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Web Communications Assignments FAQ

Page history last edited by Tama Leaver 3 years, 11 months ago

(FAQ = Frequently Asked Questions)


Credible Sources

Just because something is online, that doesn't make it credible (indeed, often the opposite is true). Curtin has a Library Guide that will help you think about finding credible scholarly sources. You might also have a look at Massey's Identifying academic sources. Please be aware -- we certainly are -- that there are a number of past student essays and assignments online. While these might appear high in the search results for certain terms, they are *not* reliable, credible or peer reviewed sources for your work (and keep in mind, too, just because it's online doesn't mean it was necessarily good work at all!). Equally, some websites that are designed to encourage cheating might host stolen content that is relevant to this unit: these are never a good source, and must be avoided.



All Internet Communications and Internet Studies units follow use the APA referencing style (6th edition); Curtin library has a pretty good guide to the APA style here (PDF). On occasion, you may need to create a reference for something not obviously covered in the APA 6th guide. In that case, have a search through the APA Blog and see if there's an updated style (examples already addressed include citing eBooks, Twitter and Facebook).


Referencing course notes:

Surname, Initials. (Year) Title of section/area/page. [Course notes]. Retrieved from http://lms.curtin.edu.au

eg Sandry, E. (2016). Introduction to Module 2: What is Web 2.0. [Course notes]. Retrieved from http://lms.curtin.edu.au


Referencing a lecture:

Surname, Initials. (Year) Title of lecture [Lecture]. Retrieved from URL.

eg Sandry, E. (2016) ... and what is the World Wide Web? [Lecture]. Retrieved from http://dbs.ilectures.curtin.edu.au/lectopia/lectopia.lasso?ut=2417


However, course notes and lectures are not generally considered good sources for research. They are a good place to get a basic conceptual understanding and an idea of what other sources you should read, but are not good sources by themselves. If you do end up using course notes or lectures in your work you must reference them, just as you must do so for any other source.



There aren't 100% strict formatting rules, but it can make your work easier to read if you 1.5-space your documents. You should use a clearly readable 12-point font (eg Times, Arial, Calibri) and make sure there is a line break (ie a blank line) between paragraphs. If you don't follow these guidelines it's not the end of the world, but it might make life more difficult for your marker.


You must follow the APA version 6.0 referencing style accurately, no matter how you format your work. When you submit your work through Turnitin and Blackboard make sure you submit Word documents not PDFs (because PDFs are much more difficult to comment on and correct).


Assignment 1: Exercise - Short Q&As

QN: If I use the questions as headings for my answers do these count as part of the word limit?

ANS: No, the words in the questions don't count towards your writing against the word limit. In general, writing out the questions (or cutting and pasting them ) can help you to focus your answers as you write,and may also make your work easier to mark. 

QN: Do in-text references and quotes count as part of the word limit?

ANS: Yes, in-text references and quotations count toward your word limit. However, the references listed at the end do not count.

QN: Is the word limit exact?

ANS: As a general rule with written work in Internet Communications units, you have +/-10% leeway with word limits (meaning, in this case, if your word count is between 676 and 824 you won't be penalised).

QN: Do I do one list of references at the end, or a list for each question.

ANS: Just one overall list at the end. Make sure it is in alphabetical order.

QN: Can I refer to unit notes and lectures?

ANS: No. This should be avoided unless you find it impossible to locate other scholarly sources. Suggested readings are provided in the unit content each week, and this should provide a useful starting point for writing your answers. Please keep in mind, though, we still expect you to do your own research and find other, peer reviewed sources (in particular in subsequent assignments, such as the Essay and Exegesis).

QN: What does 'peer reviewed' mean?

ANS: Most work published by academics is peer reviewed, literally meaning it has been reviewed and scrutinised by other members of the relevant academic community. Scholarly journals, books, book chapters and so forth are usually peer-reviewed.

QN: If I can't tell if something is peer-reviewed, can I use it?

ANS: There may be some cases where non-peer reviewed material is acceptable. An example might be a very recent development which is written about in technology blogs, but not yet in published academic writing. You need to make a judgement call as to whether a non peer-reviewed source is necessary for your work. That said, a piece of work which relies too heavily on non peer-reviewed sources is far less likely to receive a good mark than a piece of work which draws on more peer reviewed sources.


Assignment 2: Essay

QN: Is the word limit exact?

ANS: As a general rule with written work in Internet Communications units, you have +/-10% leeway with word limits (meaning, in this case, if your word count is between 1351 and 1649 you won't be penalised).

QN: Can I use bullet points?

ANS: No. An essay should consist of paragraphs, including an introduction and conclusion. Bullet points might be acceptable in some forms of assessment (such as scientific reports) but not essays. Basically, anything that starts off as a bullet point should be converted into a sentence in a paragraph before your essay is completed.


Assignment 3: Case Study - Web Presence Creation

QN: Can I use an existing profile (ie one I created before starting the unit) as part of my Web Presence.

ANS: No. In order to ensure the assignment is fair, all nodes (central and supporting) must be created specifically for the Web Presence assignment.

QN: Can I use my web presence nodes (eg Twitter or Facebook) once I've submitted the assignment?

ANS: No. You cannot change any element of your web presence from the moment you submit it until you have received your marks back for the assignment.

QN: Can I write my exegesis in the first person (ie using 'I')?

ANS: Yes. Keep in mind, though, you should still be explaining your web presence choices with reference to readings and references, it's not just a description of what you did, but a justified explanation of why you did what you did.



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