CQUniversity Unit Profile
BUSN20017 Effective Business Communications
Effective Business Communications
All details in this unit profile for BUSN20017 have been officially approved by CQUniversity and represent a learning partnership between the University and you (our student).
The information will not be changed unless absolutely necessary and any change will be clearly indicated by an approved correction included in the profile.
General Information

Overview

The unit aims to develop your skills and abilities to communicate effectively in business environments. The unit recognises employer and graduate needs to improve communication in different contexts. You will be introduced to different communication concepts including, but not limited to, models, competence, culture, media choice, channels and climate. You will also be introduced to the elements of effective communication for participation in business meetings, presentations, interpersonal and group interaction.

Details

Career Level: Postgraduate
Unit Level: Level 8
Credit Points: 6
Student Contribution Band: 10
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load: 0.125

Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

There are no requisites for this unit.

Important note: Students enrolled in a subsequent unit who failed their pre-requisite unit, should drop the subsequent unit before the census date or within 10 working days of Fail grade notification. Students who do not drop the unit in this timeframe cannot later drop the unit without academic and financial liability. See details in the Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework).

Offerings For Term 3 - 2021

Brisbane
Melbourne
Online
Sydney

Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Class and Assessment Overview

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Postgraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Class Timetable

Bundaberg, Cairns, Emerald, Gladstone, Mackay, Rockhampton, Townsville
Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney

Assessment Overview

1. On-campus Activity
Weighting: 45%
2. Group Work
Weighting: 55%

Assessment Grading

This is a graded unit: your overall grade will be calculated from the marks or grades for each assessment task, based on the relative weightings shown in the table above. You must obtain an overall mark for the unit of at least 50%, or an overall grade of ‘pass’ in order to pass the unit. If any ‘pass/fail’ tasks are shown in the table above they must also be completed successfully (‘pass’ grade). You must also meet any minimum mark requirements specified for a particular assessment task, as detailed in the ‘assessment task’ section (note that in some instances, the minimum mark for a task may be greater than 50%). Consult the University’s Grades and Results Policy for more details of interim results and final grades.

Previous Student Feedback

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Feedback from Qualitative written evaluation

Feedback

Moodle site was confusing

Recommendation

Simplify the presentation of information on Moodle

Unit Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:
  1. Recognize advanced knowledge and skills required in written, oral, and interpersonal communication to address complex business problems
  2. Apply professional business writing and oral communication skills to effectively inform or persuade a target audience
  3. Deliver effective presentations to transmit knowledge, skills and ideas to both specialist and non-specialist audiences and achieve business objectives
  4. Critically analyse communication challenges faced by organisations by applying established theories to develop innovative strategies to address them
  5. Apply autonomous thinking to reflect on good practices in workplace communication in different organizational contexts
  6. Engage and collaborate with team members to demonstrate oral, written, and interpersonal communication.

Alignment of Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Graduate Attributes
N/A Level
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Professional Level
Advanced Level

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes

Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5 6
1 - On-campus Activity - 45%
2 - Group Work - 55%

Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes

Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5 6
1 - Knowledge
2 - Communication
3 - Cognitive, technical and creative skills
4 - Research
5 - Self-management
6 - Ethical and Professional Responsibility
7 - Leadership

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Graduate Attributes

Assessment Tasks Graduate Attributes
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
1 - On-campus Activity - 45%
2 - Group Work - 55%
Textbooks and Resources

Textbooks

There are no required textbooks.

Additional Textbook Information

This unit uses textbook chapters which are available through the e-reading list.

IT Resources

You will need access to the following IT resources:
  • CQUniversity Student Email
  • Internet
  • Unit Website (Moodle)
Referencing Style

No referencing style set.

Teaching Contacts
Cait White Unit Coordinator
c.j.white@cqu.edu.au
Schedule
Week 1 Begin Date: 08 Nov 2021

Module/Topic

Introduction to BUSN20017 Effective Business Communications and the Communication Process

Chapter

Assigned Textbook Chapters and Excerpts:

Guirdham, M (2015). Chapter 1 Introduction. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 3-26). London: PALGRAVE.

Guirdham, M (2015). Chapter 5 Interaction. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 105-130). London: PALGRAVE.

Excerpted Textbook Chapter:

Hartley, P., & Chatterton, P. (2015). Developing your communication: Deciding where to start. In Business communication: rethinking your professional practice for the postdigital age. (pp. 13-35). (2nd ed.). London: Routledge.

Other articles that you need to read are on your Unit Moodle website.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 2 Begin Date: 15 Nov 2021

Module/Topic

Effective Non-verbal and Listening for the Business Context

Chapter

Excerpted Textbook Chapter:

Dwyer, J. (2016). Chapter 3 Interpersonal communication. In Communication for business and the professions: Strategies and skills (6th ed.).  (pp. 46-78). Melbourne, VIC: Pearson Australia.

Other articles that you need to read are on your Unit Moodle website.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 3 Begin Date: 22 Nov 2021

Module/Topic

Effective Interpersonal Business Communication

Chapter

Assigned Textbook Chapter:

Guirdham, M (2015). Chapter 3 Social cognition and impression management. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 53-78). London: PALGRAVE.

Guirdham, M (2015). Chapter 4 Contributing to communication, self-presentation and impression management. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 79-104). London: PALGRAVE.

Excerpted Textbook Chapter:

Dunn, D. M., & Goodnight, L. J. (2014). Creating a positive communication climate. In Communication embracing difference. (pp. 123-142). (4th ed.). London: Routledge.

Other articles that you need to read are on your Unit Moodle website.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 4 Begin Date: 29 Nov 2021

Module/Topic

Effective use of Communication Media within Business

Chapter

Assigned Textbook Chapters and Excerpts:

Guirdham, M (2015). Chapter 2 Work communication modes. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 27-50). London: PALGRAVE.

Guirdham, M. (2015). Chapter 6 Demography, culture, situation and mode as influences on communication. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 145-154). London: PALGRAVE.

Guirdham, M. (2015). Chapter 9 Cooperation, work relations and knowledge sharing. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 227-229). London: PALGRAVE.

Other articles that you need to read are on your Unit Moodle website.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Vacation Week Begin Date: 06 Dec 2021

Module/Topic

Chapter

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 5 Begin Date: 13 Dec 2021

Module/Topic

Effective Organizational Communication

Chapter

Assigned Textbook Chapter:

Guirdham, M (2015). Chapter 12 Organizational structures and cultures. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 312-316). London: PALGRAVE.

Excerpted Textbook Chapter:

Eunson, B. (2007). Chapter 5 Networks, virtual organisations and networking. In Eunson, B. (2007). Communication in the Workplace. (pp. 71-87). Milton, QLD: Wrightbooks.

Other articles that you need to read are on your Unit Moodle website.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 6 Begin Date: 20 Dec 2021

Module/Topic

Effective Academic Writing


Chapter

Excerpted Textbook Chapters:

Grellier, J. & Goerke, V. (2014). Chapter 7 Reflective writing. In Communication skills toolkit: Unlocking the secrets of tertiary success. (3rd ed.). (pp. 91-104). Melbourne, VIC.: Cengage Learning.

Summers, J., & Smith, B. (2014). Chapter 3 Report writing. In Writing communications skills handbook, (4th ed.). (pp. 43-52). Milton, QLD: Wiley.

Summers, J., & Smith, B. (2014). Chapter 4 The case study. In Writing communications skills handbook, (4th ed.). (pp. 53-68). Milton, QLD: Wiley.

Summers, J., & Smith, B. (2014). Chapter 5 Essay writing. In Writing communications skills handbook, (4th ed.). (pp. 69-78). Milton, QLD: Wiley.

Events and Submissions/Topic

The on-line assessment activity will be administered in Week 6 during your allocated workshop time. There will be a link to the assessment in Moodle. Once you begin the assessment, you will have 90 minutes to complete and submit the assessment. After 90 minutes, your responses will be automatically submitted. While you have 90 minutes to undertake this assessment, please remember that you must take the assessment during the two hours allocated to your workshop. This means that if your workshop runs from 12.00 PM-2.00 PM and you start the assessment at 1.00 PM, you only have one hour to complete the assessment because the link closes at 2.00 PM.

Vacation Week Begin Date: 27 Dec 2021

Module/Topic

Chapter

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 7 Begin Date: 03 Jan 2022

Module/Topic

Effective Business Presentations

Chapter

Excerpted Textbook Chapter:

Dwyer, J. (2012). Chapter 5 Deliver presentations and speeches. In The Business communication handbook (9th ed.). (pp. 118-140). Melbourne, VIC: Pearson Australia.

Other articles that you need to read are on your Unit Moodle website.

Events and Submissions/Topic

On-line Assessment Activity Due: Week 7 Monday (3 Jan 2022) 11:45 pm AEST
Week 8 Begin Date: 10 Jan 2022

Module/Topic

Effective Team and Group Business Communication

Chapter

Assigned Textbook Chapter:

Guirdham, M (2015). Chapter 10 Working in groups and teams. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 244-274). London: PALGRAVE.

Other articles that you need to read are on your Unit Moodle website.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Assessment Two - Team Charter is Due Friday, January 14th, 11:59 PM AEST

Week 9 Begin Date: 17 Jan 2022

Module/Topic

Effective Intercultural Communication within Business Contexts

Chapter

Excerpted Textbook Chapter:

Tuleja, E. A. (2017). Culture and context in communication. In Intercultural Communication for Global Business: How Leaders Communicate for Success (pp. 156-187). London: Routledge.

Other articles that you need to read are on your Unit Moodle website.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 10 Begin Date: 24 Jan 2022

Module/Topic

Effective Professional Genres of Written Communication

Chapter

Excerpted Textbook Chapters:

Cenere, P., Gill, R., Lawson, C., & Lewis, M. Correspondence: Letters, memos, emails. In P. Cenere, R. Gill, C. Lawson, & M. Lewis Communication skills for business professionals. (pp. 277-306). Port Melbourne, VIC: Cambridge University Press.

Judith, D., & Hopwood, N. (2016). Chapter 16 write business letters. In J. Dwyer and H. Nicole (2015). The business communication handbook. (10th ed.). (pp. 492-531).

Judith, D., & Hopwood, N. (2016). Chapter 17 write email, memos, and short reports. In J. Dwyer & H. Nicole (2015). The business communication handbook. (10th ed.). (pp. 532-570).

Judith, D., & Hopwood, N. (2016). Chapter 18 write long reports. In The business communication handbook. (10th ed.). (pp. 571-609).

Judith, D., & Hopwood, N. (2016). Chapter 19 write technical documents and proposals. In The business communication handbook. (10th ed.). (pp. 610-633).

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 11 Begin Date: 31 Jan 2022

Module/Topic

Thinking Critically within the Business Context: Effective Persuasion, Influence, and Argument

Chapter

Assigned Textbook Excerpt:

Guirdham, M (2015). Chapter 8 Influencing, handling conflict and negotiation. In Work communication: Mediated and face-to-face practices. (pp. 193-205). London: PALGRAVE.

Excerpted Textbook Chapters:

Cottrell, S. (2017). Chapter 7 Does it add up? In Critical thinking skills: Effective analysis, argument and reflection. (3rd ed.). (pp. 89-105). London: PALGRAVE.

Inch, E. S. & Tudor, K. H. (2018). Chapter 4 constructing claims. In Critical thinking and communication: The use of reason in argument. (7th ed.). (pp. 118-146). Boston: Pearson.

Other articles that you need to read are on your Unit Moodle website.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Assessment Two - Part I Due (Group Presentation Video and Speaking Outline) Friday, January 28th, 11:59 PM AEST

Week 12 Begin Date: 07 Feb 2022

Module/Topic

The Unit In Review

Chapter

Events and Submissions/Topic

Assessment Two - Part II Due (Individually Written Short Essay) Monday, February 7th, 11:59 PM AEST

Exam Week Begin Date: 14 Feb 2022

Module/Topic

Chapter

Events and Submissions/Topic

Begin Date: 21 Feb 2022

Module/Topic

Chapter

Events and Submissions/Topic

Assessment Tasks

1 On-campus Activity

Assessment Title
On-line Assessment Activity

Task Description

Assessment Type: On-line-campus Assessment Activity

Content: The on-line campus assessment activity is based upon the content of Weeks 1, 2, 3, 4,  and 5.

Format: The on-line activity consists of multiple-choice questions (36) and one (1) short written-response questions.

Weighting: This assessment total weighting is 45% of your overall grade. Each multiple-choice question has one right answer and is worth one point each.  The short written-response question is worth nine (9) points. The response should be around 150-200 words in length.

Other: No external sources may be accessed during the administration of this assessment. The answer to the short written-response question must be 'in your own words". In the absence of an approved extension, there will be no late submissions allowed for this assessment item.

Further details about this assessment are provided on the Unit Moodle site.


Assessment Due Date

Week 7 Monday (3 Jan 2022) 11:45 pm AEST

The on-line assessment activity will be administered in Week Seven during your allocated workshop time. There will be a link to the assessment within the Week Six section of Moodle. Once you begin the assessment, you will have 90 minutes to complete and submit the assessment. After 90 minutes, your responses will be automatically submitted. While you have 90 minutes to undertake this assessment, please remember that you must take the assessment during the two hours allocated to your workshop. This means that if your workshop runs from 12.00 PM-2.00 PM and you start the assessment at 1.00 PM, you only have one hour to complete the assessment because the link closes at 2.00 PM. My advice to you is to start the assessment close to the official commencement time of your workshop. You may only undertake this assessment during your assigned workshop.


Return Date to Students

Week 9 Monday (17 Jan 2022)

Marks will be uploaded in Moodle.


Weighting
45%

Assessment Criteria

The short written-response question is evaluated based on the following assessment criteria:

1.  Conceptual definition-3 marks

2.  Illustration/Example-3 marks

3.  Explanation-3 marks



Submission

No submission method provided.


Submission Instructions
Link to the Assessment in Week Seven

Learning Outcomes Assessed
  • Apply autonomous thinking to reflect on good practices in workplace communication in different organizational contexts


Graduate Attributes
  • Knowledge
  • Communication
  • Cognitive, technical and creative skills
  • Self-management
  • Ethical and Professional Responsibility

2 Group Work

Assessment Title
Group Presentation and Individually Written Academic Essay

Task Description

Assessment type: Part I: Group Video Presentation (including a Team Charter and a Sentence-Level Speaking Outline) and Part II: Individually Written Essay

Weighting: This assessment accounts for 55% of your final grade. Part I is worth 32 marks and Part II is worth 23 marks.

Format: There are two parts to this assessment.

Part I: This assessment is based upon the following case study.

Holshi is a multi-national organisation that operates in various countries including Australia, Vietnam, India, and Oman. The organisation manufactures and distributes automated fruit-picking equipment to local and international clients. In total the organisation has 8,000 employees in four countries and more than ½ million customers worldwide. The head office is based in Australia. In recent years, the organisation is facing several internal communication challenges.

They include:

1. Ineffective internal communication among teams including, but not limited to, sharing ideas, building knowledge bases, and task management.

2. Lack of quality internal communication between managers and subordinates leading to, but not limited to, poor internal interpersonal business relationships.

3. Misunderstandings amongst the employees based upon the different intercultural communication contexts.

In this part of Assessment Two you will work together with two other individuals from your assigned workshop. Each member of the group must pick one of the preceding challenges to respond to. Based upon this case study the group will develop a video presentation using PowerPoint, a sentence-level speaking outline, and a team charter. This part of the assessment will be submitted as a group and evaluated based upon both group effort and individual contribution as specified in the marking rubric. There are additional resources on the Unit Moodle site that will assist you with the required content, structure, and format of the presentation, the sentence-level speaking outline, and the team charter. You must follow the requirements for all parts.

References: The video presentation must include a total of 15 academic references (5 references for each speaker). You must use the APA reference style (7th Edition). You may only use articles from the Required Journal List (RJL). The references list must be included both in the sentence-level speaking outline and the presentation PowerPoint slides.

Length: The video presentation must be 15 minutes in length (Introduction ~2 minutes, Main Points ~4 minutes (12 minutes in total), Conclusion 1 minute)

Part II: In Part II, you will individually write a short self-reflection essay that analyses your personal communication experiences within the business context. You must pick one of following topics: small group team communication, manager-subordinate communication, or intercultural communication. You may pick the same topic as your individual group presentation topic, but please remember this essay focuses upon your personal communication experiences within the business context. With your chosen topic in mind, you must provide an example of effective and ineffective communication. Here you will need to explain why the communication is effective and why the communication is ineffective. Next, you will need to discuss what you could do to improve your identified ineffective communication. Here you will need to identify specific communication behaviours that would improve upon your ability to communicate (as directly related to your previously identified ineffective communication) within the business context.

