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COM5203 - Communication Systems and Networks

12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Postgraduate Faculty of Arts

Leader: Peter Murphy


Caulfield First semester 2007 (Evening)
Gippsland First semester 2007 (Off-campus)


The unit discusses the operation of communication systems in modern complex, impersonal, urban, high technology societies. The unit will use the case examples, such as the ecology of the city, to explore the functioning of open systems, self-organizing systems, network systems, aesthetic systems, and other ways in which contemporary communication-rich societies function.


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

  1. Knowledge, skills and attributes necessary for understanding large-scale communication systems and their convergence;
  2. Increased understanding of and competency at dealing with specific communication systems and their multiple environments;
  3. Increased understanding of the large-scale and long-term manner in which communications systems develop, and the social and institutional solutions aimed at integrating these systems;
  4. Increased knowledge, skills, and attributes necessary for independent research, enhanced capacity to formulate and research communication systems issues, to analyse and evaluate arguments, and to understand critical approaches to communication network and system integration;
  5. Enhanced intellectual independence, and greater self-reliance and critical distance in intellectual and professional activity especially in matters concerning the management of sensitive communication system nodes and boundaries;
  6. Significantly greater capacity to identify and manage between organizational system and environment, and to negotiate conflicts at the intersection of communications systems.
  7. In comparison with Level 4 students, greater fluency in use rhetorical, written, and visual forms.


Assignment 1 Research Essay (4000 words): 40%
Assignment 2 Research Essay (5000 words): 60%

Contact hours

Two hours (1 x 2 hour seminar) per week.

Off Campus Attendance Requirements

Students will be expected to participate for a minimum of one hour per fortnight in on-line discussion.