Course Title: Race and Racism

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Race and Racism

Credit Points: 12.00

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


330H Social Science & Planning


Sem 1 2006


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies


Sem 1 2007,
Sem 1 2008,
Sem 1 2009,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 2 2012,
Sem 2 2013,
Sem 1 2016

Course Coordinator: Val Colic-Peisker

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 9981

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 15.4.18

Course Coordinator Availability: by appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

Any first year social science course.

Course Description

Racism has had many guises. Its influence can be seen in politics and the law, in the writing of history and in science. Theories about race have often been used to justify differences of wealth and poverty, or to explain the power of minorities. In Southern Africa and Australia, racism and racial theories have also been closely associated with the destruction of indigenous societies. The science of race or human difference has changed dramatically over time. Techniques for measuring racial superiority have come and gone, sometimes leaving barely a trace. The invention of tests to measure human intelligence replaced the measurement of facial angles or the texture of hair as the best guide to racial identity. In this you will examines that history, using examples from Southern Africa, USA, Australia and the Pacific.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Upon successful completion of the course, you will be able to:

  • identify and define racism and racial doctrines both historically and in the contemporary context.
  • describe and evaluate the major debates about race
  • investigate and articulate reasons why sexuality has played such an important part in racial discourse
  • reflect on the experience of racism and racial conflict and outline its relationship to a broader set of contexts



Overview of Learning Activities

You will be able to engage in a variety of lectures and smaller classes. At lectures there will be opportunities for questions and clarification in addition to formal components. Lectures will be followed by an hour devoted to visiting speakers, videos, or group discussion.

Each week, you will need to read at least one item from the list of references provided. The tutorials will be structured as workshops where you will discuss, in small groups, what you have read, and how it relates to issues raised in the lectures. It is important that students do not all read the same articles, but expand their expertise as widely as possible by reporting on a range of different articles, social media and audio-visual material.

Overview of Learning Resources

You will be able to use a prescribed text and materials available through MyRMIT Studies.

Overview of Assessment

You will be assessed on how well you meet the course’s learning outcomes and on your development against the program learning outcomes. Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks.

If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or the Disability Liaison Unit if you would like to find out more.

Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies, procedures and instructions which are available for review online: