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Develop your application

Once you have decided to proceed with your application at the Highly Accomplished Teacher level, you will need to develop a cohesive body of evidence that supports your application. 

Select your evidence 

The evidence you gather to support your application at Highly Accomplished Teacher level, needs to confirm that you are achieving all the Standard Descriptors at this level in the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers.

This evidence is made up of:

  • documentary evidence
  • reports from referees and
  • report from an external observer.

Applications considered strong and likely to succeed demonstrate:

  • enough evidence selected carefully to show achievement of all the Standard Descriptors
  • thoughtful selection of evidence of practice, ensuring the evidence you select addresses the full complexity of the Standards Descriptors
  • quality evidence instead of quantity of superficial evidence
  • an appropriate balance in the way the three sources of evidence (i.e. documentary, referee and observer) are used
  • use of multiple sources of evidence to ensure that the full complexity of the Standard Descriptors is demonstrated; for instance some Standard Descriptors may be addressed by referee and documentary evidence, while others may be addressed by all three- the focus is on thoughtful and balanced selection.

Applications that are generally deemed weak are likely to show the following: 

  • documentary evidence that is repetitive – for example multiple lesson plans or multiple referees commenting on the same Standard Descriptor 
  • lack of balance in the way the Standard Descriptors are supported by evidence- for instance seven Standard Descriptors attested to by referees only, three Standard Descriptors observed by the external observer only or 30 Standard Descriptors covered by documentary evidence that does not fulfil the description provided in the annotation
  • superficial connection of evidence to the Standard Descriptor- an example is if a Standard has ‘evaluate and monitor’ or ‘initiate or lead’ as an aspect of teaching practice, then the evidence should show this.

Documentary evidence and annotations

When preparing your documentary evidence you need to:

  • consider your practice against the Standard Descriptors, 
  • select documents that best reflect your practice 
  • decide which Standard Descriptor/s each document supports 
  • write the annotations.

You are able to use evidence that may have been developed while you were working at different schools prior to starting your application

All evidence you provide will be considered by the Teacher Accreditation Authority (Highly Accomplished /Lead) or (TAA (A/L) on the basis of its continuing relevance to your practice. The information you forward about your school(s) provides a context for your evidence.

More information on Highly Accomplished Teacher accreditation evidence is available in the Evidence Guide for the Highly Accomplished Teacher Standards

Referee reports

Referee reports are provided by colleagues who can attest to your practice against the Standard Descriptors at Highly Accomplished Teacher. It is important that you consider the number of Standard Descriptors you allocate to your referees and the amount of time you allow them to complete their report. The Accreditation at Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher – Information for Referees (PDF 383 KB), has information on the role and responsibilities of referees that candidates can refer their referees to, as they step through the accreditation process.

External observer

Once you request an external observation through your online account, BOSTES will assign an external observer to come to your school and observe your practice. Your request should be made well in advance of the time when you would like the observation to occur. You may negotiate the timing of observations with your assigned observer and the school principal/service director.

The external observation is an independent view of your practice and provides some of the evidence to substantiate your claim for accreditation. When you are planning your external observation day, think carefully about the structure of the day and the number of Standard Descriptors you wish the observer to observe. 

Other resources to help you develop your application

Assessment Rubric

The key features of a successful Highly Accomplished Teacher Application are described in the Highly Accomplished Teacher Accreditation Assessment Rubric (PDF 64 KB) 

The information provided by the rubric identifies the expectations of each evidence type for gaining accreditation at the Highly Accomplished Teacher level. 

Download the Highly Accomplished Teacher Assessment Rubric (PDF 64 KB)

 MCC advice and Highly Accomplished Teacher Evidence Guide

Advice from the Moderating and Consistency Committee (MCC) and the Evidence Guide for Highly Accomplished Teacher Standards (PDF 1.05 MB) are also available as reference resources to help develop your application.

The next step

Submit your application online 

More information

Please email or call us on 1300 739 338 (within Australia), if you have any questions.