BIOL13085 - Professional Skills in Industry
Term 2 - 2017


All details in this unit profile for BIOL13085 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

In this unit students will develop professional and specific practical skills relevant to a selected agrifood industry or allied industry support sector. The unit covers the theory and practice of knowledge transfer or extension in agriculture and natural resource management, theory behind selected techniques and technologies, and practical skills using selected techniques and technologies. Students may choose to study an alternative set of professional skills relevant to a selected industry upon agreement with the unit coordinator, providing the opportunity to tailor the unit to deliver industry specific knowledge and training. The unit aims to provide students with skills that will be valuable when seeking employment in industry. Distance education students will be required to attend a residential school.

Details

Career Level Undergraduate
Unit Level Level 3
Credit Points 6
Student Contribution Band 2
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load 0.125

Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

BIOL12108 Agricultural Value Chain Management

Residential Schools

This unit has a Compulsory Residential School for distance mode students and the details are:
Click here to see your Residential School Timetable.

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 2 - 2017
  • Mixed Mode
  • 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 20%
2. Practical and Written Assessment 20%
3. Written Assessment 40%
4. Practical Assessment 20%

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
Students found the presentation practice was very helpful. Student feedback. Maintain the practice sessions for students.
On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:
  1. Analyse an industry sector to identify professional skills desired for graduate employment in the sector.
  2. Describe the scientific basis of the selected techniques and technologies used in the agrifood industry or allied industry support sector.
  3. Perform practical tasks using selected techniques and equipment.
  4. Apply the principles of agricultural extension theory and practice.

Per NPC1154

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes

Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4
1 - Written Assessment    
2 - Practical and Written Assessment      
3 - Written Assessment      
4 - Practical Assessment    

Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes

  • Introductory Level
  • Intermediate Level
  • Graduate Level
Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4
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 - Practical and Written Assessment          
3 - Written Assessment        
4 - Practical Assessment      

Textbook Information

There are no required textbooks.

IT Resources

You will need access to the following IT resources:
  • CQUniversity Student Email
  • Internet
  • Unit Website (Moodle)
All submissions for this unit must use the Harvard (author-date) referencing style (details can be obtained here). For further information, see the Assessment Tasks below.
Unit CoordinatorChristopher O'Neill (c.j.oneill@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 10-07-2017

Introduction to the Unit. Guidelines for the subject and development of generic skills. Australian agrifood industries: current status and future strategies; basic skills required to achieve in the Agrifood industry.

Week 2 17-07-2017

Review: BIOL12108 Agricultural Value Chain Management; linkage to current unit.

Professional and academic literacy, and skill recognition.

Introduction to the library website and databases, essay topics, analysis and database search strategies, critical analysis, effective writing Google Scholar/Scopus/Endnote)


Week 3 24-07-2017

Conflicts in the agrifood industries: Organic Farming vs GMO; grass fed vs grain fed; precision agriculture vs traditional; biodiversity vs mono-culture; production vs adaptation; climate change impact on agrifood – yes or no; cell vs unrestricted grazing; biological conservation vs pastoral production; farmers’ market vs supermarket; live export trade – for and against

Selection of topic ('conflict') for assessments 2 and 3 in consultation with unit coordinator.

The residential school student presentation (assessment 2), plus discussion that the presentation generates, is designed to focus the student as to the essential elements of the 'conflict' to be outlined in their written presentation (assessment 3).

Week 4 31-07-2017

The Professional Speaker: handling nerves; speech structure (opening, body conclusion); opening and concluding statements; body language; eye contact; ums and urs; vocal variety; use of humour; effective use of the pause and of repetition; when something goes wrong; keeping to time.

Week 5 07-08-2017

Indigenous Pastoralism: acquiring skills in remote regions; navigate two cultures; Mungalla as a case study; website and Facebook; tourism; habitat reconstruction; links to research institutions (e.g. CSIRO); CQU example?

