Course Title: Research history and theory to inform own arts practice

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2014

Course Code: HUSO5195C

Course Title: Research history and theory to inform own arts practice

School: 340T Art

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4311 - Certificate IV in Visual Arts

Course Contact: Jennifer Mills

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4472

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Anthony Riccardi

Nominal Hours: 70

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

In this course you will develop the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to research history and theory for application to artistic practice.


People working in all areas of arts practice apply the skills and knowledge described in this unit. The effectiveness of any creative work is enhanced if supported by a well-developed understanding of the history and theory associated with its genre, style or medium.

At this level, conclusions drawn from research may involve challenging different points of view as part of the process of developing one’s own creative voice. Research activity is largely independent with some guidance as required.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUVRES401A Research history and theory to inform own arts practice


1. Research history and theory

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Discuss research ideas with appropriate people and identify implications for own arts practice
1.2 Identify and explore potential new and alternative sources of information that could be relevant to own arts practice
1.3 Use formal and informal research techniques appropriately to access information
1.4 Organise research materials and findings for current and future use


2. Link research to own arts practice

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Evaluate information in the context of own arts practice and the work of others
2.2 Assess ways in which different aspects of history and theory may be used, adapted and challenged
2.3 Distil key themes, messages and positions to assist in clarity of thought
2.4 Develop conclusions on research findings in consultation with appropriate people as required


3. Update and maintain knowledge of trends in own arts practice

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Identify and use opportunities to update and expand own knowledge of history and theory
3.2 Incorporate and integrate knowledge into own arts practice
3.3 Seek feedback on the quality of research methodology and outcomes and note areas for future improvement

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will have completed research projects that will contribute to a portfolio of evidence.


Evidence of the ability to undertake the following is essential:

  • use research and critical thinking techniques to evaluate information and distil key themes and ideas
  • apply knowledge of historical and theoretical references to own arts practice.    

Details of Learning Activities

In this course, you learn through:
1. In-class activities:
• lectures
• teacher directed studio activities/projects
• studio exercises to review discussions/lectures
• peer teaching and class presentations
• group discussion
• studio work

2. Out-of-class activities include:
• practical exercises
• reading articles and excerpts
• preparing for discussion
• project work
• independent research

You are expected to manage your learning and undertake an appropriate amount of out-of-class independent study and research and industry guests speak about professional practice.

Teaching Schedule

WeekCourse ContentTasksElements
1Introduction to course:
• Learning outcomes
• Assessment criteria
• Course requirements
• Essay outline
• Consultation framework.

All assessment tasks are to be submitted by week 20 in a folio.
1, 1.1, 1.2, 1.3
2-6Theoretical frameworks 1
• Cultural research project
7-9Theoretical frameworks 2
• Compare critical views of artists and their works
10-11Essay Consultation3.4

Theoretical frameworks 3
• Investigate issues regarding historical and contemporary production,
• Investigate interpretation, promotion and consumption of culture

2.2, 2.3, 2.4
16-19Theoretical frameworks 4
• Professional practice issues regarding art practice and the arts industry
20Presentations of work relating to theoretical framework1.4

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems. Learning resources include access to studios and computer laboratories and relevant software. You will also be expected to make use of the library resources.

You will also be encouraged to attend exhibition openings and visit galleries outside of your learning environment. RMIT School of Art has two galleries and an ongoing exhibition program.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment for this course is on going throughout the semester. Your knowledge and understanding of course content is assessed through completion of a body of work that demonstrates concept development, understanding of materials and adhering to the guidelines of working in a studio.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Tasks
Semester 2:
1. Assessment title: Presentations of work relating to theoretical framework - Artists of influence
Visual Diary Tasks – formative task
Due date: W10

2. Assessment title: Essay
Theoretical impact on work – summative task
Due date: W20

Assessment Matrix

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

Other Information

You will receive verbal and written feedback by teacher on your work. This feedback also includes suggestions on how you can proceed to the next stage of developing your projects.
Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks.

RMIT has a strict policy on plagiarism. Please refer to the website for more information on this 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.
Please refer to the following URL for extensions and special consideration:;ID=qkssnx1c5r0y;STATUS=A;PAGE_AUTHOR=Andrea%20Syers;SECTION=1;

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.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview