• Class Number 5506
  • Term Code 3260
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Prof Martin Thomas
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 25/07/2022
  • Class End Date 28/10/2022
  • Census Date 31/08/2022
  • Last Date to Enrol 01/08/2022
SELT Survey Results

This course aims to induct students into the historian's craft. In particular, it will assist students to undertake an historical research project using primary source materials, and to present their work in a form appropriate to its subject matter, purpose and audience. Through a program of seminars, site visits, workshops, and feedback, each student will formulate a research question, work with a variety of historical sources, and construct a research output. Students will be invited to reflect on questions of method, ethics, audience and presentation in historical research and communication. All students undertaking a history major will be required to complete this course. The course encourages students to 'identify and reflect on the knowledge and skills developed in their study of History' (History Level 7 Threshold Learning Outcomes).

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. identify and select from a range of conceptual approaches to interpreting the past in designing a methodologically sound historical research proposal;
  2. locate and interpret a wide variety of primary source materials and secondary literature relevant to that project;
  3. provide and respond to feedback in the process of developing historical project work;
  4. construct an evidence-based historical argument in a form suitable to its content, stated purpose and target audience;
  5. reflect on and apply the discipline's ethical conventions; and

Research-Led Teaching

In guiding students as they investigate archives for the first time, the academics teaching this course draw constantly from their own experiences as historical researchers and writers.

Field Trips

The following field trips are compulsory:

Visit to the University Archives (on campus)


Off-campus visits to: Australian War Memorial; National Library of Australia: National Archives of Australia.

While all these sites make provision for people with disabilities, students should contact the convenor if they anticipate any problems to do with access.

ANU protocols to do with the prevention of COVID 19 will apply at the off-site venues. This means that masks are compulsory both on and off campus.

Additional Course Costs

The field trips are to institutions within the metropolitan area of Canberra. There are no entry charges. Students are personally responsible for getting to the venue on time. The cost of transport will be borne by the student, but is not likely to vary significantly from the usual cost of getting to campus.

Examination Material or equipment

Students are expected to take photographs during site visits using pocket cameras or mobile phones.

Required Resources

Essential reading is provided or accessible through the ANU Library.

Whether you are on campus or studying remotely, there are a variety of online platforms you will use to participate in your study program. These could include videos for lectures and other instruction, two-way video conferencing for interactive learning, email and other messaging tools for communication, interactive web apps for formative and collaborative activities, print and/or photo/scan for handwritten work and drawings, and home-based assessment.

ANU outlines recommended student system requirements to ensure you are able to participate fully in your learning. Other information is also available about the various Learning Platforms you may use.

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). Feedback can also be provided to Course Conveners and teachers via the Student Experience of Learning & Teaching (SELT) feedback program. SELT surveys are confidential and also provide the Colleges and ANU Executive with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Lecture/workshop: Orientation & Expectations Seminar: Introductions & Developing a Research Project
2 Lecture/workshop: ANU Archives - site visit Seminar: Primary Research & The Digital Revolution
3 Lecture/workshop: Australian War Memorial - site visit Seminar: Personal consultations instead of seminar. Use Wattle to book a consultation with your seminar convenor.
4 Lecture/workshop: National Library of Australia - site visit Seminar: Writing a Research Proposal
5 Lecture/workshop: National Archives of Australia - site visit Seminar: Personal & Creative Sources
6 Lecture/workshop: None Seminar: Archival Records
7 Lecture/workshop: None Seminar: Visual/Material Sources
8 Lecture/workshop: None Seminar: Oral/Aural Sources
9 Lecture/workshop: None Seminar: Writing Workshop 1
10 Lecture/workshop: None Seminar: Writing Workshop 2
11 Lecture/workshop: Time will be used for oral presentations if required. Seminar: Research Presentations
12 Lecture/workshop: Time will be used for oral presentations if required. Seminar: Research Presentations

Tutorial Registration

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Learning Outcomes
Source Reflections 15 % * 2, 3
Research Proposal 20 % 19/09/2022 1, 2
Research Presentation 10 % * 3, 4, 5
Final Research Essay 45 % 03/11/2022 1, 2, 4, 5
Participation 10 % * 2, 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 Integrity 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 Academic Skills 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.


Participation will be assessed on the basis of the quality/relevance of contributions to discussions, demonstrated familiarity and engagement with the readings, and willingness to participate individually or in groups, and to provide peer feedback, as requested.



Assessment Task 1

Value: 15 %
Learning Outcomes: 2, 3

Source Reflections

Length: Three Souce Reflections, each of which will be 150–200 words maximum.

Due: Each Reflection concerns an example of the types of primary source discussed in weeks 2, 5, and 6 (ie Digital, Personal, and Archival sources). Post to Wattle 24 hours before your seminar in Weeks 2, 5, and 6.

Further information in course outline.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 19/09/2022
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2

Research Proposal

Length: 1000 words

Due: 19 September 2022

Further information in course outline.

Assessment Task 3

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

Research Presentation

Length: 8-10 minutes

Due: Week 11 or 12

Further information in course outline.

Assessment Task 4

Value: 45 %
Due Date: 03/11/2022
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 4, 5

Final Research Essay

Length: 2300-4000 words

Due: 3 November 2022

Further information in course outline.

Assessment Task 5

Value: 10 %
Learning Outcomes: 2, 5


Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. The University’s students are an integral part of that community. The academic integrity principle commits all students to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support, academic integrity, and to uphold this commitment by behaving honestly, responsibly and ethically, and with respect and fairness, in scholarly practice.

The University expects all staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle, the Academic Integrity Rule 2021, the Policy: Student Academic Integrity and Procedure: Student Academic Integrity, and to uphold high standards of academic integrity to ensure the quality and value of our qualifications.

The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 is a legal document that the University uses to promote academic integrity, and manage breaches of the academic integrity principle. The Policy and Procedure support the Rule by outlining overarching principles, responsibilities and processes. The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 commences on 1 December 2021 and applies to courses commencing on or after that date, as well as to research conduct occurring on or after that date. Prior to this, the Academic Misconduct Rule 2015 applies.


The University commits to assisting all students to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. All coursework students must complete the online Academic Integrity Module (Epigeum), and Higher Degree Research (HDR) students are required to complete research integrity training. The Academic Integrity website provides information about services available to assist students with their assignments, examinations and other learning activities, as well as understanding and upholding academic integrity.

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

The Academic Skills website has information to assist you with your writing and assessments. The website includes information about Academic Integrity including referencing requirements for different disciplines. There is also information on Plagiarism and different ways to use source material.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted 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.

Resubmission of Assignments

Not permitted.

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).

Prof Martin Thomas

Research Interests

• Cross-cultural interactions. • Environmental and landscape history. • Indigenous history of Australia. • Colonisation and empire. • Oral history. • History as told through film and radio. • History of science, media, and anthropology.

Prof Martin Thomas

By Appointment

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