EDUC 1008 - University Culture

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2019

This course explores the University of Adelaide as a culture of its own, and places students as ethnographers or anthropologists of this culture through immersion. University is a place where people think, act and communicate differently to how they do in other contexts, and this course makes cultural expectations explicit as well as exploring the processes required to adjust to them. Most students should undertake this course as the first course in their University Preparatory Program. Students in this course have the opportunity to experience the usual university learning modes of the lecture and tutorial, and reflect upon their own prior and current experiences of learning with a view to establishing the goals they have for their own study. In particular, students undertake an ethnography task whereby they audit classes right across the University, not in order to gather content knowledge but to observe and analyse social interaction and modes of learning. This enables them to become familiar with the processes and expectations of university learning and plan their own learning in alignment with university culture

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code EDUC 1008
    Course University Culture
    Coordinating Unit School of Education
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Restrictions Available to University Preparatory Program or Wirltu Yarlu Preparatory Program students only
    Assessment Reflective Journal x 3; Gathering Cultural Knowledge Essay; Learning Mode Ethnography Essay; Academic discussion on Learning Mode Ethnography process
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Ms Amy Robinson

    Lecturer-in-charge and tutor: Miss Kami Neira (email:
    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    Upon the successful completion of this course students will be able to:
    1. Self-evaluate their learning, identify their strengths and aspects that can be improved, adopt strategies to address learning skills
    2. Provide feedback on the reflections of their peers
    3. Demonstrate effective communication, critical and reflective thinking
    4. Demonstrate effective English language use in writing
    5. Demonstrate effective English language use in oral/aural communication
    6. Identify opportunities and challenges in intercultural communication at university and how these challenges can be addressed
    7. Engage in discussions on academic topics
    8. Demonstrate an understanding of learning at university through engagement with course based activities
    9. Identify and discuss cultural issues from multiple perspectives
    10. Identify support services and social or volunteer activities and events at university in which s/he would like to participate
    11. Locate online and print information relevant to a specific question or issue
    12. Evaluate written texts
    13. Use the University’s Learning Management System (myUni) to access course information, submit assignments, and interact with teachers and other students

    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    3, 7, 9, 12
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 12
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    6, 10, 11, 13
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    6, 9
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    A list of weekly readings is available in Canvas. 
    Recommended Resources

    The below sources are not required readings but are merely suggested readings should students wish to have useful resources that cover the themes of the course. These are available in the Barr-Smith Library on campus should students wish to borrow them. These are not course readings. 

    Damrosch, D 1995, We scholars: changing the culture of the university, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts. (Available in Barr Smith Library, call number 378.73 D166w.)

    Hay, I, Bochner, D & Dungey, C 2006, Making the grade: A guide to successful communication and study (3rd edition), South Melbourne, Oxford University Press. (Available in Barr Smith Library,
    call number 378.170281 H412m.3.)

    Online Learning
    Please note: Turnitin will be used for students to learn more effectively about referencing and citation conventions at university; it is recommended that you familiarise yourself with this. Please visit for further information.

    It is important to become proficient in using the university library to find appropriate texts for a range of subjects in the Humanities and Social Sciences. Please use the Library online tutorials for assistance with this: It is also strongly recommended that you view the following video:

    MyUni will be used for essential communication including via email, so please check your University email regularly (at least three times a week). If you have a smartphone it is strongly recommended that you set up your email on it for easy and regular access to your University email. For guidance on how to do this, visit:

    Remember, the most useful portal for all University online activities is Unified:
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Students will be required to attend a one hour lecture and two hour tutorial each week of the semester.


    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    1 x 1 hour lectuer per week (x12) 12 hours
    1 x 2 hour tutorial per week (x12) 24 hours
    3 hours readings per week (x12) 36 hours
    3 hours per week working on reflective journal,
    assessments and auditing lectures and other University modes (x12)
    36 hours
    4 hours per week group project work (x12) 36 hours
    Total 156 hours
    Learning Activities Summary
    See MyUni-Canvas for weekly topics and activities.
    Specific Course Requirements
    See MyUni for further details.
    Small Group Discovery Experience
    See MyUni for further details.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary

    Assessment Task Requirements Due Weighting Student Learning Outcome outcomes
     Reflective journal 1 Individual
    400 words

    Friday Week 3 5pm

    10% Self evaluate their learning, identify their strengths and aspects that can be improved, adopt strategies to address learning skills 1,3-4
    Reflective journal 2 Individual
    300 words 
    Friday Week 6 5pm 15% Self evaluate their learning, identify their strengths and aspects that can be improved, adopt strategies to address learning skills 1,3-4
    Response to reflective journal 2: Peer review Individual
    150 words
    Please respond to the reflective journal of your peer
    Friday Week 7, 5pm 15% Valuing diverse perspectives of fellow students Provide feedback on the reflections of peers 2,3-4
    Learning mode ethnography Individual 1000 words. Report on a minimum of four different lecture visits Friday Week 10, 5pm 30% Demonstrate an understanding of learning at university through engagement with course based activities 8-13
    Academic discussion Team
    15 minute discussion on a topic of the team’s choice
    In class Week 12 15% Demonstrate effective English language use in academic oral/aural communication 5,6,7
    Reflective journal three Individual
    300 words 
    Friday Week 13 15% Self evaluate their learning, identify their strengths and aspects that can be improved, adopt strategies to address learning skills 1,3-4
    Assessment Related Requirements
    See MyUni for details.
    Assessment Detail
    See MyUni for assessment details.
    See MyUni for details.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.