• Class Number 6185
  • Term Code 3160
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 12 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Maria Nugent
    • Maria Nugent
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 26/07/2021
  • Class End Date 29/10/2021
  • Census Date 14/09/2021
  • Last Date to Enrol 02/08/2021
SELT Survey Results

This course seeks to enhance students’ skills in historical writing and presentation.  Students enrolled in this course will analyse critically a range of historical texts and genres, focussing particularly on issues of structure, style, voice and narrative technique.  They will explore diverse means of presenting research findings, including visual and oral presentation.  They will reflect on their own practices and those of others. Topics examine the art and craft of historical practice in traditional and contemporary forms of historical writing and performance. Through workshops, students will develop their own abilities in the design and presentation of a research project.  Collectively, the components of the course provide extended analysis of, and training in, methods of expression and communication within the discipline of history.  The skills developed, however, have much broader professional applications. 


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

    Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

    1. Identify structural, rhetorical and artistic devices within historical texts and other genres for the dissemination of historical thinking.
    2. Evaluate the role of such devices in effectively communicating with different audiences.
    3. Articulate and defend choices in the design and presentation of their own research.
    4. Communicate their research results in a range of formats.
    5. Provide constructive feedback to others in relation to issues of historical writing and presentation.


    Ann Curthoys and Ann McGrath, How to Write History that People Want to Read (Sydney: UNSW Press, 2009), http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/anu/detail.action?docID=533792

    Ann Curthoys and Ann McGrath (eds), Writing Histories: Imagination and Narration (Melbourne: Monash University ePress, 2009), http://www.epress.monash.edu.au/wh/index.html

    Greg Dening, Performances (Melbourne University Press, 1996)

    Tom Griffiths, The Art of Time Travel: Historians and their Craft (Melbourne: Black Inc. Books, 2016), https://ebookcentral-proquest-com.virtual.anu.edu.au/lib/anu/detail.action?docID=4419742

    Stephen Pyne, Voice and Vision: A Guide to Writing History and Other Serious Non-fiction (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2009), https://virtual.anu.edu.au/login/?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&scope=site&d b=nlebk&db=nlabk&AN=327625

    John Tosh, The Pursuit of History (Routledge, 2013; first published 1984)

    Barbara Tuchman, Practising History, (Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1981)

    Recommended journals

    Archives and Manuscripts

    History and Theory

    History Workshop Journal

    Past and Present

    Public History Review

    Radical History

    Rethinking History

    The Public Historian

    Staff Feedback

    Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

    • written comments
    • verbal comments
    • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

    Student Feedback

    ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

    Class Schedule

    Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
    1 Writing history workshop 1
    2 Writing history workshop 2
    3 Writing history workshop 3 First peer review
    4 Writing history workshop 4
    5 Writing history workshop 5
    6 No classes Second peer review
    7 No classes
    8 No classes Critical study/profile
    9 No classes
    10 No classes
    11 No classes
    12 Presenting history workshop Oral presentation in exam period

    Assessment Summary

    Assessment task Value Learning Outcomes
    Critical study/profile of the work of a historian (30%) 30 % 1, 2, 4
    Peer reviews of draft thesis chapters (20%) 20 % 1, 2, 3, 4
    A public presentation of your thesis work (40%) 40 % 3, 4, 5
    Workshop/seminar participation (10%) 10 % 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

    * If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


    ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

    Assessment Requirements

    The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

    Moderation of Assessment

    Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


    The course is run over 6 whole day workshops - across weeks 1-5 and in week 12.


    Public presentation of thesis research during examination period.

    Assessment Task 1

    Value: 30 %
    Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 4

    Critical study/profile of the work of a historian (30%)

    This involves writing a critical study of the work of a historian, preferably one that is relevant to your project. It should be based on writing, reviews, interviews, obituaries, profiles, personal papers and so on that are publicly available. The study should reflect on the historian’s practice, particularly their approaches to writing and communicating historical research and interpretation, and it can also include a critical assessment of their contributions to historical knowledge and, if relevant, public debate. A model for this can be found in Tom Griffiths’ The Art of Time Travel: Historians and their Craft, as well as in various festschrifts for historians. In preparation, we will study examples of historians writing about other historians and their work. Length: 2500-3000 words. 

    Assessment Task 2

    Value: 20 %
    Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 4

    Peer reviews of draft thesis chapters (20%)

    Peer review is central to the work of historians. For this assessment task, you are required to write two critical reviews on other students’ draft chapters. Ideally, one will be on a draft chapter and another on a draft introduction. This task provides an opportunity to develop skills as astute and incisive readers of others’ written presentation of their research and analysis. The aim is to provide critical feedback to assist each other to articulate better arguments and analyses. Length: 2 x 1000 words.

    Assessment Task 3

    Value: 40 %
    Learning Outcomes: 3, 4, 5

    A public presentation of your thesis work (40%)

    This assessment task requires you to present either a seminar paper (c. 20 minutes long; c. 2000-2500 words), or to produce a piece of public history (i.e. podcast, radio program etc) based on your honours thesis project. Whatever format you choose, the task involves presenting to faculty in the School of History and other invited guests after your thesis has been submitted for examination. The aim is to adapt and translate your completed thesis rather than merely regurgitate it; to communicate effectively its arguments and conclusions; and to respond to questions about it and to defend your choices. Additionally, each of you will be required to chair a session, for which a portion of the marks is assigned. 

    Assessment Task 4

    Value: 10 %
    Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

    Workshop/seminar participation (10%)

    Academic Integrity

    Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

    Online Submission

    You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

    Hardcopy Submission

    For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

    Late Submission

    Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

    • Late submission not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.
    • Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

    Referencing Requirements

    Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

    Extensions and Penalties

    Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

    Privacy Notice

    The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
    In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
    If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

    Distribution of grades policy

    Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

    Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

    Support for students

    The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

    Maria Nugent

    Research Interests

    Indigenous history; memory studies; cross-cultural history and colonial encounters; researching objects, collections and museums; public history

    Maria Nugent

    By Appointment
    Maria Nugent

    Research Interests

    Maria Nugent

    By Appointment

    Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions