COMM12022 - Technology, Communication and Culture
Term 1 - 2017


All details in this unit profile for COMM12022 have been officially approved by CQUniversity and represent a learning partnership between the University and you (our student). The information will not be changed unless absolutely necessary and any change will be clearly indicated by an approved correction included in the profile.

Overview

Communications technologies have changed culture in profound ways, and have determined the shape of many cultures. At the same time, people play a role in determining how such technology is utilised. This unit examines the development of communication and its associated technologies such as telecommunications, digital printing, global 'sharing'. It critically analyses how modern culture is influenced by these developments and incorporates an intergenerational reflection of the evolution of communication. Through this unit, you will develop a critical awareness of new communication technologies and their impact on a global scale.

Details

Career Level Undergraduate
Unit Level Level 2
Credit Points 6
Student Contribution Band 1
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load 0.125

Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

Prerequisite: Minimum of 36 credit points

Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Offerings

Term 1 - 2017
  • Distance
  • Rockhampton

Website

This unit has a website, within the Moodle system, which is available two weeks before the start of term. It is important that you visit your Moodle site throughout the term. Go to Moodle

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Undergraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Class Timetable

Assessment Overview

Assessment Task Weighting
1. Written Assessment 35%
2. Written Assessment 20%
3. Presentation and Written Assessment 45%

This is a graded unit: your overall grade will be calculated from the marks or grades for each assessment task, based on the relative weightings shown in the table above. You must obtain an overall mark for the unit of at least 50%, or an overall grade of ‘pass’ in order to pass the unit. If any ‘pass/fail’ tasks are shown in the table above they must also be completed successfully (‘pass’ grade). You must also meet any minimum mark requirements specified for a particular assessment task, as detailed in the ‘assessment task’ section (note that in some instances, the minimum mark for a task may be greater than 50%). Consult the University’s Grades and Results Procedures for more details of interim results and final grades.

All University policies are available on the IMPortal.

You may wish to view these policies:

  • Grades and Results Procedure
  • Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework)
  • Review of Grade Procedure
  • Academic Misconduct Procedure
  • Monitoring Academic Progress (MAP) Policy and Procedure – Domestic Students
  • Monitoring Academic Progress (MAP) Policy and Procedure – International Students
  • Refund and Excess Payments (Credit Balances) Policy and Procedure
  • Student Feedback – Compliments and Complaints Policy and Procedure
  • Acceptable Use of Information and Communications Technology Facilities and Devices Policy and Procedure

This list is not an exhaustive list of all University policies. The full list of University policies are available on the IMPortal.

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Feedback Source Recommendation
Assessment #3 was unclear and difficult to understand. Student feedback All assessments will be rewritten to ensure clarity and ease of understanding.
The weekly video lectures are really useful. Student feedback The weekly video lectures will be continued.
On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:
  1. Examine the development of communication technologies globally.
  2. Interpret and evaluate how global communication technologies have changed the way we live and work.
  3. Critically analyse how communication technologies influence changes in cultures.

n/a

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes

Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3
1 - Written Assessment  
2 - Written Assessment  
3 - Presentation and Written Assessment  

Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes

  • Introductory Level
  • Intermediate Level
  • Graduate Level
Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3
1. Communication
2. Problem Solving
3. Critical Thinking
4. Information Literacy
5. Team Work      
6. Information Technology Competence
7. Cross Cultural Competence
8. Ethical practice

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Graduate Attributes

  • Introductory Level
  • Intermediate Level
  • Graduate Level
Assessment Tasks Graduate Attributes
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
1 - Written Assessment      
2 - Written Assessment  
3 - Presentation and Written Assessment  

Prescribed Textbooks

A History of Communications: Media and Society from the Evolution of Speech to the Internet
Author/s: Marshall T. Poe Year: 2011
Edition: 1st Publisher: Cambridge University Press
City: New York State: NY
Country: USA
View textbooks at the CQUniversity Bookshop
Note: This text will also be available as an e-text via a link on the course website.

IT Resources

You will need access to the following IT resources:
  • Internet
  • CQUniversity Student Email
  • Unit Website (Moodle)
All submissions for this unit must use the American Psychological Association (APA) referencing style (details can be obtained here). For further information, see the Assessment Tasks below.
Unit CoordinatorTris Kerslake (t.kerslake@cqu.edu.au)
Note: Check the Term-Specific section for any additional contact information provided by the teaching team
Week Begin Date Module/Topic Chapter Events and Submissions
Week 1 06-03-2017

Introduction.

What is the connection between technology, communication and culture? Why is this triangle of connectivity so critical from both an historic and a futuristic perspective? How does the human development of a spoken language of words affect global warming? What connects the first cave paintings with the first iPhone? We begin to examine the evolution of human communication; its beginnings, its development and, most critically, its possibilities.

Poe. Introduction (pp. 1 - 25)

Access course text via electronic link on Moodle site.

Poe, M., (2013) A History of Communication, Cambridge University Press.

Week 2 13-03-2017

Speech and Language.

How did the development of human speech stop wars? How did it encourage trade, the sharing of knowledge? Why did the power of speech enable humans to become the apex predator on the planet? Through the ability to communicate in spoken form, and through the intentional and deliberate act of linguistic development, we now have the ability to contact extraterrestrials. True.

Poe. Homo Loquens (pp. 26 - 41).

Week 3 20-03-2017

The Talking Culture.

In the beginning, there was ... what? This week looks at the early development of wider communication; how it took on new forms and how it began to tell us things about ourselves. Talking in groups is incredibly important in the development of human culture and in technological innovation, giving us dreams to aim for. You didn't know? Well, once upon a time ...

Poe. Homo Loquens (pp. 41- 60)
Week 4 27-03-2017

Writing before Writing.

There is ample evidence of symbolic production from somewhere between 40,000 and 30,000 years ago. The earliest of the French cave paintings came from this time. However, it was not until early humans settled into a less nomadic lifestyle around 10,000 years ago that the first public buildings started to appear and with them, the first signs of fixed symbols: numbers.

Poe. Homo Scriptor (pp. 61 - 79)
Week 5 03-04-2017

The Age Of Manuscripts.

The great philosopher Plato did not appreciate writing at all, claiming that written words 'talk to you as if they were intelligent' (Phaedrus 275 AD). Plato believed words were the enemies of true understanding; however, it was through the spread of the written word and the ability to begin to understand written languages other than our own, that enabled the first great communication technologies.

Poe. Homo Scriptor (pp. 79 - 100).

Vacation Week 10-04-2017

BREAK WEEK

Week 6 17-04-2017

Revolutions of Print.

For the first thousand years or so of western civilisation, the written word was the province of the educated and wealthy elite. Even though the Chinese created a ceramic version of movable type as long ago as 1040 (Needham 1994), it was not until 1439 that Johannes Gutenberg developed the principle of movable type to the point where his work directly connects the great printing presses of 1950s mass media to the 3D printer of today.

Poe. Homo Lector (pp. 101 - 126)
Interview and Essay Due Friday (21 Apr 17) 06:00 PM AEST
Week 7 24-04-2017

Literacy and Literature.

Both indirect and direct measures suggest that literacy made significant advances during the early modern period, especially in Northwest Europe. Spain, for example, had six universities in 1450 and thirty-three by 1600 (Poe p. 113). The price of printed matter declined continuously and the ownership of printed texts spread throughout society and indeed, the world. Owning a book was unthinkable in 1500. By 1800, it was commonplace.

Poe. Homo Lector (pp. 127 - 151).

Week 8 01-05-2017

The Sound of Music.

After the invention of electricity came a frenzy of devices and technologies that could be powered by such containable energy. The development of both safe electrical current and the invention of batteries enabled the creation of such communication wonders as radio, the telegraph and the humble vinyl LP. The social impact of recording both music and voice unleashed a flood of new development in the entertainment and information industries.

Poe. Homo Videns (pp. 152 - 177).

Workbook Exercises Due Friday (05 May 17) 06:00 PM AEST
Week 9 08-05-2017

Homo Videns.

Not only did Plato dislike the written word, but he loathed actors, suggesting their realistic depiction of suffering made the audience as anxious as if they were witnessing someone in real pain. The next leap in communication and media evolution and cultural interaction came with the invention of visual and audiovisual technologies; television and video.

Poe. Homo Videns (pp. 178 - 201).

Week 10 15-05-2017

The Rise of the Internet.

