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CMS3009 Research and Inquiry in Communication and Media

Semester 1, 2021 Online
Short Description: Rsch&Inqry in Cmnctn & Media
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts
School or Department : School of Humanities & Communication
Student contribution band : 2021 Grandfather Funding Cl 1
ASCED code : 100799 - Communication and Media Studie
Grading basis : Graded


Examiner: Andrew Hickey

Other requisites

Students will require access to e-mail and have internet access to UConnect for this course.


The disciplines of communication and media studies utilise specialist methods of analysis. This course introduces students to modes of inquiry and analysis used in communication and media studies to enable engagement with and understanding of the ways popular culture and mass media products are produced, disseminated and consumed.


This course will equip students with a comprehensive knowledge of the specialist methods of analysis used in communication and media studies. Using contemporary approaches to textual analysis, discourse analysis and ethnography as well as analytic practices drawn from current developments in communication, media and cultural studies, this course will equip students with the requisite skills to undertake the critique and analysis of popular cultural and mass media texts.


On completion of this course students should be able to:

  1. discuss the traditions of analysis used in communications and media studies;
  2. apply selected methods of analysis used in communication and media studies to decode and analyse selected communications and media texts;
  3. use key disciplinary terms and/or approaches in applying specialist communication and media studies approaches in the analysis of communications and media texts.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Criticism, critique and communication and media studies 40.00
2. Methods of analysis 40.00
3. Critical practices 20.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

There are no texts or materials required for this course.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
Denzin, NK & Lincoln YS 2017, The Sage handbook of qualitative research, 5th edn, SAGE Publications Inc, Thousand Oaks.
Jensen, KB 2012, A handbook of media and communication research: qualitative and quantitative methodologies, 2nd edn, Routledge, London.
Quaan-Haase, A & Sloan, L 2017, SAGE handbook of social media research methods, SAGE Publications Inc, Thousand Oaks.

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Directed Study 39.00
Private Study 126.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Objectives Assessed Notes
PROPOSAL 100 40 02 Apr 2021 1,2,3
PROJECT 100 60 04 Jun 2021 1,2,3

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    It is the students' responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them, to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks for that item.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the aggregate of the weighted marks obtained for each of the summative items for the course.

  6. Examination information:
    There is no examination in this course.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    There is no examination in this course, there will be no deferred or supplementary examinations.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. Referencing in assignments must comply with the Harvard (AGPS) referencing system. This system should be used by students to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The Harvard (APGS) style to be used is defined by the USQ library’s referencing guide. This guide can be found at

Evaluation and benchmarking

In meeting the University’s aims to establish quality learning and teaching for all programs, this course monitors and ensures quality assurance and improvements in at least two ways. This course:

  1. conforms to the USQ Policy on Evaluation of Teaching, Courses and Programs to ensure ongoing monitoring and systematic improvement
  2. forms part of the Bachelor of Communication and Media and is benchmarked against the internal USQ accreditation/reaccreditation processes which include (i) stringent standards in the independent accreditation of its academic programs, (ii) close integration between business and academic planning, and (iii) regular and rigorous review.

Date printed 18 June 2021