Diversity and inclusion in senior English texts

A research project from the University of Melbourne has analysed the text lists for the Senior Victorian English curriculum between 2010 and 2019.

More than 300 texts – from novels to films, and poetry – were analysed for their text type, story setting, exploration of themes, and other characteristics (such as the author’s and protagonist’s gender).

The research project found a majority of texts were set in Europe, North America and Australia. The most popular time period setting for texts was between the years 1965 and 1997. Only five texts were created by Australian Indigenous creators, and only 3.6 per cent of texts contained an Australian Indigenous protagonist.

Selecting texts which reflect values of diversity and inclusivity can help students appreciate and understand the diversity of the world they live in.

Find out more in our video below.



Bliss, L. & Bacalja, A. (2020). What counts? Inclusion and diversity in the senior English curriculum. The Australian Educational Researcher, pp. 18-. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13384-020-00384-x

As a senior English teacher, reflect on the texts chosen for your students to study this year. During the decision making process for text selection, how highly was diversity prioritised? Is this year’s text list representative of the diverse community students are living in?

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