Social concepts in agriculture and horticulture


Illustrating professionalism in an agrifood industry portfolio Due Friday (11 Aug 17) 05:00 PM AEST
Vacation Week 14-08-2017
Week 6 21-08-2017

Principles of agricultural extension theory and practice. Information transfer: 1) linear ‘top down’; 2) ‘group empowerment’; 3) one-to-one advice; 4) formal educational training. No single model sufficient: continued need for reliable scientific information; opportunities for the emerging social media.


Week 7 28-08-2017

Adoption of technology/Precision Agriculture (PA): successful (sugarcane PA) and failed (beef cattle PA) adoption by industry; for northern beef producers no change in adoption of genetic improvement technology after 30 years; reasons for winners and losers; risk vs fear.

Week 8 04-09-2017

Role of biotechnology and economic linkages: technologies that are both productive and sustainable; return on investment; Allan Savory and holistic farm management.

A background to the relationship between agriculture and climate change.

Mandatory Residential School in Bundaberg September 8-10, 2017

Identify and interrogate key issues of an agrifood industry: Part A oral presentation; ready for a (practice) run on the first day of the Residential School (Week 8): assessment of the oral presentation on the second day (Saturday).

Identify and interrogate key issues of an agrifood industry (Part A oral presentation) Due Friday (08 Sep 17) 02:00 PM AEST
Week 9 11-09-2017

Agro-meteorology and climatology: BOM site; decision support; the impediments for agricultural adaptations to climate change.


Identify and interrogate key issues of an agrifood industry (Part B written assignment) Due Friday (15 Sep 17) 03:00 PM AEST
Week 10 18-09-2017

Crisis management; monitoring animal and pasture performance; drought preparation; the paradigm shift; and mental health.

Characteristics of workplace: business networking (LinkedIn); professional image.


Confirmation of topic ('industry transformation') for assessment 4 with unit coordinator.

Week 11 25-09-2017

Overview of the Global Agrifood Industry: current status and future directions; global employment opportunities (ACIAR, ILRI, AusAID, Australian Council for International Development).

Australian and global employment opportunities.

Week 12 02-10-2017

Review

Professional skills required to transform an agrifood industry Due Wednesday (04 Oct 17) 05:00 PM AEST
Review/Exam Week 09-10-2017
Exam Week 16-10-2017

1 Written Assessment

Assessment Title Illustrating professionalism in an agrifood industry portfolio
Task Description

1. Students are required to compile a collection of 10 documents, photographs, and press articles which illustrates the professional skill-set required of professionals in their 'chosen' agrifood industry either Australian or global. These documents should reflect the professional skill-set: Critical Thinking; Information Literacy; Cross-cultural Competence; Collaboration and Teamwork; Communication.

2. Search and record 4 job descriptions of vacant positions from the internet.

Reflect on how your current skills meet the criteria of one of the vacant job positions and develop a plan for developing the missing skills, identifying training methods or agencies. A mock job interview will be conducted during the residential school as part of this assessment, but will be unmarked. The student will participate both as an employer and job applicant. You are required to participate in the mock interview to fulfill the participation requirement of residential school.

Each portfolio must include a report (1500 minimum — 2000 maximum word count) of the contents therein.

Assessment Due Date Week 5 Friday (11-Aug-2017) 05:00 PM AEST
Electronic submission
Return Date to Students Week 6 Monday (21-Aug-2017)
Electronic submission
Weighting 20%
Assessment Criteria

The assessment criteria for this task are:

The portfolio will be assessed based on your ability to use external media to clearly identify the professional skills for your designated agrifood industry. Please select no more than 10 images or short articles that capture the idea of professional skills in the agrifood industries and scan and save as a word document. You will need to provide a descriptive heading to support each image or article in your portfolio. (25%)

Using the internet find an advertised job in the agrifood industries that you think might be an interesting future career for you. Identify the selection criteria and provide a written response demonstrating how you meet those selection criteria. Include in your report a copy of the job advert, the selection criteria and your responses to those selection criteria. (25%)

Reflect on how your current skills meet the selection criteria and provide a written plan how you will identify training so that you can better address selection criteria in the future. (15%)

Your written assignment (1500 – 2000 word) will be marked on your ability to demonstrate that you can address selection criteria and recognise areas where you need to develop your skills. Does the written document capture the portfolio? (35%)

