Course Title: Industry Engagement for Disaster Design and Development

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Industry Engagement for Disaster Design and Development

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


320H Architecture & Urban Design


Sem 1 2019,
Sem 2 2019,
Sem 1 2020,
Sem 2 2020,
Sem 2 2021,
Sem 2 2022

Course Coordinator: Esther Charlesworth

Course Coordinator Phone: Contact via Email

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: online

Course Coordinator Availability: Appointment via email

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

This course aims to link academic with practical workplace learning and/or training in the Disaster, Design and Development (DDD) field. It also provides you with the opportunity to further investigate a particular area of scholarship and professional practice in the DDD field.

The course is offered in partnership with industry and may include placements in organizations involved in post-disaster reconstruction, disaster risk reduction or community-based development. It can also involve undertaking training programs with industry partners.

This course provides you with an opportunity to work with NGOs, community groups, local or national government agencies, the private sector, philanthropic groups, foundations or campaigns, particularly committed to development and/or humanitarian assistance issues. You may choose to align your project 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.

The aim is for you to reflect on and extend your knowledge and skills in professional work situations and develop an applied understanding of DDD industry practices. You will receive feedback from clients and supervisors, develop professional work practices, and experience workplace culture in the humanitarian sector whilst you explore career options and

develop a professional network. You will conduct research to underpin and support your time on placement and to facilitate your own learning.

Placements or training opportunities can be undertaken in an international or national setting. Placements should be between 40 to 80 working days. However, the meaningfulness of the internship is determined less by duration than the quality of the learning experience.

The duration of training programs should be no less than 39 hours contact and will need to be approved by the program manager.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

In this course, you will develop the following Program Learning Outcomes: 

  • Determine and apply specialist knowledge and research skills required to creatively solve problems, demonstrating expert judgment and ethical responsibility relating to your professional practice in disaster, design and development.
  • Critically analyse, synthesize and reflect on complex theories and recent developments globally to extend and challenge knowledge and practice in design and development for disaster risk reduction and management.
  • Professionally communicate propositions, processes and outcomes to address specialist and non-specialist audiences.
  • Provide leadership within your discipline as well as collaborate with others.
  • Master a body of knowledge and specific technical skills to progress your professional career within the contemporary disaster management, design and development arena.

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

  1. Critically engage with professional and scholarly literature to inform project planning and design.
  2. Analyse and evaluate research approaches and methods to respond to contemporary problems and issues in the DDD industry and/or organisations.
  3. Articulate and reflect on key guiding principles and practices that are necessary for working in the DDD sector.
  4. Reflect on your skills, capabilities, and knowledge in relation to DDD in local and global contexts.
  5. Present projects to diverse stakeholders in professional settings.

Overview of Learning Activities

This course will involve work placements such as internships. This may also involve overseas placements. The placement can be arranged for you through RMIT, or you may find your own placement in consultation with the course coordinator. You should begin planning your placement several months in advance of the course commencement. 

You may also be actively engaged in a range of learning activities such as lectures, tutorials, seminars, project work, class discussion, individual and group activities. Delivery may be face-to-face, online or a mix of both.

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems.

There are services available to support your learning through the University Library. The Library provides guides on academic referencing and subject specialist help as well as a range of study support services. For further information, please visit the Library page on the RMIT University website and the myRMIT student portal.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment will include research about key organizations working in the field of Disaster, Design and Development in preparation for your internship, a reflective practice journal including reflection on feedback from supervisors, and a portfolio of work that you have undertaken as part of your placement.

You will be assessed on how well you meet the course learning outcomes and on your development against the program learning outcomes.

Assessment Task One
1,500 word Project/Placement Proposal (20%)
CLOs: 1, 2,

Assessment Task Two
Reflective Journal/Blog Midway (20%)
CLOs: 3, 4

Assessment Task Three
2,500 word Final Report (40%)
CLOs: 1,2, 3

Assessment Task Four
Final Reflective Journal/Blog (including an oral presentation of placement key findings to industry) (20%)
CLOs: 3, 4, 5

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 Equitable Learning Services if you would like to find out more.

Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies, procedures and instructions