- Class Number 3403
- Term Code 3230
- Class Info
- Unit Value 6 units
- Mode of Delivery In Person
- Dr April Biccum
- Dr April Biccum
- Dr Nick Cheesman
- Class Dates
- Class Start Date 21/02/2022
- Class End Date 27/05/2022
- Census Date 31/03/2022
- Last Date to Enrol 28/02/2022
The 20th Century witnessed profound challenges to classical knowledge paradigms in the social sciences. Approaches to the study of society and politics diversified. Critical, social, post-structuralist, post-colonial and ‘post-modern’ interventions drew attention to structures and practices of meaning-making and to the relationship between knowledge paradigms and power. Interpretivist scholars made substantial contributions to developments in the theories of language and communication, and in the 'second order observation' involved in varieties of discourse analysis. Scholars across a variety of disciplines are working in interpretivist traditions that depart from the positivist paradigm adopted constructivist, thick descriptive, inductive and context-based approaches to assess, explain and understand sites and assemblages of ‘meaning making’.
The aim of this course is to introduce students to the long tradition of Interpretivist Social Science, and to invite them to consider how its theoretical claims might inform their own epistemological and methodological decisions. The course offers practical training for students interested in modes of enquiry into the increasingly communicative, media driven, institutional and text based world in which we live that are not covered by conventional quantitative and qualitative approaches. In addition to equipping students with skills for interpretivist research design, data generation, analysis, inference, interpretation and critique, it addresses fundamental questions about the logic, conduct and significance of social scientific inquiry and the politics of knowledge in the 20th and 21st Centuries.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- engage in epistemological debates that relate to methodological approaches;
- assess the diverse range of strategies and approaches available to scholars in the social sciences;
- develop techniques and skills appropriate to the design and conduct of interpretivist research; and
- assess the logics that distinguish methodologies and the creative possibilities for their assembly.
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
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.
The information provided is a preliminary Class Outline. A finalised version will be available on Wattle and will be accessible after enrolling in this course. All updates, changes and further information will be uploaded on the course Wattle site and will not be updated on Programs and Courses throughout the semester. Any questions or concerns should be directed to the Course Convenor.
|Week/Session||Summary of Activities||Assessment|
|1||Introduction & Course Overview|
|2||What distinguishes the Interpretive approach? An introduction to the Philosophy of Science|
|3||What is Social Constructivism? An introduction to the Sociology of Knowledge|
|4||What is the context? The role of Theory and Reasoning|
|5||What is a concept? An introduction to Conceptual History and Conceptual Elucidation|
|6||An introduction to Ethnography|
|7||An Introduction to Political Ethnography|
|8||An Introduction to Hermeneutics|
|9||An Introduction to Socio-Linguistics and Critical Discourse Analysis|
|10||Advancing Critical Discourse Analysis|
|11||Virtual Ethnography: Interpretive Methods in the Digital Age|
|12||Conclusion and Wrap up|
|Assessment task||Value||Learning Outcomes|
|Research Paper||40 %||1,2 & 3|
|Weekly Reading Responses||30 %||1, 2 &4|
|Oral Presentation||20 %||1, 2 & 4|
|Participation||10 %||1, 2, 3 & 4|
* 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:
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 Integrity . 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.
Assessment Task 1
Learning Outcomes: 1,2 & 3
The Research Paper comprises the major written assessment and is designed to immerse course participants in a summative piece of research devised in dialogue with the course convener. It should demonstrate their ability to synthesise and integrate ideas obtained over the duration of the course with their own research interests and goals.
Assessment Task 2
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2 &4
Weekly Reading Responses
200 words (Maximum) X 10 weeks
30% (3% each)
These weekly reading responses will be posted to wattle constitute a form of intermediate task building towards the final goal of the course. It will enable students to develop and evaluation their reading comprehension skills which are a vital component of interpretivist methods. Students and convener will be encouraged to post comments on weekly reading responses and this will contribute to course participation.
Assessment Task 3
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2 & 4
The Oral Presentation is a form of peer-reviewed summative assessment designed to involve all course participants. Presentations will be on research that demonstrates some aspect of interpretivist methods in practice. Students will be provided with a working list of possible texts. Students may locate their own text to present upon in consultation with the convener so long as a pdf can be provided. Presenters will be assessed on their ability to succinctly engage with and present a reading that demonstrates 'interpretivism in action' and to lay out for students the components of the approach, research design and analysis with a focus on the strengths, limitations and contributions of the research under discussion. They will be asked to lead the class in formulating and discussing methodological and analytical questions that arise from the research.
Assessment Task 4
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3 & 4
Participation will be assessed on student overall engagement with the course. This includes their weekly preparedness for class, engagement with online discussion in weekly reading responses and their engagement with discussion during presentations.
Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.
The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to 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 be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, 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 Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.
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.
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.
Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:
- 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.
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. 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.
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).
- ANU Health, safety & wellbeing for medical services, counselling, mental health and spiritual support
- ANU Diversity and inclusion for students with a disability or ongoing or chronic illness
- ANU Dean of Students for confidential, impartial advice and help to resolve problems between students and the academic or administrative areas of the University
- ANU Academic Skills and Learning Centre supports you make your own decisions about how you learn and manage your workload.
- ANU Counselling Centre promotes, supports and enhances mental health and wellbeing within the University student community.
- ANUSA supports and represents undergraduate and ANU College students
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Global Citizenship, Global Education Governance, Political Theories of Empire and Imperialism
Dr April Biccum
Dr April Biccum