Course Title: Interpret and respond to a design brief

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2018

Course Code: BUSM5879C

Course Title: Interpret and respond to a design brief

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

Teacher: Yannick Thoraval

Nominal Hours: 20

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

 There are no pre-requisites or co-requisites for this course

Course Description

Writing business or technical documents may involve responding to a specific brief. In this course you gain the skills and knowledge needed to interpret and respond effectively to a brief. Through the process of interpretation, you also analyse the elements of a successful brief and learn, in the process, how to write one.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

BSBDES402A Interpret and respond to a design brief


1. Interpret design brief 

Performance Criteria:

1.1.Correctly interpret the specifications of the design brief

1.2.Establish and clarify user or client for the proposed product/service to inform design decisions

1.3.Identify and clarify specifications, parameters or constraints of the design brief in consultation with relevant colleagues

1.4.Source and evaluate information pertinent to design brief


2. Explore and develop design concept

Performance Criteria:

2.1.Generate ideas for design concept through research, exploration and experimentation

2.2.Develop initial design concept consistent with design brief parameters

2.3.Evaluate and explore options for refining the concept to best meet design brief parameters

2.4.Refine options and select the approach which best meets design brief requirements


3. Liaise with client

Performance Criteria:

3.1.Agree on communication process and frequency of communication with the client

3.2.Present concepts for work at appropriate stages during design process as required

3.3.Present and explore different options and creative ideas with client when appropriate

3.4.Pro-actively seek and act on client feedback

3.5.Reach agreement on concept for work which complies with design brief


4. Plan production of work

Performance Criteria:

4.1.Assess specific design production risks

4.2.Identify all components required to produce a prototype

4.3.Assess technical requirements for production against specified guidelines

4.4.Identify and consult with support services required for production

4.5.Produce a prototype and evaluate against design brief requirements

4.6.Analyse prototype and determine any further adjustments to production requirements

4.7.Finalise production specifications supported by accurate and complete documentation


5. Complete production of work

Performance Criteria:

5.1.Collect and/or organise required components for the work

5.2.Produce or monitor the production of work ensuring all parameters of design brief are met

5.3.Accurately document work progress in a format appropriate to the nature of the design and requirements of design brief

5.4.Seek client approval for work where appropriate

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will be able to develop and respond effectively to a written brief.

Details of Learning Activities

In class activities may include:

  • Lectures
  • Guest lecture
  • Class presentations
  • Group discussions
  • Teacher directed group activities/projects
  • Class exercises to review discussions/lectures
  • Workshopping of student projects
  • Analysis/critique of relevant reading material

Out of class activities may include:

  • Online research
  • Independent project based work

Teaching Schedule


Course Schedule: Interpret and Respond to a Design Brief, Semester 1, 2018                                                         





Week 1


What is a brief 

Activity: Exploring course schedules and discussion

Introductions and explanation of  course structure and assessments

Definitions of briefs

Types of briefs

·       policy

·       research

·       design

·       writing

·       decision        

The value of a brief in project management

The risks in a poorly written brief

The risks in a poorly followed brief

Explore the differences between an effective and an ineffective brief

Format of a brief

Interpret a business/design brief

Scope/parameters of the brief


Assessment 1 Assigned

Assessment 1

Due: Sunday 11 February

Note Class#2 due 4 March

Week 2


Writing a brief

Activity: Outlining your needs and setting expectations. 

Explore and develop creative/design brief concept

Generate ideas to respond to a brief

Creative thinking and problem solving

Managing intellectual property



Week 3


Interpreting a brief

Liaising with clients

Activity: Identifying and addressing potential risks and issues. Managing professional relationships. Executing the brief


Assessment Two:

Due: Sunday 4 March

Note: Class#2 due 25 March


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.


Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

Your teacher will supply all readings and class materials in class.

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 clss and online
  • oral presentations
  • the application of learned skills and insights to your writing tasks.

Assessment Tasks

To demonstrate competency in this course you will need to complete the following two pieces of assessment to a satisfactory standard. You will receive feedback from the teacher at the conclusion of each assessment task. You should refer to the assessment brief which is available on Canvas for full assessment criteria.

Assessment One: Write a Design Brief (Class #1 Due 11 February; Class#2 due 4 March) 

You will write a clear and thorough brief to a service provider based on one of the supplied scenarios. You will then share your brief with a colleague and provide and receive critical feedback on your brief.

Assessment Two (Graded): Interpret and Respond to a Design Brief (Class #1 Due 4 March; Class#2 25 March)

You will respond to a supplied design brief by:

  • summarising your understanding of the client’s requirements
  • producing an initial production timeline
  • preparing an initial budget
  • gathering some sample images
  • listing services required
  • writing sample text
  • preparing a list of questions you have for the client.

Once you have demonstrated competency, you will also receive a grade for Assessment Two and for the course. Refer to MyRMIT for grading rubric. 

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 matrices are available on Canvas under the 'Assessments' tab.

Other Information

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

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.

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

Adjustments to Assessment (eg. applying for an extension of time):
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