Intranet, Internet and Extranets. Whose idea was it to create a 'network of networks' and what does this have to do with the World Wide Web? What's the link between Humpty Dumpty and the humble modem? 'The Internet is the culmination of a 400-year old dream that information might be collected, stored and sifted; easily, efficiently and endlessly.' (Poe p.215). Nobody mentions information capitalism, the surveillance state or cultural privatism, do they?

Poe. Homo Somnians (pp. 202 - 225)

Week 11 22-05-2017

The Digital Revolution.

Whereas writing and printing spread slowly and audio-visual material took off in a few decades, the internet has blossomed virtually overnight. 'While it would not be fair to say the Internet pushes all of our evolutionary buttons, it certainly pushes more of them than any other device in history.' (Poe p.219). Humans were designed to look for puzzles and anomalies, and the internet is full of them. It's all there; the odd, the weird, the strange.

Poe. Homo Somnians (pp. 226 - 250).

Week 12 29-05-2017

Review

Poe. Conclusion (pp. 251 - 275).

Presentation and Reflection Due Friday (02 Jun 17) 06:00 PM AEST
Review/Exam Week 05-06-2017
Exam Week 12-06-2017

1 Written Assessment

Assessment Title Interview and Essay
Task Description

Interview and Essay (35 marks)


Interview: 10 minutes minimum
  • You are to conduct and record (either audio or audio/video) an interview with a person of an older generation (for example, your grandparent, elderly friend or parent).
  • You are to encourage the interviewee to describe the changes in communication technology in their lifetime and the effects these changes have had on their personal, social and working lives. For example: radio since World War II; the arrival of television; changes in music consumption brought about by vinyl records, cassette tapes; CDs; changes in telephony (telephone mobility, smartphone technologies); virtual conferencing softwares such as Skype; use of videos and video cameras; the arrival of computers and their use in business, academia, social media; on-line newspapers, on-line banking (etc).
  • The recorded interview needs to be a minimum of 10 minutes. It should be long enough for you to have sufficient information to use in your essay (Asst#1) and final presentation (Asst#3). The interview should be conducted using a question and answer format. Have between 10-15 questions prepared to ask your interviewee but be flexible enough to adjust your questions based on your interviewee's responses.

Essay: 1,800 - 2,200 words

  • Create a title for your essay in the form of a question. For example, 'How has communication changed the world?' or 'What does the evolution of communication forms tell us?' Write a formal essay in response to this question.

    (Note: There are further questions provided in Assignment #3 that may also be used as a guide).

  • The essay will be written after the interview and requires you to analyse and discuss the changing use and impact of technology based on your interviewee's responses. You should include information from the interview (both paraphrased information and direct quotes) in your essay.
  • You are required to substantiate your essay by referencing sources (from the interview, the unit text, unit readings and library sources) that help you better understand how the evolution of communication technologies alter the world around us and the way we live our lives today.
  • Your writing needs to follow a formal essay structure.

Your uploaded assignment submission MUST include three files:

1. an 1,800 - 2,200 word essay with the Marking Criteria sheet at the end in a Word document format,

2. the recorded interview, uploaded as a sound file (format is flexible) and

3. the information sheet and signed consent form (or email).


Further details of this assignment are available on the Moodle website.
Assessment Due Date Week 6 Friday (21-Apr-2017) 06:00 PM AEST
You are to submit the essay, the signed information and consent sheets and a separate sound file to Moodle
Return Date to Students Week 10 Friday (19-May-2017)
Assignments will be returned within 10 working days in most cases.
Weighting 35%
Assessment Criteria

The assessment task relates to the general assessment criteria below:

  • Written argument/analysis rather than description
  • Research/use of sources to support argument
  • Structure/presentation
  • Writing standard
  • Use of technology
  • Timely submission
  • Referencing
Referencing Style American Psychological Association (APA)
Submission Online

Submit all parts of the assessment to Moodle by or before the due date

Learning Outcomes Assessed
This section can be expanded to view the assessed learning outcomes

1. Examine the development of communication technologies globally.

3. Critically analyse how communication technologies influence changes in cultures.

Graduate Attributes
This section can be expanded to view the assessed graduate attributes

1. Communication

2. Problem Solving

3. Critical Thinking

4. Information Literacy

6. Information Technology Competence



2 Written Assessment

Assessment Title Workbook Exercises
Task Description

4 Workbook Exercises (4 x 5 marks = 20 marks total)


  • You are required to complete the series of four compulsory exercises detailed on the Moodle website. All four exercises must be attempted in order to successfully pass this assignment.
  • Each exercise must be referenced with at least two formal sources in the APA format.
  • You will upload any two of your completed exercises to the relevant Assignment Discussion Forum for group critique and feedback.
  • The completed exercises in this assignment will form the basis of your final assignment (Presentation and Reflection).
  • All four of these exercises will be submitted via Moodle as a single document with the Marking Criteria sheet attached at the end.