For example, you could focus upon your intercultural communication. Think about your intercultural communication--What do you do well? What could be improved? Based upon your answers to these questions describe one intercultural communication skill or activity that you do effectively and one skill or activity that you feel you do ineffectively. Please make sure you back up each example by explaining why the communication is either effective or ineffective. Next, you will need to discuss how you would specifically change your ineffective communication—essentially describe the remedial communication behaviours and justify why these behaviours would be effective.

References: The short self-reflective essay must include three (3) academic references. You must use the APA reference style (7th Edition). You may only use articles from the Required Journal List (RJL). These references must be different from the references that you have used in the presentation.

Length: This essay must be 1500 words in length, excluding the references.

Due Dates: Team Charter -- Friday, January 14th, 11:59 PM AEST (Week Eight); Group Presentation Video and Speaking Outline -- Friday, January 28th, 11:59 PM AEST (Week Eleven); Individually Written Short Essay -- Monday, February 7th, 11:59 PM AEST (Week Twelve).

Other: Late penalties will be applied in accordance with the university policy.

Further details about this assessment are provided on the Unit Moodle site.


Assessment Due Date

Return Date to Students

Marks and feedback will only be released after Certification of Grades.


Weighting
55%

Assessment Criteria

The Presentation group contribution is evaluated based on the following assessment criteria:

1. Introduction-5 marks

2. Conclusion-3 marks

3. Sentence-level speaking outline-5 marks

4. References-5 marks

5. Team Charter- 5 marks

The Presentation individual contribution is evaluated based on the following assessment criteria:

1. Main point-6 marks

2. Delivery-3 marks

The Individual Short Essay is evaluated based on the following assessment criteria:

1. Introduction-5 marks

2. Description and explanation of one effective and one ineffective communication skill or activity-5 marks

3. Description and justification of remedial communication-5 marks

4. Conclusion-3 marks

5. References-5 marks


Submission

No submission method provided.


Learning Outcomes Assessed
  • Recognize advanced knowledge and skills required in written, oral, and interpersonal communication to address complex business problems
  • Apply professional business writing and oral communication skills to effectively inform or persuade a target audience
  • Deliver effective presentations to transmit knowledge, skills and ideas to both specialist and non-specialist audiences and achieve business objectives
  • Critically analyse communication challenges faced by organisations by applying established theories to develop innovative strategies to address them
  • Apply autonomous thinking to reflect on good practices in workplace communication in different organizational contexts
  • Engage and collaborate with team members to demonstrate oral, written, and interpersonal communication.


Graduate Attributes
  • Knowledge
  • Communication
  • Cognitive, technical and creative skills
  • Research
  • Self-management
  • Ethical and Professional Responsibility
  • Leadership

Academic Integrity Statement

As a CQUniversity student you are expected to act honestly in all aspects of your academic work.

Any assessable work undertaken or submitted for review or assessment must be your own work. Assessable work is any type of work you do to meet the assessment requirements in the unit, including draft work submitted for review and feedback and final work to be assessed.

When you use the ideas, words or data of others in your assessment, you must thoroughly and clearly acknowledge the source of this information by using the correct referencing style for your unit. Using others’ work without proper acknowledgement may be considered a form of intellectual dishonesty.

Participating honestly, respectfully, responsibly, and fairly in your university study ensures the CQUniversity qualification you earn will be valued as a true indication of your individual academic achievement and will continue to receive the respect and recognition it deserves.

As a student, you are responsible for reading and following CQUniversity’s policies, including the Student Academic Integrity Policy and Procedure. This policy sets out CQUniversity’s expectations of you to act with integrity, examples of academic integrity breaches to avoid, the processes used to address alleged breaches of academic integrity, and potential penalties.

What is a breach of academic integrity?

A breach of academic integrity includes but is not limited to plagiarism, self-plagiarism, collusion, cheating, contract cheating, and academic misconduct. The Student Academic Integrity Policy and Procedure defines what these terms mean and gives examples.

Why is academic integrity important?

A breach of academic integrity may result in one or more penalties, including suspension or even expulsion from the University. It can also have negative implications for student visas and future enrolment at CQUniversity or elsewhere. Students who engage in contract cheating also risk being blackmailed by contract cheating services.

Where can I get assistance?

For academic advice and guidance, the Academic Learning Centre (ALC) can support you in becoming confident in completing assessments with integrity and of high standard.

What can you do to act with integrity?