Conditions Minimum mark or grade - 30%
Referencing Style Harvard (author-date)
Submission Online

Electronic submission

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

1. Analyse an industry sector to identify professional skills desired for graduate employment in the sector.

4. Apply the principles of agricultural extension theory and practice.

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

1. Communication

3. Critical Thinking

4. Information Literacy

7. Cross Cultural Competence

8. Ethical practice



2 Practical and Written Assessment

Assessment Title Identify and interrogate key issues of an agrifood industry (Part A oral presentation)
Task Description

Students are required to orally present findings and ideas from their written report (Assessment 3) on the scientific basis of a conflict in the agrifood industries on any one of the following issues:

  1. organic farming vs GMO;
  2. grass fed vs grain fed;
  3. precision agriculture vs traditional;
  4. biodiversity vs mono-culture;
  5. production vs adaptation;
  6. cell vs unrestricted grazing;
  7. biological conservation vs pastoral production;
  8. farmers’ market vs supermarket;
  9. live export trade vs no live-export;
  10. Free Trade Agreements – opportunities and threats;
  11. a conflict of the student's choosing with approval of the instructor.

Deliver a 20 minute oral presentation (and up to 10 minute question and answer) during the residential school; identifying a key driver in the nominated agrifood industry from Part B; supporting argument for and against an issue in the conflict; feedback from the oral presentation would be expected to finalise the written report. Note the topic should be chosen in consultation with unit coordinator and student participation in the question and answer session, and any ensuing discussion, will contribute to the assessment.

Please note, you must have begun writing Assessment 3 to be successful in this assessment:

Part A (Oral presentation) deliver a 20 minute presentation during the residential school; feedback from the presentation may help finalise the report of Part B; topic chosen in consultation with unit coordinator; and

Part B (Written) write a 4000 word report on two contrasting issues; compare and contrast.

Assessment Due Date Week 8 Friday (08-Sep-2017) 02:00 PM AEST
Oral presentation ready to go on the first day of the Residential School (Week 8)
Return Date to Students Week 10 Monday (18-Sep-2017)
Feedback on the presentation/discussion will also be given during the Residential School.
Weighting 20%
Assessment Criteria

Your oral presentation will be assessed using the following rubric:

Ext Gd Av NI Comment
Opening: (3 pts)
Attention getting Ex Gd Av NI
Logical Ex Gd Av NI
Sets scene Ex Gd Av NI
Body: (5 pts)
Main points articulated Ex Gd Av NI
Supporting material Ex Gd Av NI
Transition Ex Gd Av NI
Sound reasoning Ex Gd Av NI
Sources cited Ex Gd Av NI
Conclusion: (2 pts)
Logical closure Ex Gd Av NI
Sufficient information Ex Gd Av NI
Delivery: (4 pts)
Physical presence Ex Gd Av NI
Vocal variety Ex Gd Av NI
Eye contact Ex Gd Av NI
Use of notes Ex Gd Av NI
Use of pause Ex Gd Av NI
Use of visual aids Ex Gd Av NI
Use of humour Ex Gd Av NI
Gestures Ex Gd Av NI
Overall: (6 pts)
Convincing argument Ex Gd Av NI

Evaluation: Ex = Excellent; Gd = Good; Av = Average; NI = Needs Improvement

Conditions Minimum mark or grade - 40%
Referencing Style Harvard (author-date)
Submission Hard copy

PowerPoint presentation and conduct during the presentations by all students

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

3. Perform practical tasks using selected techniques and equipment.

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

1. Communication

6. Information Technology Competence

8. Ethical practice



3 Written Assessment

Assessment Title Identify and interrogate key issues of an agrifood industry (Part B written assignment)
Task Description

Please note: This assessment must be mostly complete before Part A Oral presentation occurs in Week 8. You will edit it based on feedback during the presentation.

Students are required to author a report on the scientific basis of a conflict within one chosen agrifood industry and select a key driver of that conflict:

  1. organic farming vs GMO;
  2. grass fed vs grain fed;
  3. precision agriculture vs traditional;
  4. biodiversity vs mono-culture;
  5. production vs adaptation;
  6. cell vs unrestricted grazing;
  7. biological conservation vs pastoral production;
  8. farmers’ market vs supermarket;
  9. live export trade;
  10. Free Trade Agreements – opportunities and threats;
  11. a conflict of the student's choosing with approval of the instructor.

This assessment occurs with Assessment 2:

Part A (Oral presentation) deliver a 20 minute presentation during the residential school; feedback from the presentation may help finalise the report of Part B; topic chosen in consultation with unit coordinator; and

Part B (Written) write a 4000 - 4500 (4500 word max) word report on two contrasting issues; compare and contrast.

Assessment Due Date Week 9 Friday (15-Sep-2017) 03:00 PM AEST
Electronic submission
Return Date to Students Week 11 Monday (25-Sep-2017)
Electronic submission
Weighting 40%
Assessment Criteria

The marking criteria for this assessment are as follows:

  1. Your written work fully addresses all parts of the assignment question (20%);
  2. Your argument/thesis statement is fully supported by the reference material that you have chosen, but you haven’t been biased (20%);
  3. You have chosen reference material that is relevant to the assignment question and you have presented this material accurately (20%);
  4. You have discussed the topic in detail – paragraphs with a topic sentence (10%);
  5. Fluent and succinct writing – short sentences; only one idea in paragraph; correct spelling and punctuation; use of a topic sentence for each paragraph; word length correct + 10% (20%);
  6. Harvard referencing and all references acknowledged. Note: maximum of 10% as an internet reference. (10%)
Conditions Minimum mark or grade - 40%
Referencing Style Harvard (author-date)
Submission Online

Please submit as a MS word (.docx or .doc) or RTF document on the unit Moodle site.

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

2. Describe the scientific basis of the selected techniques and technologies used in the agrifood industry or allied industry support sector.

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

1. Communication

2. Problem Solving

3. Critical Thinking

4. Information Literacy



4 Practical Assessment

Assessment Title Professional skills required to transform an agrifood industry
Task Description

Analysis of professional skills required of the Australian and global agrifood industries.

Students are required to synthesise the theory and practice of research development and extension (RD&E) that will lead to bridging the gap between the adoption and non-adoption of technology. There is clear evidence that Australian agricultural RD&E is currently unravelling.

Historically information transfer occurs by: 1) linear ‘top down’; 2) ‘group empowerment’; 3) one-to-one advice; and 4) formal educational training. A new model is emerging that involves the internet and social media. Students are required to report (2000-2500 word max) their understanding of Australian RD&E and explore future models using social media/internet.

Assessment Due Date Week 12 Wednesday (04-Oct-2017) 05:00 PM AEST
Electronic submission
Return Date to Students Review/Exam Week Monday (09-Oct-2017)
Electronic submission
Weighting 20%
Assessment Criteria

The marking criteria for this assessment are as follows:

  1. Your written work fully addresses all parts of the assignment question (20%);
  2. Your argument/thesis statement is fully supported by the reference material that you have chosen, but you haven’t been biased (20%);
  3. You have chosen reference material that is relevant to the assignment question and you have presented this material accurately (20%);
  4. You have discussed the topic in detail – paragraphs with a topic sentence (10%);
  5. Fluent and succinct writing – short sentences; only one idea in a sentence and paragraph; correct spelling and punctuation; use of a topic sentence for each paragraph; word length correct + 10% (20%);
  6. Harvard referencing and all references acknowledged. Note: maximum of 10% as an internet reference. (10%)
Conditions Minimum mark or grade - 40%
Referencing Style Harvard (author-date)
Submission Online

Written report (use Microsoft Word) submitted online 4/10/2017 (Week 12)

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

2. Describe the scientific basis of the selected techniques and technologies used in the agrifood industry or allied industry support sector.

4. Apply the principles of agricultural extension theory and practice.

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

2. Problem Solving

3. Critical Thinking

5. Team Work

7. Cross Cultural Competence

8. Ethical practice




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