This module provides an introduction to critical and creative thinking that participants can then build upon in Modules 1-4. Teachers can mix and match these modules; however, it is recommended that modules are completed in numerical order.

Pre-learn module

Build a foundational knowledge of critical and creative thinking. Teachers will have the opportunity to explore the case for change in relation to CCT and begin to consider changes they would like to see in their classroom.

Module 1: CCT alignment to curriculum

Explore how critical and creative thinking is embedded within NSW curriculum. You will have the opportunity to interact with NSW syllabus documents and the ACARA CCT descriptions to identify changes you would like to see in relation to student CCT capacity.

Module 2: CCT pedagogy and strategies

Examine a range of teaching strategies that can be used to support the teaching of critical and creative thinking skills. You will begin to consider how these might look in your classroom.

Module 3: Using SDT to assess student achievement

Use Surface-Deep-Transfer (SDT) to assess student learning and learn about how it can be used to develop tasks that promote student thinking.

Module 4: Using SOLO to assess student achievement

Use Structure of the Observed Learning Outcomes (SOLO) to assess student learning and learn about how SOLO can be used to promote student thinking.

Online writing and collaboration workshops

Upon completion of at least one eLearning module, teachers may like to attend the CCT in Practice writing and collaboration workshops. During these workshops, teachers will have the opportunity to be supported by Teaching Quality Advisors in deepening CCT further in their classrooms. Participants in the workshop will be required to share their teaching and learning activities with the General Capabilities team. Dates for these workshops will be provided via enrolment in the online modules.

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