Design principles for TrackSAFE learning resources

We needed a way to ensure students:

  • are able to learn at their own level, and
  • actually learn what we say they will learn when participating in the lessons.

The TrackSAFE Education learning resources have been designed with Professor John Hattie’s “Visible Learning” principles in mind. Hattie’s research indicates that:

  • “the biggest effects on student learning occur when teachers become learners of their own teaching, and when students become their own teachers” (Hattie, 2009); and
  • the curriculum should provide opportunities for a balance between surface and deep understanding, based on specific learning intentions and success criteria (Hattie, 2009).

The TrackSAFE Education lessons and assessments have been designed on SOLO Taxonomy (Structure of the Observed Learning Outcome) (Biggs and Collis,1982), which is endorsed by Hattie and Purdie (1998) as a model for Visible Learning, and is considered as a simple yet highly effective teaching, learning and assessment methodology.

SOLO Taxonomy allows lessons to be planned for differentiation. It also assists in mapping the levels of understanding or skill built into the intended learning outcomes.

We have used SOLO Taxonomy in the design of the lesson content and assessment rubric to ensure there is a clear way for teachers to observe student progress and achievement in the rail safety learning outcomes. We ask teachers to share the assessment data with us. Collection of this data helps TrackSAFE evaluate the effectiveness of the learning process, and to ensure continuous improvement of the learning resources.

Publications that informed the design

When developing the TrackSAFE learning resources between 2013-2016, TrackSAFE used a number of publications to ensure the evidence base is diverse and thorough. If you are interested in reading more about the approaches we have adopted, please see the publication list below.

Visible Learning

Hattie, J. (2009). Visible learning A synthesis of over 800 meta – analyses relating to achievement.

SOLO Taxonomy

Biggs, J.B., & Collis, K.F. (1982). Evaluating the quality of learning: The SOLO taxonomy. New York: Academic Press.

Hattie, J. & Purdie, N. (1998) The SOLO model: Addressing fundamental measurement issues. In Dart, B. & Boulton-Lewis, G. M. (Eds.) Teaching and learning in higher education. Camberwell, Vic, Australian Council of Educational Research.

Effectiveness of Safety Education

Cahill, H (2006). Devising classroom drug education programs, in Midford, E and Munro, G (eds), Drug education in schools: searching for the silver bullet (pp147-165). Melbourne: IP Communications.

Chamberlain, M and Hook, P (2012). Changing mental models: How recent developments in teaching and learning can be applied to road safety education in schools. Presented at Australasian Road Safety Research, Policy and Education Conference, Wellington NZ 6 October 2012.

European Commission, Directorate General for Transport and Energy (2005). Rose 25: Inventory and Compiling of a European Good Practice Guide on Road Safety Education Targeted at Young People. Available from

Herbert, P C and Lohrmann, DK (2010). ‘It’s all in the delivery! An analysis of instructional strategies from effective Health Education Curricula’, Journal of School Health, 81 (5), 258-264

McKenna, F (2010) Education in Road Safety: Are we getting it right? Report 10/113 United Kingdom: RAC Foundation.

Raftery, S J and Wundersitz, W L N (2011). The Efficacy of Road Safety Education in Schools: A Review of Current Approaches. CASR Report Series. CASR077. South Australia: Centre for Automotive Safety Research, University of Adelaide

Raftery SJ, Wundersitz LN (2011). ‘Road Safety Education: Directions for the future’, 2011 Australasian Road Safety Research, Policing and Education Conference, Perth, 6-9 November 2011.

Rowan, L & Bigum, C (2010) At the hub of it all: knowledge producing schools as sites for educational and social innovation. In Clanfield, D (eds.) The School as Community Hub: Beyond Education’s Iron Cage, pp. 185-203. Quebec: Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

SDERA (2009) Principles for School Road Safety Education: A Research Summary. Government of Western Australia, School Drug Education and Road Aware. Available from

VicRoads (n.d.). Young people’s response to intended ‘shocking’ road safety messages. Arrive Alive! Information Bulletin.

Rail safety data

Australian Transport Safety Bureau (2012) Australian Rail Safety Occurrence Data 1 July 2002 to 30 June 2012. ATSB