Photographic Essay

Assessment 2: Photographic Essay (1,000 words)

 Overview In Module 2 of People, Place and Social Difference (Australia’s Migration Story)

we have been examining the impacts of immigration in Australia at a national and local scale. We have also explored the experiences of people immigrating to a new country.

This assignment requires you to draw upon the knowledge and skills you have developed in the lectures, readings and workshops in the second module to write a photographic essay on the following question:

 What are the benefits (e.g. cultural maintenance, provision of services, etc.) and challenges (e.g. exclusion, stereotyping/prejudice, etc.) of ethnic residential concentration in the suburb of Cabramatta?

Your essay must include three (3) of your own illustrative photographs (see information below). The essay should be 1,000 words (but this does not include your reference list, figure captions or photograph source information).

Photographic Essay Learning Objectives After successfully completing this assignment, students will be able to:

1. Identify the impacts of migration upon social and cultural landscapes in Sydney.

 2. Identify the benefits and challenges of ethnic residential concentration.

3. Understand the challenges presented by migrating to a new country.

4. Use photographic evidence to illustrate social and cultural processes.

5. Effectively and safely conduct fieldwork to gather data/evidence.

6. Identify, evaluate and utilise academic sources to produce a scholarly piece of writing.

Photographic evidence (compulsory) The essay requires you to use three (3) photographs taken during your self-guided field trip to Cabramatta. (The Photographs are attached). The photographs are a form of primary data which you will use to explain and illustrate the key arguments that you make. You should ensure that you have completed some background reading about ethnic residential concentration and Cabramatta before the field trip so that you know what type of photographs you will need. The photographs MUST be yours and MUST be taken during the 2017 field trip.

You will be required to record the location of each of your photographs, along with the direction you were facing, the subject and the date/time each was taken. This information MUST be included in a source statement for each photograph in your essay.


Note: Not all of the key points/arguments you make in your essay need to be supported with photographs (indeed, you should have more than three key arguments). In previous years students have found it difficult to represent the challenges of ethnic residential concentration using photographs. It is okay if you only use photographs to illustrate the benefits of ethnic residential concentration. However, your photographs should illustrate different points/arguments within your essay (e.g. if you have a paragraph in your essay that discusses exclusion as a challenge of ethnic residential concentration, you should not use three photographs to illustrate this one point).


Literature Requirements You MUST use at least five (5) academic sources (journal articles, book chapters or books) to write your essay. This should include at least two (2) sources that you find  yourself.

Secondary Data

As well as the photographs that comprise the primary data of your essay, we encourage you to use secondary data to add rigour and value to your argument. Cabramatta contains a number of different cultural groups. As we discussed in Module 1, the best way to understand the social make up of an Australian suburb is to draw upon Census data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics. This could act as secondary data for your essay.


Suggested Readings

Birrell, B 1993, ‘Ethnic concentrations: the Vietnamese experience’, People and Place, vol. 1, no. 3, pp.26–32

Burnley, IH 1994, ‘Immigration, ancestry, and residence in Sydney’, Australian Geographical Studies, vol. 32, no. 1, pp.69–89.

Dunn, KM 1993, ‘The Vietnamese concentration in Cabramatta: site of avoidance and deprivation, or island of adjustment and participation?’, Australian Geographical Studies, vol. 31, no. 2, pp.228–45


Dunn, KM 1998, ‘Rethinking ethnic concentration: the case of Cabramatta, Sydney’, Urban Studies, vol. 35, no. 3, pp.503–27.

Hugo, G 1995, Understanding where immigrants live, Bureau of Immigration, Multicultural and Population Research, Canberra. Available at:

Hugo, G 2011, ‘Changing spatial patterns of immigrant settlement’, in J Jupp & M Clyne (eds.), Multiculturalism and integration: A harmonious relationship, ANU E Press, Canberra, pp.1–40. Available at:

Handy Tips/Resources:

Half of the marks in the essay will be allocated according to your presentation of the data, the

· standard of the data collected, and its integration with the text. The other half of your marks will be determined by the structure and content of your argument (e.g. coherence of your argument, appropriate reference to the literature).  Acknowledge all sources. Even if you are paraphrasing or summarising, a citation with author and

· date is still needed.  While we encouraged you to reflect upon the lectures in Assignment 1, the lectures should not be

· cited in Assignment 2. Use academic literature (journal articles, book chapters and books) as sources instead.  Use proper paragraph structures: ‘A fairly typical paragraph begins with a topic sentence that makes

· a general statement. The sentences that follow then support or develop that statement with details, examples and evidence’ (Australian Government Publishing Style Manual, 1988:6).  Structure your essay: have an Introduction that is aligned with a Conclusion.

The Introduction

· should be a road map for the essay, and present your key argument and/or theory, define your case study, etc. The Conclusion must address the points raised in the Introduction. Visit the following link for a helpful Western Sydney University guide on structuring an essay: 

Address the essay question being answered: ensure your essay actually responds to the question· being asked. Pick out keywords. Visit the following link for a helpful Western Sydney University guide on analysing an assignment question: ion.pdf.  Do not use symbols in text (e.g. use ‘per cent’, rather than ‘%’, ‘and’, rather than ‘·&’, ‘at’, rather than ‘@’, etc.) 

Do not start a sentence with a numeric. Write ‘Fifteen per cent of people …’ NOT ‘15 per cent of· people …’.  Data are plural

.·  Full stops only at end of sentence (unless an abbreviation stop): ‘… according to Dunn (2004).’· NOT: ‘… according to Dunn. (2004)’.  Do not use personal pronouns to describe Sydney or Australia. ‘Sydney has become polarised’

.· NOT ‘We have become polarised’. Visit the following link for a helpful Western Sydney University guide on essay tone:

 Do not use conjunctions in formal text (e.g. ‘cannot’, rather than ‘can’t’, ‘do not’, rather than ‘don’t),· ‘should not’, rather than ‘shouldn’t’), etc.).  Explain what acronyms stand for at their first use (e.g. New South Wales (NSW), ABS (Australian· Bureau of Statistics), GWS (Greater Western Sydney), etc.).

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