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Advocacy and Influence: Shaping Public Opinion (11091.1)

Level: Level 3 - Undergraduate Advanced Unit
Credit Points: 3
HECS Bands: 1
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Design
Discipline: School of Arts and Communications


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For the remainder of 2020, resulting from Australian Government's directives requiring physical distancing and restrictions on movement because of the COVID-19 pandemic, any exams that are required for assessment in a unit will be online exams. Online exams may also use online proctoring to help assure the academic integrity of those exams. Please contact your unit convener with any questions.

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Unit Outlines

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  • Semester 2, 2020, ON-CAMPUS, BRUCE (195960) - View
  • Semester 2, 2019, ON-CAMPUS, BRUCE (184286) - View

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This unit provides you with an understanding of journalism and professional communication in a political, activist and social context, and how these industries can influence public opinion and policy and drive issues onto the political and public agenda. In this unit you will explore foundations of persuasive communication, propaganda and rhetoric by examining elections, campaigns and mediated political communication. You will dissect the role of media advisors, image-makers, political journalists and lobbyists in the creation of news and policy. You will also examine Parliamentary processes and democratic representation and how not-for-profits, industry associations, corporations and individuals participate in and influence the democratic process with the help of communications professionals.

Learning Outcomes

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

1. Critique the different approaches to persuasive and propagandist communication and how they are applied in different cultural and political contexts around the world;

2. Critically examine the role of media and communications in the formation of public opinion and public policy through analytical research of campaigns, social media and other appropriate communication outputs; and

3. Analyse Parliamentary and advocacy processes as they relate to contemporary theories of democratic communication and public representation.

Assessment Items

Contact Hours

Three hours of on-campus interactive workshops per week.


Students need to have completed 36 credit points to enrol in this unit.



Assumed Knowledge


Incompatible Units


Equivalent Units

9303 Journalism and Society 8127 Journalism and Political Process 8125 Campaigns Election and Lobbying 9024 Introduction to Political Communication

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