What’s the deal with PBL?

Explore the potential for Project Based Learning (PBL) to change the way you teach.

Carefully planned and managed authentic PBL projects that effectively integrate technology, encourage students to become independent workers, critical thinkers and lifelong learners.  This two-day introductory workshop will allow teachers to explore the potential of Project Based Learning (PBL) as an effective and enjoyable way for students to learn, and develop deeper learning competencies.

“PBL is not just a way of learning; it’s a way of working together. If students learn to take responsibility for their own learning, they will form the basis for the way they will work with others in their adult lives.”


Day 1
  • Keynote by Dr Mitch Parsell on the importance of learning communities and how they can support and sustain inquiry.
  • Project Slice – experience an immersive PBL project slice to gain insight into the student experience.
Day 2
  • Reflective analysis of PBL – Participants will delve into PBL concepts, practices and methods. Some common misconceptions such as the difference between PBL and ‘doing projects’ will also be explored.
  • Project slice – participants will experience a very different short, immersive project aimed to inspire, excite and capture imaginations.
  • Design a PBL project – participants will begin to draft their own project plans for their own students with a focus on PBL basics, including differentiation, and curation practices.
  • Participants will be required to bring existing assessments and units of work that lend themselves to be transformed into Project Based Learning opportunities.

Audience: All teachers and school leaders

Keywords: Project Based Learning, Pedagogy, Inquiry Learning, Learner Centric, Inter-disciplinary, Authentic Learning, Future Focused, Digital Literacy.


What is Project Based Learning?

Project Based Learning is a teaching method in which students gain knowledge and skills by working for an extended period of time to investigate and respond to an authentic, engaging and complex question, problem, or challenge.  –  Buck Institute for Education (BIE)

Keynote Presenter

Dr Mitch Parsell

Associate Dean, Learning and Teaching, Faculty of Human Sciences, Macquarie University

Mitch’s research covers three domains: the scholarship of learning and teaching, applied ethics and cognitive science. He has been an external consultant for the New South Wales Institute of Teachers and THINK Education Group. In 2008 was awarded an Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC) Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning.

Read more on his blog…

Workshop Facilitators

Cathie Howe

Cathie Howe

Centre Manager

As team leader at MacICT, Cathie is passionate about building the capacity of  teachers to design learning consistent with 21st century skills and pedagogies. She has worked with thousands of K – 12 teachers across a range of professional learning activities that have assisted teachers to explore research on current and emerging digital pedagogies, develop a deeper understanding of future focused learning as well as the skills and understandings to design inquiry based digital learning that effectively integrates technology.

Michael Stevenson

Michael Stevenson

Researcher, Developer, Facilitator

Michael is a lecturer in the Department of Educational Studies, specialising in the areas of English Methodology and ICT. Since commencing his teaching career in 2001, he has taught English, ESL, Music and Technology in secondary schools across northern and western Sydney. In 2011, he received training in the New Tech Network model of Project Based Learning (PBL) and was chiefly involved developing and implementing an integrated curriculum program that incorporates PBL and cross-curricula team teaching in open plan environments.

Khyiah Angel

Khyiah Angel

Researcher, Developer, Facilitator

Khyiah is both a PhD candidate in multimodality and a sessional academic in the School of Education at Macquarie University. As an Educator, Khyiah has 15 years experience across primary and high school settings. She has a Master’s degree in Creative Writing, and another in Gender Studies and is also a published author of young adult fiction. Khyiah is experienced in working with school teams in shifting teaching and learning pedagogies to incorporate 21st Century skills.


28 and 29 November 2016 (two-day course)

Location: North Ryde, NSW
Time: 8:30am – 4:00pm each day
Cost: $330 (inclGST)

Now Full.

If you would like to be placed on a waiting list click the button below. If a spot opens up we will contact you ASAP.

Register your interest


How do I enrol?
Just click on the enrolment button and fill out the form. You will be emailed a confirmation within 2 working days. The course will not appear in the MyPL system. If this is a BOSTES registered course then when you have completed the course, your accreditation will show up on your BOSTES record. If it is not a registered course then it is classified as Teacher Identified Professional Learning. A certificate of completion can be provided upon request.
How is payment taken?
If you are from a NSW DoE school, payment will be via direct debit and appear on your school's Sundry Tax Invoice Statement. Non-DoE schools and individuals will be invoiced. Please contact us to confirm your billing details.
How do I get there and do I need to bring anything?
There are many transport options. See our Contact page for more information. We will send out an email to all participants with parking information two days before the event. Please look out for this email and read the instructions carefully. All equipment will be provided unless otherwise advised.
What if I cancel or don't show up?
If you would like to cancel your enrolment please Contact us, however keep in mind any cancellations made within 2 days of the event or no-shows will incur the full cost, charged to your school.
What's a follow-on component?
Some of our courses include a follow-on component that is to be completed by the participant back in their school context, with the aim of  transferring the new practice to their teaching and learning repertoire. These deliverables are included as part of the course hours and are designed to engage teachers in real 'learning through doing' leading to improvement in the skills and capabilities of teachers. Satisfactory completion of these deliverables are according to a framework that is emailed out to participants. Participants will be notified by email if their deliverables do not satisfactorily meet the criteria and be given an opportunity to resubmit. If for some reason you are unable to complete the follow-on, you can still log hours for a workshop day separately in your BOSTES record as Teacher Identified Hours, if signed off by your Principal. We can provide a Certificate to facilitate this.
More questions? Contact us.