Aspiring Thinkers


Develop yourself, develop your team

Aspiring Thinkers provides school leaders and teachers with the expert guidance, collaborative network and professional learning pathway required to lead teaching for thinking at your school.

  • Improve pedagogical practices by shifting the focus from knowledge to inquiry, working collaboratively and providing a language of feedback on thinking.
  • Enhance curriculum delivery by planning for student thinking and aligning cognitive verbs and 21st century skills across P-10 learning areas/general capabilities and Year 11-12 subjects.
  • Develop expert teaching teams through a culture of continuous professional improvement and sharing of best practice within school teams and across the Aspiring Thinkers network.

We support your success

Aspiring Thinkers presents your leaders and teachers with an excellent platform for professional growth.

  • Network members and experts intentionally collaborate through online and face-to-face focus topics, workshops and masterclasses.
  • Members include principals, school leaders and teachers from 120 schools across all seven regions of Queensland.
  • Expert contributors are shown below. Your school can join us.
  • The IMPACT Centre and UQCTP partnership began in 2012 through the co-design of the IMPACT Centre’s highly acclaimed Critical Thinking program (9,000+ students since 2012).

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How it works

Step 1: Join via a 2-day foundational workshop.

Step 2: Intentionally collaborate within your school and across the network.

Step 3: Be a thinking leader!

Foundational workshop


15–16 October 2020 (Thursday and Friday)

Term 4, Week 2 | 9.00am–3.30pm


Pavilions Function Centre, Allan Border Field, Albion

Selling fast, check registration for availability.

22–23 October 2020 (Thursday and Friday)

Term 4, Week 3 | 9.00am–3.30pm


Fitzy’s Loganholme

Selling fast, check registration for availability.

Note: 2021 details are coming soon.

We are proceeding with face-to-face workshops based on Stage 3 of the Roadmap (PDF, 157KB) to easing Queensland’s restrictions.

Dr Peter Ellerton

Dr Peter Ellerton from the University of Queensland Critical Thinking Project facilitates the foundational workshop. Content includes:

  • how to develop cognitive skills through a shift in focus from knowledge to inquiry
  • how to think and plan in the language of student cognition
  • how to work collaboratively so thinking can be shared
  • how to facilitate metacognition and provide a language of feedback on thinking
  • learning experience design
  • virtues/characteristics of effective thinkers. 

Registrations close approximately one week prior to the workshop date (or earlier if sold out).

What comes next? Online and face-to-face collaboration, including contributions from members and expert facilitators.

Target audience

  • Aspiring Thinkers is most suited to primary or secondary school leaders (including principals) and classroom teachers who are passionate about teaching for thinking, have the mindset to lead improvement, the interpersonal skills to influence your staff and the dedication to actively participate in the network.
  • Some schools are investing in a 'Teaching for Thinking' leadership team and involving representatives from senior management, middle management and key teachers.
  • It is highly recommended that medium-large schools/clusters register at least 2 members to support local leadership and collaboration, however you can register 1 staff member if desired.
  • Small schools/clusters can register 1 staff member.

The value of membership

  • Aspiring Thinkers engages you and your team in ‘the right work’ if cognitive skills and teaching for thinking are priorities at your school.
  • Members and experts intentionally collaborate and deepen professional learning through online and face-to-face focus topics and masterclasses.
  • The initial membership fee is $950 per person—this includes participation in the foundational workshop and network membership for 12 months.
  • School principals join for free⁠—no charge for the foundational workshop, no charge to join the network for the first year (not transferable to other staff).
  • Teacher Relief Scheme and travel costs may be necessary for face-to-face workshops.

Note: The costs above apply to Queensland state government schools.

Last updated 29 September 2020