• Offered by Crawford School of Public Policy
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Environmental Management & Development
  • Areas of interest Environmental Studies
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Simon West
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person
  • Offered in Second Semester 2024
    See Future Offerings

This course is available for on-campus & remote (online) learning. All students participate in interactive, real-time classes.

This course equips students to critically apply qualitative and mixed methods to assess the impacts of environmental and development projects and policies.  Participants study how assessment and evaluation methods have evolved to become important foundations for the design, implementation and regulation of such interventions. Students learn the importance of going beyond project-specific assessments to consider cumulative impacts and how strategic assessments can help to manage these. The course considers the role of public participation and science in decision-making, and how political, social and economic dynamics intersect such decisions. Students gain experience with assessing impacts across diverse domains such as biodiversity, livelihoods, institutions, social structures, equity, culture and quality of life. The course has a strong emphasis on case-based learning and students have opportunities to explore alternative evaluation and assessment approaches across a range of sectors and national jurisdictions.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1.  Demonstrate a sound understanding of current principles, concepts and theories that guide assessment and evaluation across a range of sectors and national jurisdictions.
  2. Explain key debates and questions that are shaping the future of impact assessment as a field.
  3.  Identify, assess and articulate how social relationships and political contexts affect how assessment practices function, especially in shaping the trade-offs that occur between competing interests.
  4.  Select and apply appropriate qualitative and mixed methods to design assessments and evaluations of environmental and development projects and policies.
  5.  Critically evaluate the strengths and limitations of assessment studies that have been prepared for decision-making about environment and development projects.

Other Information

This course is especially suitable for students in environmental, social science and humanities programs with an interest in environmental and development interventions. It requires no prior social science or environmental knowledge. The course does not cover ecological assessment methods.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Reflection papers for Weeks 1-3 (3 x 400 words, 5% each) (15) [LO 1,2,3]
  2. Assessment/evaluation study (10 minute group presentation 15% and individual online debrief 15%) (30) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  3. Critical evaluation of an impact or evaluation study (2500 words) (45) [LO 1,2,5]
  4. Participation and engagement (10) [LO 1,2,3,5]

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.


The workload for 6 unit courses is 130 hours including class time and independent study.

Inherent Requirements


Prescribed Texts

None specified


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2024 $4680
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2024 $6360
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

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.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
On Campus
9055 22 Jul 2024 29 Jul 2024 31 Aug 2024 25 Oct 2024 In Person N/A
9056 22 Jul 2024 29 Jul 2024 31 Aug 2024 25 Oct 2024 Online N/A

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