Advanced Diploma Of Alexander Technique Teaching
Training Course Prospectus 2019
This course aims to provide its graduates with an internationally recognised qualification as Alexander Technique teachers. The course is accredited by the Australian Society of Teachers of the Alexander Technique (AUSTAT) and the qualification is recognised internationally by all other national affiliated societies.
We provide trainees with an active visiting teacher program, having top overseas and Australian visiting teachers, whilst the regular teachers here offer a focused application of the basic principles of the Alexander technique. And as an active teaching centre we are able to provide final year trainees with plenty of experience in our student clinic.
" I came to the School for F.M. Alexander Studies Teacher Training to enhance my teaching practice. The technique has radicalised how I think about and teach Voice and Acting. The School for F.M. Alexander Studies is an excellent environment for training Alexander technique teachers. Senior faculty members are highly skilled. They keep abreast of advancements in AT pedagogy and are dedicated in facilitating each student to develop their own teaching style while maintaining the essence of the technique. To that end the director of the school ensures that students have many opportunities to work with visiting international master teachers. The school also provides comprehensive support and mentoring for new graduates of the school. I can highly recommend this school to anyone who is seriously considering training for teacher qualifications in the Alexander Technique. "
- Tony Smith, Lecturer in Theatre (Voice) at Victorian College of the Arts and graduate of the school
The school follows the traditional format of Alexander technique training, whereby trainees immerse themselves in an intense process of learning and change over three years. Whilst providing intensive study of Alexander's writings as the basis of our work, we aim to expose the trainees to the range of interpretations of the work that have developed since Alexander's days. The course aims to give trainees a high level of understanding of their own use as the basis of being able to teach others. In the fourth year part time year we also focus on the practical nuts and bolts of establishing a viable Alexander teaching practice, provide opportunities for developing skills in running group classes and in continuing to develop professional practice.
Click here for a more detailed outline of the school's training philosophy in training teachers of the Alexander technique.
The school runs 36 weeks a year, normally following a nine week term which is as closely aligned to the state school terms as possible. Click here for dates.
The first full time three year component of the course runs for a minimum of 1600 hours. All trainees will attend four classes a week: Monday to Wednesday from 9am to 1pm and Thursday either from 9am to 1pm or 5 to 9pm. On Tuesdays and Wednesdays trainees in the second half of the third year will develop their teaching skills in our supervised student clinic. This program may be altered with sufficient notice when we run full day workshops with visiting teachers or have subjects taught via webinar with overseas experts in different time zones.
There is also an annual residential course, normally in the first term of the year. Tuition for this is included in the school fees, but trainees will have additional expenses for food and accommodation (normally around $430).
In the fourth year trainees have a range of possibilities to complete the course. Trainees also have the possibility of continuing full time for this final year.
Daily Content of Classes
Each day trainees get a turn with a teacher - that is a individual lesson lasting from 15 to 20 minutes. And apart from the anatomy day we break up into small group classes. These small group classes focus on the development of the individual trainee's use, observation and diagnostic skills, and verbal and manual teaching skills. In addition to this each day has a particular focus as follows:
Monday: is our book day. On this day we have a 40 minute session. This is structured in different ways, but most weeks will involve trainees bringing one short written answer from the choice of a range of written questions given and discussing the reading in small groups. Once or twice a year a written assignment will also need to be completed on this subject
Tuesday: On some Tuesdays we run a Body-Mapping session, short anatomy classes and classes on communication and counseling. We sometimes invite specialist teachers to run this class.For final year students there is a one hour student clinic for the final hour of the day.
Wednesday: is a day focused around structured movement. At present the day includes a class looking at the application of the Alexander Technique to yoga, as well as a group looking at developing personal and teaching skills.
Thursday: is our voice and performance day. This is a day on which outside participants can attend, giving final year trainees lots of experience working with a range of different people, both in individual work and working in groups with activities. On these days we will break up into small performance groups for the latter part of the session.
For third year trainees we have a supervised student clinic.
During the course we focus on the underlying skills of teaching groups, and run a formal sessions on group teaching in the fourth year (
Counseling and communication classes
Professional writing an research skills
Business skills for running an Alexander technique practice
Diploma of Yoga And Alexander Technique Teaching
Trainees also have the option of undertaking this Diploma
The training focuses primarily on the development of core Alexander Technique teaching skills. Trainees undergo a process of ongoing assessment of their ability to apply the technique firstly to themselves, and then on their ability to continue to apply the technique to themselves as they work on others. There are also a number of written assignments which need to be completed, but the main emphasis of the course is on the practical skills. On successful completion of this first three year trainees will receive an AUSTAT accredited certificate While most students are ready to gain this certificate at the end of three years, the school does not guarantee this and may require trainees to come for further training. The school also has an AUSTAT appointed moderator visiting the school. She/he will meet up with each trainee individually and in small groups once a year Trainees will get feedback from their moderator who will also advise the director on assessment decisions.
In the first year students focus primarily on developing an awareness of their own patterns use.
Each class provides a combination of individual and group work. Work in the first year concentrates on educating the trainees to improve their own use and to identify aspects of their use which need continuing work.
Trainees will learn the theoretical foundations of the AT as originally conceived of by FM Alexander. Additionally a range of contemporary interpretations of the technique is taught in application to a variety of activities.
By the conclusion of the first year trainees will have a basic knowledge of the theoretical foundations and practical applications of the Alexander Technique, as well as a grounding in basic anatomy. Practical work in the first year focuses on the individual student.
In the second year trainees continue to develop their use of themselves and also begin to learn and practice basic hands-on teaching skills, mostly working with fellow trainees
Trainees will develop their understanding of the basic principles underlying thee technique and their ability to be able to apply those principles and to explain them to others
By the conclusion of the first year trainees will have a good knowledge of the theoretical foundations and practical applications of the Alexander Technique, as well as a deeper practical understanding of the anatomy of movement.
In the third year students are encouraged to begin to work in an apprentice style. Training includes:
A supervised clinical/educational setting open to the public for consultation - trainees are required to teach a minimum of eight lessons to five individual students.
Supervised application of the technique to first and second year students.
Group presentations as required by the school - trainees are required to to develop a presentation on the technique or the application of the technique in a particular area
Group teaching - trainees will develop the skills to teach the technique to a group and will begin working with groups under supervision.
Active participation in at least one public outreach event promoting the Alexander technique
Assisting the director and other teachers as directed
For those who wish to complete a yoga diploma (non-government accredited) are a number of extra classes plus a chance for apprentice style training by assisting in classes and workshops for the public which are run by the school.
The focus on the third year is to learn how to teach the Alexander Technique to individuals and small groups, the development of both hands-on and verbal communication skills and the ability to accurately assess people's pattern of use.
By the conclusion of the third year trainees will be ready to be assessed for teacher membership of AUSTAT.
Post-graduate continuing education
The school has a strong belief in and commitment to continuing professional development and has been the leading provider of post-graduate education for Alexander teachers in Melbourne for many years. We regularly set up courses with senior teachers from the school and visiting teachers of the technique. Graduates of the school are given priority placement in these courses when positions are limited.
Some of the course is run with combined year levels working together. This allows students to work at their own pace utilising the various levels of experience on the course. In these segments of the course students study the same material but with a focus suited to their level. We also break up into smaller groups to work with teachers. With a teacher to trainee ratio of 1:5 for most of the training students are able to get individual attention.
Assessment is an integral part of the learning process, required in order to:
judge performance, measured against intended learning outcomes.
determine whether progression to the next level is appropriate.
provide useful feedback, which indicates attainment but also areas for improvement.
identify what has not been understood, thus helping to inform evaluation of teaching methods and approaches.
The process of assessment at the school is one of ongoing continuous assessment The final assessments will involve actual teaching work in our supervised student clinic: developing a course outline and organising an running group classes in the technique:and writing and presenting three substantial papers reflecting on Alexander Technique theory, educational theory and research on some aspect of science or anatomy related to the technique,
In the first two years of the course trainees will develop the underlying skills to be able to teach the technique. The development of their own use is a key aspect of this.
Fees and protection of fees paid in advance
The school collects fees just at the start or each 3 week period of training. Thus we hold no more than $1,300 per student for any training not yet delivered and as this is payable only at the very start of each three week period, there is a very high guarantee that the training paid for will be delivered. An application fee of $600 is required along with a completed application form.. This application fee will be refunded in full if your application is rejected. It will also be refunded in full if you are accepted provided that you begin the class on the nominated date. If you delay your nominated date or fail to join the course the application fee is non-refundable. The cost of fees is fixed at the commencement of training for a three year period provided the increase in the CPI remains under 5% per annum. No GST is payable on these fees.
Recognition of Prior Learning
The school recognises that in some modules trainees may have already gained the required competencies, and can therefore be credited with these modules.
