Course Title: Develop and extend critical and creative thinking skills

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2013

Course Code: EMPL5960C

Course Title: Develop and extend critical and creative thinking skills

School: 320T Architecture & Design

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C4322 - Certificate IV in Design

Course Contact : Leigh Milward

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 9438

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Nominal Hours: 40

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


This course is delivered and assessed in conjunction with GRAP5335 Generate design solutions.

Course Description

In this course you will develop the skills and knowledge required to think in a more creative way. Creative thinking involves looking at things differently, musing, testing, experimenting and challenging existing thought patterns.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

BSBCRT301A Develop and extend critical and creative thinking skills


1. Develop a questioning mindset

Performance Criteria:

1.1. Develop the habit of asking questions from different perspectives
1.2. Take responsibility for exploring a variety of information sources to provide relevant answers to own questions
1.3. Sort through information and ideas to identify the central questions, issues and challenges
1.4. Challenge preconceptions and assumptions to determine actual constraints in defining a problem for resolution


3. Challenge, test and re invent ideas

Performance Criteria:

3.1. Identify, interrogate and challenge the assumptions behind ideas
3.2. Experiment with variations, and explore and challenge a range of different solutions and ideas
3.3. Consciously change perspectives, and evaluate ideas and situations in new ways
3.4. Where appropriate, involve others in ideas and how they might change or be improved


4. Enhance creative thinking skills

Performance Criteria:

4.1. Consciously challenge and question own thought patterns and ways of responding to work and life situations
4.2. Identify and take opportunities to self-assess and to learn about new ideas and different ways of thinking
4.3. Take opportunities to practise and experiment with creative thinking techniques across work and life situations
4.4. Pro-actively talk to others about ways that new ideas and patterns of thinking can be encouraged and developed


2. Generate ideas and responses

Performance Criteria:

2.1. Explore and use a range of creative thinking techniques to generate ideas and responses
2.2. Muse on, play around with and have fun with ideas in relation to a perceived objective
2.3. Identify and challenge blockers to creative thinking
2.4. Consider and explore realities beyond the current situation
2.5. Evaluate, and where appropriate, challenge existing boundaries to determine perceived or actual constraints
2.6. Show willingness to take risks with ideas and thought processes
2.7. Look around in familiar and unfamiliar places for new inspiration and habitually record observations, experiences, ideas and reflective thoughts to broaden personal knowledge base
2.8. Acknowledge and accept the opportunity for revelation when least expected
2.9. Identify connections and associations from things that seem unconnected

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will have developed and applied the skills and knowledge required to demonstrate your competency in the above elements.

Details of Learning Activities

Participants in this course will be exposed to, and take part in, various design related activities to explore and build skills towards more creative, reflexive and self critical thinking.

’Design Games’* will be played that encourage individual and collaborative Design Process and Completed Design. *In this context the structure of some Games will be used that incorporate the various possibilities of designing in alternate modes such as: 2d & 3d; surface versus spatial; trajectories of design process and final design (via distribution); planned, contingent &/or random; identity & communication.

Research Collection & Analysis will be used together with Research via Practice. Participants will be required to Collect and Organize their own Research into useful and referable media.

Participants will also be required to Communicate in various modes including: Speaking, Listening, Recording, Reading, Responding, Searching, Sharing & Discussing. These modes can create demands where individual participants may have different levels of skill, ability or motivation. Where possible in group work roles will be assigned according to personal choice, HOWEVER at times participants will be required to adopt a role in which the pre-existing skill, or motivation is low. This requirement is clearly outlined in the performance criteria above, for example: 4.1 Consciously challenge and question own thought patterns and ways of responding to work and life situations.

Design Processes will work towards Completed Designs via ONE Research/Process ’portfolio’ & TWO Major Project outcomes.

Teaching Schedule

 Please note: While your teacher will cover all the material in this schedule, the weekly order is subject to change depending on class needs and availability of speakers and resources.



Orientation Week



Develop - Q&A.
Research/Process Task 1. Design Game 1.

Research/Process Portfolio start.



Research/Process Task 2. Design Game 2.



Design 1 - Brief ’Trajectory’. Delivery of project brief and discussion.

Research/Process Task 3. Design Game 3.



Design 1- Generate. [idea & concept generation]

Research/Process Portfolio review #1



Design 1 - Challenge. [critique & develop concepts with review and also media experimentation]



Design 1 - Enhance. [take existing concepts and media through to further developed potential outcomes]



 > Production/Communication. [use in-person and also online methods to communicate where necessary to finalise design; use necessary techniques either on or off campus to produce design]

Research/Process Portfolio review #2



Design 2 - Brief ’Situation’. Delivery of project brief and discussion.

Design 1 - Final Design Due Date



*no attendance* Public Holiday

> Production/Communication. Online Task [experiment in generation of ideas via online media]



*no attendance* AGIdeas OR Alternate Task.

Design 2 - Generate. [*this session time is taken by AGIdeas attendance so activity will be self directed OR online - idea & concept generation]



Design 2 - Challenge. [critique & develop concepts with review and also media experimentation]



Design 2 - Enhance. [take existing concepts and media through to further developed potential outcomes]



> Production/Communication. [use in-person and also online methods to communicate where necessary to finalise design; use necessary techniques either on or off campus to produce design]



Research/Process Portfolio review #3

Design 2 - Final Design Due Date



Finale & Design Game 4.

Research/Process Portfolio - Final Due Date

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

None required


You are advised to look at the course myRMIT site for ongoing updated information.

Other Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems and access to specialised facilities and relevant software. You will also have access of the library resources.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment is on-going throughout the course. Assessment tasks will require you demonstrate the application of knowledge and skills and will include group and individual tasks and group and individual projects.

Assessment tasks are:
Project 1 50%
Project 2 50%

An assessment charter summarises your responsibilities as an RMIT student as well as those of your teachers.

Assessment Tasks

To demonstrate competency in this course you need to complete the following to a satisfactory standard. Part A (Formative Tasks) - Part B (Summative Project):

Research/Process ’portfolio’. 

A: Research collection/analysis/production; Design Game participation; Design Process participation/documentation.
B: Development of Content/Presentation of Portfolio.
Dates: Three reviews (week 5 - March 14, week 11 - May 2, week 15 - May 30) THEN Final Submission (week 16 - June 6)

Design #1. 

A: Ideas generate/challenge/enhance & produce/document; 
B: Production/presentation of Design.
Dates: Brief Week 4 - March 7; Project Due Week 9 - April 18

Design #2.
A: Ideas generate/challenge/enhance & produce/document; 
B: Production/presentation of Design.
Dates: Brief Week 9 - ; Project Due Week 15 - May 30

Assessment Grades.
The following grades apply to courses delivered in accordance with competency-based assessment, but which also use graded assessment:

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

Assessment Methodology.
This Course will comprise formative & summative assessment. Prior to commencement you will be informed of HOW the tasks & projects will be assessed.
Formative TASKS are assessed simply as: Complete/Not complete, OR Participated / Didn’t participate. The quality of these tasks however will be described via verbal or text feedback. Formative tasks provide the basis for ongoing feedback and can be considered essential building blocks for the more substantial summative assessment projects.
Summative PROJECTS will be Graded at Assessment. Summative projects will use, and improve upon, elements produced or processes explored as part of the formative tasks.
The Quality of your work will be assessed in accordance with demonstrated works by previous & current students, and in comparison to examples provided both by yourself during research, and also examples discussed during sessions or in communication. These quality benchmarks are discussed in relation to personal goals, but also in relation to our percieved, externally relevant, levels & standards.

Assessment Matrix

An assessment matrix demonstrating alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency is available from the course contact person (stated above).

Other Information

The major learning experiences involve individual and collaborative activities which require participation with designated tasks and roles during sessions scheduled on-campus. It is strongly
advised that you participate in the on-campus sessions, and also any activities which require online participation, in order to engage in the required learning, ensuring the
maximum opportunity to gain the competency.
You will receive verbal OR text feedback by teacher on your work. This feedback also includes suggestions
on how you can proceed to the next stage of developing your projects. In this particular course feedback may require response, or other forms of documentation such as note taking or recording.
Student feedback at RMIT
Student Progress
Monitoring academic progress is an important enabling and proactive strategy to assist you to achieve your
learning potential. Student progress policy
Special consideration Policy (Late Submission)
All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level. If you are unable to complete any
piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension. Special consideration, appeals 
and discipline (unresolved)

Cover Sheet for Submissions
You must complete a submission cover sheet for every piece of submitted work. This signed sheet
acknowledges that you are aware of the plagiarism implications.
Academic Integrity and Plagiarism
RMIT University has a strict policy on plagiarism and academic integrity. Please refer to the website for more for more
information on this policy go to Academic Integrity

Course Overview: Access Course Overview