Assessment Tasks
  1a) Threaded Discussion
  1b) Essay
   2) Visual Language Journal
  3a) Threaded Discussion
  3b) Team Project

Assessment Requirements

Assessment Tasks

The information which follows here outlines each of your assessment tasks for Fundamentals in Communication Design. Just prior to commencing each new study module which these assessment tasks relate to, a pdf brief for each task will be posted on WebBoard along with a ‘Questions and Answers’ thread where you can raise questions about that task. The brief will provide you with specific assessment criteria, submission dates and assessment weighting for each task.

When we commence discussion you will also find a semester calendar to assist you in planning your assessment tasks and submission requirements.

Threaded discussion - Assessment Item (1a)

Over the four-week life of this module you will be expected to contribute at least twelve times to a discussion on the WebBoard (also called discussion board), commencing this week on the subject of design analysis. You will first of all have to do reading, which will inform your ideas, and then comment on the main concepts in the readings, their compatibilities and differences.

The point of the discussion here is the evolution of your ideas. I ask you to start naïvely by describing your current (uninformed except by experience) position and then, through reading Raymond Williams and Tony Fry, to slowly modify this position into something more sophisticated. Next, I ask you to consider the role of the designer as author and the role the reader/audience plays for the designer.

Percentage of Final Mark: 10%

Due date: the exact date will be announced in week 1 of the semester


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Essay Manifesto for Communication Design - Assessment Item (1b)

As the final assessment item for this module you will each be expected to write your own 'Manifesto for Communication Design'.

This is where you get to write passionately about your own concept of graphic design. One that takes account of the postmodern ideas and critiques proposed by people like Fry and Baudrillard. I have described this account as a manifesto because it should be something that is intensely personal and political, in that it should acknowledge the values and insights that you have developed and that you would like to impart to others – such as to colleagues who might share your understanding or to students who might be studying to become graphic designers in their own right.

Essay length: 3000 words

Percentage of Final Mark: 20%

Due date: the exact date will be announced in week 1 of the semester


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A shared visual language journal - Assessment Item (2)

In this module, I want you to contribute annotated visual material. Both your collection of objects and your analysis will be considered important in my assessment of this task.

I suggest you use a basic layout program such as Pagemaker, Quark or In Design for your layout task. Set up a grid and related typographic style sheet and save it for the visual language journal. I would expect every page to be a varied mixture of text and image. Each image should at least have a caption naming it, giving its year of production (if important) and then pointing out why you are including it and what its significance is to the visual language of design. The latter should make a serious attempt to analyze the visual material, making reference to the myriad of readings included on the reading list. For those of you who have completed ‘The Language of Design Communication’ unit of this program, you will already have completed many readings relevant to this analysis.

You will see in the course outline that I have set a number of stages for the visual language journal. Once we commence the time period for the module, I will set up a time frame for each stage. I expect you to progressively post completed pages on the WebBoard as PDFs and I expect that you/we will be able to comment on and learn from each others' contributions and make progressive comment on the WebBoard as well.

Progressive assessment based on contribution*, quality and volume -
Percentage of Final Mark: 30%

At the end of the module I expect you to post or email your whole journal to me for assessment -
Percentage of Final Mark: 10%

*Contribution includes both PDFs of journal pages and participation in discussion.

Due date: the exact date will be announced in week 1 of the semester


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Threaded discussion - Assessment Item (3a)

Module 3 is about media forms, and it culminates in a group project contrasting the book and the internet. Preceding that is a threaded discussion that is based on readings – mainly of Raymond Williams and Marshall McLuhan – about changing media forms, the importance of media as mere carriers of information or significant in their own right, and differing media participatory processes and their effect on the appreciation of the message itself.

Percentage of Final Mark: 10%

Due date: the exact date will be announced in week 1 of the semester


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Team project: building a template of media change - Assessment Item (3b)

Using the discussion board, start to accumulate historical and contemporary visual material and facts that illustrate the development of media forms in terms of structure, tradition, style and content. Your presence on and contributions to the board will record your participation.

I am proposing that you then develop a history of the book and the Internet. These are purposefully chosen as strongly contrasting medias. You will need to collectively resolve how you are going to present your information, who is going to prepare and research it and how I should assess it. (On the latter point I will make some suggestions, but you can choose the final method I adopt – after that, you will have to accept collective decision – we will vote if necessary.)

I am proposing that there be at least two groups who work separately to each produce an outcome. This will depend upon the number of enrollments of course as groups should have a minimum number (3) and be as even in number as possible. Weighting of marks could of course compensate for this. It will be possible to work with only one group, but more than one will better set the standard by which the work could be judged. I understand that there might be different sorts of input here, as there are research, collection, reading, writing, organization and layout tasks to be involved. All are necessary and some will opt to specialize, so credit should be given regardless of type of input.

The finished product must of course have a media form itself – which you have to collectively decide on – and I would like there to be a relation between the subject matter and the format you use to present it in. So we could be talking brochures or a booklet or poster/s here. It would be good too if you could remember that idea of interactivity implied by McLuhan’s idea of process: that reader/viewer involvement with the media (and through it with each other) might be demonstrated.

Percentage of Final Mark: 20%

Due date: the exact date will be announced in week 1 of the semester


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