Faculty of Arts

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2012 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
OfferedCaulfield Second semester 2012 (Day)
Clayton Second semester 2012 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Elizabeth Paton


Previously coded COM2055


The unit examines the way in which communicative behaviour functions to expand and constrain and mediate creative action in the political, social and technological domains, and in the arts and sciences. The unit asks what is an act of creation? Is it defined by newness, innovation, originality? Or is it a mimesis of nature? How has it been defined in history? How is it defined by the law? What role does it play in modern economies? The unit looks at how communication mediates creative action. It reflects on whether creativity is primarily an expressive act-the authentic communicative action of individuals or societies that invent themselves. Or whether creative communication is primarily a structural force-characterized by paradox, analogy, apposition and opposition, similitude, pattern, rhythm, and the like.


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

  1. Understanding of the debates about the definition of creative action;
  2. Understanding of the role of communication in facilitating, constraining and mediating creative action;
  3. Understanding of creative communication both as a form of individual and social action;
  4. Increased knowledge, skills, and attributes necessary for independent research; increased competency in the use of online research databases and other materials; enhanced capacity to formulate and write about communication issues, and to analyse and evaluate arguments. Third-year students will be expected to show a deeper theoretical grasp of the role of communication in mediating creative action.


Essay (1350 words): 30%
Keyword journal (900 words): 20%
Exam (1800 words): 40%
Participation: 10%

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Elizabeth Paton

Contact hours

One 2-hour seminar per week

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study



An approved first year sequence