• Class Number 2796
  • Term Code 3130
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dr Denghua Zhang
    • Dr Denghua Zhang
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 22/02/2021
  • Class End Date 28/05/2021
  • Census Date 31/03/2021
  • Last Date to Enrol 01/03/2021
SELT Survey Results

This course explores the experience of the post-colonial states and societies of the Pacific with global political, strategic, cultural and economic processes. It examines the impact of such processes on the fragmentation and integration of political community, on development and poverty, cultural identity, conflict and governance, human security and sovereignty. It is particularly concerned with how global norms and ideas such as democracy, human rights, gender equity, sovereignty, statism and neo-liberal economics interact with the values and organisation of local societies. It situates the Pacific experience in a larger debate about the impact of 'globalisation' on developing states, and about the international system as viewed from non-western regions.

Learning Outcomes

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

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. demonstrate a deeper understanding and appreciation of dynamics, debates and processes that shape the post-colonial (as in the era) contemporary Pacific;
  2. apply post-colonial approaches to write analytical pieces and generate research on the Pacific, and other regions or areas of interest;
  3. confidently pursue future research and/or policy work in international relations, security, development or diplomatic studies in the most diverse region of the world

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:
  • Written comments
  • Verbal comments
  • Feedback to the whole class, to groups, to individuals, focus groups

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 Seminar 1: Framing the Pacific (February 24)
2 Seminar 2: Colonial Encounters, Colonial Legacies (March 3)
3 Seminar 3: Democracy, State and Good Governance (March 10 )
4 Seminar 4: Political Community, Cultural Identity and Regionalism (March 17)
5 Seminar 5: Diplomacy and the New Diplomacy in the Pacific (March 24)
6 Seminar 6: China and Other External Parnters (March 31)
7 Seminar 7: The Pacific and Australia/New Zealand (April 21)
8 Seminar 8: Natural Resources and Environment (April 28)
9 Seminar 9: Pacific Economies and Development (May 5)
10 Seminar 10: Gender, Women and Politics (May 12)
11 Seminar 11: Transnationalism and Labour Mobility (May 19)
12 Seminar 12: Climate Change Politics and Activism (May 26)

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Class and Online Participation 20 % 31/05/2021 31/05/2021 1, 2, 3
Short Essay (1,500 words) 20 % 31/03/2021 30/04/2021 1, 2, 3
Major Research (2,500 words) 30 % 21/05/2021 30/05/2021 1, 2, 3
Take Home Exam 30 % 30/05/2021 02/07/2021 1, 2, 3

* 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 Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.

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.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 31/05/2021
Return of Assessment: 31/05/2021
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3

Class and Online Participation

Students will receive a grade based on their active participation in class and online. There will be opportunity for questions on the lectures and readings during the 12 seminars of the semester. Students are encouraged to attend these classes or notify the convenor if they cannot make prior the lecture. At the same time, there is an online discussion forum portal on wattle for those not comfortable to raise questions in person, or could not attend in person. 

Starting from Week 2, students will be allocated a week to lead and facilitate online discussions. Based on the themes for the week seminars- students may post theme questions and readings prior and post lecture, but not limited to the materials of the course. Students may also post news items, blogs, policy reports either from current or past news, or online resources to facilitate discussion, and/or introduce online activity. The facilitator must provide an introductory post on reflections (no less than 150 words) in the week leading up to the lecture. The class may respond to the reflection, or post comments or questions to keep the thread going. 

Please keep posts and comments in a professional manner; this is an academic forum for information sharing, inquiry and debate. You are encouraged to email the Convenor separately if you have a particular concern about the forum or a post, or content/question on the course. (denghua.zhang@anu.edu.au) 

Assessment Task 2

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 31/03/2021
Return of Assessment: 30/04/2021
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3

Short Essay (1,500 words)

Choose one of the two topics:

a) Using Epeli Hauofa’s essay 'Our Sea of Islands', critically analyse the question: Does post-colonialism have a place in the study of international relations?

b) Using one theme from the first six weeks of lectures, critically analyse the question: Does post-colonialism have a place in the study of international relations?

DUE DATE: March 31, 2021

Assessment Task 3

Value: 30 %
Due Date: 21/05/2021
Return of Assessment: 30/05/2021
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3

Major Research (2,500 words)

For the major assignment, you will formulate a research question related to the themes or issues discussed in the course- and to be presented in one of three formats: research essay, policy report, or three media reports/blogs . All students must discuss and gain prior approval of lecturer, denghua.zhang@anu.edu.au, no later than May 11 of their topic and question. 

The course convenor will advice on sources, and recommend experts on/from the Pacific in the particular topic from ANU/Canberra for possible mentoring. Although not required, meeting these experts on campus is one way of getting more information on your research topic, and building your Pacific networks. Here are some useful links to experts on campus from the Department of Pacific Affairs and ANU Pacific Institute

Students will have the choice of presenting their research in either one of the three formats:

i) Research academic essay (2,500 words)

ii) Policy report (2,500 words)

iii) Three media articles/blogs of 833 words each (total of 2,500 words)

More information on these formats will be discussed one on one discussions with the Convenor to approve topics.

DUE DATE: May 21, 2021

Assessment Task 4

Value: 30 %
Due Date: 30/05/2021
Return of Assessment: 02/07/2021
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3

Take Home Exam

You have 48 hours to enter the exam portal (below) and complete three essays. The portal opens from May 27 @ 9am until May 30 @11.55pm. You will have to select a 48 hour period during this time frame to complete the examination. Please note that in order to have 48 hours for your exam, start the exam no later than 9am May 29, as the portal will automatically close at 11:55pm May 30. The portal is time sensitive and will not accept any late essays beyond 48 hours of the time you open. For more instructions-- please listen to lecture recording of Week 12, or see the cover information of the portal. 

Once you enter the portal- you will be prompted again if you want to start-- once you enter the portal you will see 13 questions of which 3 you must answer. You will have 48 hours to answer the three questions from that time of receiving them. Word limit for each answer is 1,000. To use references in your answers is optional, but you will get extra marks if you use references. Do not share the exam questions or use materials from past essays.

Portal Dates: May 27 - May 30, 2021

Time of Examination: 48 hours (from time of entering the portal). Start your exam no later than 9am May 29 to give yourself full 48 hours, as the portal will automatically close at 11:55pm May 30.

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

The ANU uses 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. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.

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

No submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date will be 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).
Dr Denghua Zhang

Research Interests

International Relations; Pacific Studies; China Studies; China in the Pacific.

Dr Denghua Zhang

Dr Denghua Zhang

Research Interests

Dr Denghua Zhang

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