Course Title: Public Relations Essentials: Concepts and Practice

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Public Relations Essentials: Concepts and Practice

Credit Points: 24.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


345H Media and Communication


Sem 1 2015,
Sem 1 2016,
Sem 1 2017,
Sem 1 2018,
Sem 1 2019,
Sem 1 2020

Course Coordinator: Michaela Jackson

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 3909

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: Building 9 Level 5

Course Coordinator Availability: Contact Course Coordinator

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

In this course you will explore the evolution, principles and practice of public relations in a global context. The course also introduces you to key communication techniques in the context of public relations practice. It looks at prominent areas of Public Relations practice and specialisation, and considers environments in which Public Relations practitioners work, relating them to ethical dimensions for the practitioner, the Public Relations industry and society. This course will introduce you to communicating a message and writing for a variety of media platforms. You will develop expertise in formulating key messages aligned to objectives as well as communicating effectively to publics and stakeholders.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

In this course you will develop the following program learning outcomes:

  • Discuss and analyse how public relations concepts are used in public and private sector practice.
  • Apply a body of theoretical and practical knowledge and specific skills in public relations in which to base your professional practice or future study.
  • Develop a critical perspective about public relations in both local and international contexts.
  • Work with others in a range of roles and contexts, demonstrating cultural, environmental and social awareness and ethical and reflective practice.

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

  1. Identify and discuss key aspects of the development, and principles and practices, of modern public relations.
  2. Examine links between public relations, communication theory and applied communication practice.
  3. Identify and analyse contexts in which public relations practitioners operate as well as relevant professional issues.
  4. Discuss major current issues and trends relevant to global public relations practice.
  5. Apply stakeholder-specific public relations writing skills; adopting appropriate style, accuracy, relevance and timeliness.
  6. Reflect on ways in which contemporary and emerging technologies and social influences inform public relations writing.

Overview of Learning Activities

You will be actively engaged in learning that involves a range of activities such as lectures, tutorials, seminars, project work, class discussion, individual and group activities.

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 by your lecturer, including books, journal articles and web resources. You will also be expected to seek further resources relevant to the focus of your own learning.

The University Library has extensive resources for public relations students. The Library has produced a subject guide that includes quality online and print resources for your studies:

The Library provides guides on academic referencing: and subject specialist help via your Liaison Librarian.

Overview of Assessment

You will be assessed on how well you meet the course’s learning outcomes and on your development against the program learning outcomes. Assessment may include essays, reports, reflective papers, creative projects and presentations, individually and in groups. Assessment will cover both theoretical and practical aspects of your learning.

Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks.

If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or the Equitable Learning Services if you would like to find out more.

Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies, procedures and instructions which are available for review online: Assessment

Task 1: Written Glossary / Guide Entries [Individual, 10% Linked CLO's: 1, 2 & 3, 5]   Task 2: Writing Folio [individual, 45% Linked CLO's: 4, 5, 6]    Task 3: Critique [Pairs, 20% Linked CLO's: 2, 3, 5]   Task 4: Podcast/Video/ Presentation [Group, 25% Linked CLO's: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6]