NOTE: While not compulsory, it is expected that each student will review and provide feedback on at least three other student exercises in the Assignment Discussion Forum.


Further information about this assignment is available on the Moodle website.


Assessment Due Date Week 8 Friday (05-May-2017) 06:00 PM AEST
A single Word document containing all the exercises and the Marking Criteria sheet should be uploaded to Moodle by or before the deadline.
Return Date to Students Week 10 Friday (19-May-2017)
Assignments will be returned within 10 working days in most cases.
Weighting 20%
Assessment Criteria

This assessment task relates to the general assessment criteria below:

  • Writing standard
  • Writing structure
  • Research and referencing
  • Timely submission
  • Link between submission and course concepts
Referencing Style American Psychological Association (APA)
Submission Online

Submit a single document containing all four exercises and the Marking Criteria sheet to Moodle

Learning Outcomes Assessed
This section can be expanded to view the assessed learning outcomes

2. Interpret and evaluate how global communication technologies have changed the way we live and work.

3. Critically analyse how communication technologies influence changes in cultures.

Graduate Attributes
This section can be expanded to view the assessed graduate attributes

1. Communication

2. Problem Solving

3. Critical Thinking

4. Information Literacy

6. Information Technology Competence

7. Cross Cultural Competence

8. Ethical practice



3 Presentation and Written Assessment

Assessment Title Presentation and Reflection
Task Description

PowerPoint Presentation and Reflection (45 marks)


PowerPoint Presentation.

Create a 10 -15 slide PowerPoint presentation with a voice-over narration (with additional slides as necessary for the reference list) based on the key themes you identified in the interview you undertook for Assignment #1. The presentation should be based on the deeper issues you are able to link to the responses from your interviewee. Some of the questions you might consider in your presentation:

  • what are the most profound communication changes the interviewee has seen in their lifetime?
  • what are the wider implications of these changes in terms of privacy and security?
  • how have these technological developments changed people's lives?
  • are these changes entirely positive or negative? Why?
  • are there any communication developments your interviewee regrets? Why?
  • has anything been lost in the rush for technological development?

Reflection.

Write a 1,100 - 1,300 word reflection based on your own personal experience of the discussion with your interviewee and how this has widened your thoughts on the effect of technological change and the way we communicate today. The reflection should be written essay-style in a semi-formal tone where the use of the first person is acceptable. APA referencing conventions will be followed.

Further details of this assignment are available on the Moodle website.

Assessment Due Date Week 12 Friday (02-Jun-2017) 06:00 PM AEST
Both parts of this assignment should be uploaded to Moodle by or before the due date.
Return Date to Students Exam Week Friday (16-Jun-2017)
Assignments will be returned within 10 working days in most cases.
Weighting 45%
Assessment Criteria

This assessment task relates to the general assessment criteria below:

Presentation:

  • Appropriate length and formal presentation
  • Use of technology
  • Appropriate discussion and referencing
  • Appropriate professionalism and format

Reflection:

  • Written argument/analysis rather than description
  • Research/use of sources to support argument
  • Structure/presentation
  • Writing standard
  • Timely submission
  • Referencing
Referencing Style American Psychological Association (APA)
Submission Online

Submit both the Powerpoint and the Word document via Moodle

Learning Outcomes Assessed
This section can be expanded to view the assessed learning outcomes

2. Interpret and evaluate how global communication technologies have changed the way we live and work.

3. Critically analyse how communication technologies influence changes in cultures.

Graduate Attributes
This section can be expanded to view the assessed graduate attributes

1. Communication

2. Problem Solving

3. Critical Thinking

4. Information Literacy

6. Information Technology Competence

7. Cross Cultural Competence

8. Ethical practice




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