Course Title: International Development Research Project 1

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: International Development Research Project 1

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies

Face-to-Face or Internet

Sem 1 2017,
Sem 2 2017,
Sem 1 2018,
Sem 2 2018

Course Coordinator: Associate Professor Jose Roberto 'Robbie' Guevara

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 3046

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 37.05.13

Course Coordinator Availability: by appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

Second year standing, having completed 8 x 12 credit points towards the Master in International Development program.

Course Description

This course includes a work-integrated learning experience in which your knowledge and skills will be applied and assessed in a real or simulated workplace context and where feedback from industry and/or community is integral to your experience.

This course will assist you to identify and secure an individually negotiated research project or placement based on either a development issue relating to your professional context or a development setting of your choice.
It is designed as the initial step of your capstone experience that will enable you to synthesize and integrate knowledge, connect theory and practice as well as demonstrate holistic achievement of program learning outcomes. The course provides the tools for you to identify a particular area of scholarship and professional practice in the field that you will have the opportunity to more deeply investigate.

You may choose to align your project or placement with your professional work if you are already employed in the sector, or you may conduct the project in conjunction with an organisation that you have a relationship with.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • Plan, design and present an applied research project within an international development context
  • Engage with appropriate professional and scholarly literature
  • Critically review appropriate participatory tools, methods and techniques in research design or project planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation
  • Identify appropriate research approaches and methods to respond to an authentic industry problem or address a contemporary issue faced in organisations

You will be assessed on your development of the following program learning outcomes:

  • critically reflect on socio-cultural diversity and values, world systems and the benefits of local and global development practices for communities engaged in development processes
  • determine and apply the specialist knowledge and technical skills required to creatively solve problems, demonstrating expert judgment and ethical responsibility in your professional practice in international development
  • critically analyse, synthesize and reflect on personal awareness and lived experience, theories and practices of development, both local and international, to extend and challenge knowledge and practice in the discipline
  • professionally communicate propositions, processes and outcomes relating to international development to address specialist and non-specialist audiences
  • provide leadership within your discipline as well as collaborate with others
  • use appropriate research methods to design and execute substantial projects, evaluate the outcomes and theorize about the contribution of your learning to the profession and knowledge area
  • critically reflect on the causes and impacts of poverty in global contexts and to evaluate the theories and practice of development institutions

Overview of Learning Activities

The course is offered in online and face to face modes. You will be guided in identifying and securing a project or placement where you will have the opportunity to conduct research, critique, question and compare industry practices. You will also receive industry/community feedback on your applications.

As well as conducting individual research, you will be engaged in learning that involves peer learning.
Learning activities may include intensive mode lectures, class activities, presentations, independent research and regular seminars focused on sharing and planning project work.

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems. A list of recommended learning resources will be provided, including books, journal articles and web resources. An introductory overview of key literature, concepts and processes/methods relevant to your project and working with industry will be available as well as additional references are also provided to you if you wish to follow particular themes in more detail. You will also be expected to seek further resources relevant to the focus of your own learning.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment will cover both theoretical and practical aspects of your learning. You will be able to develop your work in relation to your own specific areas of interest in your professional practice.
You will be assessed on how well you meet the course’s learning outcomes and on your ability to demonstrate the program learning outcomes.

Assessment may include a combination of presentations, an online blog, confirmed project/placement agreement and an approved project/placement proposal.

Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks.