Writing Humour - 2016

This unit contains mature content including Adult Themes, Coarse Language, Drug use, Nudity, Sex / Sexual References and Violence and may not be suitable for some students.
Any student under the age of 16 who would like to enrol in this unit must first complete a Parental Consent Form.

Unit summary


  • Level of Study: Postgraduate
  • Study load: 0.125 EFTSL
  • Delivery method: Fully Online
  • Prerequisites: Yes
  • Duration: 13 weeks
  • Government loans available: FEE-HELP
  • Availability for 2016: SP2
  • Assessment: Assignments - Two short sketches (20%) , Journal (25%) - Learn more

Unit provided by

2016 Fees
Domestic 2,450.00
International 2,700.00

In order to enrol in this unit, you must be accepted into Graduate Diploma in Professional Communication.

This unit examines issues in the theory and practice of humour writing. You will engage critically and creatively with a range of different genres, styles and publication contexts of humour writing. Topics covered include parody, irony, anecdote, political satire, domestic humour, grotesque and absurd humour, humour as investigative reporting, stand up comedy, stunt comedy, joke writing, humour writing and the internet, humour writing in cross-cultural contexts, humour writing and gender, humour in the workplace.

Please Note:  If it’s your first time studying a Curtin University unit you’ll need to complete their compulsory ‘Academic Integrity Program’. It only takes two hours to complete online, and provides you with vital information about studying with Curtin University. The Academic Integrity Program is compulsory, so if it’s not completed your unit grades will be withheld.

Find out more about the Academic Integrity module.

At the completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. identify and describe the characteristics and conventions of humour writing
  2. design and create a new look which applies and experiments with the generic characteristics and conventions of humour writing
  3. critique and evaluate humour writing texts, peer creative production and personal creative practice
  4. analyse ethical and cross-cultural issues involved in writing humour
  5. research and analyse the social, cultural or psychological dynamics of humour writing.
  • Assignments — Two short sketches (20%)
  • Journal (25%)
  • Portfolio — Portfolio and research essay (40%)
  • Seminar — Workshop sessions (15%)

In order to enrol in this unit, you must be accepted into Graduate Diploma in Professional Communication.

  • Broadband access

This unit addresses the following topics.

1Theories and techniques of humour
2Comedy and satire
3Irony and wit
4Strategies and techniques for writing humour
6The grotesque, nonsensical and absurd
7Humour as investigative reporting
8Stand up and joke writing
9Aussie humour
10Humour ethics and humour in the workplace
11*Note: Topics are sometimes altered in response to student feedback and to reflect changes and new information in the field.

This unit is delivered using the following methods and materials:

Instructional Methods

  • Audio/Video conferencing
  • Blogs
  • Chat rooms
  • Discussion Forum/Discussion Board
  • Embedded Multimedia
  • Online assignment submission
  • Podcasting/Lecture capture
  • Standard Media
  • Streaming Multimedia
  • Web links
  • Wikis

This unit is not currently a requirement for any courses, but may be eligible for credit.

  1. Many undergraduate courses on offer through OUA include 'open elective' where any OUA unit can be credited to the course. You need to check the Award Requirements on the course page for the number of allowed open electives and any level limitations.
  2. In other cases, the content of this unit might be relevant to a course on offer through OUA or elsewhere. In order to receive credit for this unit in the course you will need to supply the provider institution with a copy of the Unit Profile in the approved format, which you can download here. Note that the Unit Profile is set at the start of the year, and if textbooks change this may not match the Co-Op textbook list.
This unit does not have a prescribed textbook(s).

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