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FOHS3050 – Critical Communication

2020 – Session 1, Weekday attendance, North Ryde

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, any references to assessment tasks and on-campus delivery may no longer be up-to-date on this page.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff
Susan Hoadley
Margaret Wood
Credit points Credit points
Prerequisites Prerequisites
80cp at 2000 level or above
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description

This unit aims to develop effective communication skills for professional practice in diverse institutional, organisational and workplace contexts. The unit examines how communication functions in professional contexts to achieve individual and institutional outcomes that are ethical and socially responsible. Students will draw on existing knowledge of their discipline and relevant regulatory, ethical or social frameworks to identify the critical communication demands of their field, for example whilst interacting with clients and negotiating with stakeholders. At the same time, students will develop the communication skills, practices and strategies to respond to these demands. Key outcomes of the unit are the ability to create written, spoken and multi-modal texts for diverse audiences and purposes; an ePortfolio demonstrating professional communication skills, practices and strategies; and a personal learning and professional development plan for ongoing development of communication skills. As well as equipping students with communication skills for the workplace, the unit is suitable for students who plan to undertake further study and/or research in their discipline.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at https://students.mq.edu.au/important-dates

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  • ULO1: Evaluate communication and its functions in your discipline and associated institutional, organisational, and workplace contexts.
  • ULO2: Communicate the implications of regulatory, ethical, or social frameworks for professional practice in your discipline to diverse audiences using various modalities and technologies.
  • ULO3: Develop skills, practices, and strategies to use communication to achieve ethical and socially responsible individual and institutional outcomes.
  • ULO4: Critique your communication practices to inform future learning and professional development.

Assessment Tasks

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Assessment details are no longer provided here as a result of changes due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

Delivery and Resources

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Any references to on-campus delivery below may no longer be relevant due to COVID-19.

Please check here for updated delivery information: https://ask.mq.edu.au/account/pub/display/unit_status

This unit is delivered through a combination of online and face-to-face learning activities.


Online lectures and other learning activities are provided via iLearn (the Macquarie University Learning Management System) each week.

The face-to-face activities are two hour, weekly tutorials involving independent/collaborative learning activities and student-driven group/individual discussions to develop students’ communication knowledge/skills and scaffold the production of the texts required for the assessment tasks.

Students must take responsibility for their own learning, prepare for tutorials and make a positive contribution to the unit learning community.

There is no prescribed text book for this unit. 

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central). Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Students seeking more policy resources can visit the Student Policy Gateway (https://students.mq.edu.au/support/study/student-policy-gateway). It is your one-stop-shop for the key policies you need to know about throughout your undergraduate student journey.

If you would like to see all the policies relevant to Learning and Teaching visit Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central).

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/study/getting-started/student-conduct​


Results published on platform other than eStudent, (eg. iLearn, Coursera etc.) or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au or if you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Late assessment task submissions

  • Late submissions without an extension will receive a penalty of 3% of the total mark available for the assessment task per day including weekend days (i.e. this is 3% of the total marks possible for the task – NOT 3% of the marks the student received. For example, if the assessment task is worth 100 marks and the student is two days late their mark for the task is reduced by 6 marks.)
  • Late submission of an assessment task without an extension will not be accepted at all:
    • after the date on which marked assessment tasks have been released to the rest of the class at the unit convenor's discretion
    • more than one week after the end of the teaching session at the unit convenor's discretion.
  • Extensions will only be given in special circumstances, and can be requested by completing the Special Consideration request at ask.mq.edu.au and providing the requisite supporting documentation.
  • Extensions that will result in submissions after the assessment task has been returned to the class will require a separate assessment task to be completed at the unit convenor's discretion.
  • For more information on Special Consideration, see the university website https://students.mq.edu.au/study/my-study-program/special-consideration\
  • If a student fails the unit due to non-submission of an assessment task or non-attendance at an exam, an FA grade will be applied in accordance with the University's Assessment Policy.
  • Unit convenors have the discretion to determine whether or not students should fail a unit on the basis of lateness penalties alone if other learning outcomes of the unit have been met.

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to help you improve your marks and take control of your study.

The Library provides online and face to face support to help you find and use relevant information resources. 

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

If you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.