Course Title: Conduct research

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2016

Course Code: COMM5916C

Course Title: Conduct research

School: 345T Media and Communication

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5314 - Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing

Course Contact: Program Administration

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925-4815

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Lorna Hendry

Nominal Hours: 30

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

Conducting research and analysing your findings is an important part of writing a wide range of business documents and projects. This unit is designed to cover the skills and knowledge required for you to conduct comprehensive research in response to a brief.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUFRES401A Conduct research


1. Clarify research brief

Performance Criteria:


1.   Confirm topic or content to be researched with relevant personnel, including deadlines for completion

2.   Identify research and data gathering techniques that best meet the requirements of the brief

3.   Discuss research ideas fully and constructively with relevant personnel and identify any implications for research briefs

4.   Reach agreement with relevant personnel on the format for presenting research findings

5.   Identify issues of a culturally sensitive or legal nature that affect research briefs

6.   Alert relevant personnel to potential difficulties in meeting briefs and agree on alternative strategies or outcomes

7.   Where specialist research expertise is required, identify potential subcontractors and organise subcontract arrangements in consultation with relevant personnel


2. Conduct research

Performance Criteria:

8.   Identify sources of information and potential contributors relevant to research briefs

9.   Design research tools as required

10. Contact a sufficiently wide range of valid sources to optimise information gathering in line with research briefs and agreed methodology

11. Approach relevant sources promptly and in a way most likely to elicit the required information

12. Adjust research strategies as required, without compromising required outcomes

13. Maintain accurate and comprehensive details of information sources

14. Adjust contact information when requirements of research briefs change and keep records up to date

15. Record all data gathered in a system that allows easy access and retrieval of information in the analysis phase


3. Analyse research findings

Performance Criteria:


16. Analyse and interpret data or information gathered

17. Check all facts before including them in research findings

18. Make judgements about how much information to include in research findings and be clear on the rationale for doing so

19. Develop conclusions and recommendations as required in consultation with relevant personnel


4. Present research findings

Performance Criteria:


20. Organise information logically and clearly in the agreed format

21. Present information to relevant personnel by agreed deadlines

22. Identify key issues for further research or discussion with relevant personnel

23. Seek feedback on the quality of research outcomes and note areas for improvement

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit you will be able to use a range of research and data gathering techniques to gather the information needed to write a range of business documents and projects. 

Details of Learning Activities

This course is co-delivered with BSBPMG510A Major Projects

In this course, you will learn through:

1. In-class activities:
- lectures
- teacher directed group activities/ projects
- guest speakers
- group discussion
- class exercises
- workshopping

2. Out-of-class activities:
- online and other research
- independent and group project based work
- independent study

Teaching Schedule



 Class Content





Course outline/assessment

What is a project?

Outline of project management skills

Analysis of project manager job descriptions

Project documentation

Brainstorm ideas for projects


Computer lab:

Research project ideas

Create a template for your personal reflection 





Note-taking skills

Case study: Blueprint festival

Stages of a project

Why projects fail

Update on project ideas


Computer lab:

Research project ideas







Working in teams – group theory

Teamwork – decision making, setting goals, assigning roles, team rules

Meeting procedures

Setting personal goals


Computer lab:

Online personality typing

Research project ideas and work on pitch

Personal reflection










Present pitches

Form teams


Computer lab:

Team meeting – assign roles and document meeting

Create templates for agendas/minutes/timesheets

Begin project proposal

Personal reflection 

Project pitch





Managing conflict

Identifying and managing resources


Computer lab:

Team meeting

Feedback on project proposal

Project work – deliverable 1

Personal reflection 





Customer/stakeholder needs

Project management tools

- Developing timelines/schedules

- Using project management charts: flow, pert, gantt


Computer lab:

Team meeting

Project work

Personal reflection 





Budgeting – internal and external

Tracking and recording resources


Computer lab:

Team meeting

Project work

Prepare progress report

Personal reflection 






Present progress reports

Class discussion on any issues, concerns or questions


Computer lab:

Team meeting

Project work

Personal reflection 



Feedback on progress reports

Marketing and publicity


Computer lab:

Team meeting

Project work

Personal reflection 




Risk management and contingency plans


Legal requirements


Computer lab:

Team meeting

Project work

Personal reflection 

Project plan:

Deliverable 1





Feedback on project plan

Change management


Computer lab:

Team meeting

Project work

Personal reflection 





Mid-semester break: 19–30 September





Presentation skills

Guest speaker: TBC


Computer lab:

Team meeting

Project work

Personal reflection 





Group work to complete Deliverable 2

Computer lab:

Team meeting

Project work

Personal reflection 






Rehearse team presentation


Computer lab:

Team meeting

Project work

Project plan:

Deliverable 2







Team presentations

Team presentation




Semester review





Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


You are advised to check the Blackboard site for additional information and resources.

Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

Assessment is on-going throughout the course. Assessment will incorporate a range of methods to assess performance and the application of knowledge and skills and will include:

  • participation in written exercises, in class and online
  • oral presentations
  • the application of learned skills and insights to researching in response to a brief.

Assessment Tasks

This course is assessed with BSBPMG510A Manage Projects.

To demonstrate competency in this course you will need to complete the following assessment to a satisfactory standard. You will receive feedback on all assessment and once you have demonstrated competency, you will receive a grade for Assessment Task 2 Deliverable 2 and Assessment Task 3 (refer to Blackboard for assessment criteria and grading rubric).

Assessment Task 1. Individual presentation: Project pitch. Due Week 4 (28 July)
You will research a potential project and make a short pitch to the class for it to be taken on as one of the class’s activities for the semester.

Assessment Task 2. Project plan. Submitted in two (2) parts
- Deliverable 1. Due Week 10 (8 September)
     - Deliverable 2. Due Week 14 (20 October) (graded)
As a team, you will create, maintain and update a comprehensive, well-organised and professionally presented project plan that documents all aspects of your project. Individually you will write a personal reflection on the project. Deliverables will be submitted in 2 parts.

Assessment Task 3. Group presentation. Due Week 15 (27 October) (graded)
As a team, you will present a review of your project to the class. Every member will participate actively in the presentation and some audio and/or visual content is required. 

Graded assessment in this course uses the following grades:

CHD Competent with High Distinction
CDI Competent with Distinction
CC Competent with Credit
CAG Competency Achieved – Graded
NYC Not Yet Competent
DNS Did Not Submit for Assessment

Assessment Matrix

The assessment matrix demonstrates alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency. These are available from the course contact in Program Administration.

Other Information

Other Information

Please refer to the RMIT student page for extensive information about study support, assessment, extensions, appeals and a range of other matters:   

Submission of work
You must submit your work electronically to your teacher. Your assessment briefs will specify whether this be by email, Google docs or Blackboard.

Cover Sheet for Submissions
You must complete and sign a submission cover sheet for every piece of submitted work. This should be submitted electronically with your assessment items.;ID=x3ddsmsrwa1hz   

Your learning experience will involve class-based teaching, discussion, demonstration and practical exercises. It is strongly advised that you attend all timetabled sessions. This will allow you to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring you the maximum opportunity to complete this course successfully.   

Assessment Feedback
You will receive spoken and written feedback on all your work.  Where relevant, this feedback will also include suggestions on how you can proceed to the next stage of developing your projects.;ID=qwxbqbg739rl1   

Academic Progress
Monitoring academic progress is an important enabling and proactive strategy designed to assist you in achieving your learning potential.   

Adjustments to Assessment 
If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment satisfactorily by the due date, you can choose to apply for an adjustment to your assessment. RMIT University offers a range of adjustments designed to support you in your studies, including an extension of time to complete the assessment.

Academic Integrity and Plagiarism
RMIT University has a strict policy on plagiarism and academic integrity. Please refer to the website for more information on this policy.   

Credit Transfer and Recognition of Prior Learning 
Credit transfer is the recognition of previously completed formal learning (an officially accredited qualification). Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is an assessment process that allows you to demonstrate competence using the skills you have gained through experience in the workplace, voluntary work, informal or formal training or other life experiences.

Recognition of Current Competency (RCC) RCC applies only if you have previously successfully demonstrated competence in a unit of competency, and now require to be reassessed to ensure that the competence is being maintained.   

Please speak to your teacher if you wish to discuss applying for Credit Transfer, RPL, or RCC for the unit(s) of competency addressed in this course. 

Course Overview: Access Course Overview