Trainees enrolling at the school also have the right to apply for RPL. This recognition may be subject to an assessment process to ensure that competencies previously attained are current. In the case of there being a dispute over whether a particular competency is still current, the trainee may request that an independent assessor be brought in to judge the level of competency.
Evidence of current competencies would include
Australian Quality Framework qualifications and statements of attainment issued by any other RTO
A statement from a training course affiliated with AUSTAT or one of its internationally affiliated societies (in such a situation the recommendation of that training course would be only part of the assessment process).
Evidence that the trainee gained the competencies in a practical manner and has demonstrated mastery of these competencies in a practical manner (e.g. running a practice)
Assessment by two senior teachers appointed by AUSTAT of the level of competency of a trainee who may have trained at a non-recognized training course. In this case the trainee would be required to pay the reasonable costs of such assessment.
The first three years of the course will be taught under the conditions laid down by AUSTAT and its internationally affiliated societies - namely a minimum of 80% practical hands-on work with a minimum average teacher to trainee ratio of 1:5. The school also undertakes to follow any changes made to these requirements. This allows for a process of continuous and ongoing assessment and feedback, and the ability to be able to tailor the delivery of the course to individual needs. Although the course is set out in modules the holistic nature of the Alexander technique means that teaching and learning covers multiple modules and units simultaneously.
The School provides access to a library containing most Alexander technique titles and a range of anatomy and other books. The School is located in St. Georges Road with good access by public transport - bus, train and tram.
Prerequisites to enrolling on the course are having had enough Alexander technique lessons to have a basic understanding of what the Alexander technique is about and to decide that this is the way the trainee wants to work on him or her self. Given the very intense and personal nature of the course, the director is also required to make an informed assessment based on his experience, of the suitability of the applicant to undergo this intense process. Trainees will also need a level of literacy such that they can read the required text books and research papers and write short essays. Students language and literacy levels are assessed prior to acceptance. Speakers with English as a second language will be required to as a minimum to attain a score of 5.5 in Academic English IELTS test.
In the case of trainees wishing to move from a school accredited by AUSTAT, STAT or one of their affiliated societies a reference would be required from the director of that school. In such a case the school would need to assess the level of the applicant and it is quite possible that such an assessment would mean that the applicant would need to complete a total of more than three years of training to gain AUSTAT certification.
Enrollment, induction and orientation
All prospective trainees will receive either by mail or via the web-site a copy of the school's prospectus which will outline as clearly as possible the nature and structure of the course. Trainees will also receive application form to fill in and will meet the director prior to training for an interview. Applications must be accompanied by a deposit of $600, except in the case of overseas students who must pay the deposit once they have signed or agreed to the contract for training.
Prospective trainees are invited wherever possible to attend the course for a full week before they commit to training. This will be charged at the rates current for trainees, but will either be deducted from the first term's fees, or these hours will be included in the training, should the prospective trainees start immediately. This gives them an overview of the course and a chance to evaluate it in a very thorough way. Some trainees may also attend one of our specialist days for a term or several terms prior to joining the course.
Trainees may enroll at the start of any term in which there is space. Trainees will sign a contract for the training when they join the course and will receive information the policies and procedures in place at the school.
Appeals and Complaints
The school has a Disciplinary Policy in place to deal with behaviour that is unacceptable within the school and we reserve the right to terminate a trainee's study in extreme circumstances.
Staff Responsibilities for Access and Equity
All staff are responsible for making sure that access and equity policies are implemented. The Director is the person to see if you have any concerns or inquiries in this area. Our access and equity policy is posted on our web-site.
Most Alexander teachers work in private practice, but because of the nature of the Alexander technique, which can be applied in all areas of life, there are a wide variety of opportunities for teachers with specialist skills or interests to work with particular client groups either in private practice of institutions. Examples include applying the technique to teaching the whole range of the performing arts (teachers work in performing arts institutions like NIDA & VCA in Australia); applying the technique to the whole range of sports (teachers currently work in horse-riding and swimming);
Our students have included personal trainers; yoga teachers , tai chi instructors, occupational therapists, dentists, medical practitioners horse riders, school teachers and chiropractors who can take the AT to enhance their present professional skills. For health professionals there is the possibility to work in multi-disciplinary teams in places such as general practice and pain clinics.
At present there are opportunities for working in many areas of the world where there are as yet no or very few Alexander teachers. A training school has just been set up by graduates of the school in Taiwan, but other countries in our region like Hong Kong, China, India all of South East Asia have few or no teachers and there is an unmet demand to be filled in those areas. There are also a number of areas in Australia which are poorly serviced by Alexander teachers.