Application workshop: The “Learning and self-evaluation” competency

9 April 2018

Through the selection process, candidates are assessed against eight competencies based on evidence of effectiveness in the classroom.

Liz Cullen is our Team Manager for Recruitment and Advocacy. She has a a background in Law/Arts, and is an Alumna of our Leadership Development Program. In this post, she suggests how to address the “Learning and self-evaluation” competency in your application.


If you’re reading this, you’re probably:

  • Looking for tips to craft the strongest application ahead of pressing ‘submit’. Good on you! I hope this helps.
  • Still learning more about what Teach For Australia and the Leadership Development Program are – excellent, you’re doing your homework!
  • Lost. Since you’ve made it this far, stick around. You may just have found the opportunity for development and impact you’ve been looking for (whether you knew it or not!)

Teach For Australia’s Leadership Development Program (LDP) is a unique model. It’s intensive, challenging and, beyond a doubt, rewarding – not least because of the development this ‘baptism of fire’ will see you undergo, professionally and personally.

If experience is the greatest teacher, then the greatest students are those who can reflect accurately and honestly on those experiences. What happened? What that really what happened? Why? Was that really why?

To not only survive but thrive in the experience of the LDP, we look for an strong orientation towards learning and drive for success through challenging circumstances. There will be a lot that feels outside of your control as you get to know your students, their families, your colleagues and, perhaps, a new community. But you will be the leader of your classroom and leaders find ways to act and make change – often starting with themselves.

Let me suggest three next steps to develop your understanding of this competency, reflect on relevant experiences where you’ve demonstrated this competency, and start to strengthen the reflective muscles that will get the work out of their life during this program!

  1. Look at our eight competencies and honestly reflect on your relative strength and areas for growth. What experiences have you had which demonstrate these? Would a friend or colleague agree or offer a different insight?
  2. Read this vulnerable reflection on failure and its role in learning from a current Associate.
  3. Watch this TedTalk by development guru Carol Dweck about the power of believing you can improve.

And an extra step for good measure (!), because we want you to be as confident as you can be:

  1. Speak to one of our Recruitment and Advocacy Manager about your application before you submit. They are there to help and can discuss how your experiences might best align to our competencies. You can find your local best point of contact here.

Best of luck with your application and possibly, the start of this life-changing journey!


“Learning and self-evaluation” is one of the eight competencies we assess against in your application. Learn about all of our eligibility requirements and selection criteria here.

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