Course Title: Self, Identity and Agency

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Self, Identity and Agency

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies


Sem 2 2007,
Sem 2 2008,
Sem 2 2009,
Sem 2 2010,
Sem 2 2011,
Sem 2 2012,
Sem 2 2013,
Sem 2 2014,
Sem 2 2015,
Sem 2 2016,
Sem 1 2017,
Sem 2 2017,
Sem 2 2018,
Sem 2 2020,
Sem 2 2021


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies

Face-to-Face or Internet

Sem 2 2019


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies


Sem 1 2020

Course Coordinator: Dr Sonia Martin

Course Coordinator Phone: +(61 3) 9925 3483

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: Building 8, Level 10

Course Coordinator Availability: By appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

Self, Identity and Agency examines the ways in which people shape, and are shaped by, the world around them. In this course you will examine questions such as: Are we ‘born’ the way we are or are we ‘made’ the way we are? How might issues be socially constructed and what are the debates about how meanings are created?  How and why do human beings grow and change over the course of their lives and what factors shape and determine their life chances? In order to answer these questions we will draw on a range of social science theories which can be used to increase understanding of human development and of the dynamics between the individual and the society of which they are a part. The course requires you to develop analytical skills in examining these theories and to apply them to an understanding of a range of social issues which confront individuals in contemporary society. It is particularly relevant to those working in human services such as psychologists, social work practitioners, youth workers, teachers, educators, community workers and others.  

This course is an academic study of constructs of self and identity, through interdisciplinary knowledge forms. It is not a therapeutic study. 

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Course Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Describe and explain the purpose of theory in the social sciences
  2. Compare and critically evaluate key social, constructionist and developmental theories discussed in the course
  3. Engage the complexity of social meanings in relation to an area of society related to your future professional practice
  4. Identify the key factors and processes involved and impacting on human development across the life course development
  5. Use the ideas and theories studied in this course to  analyse your own life and experiences.  

Overview of Learning Activities

This course runs in face to face and online mode. Some resources and activities are shared, whereas others may be specific to each group. This course will consist of a weekly lecture or series of mini lectures. There are also weekly workshops, or their equivalent  that draw upon the understandings developed in the lectures to establish deeper and applied conceptual knowledge through practical experiences. Online discussion forums will also be utilised. Readings will be provided and drawn upon to explore a range of theoretical perspectives. 

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems. 

Reading materials will be available through CANVAS and the RMIT Library. 

There are services available to support your learning through the University Library. The Library provides guides on academic referencing and subject specialist help as well as a range of study support services. For further information, please visit the Library page on the RMIT University website and the myRMIT student portal. 

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.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment 1: Introducing your ‘self’ - 750 words, 15% CLO 4, CLO 5. 

Assessment 2: Introducing an ‘other’ – 1250 words, 35% CLO 1, CLO 2, CLO 4 

Assessment 3: Self and Agency – An evaluation -  up to 2000 word or equivalent, 50% CLO1, CLO2, CLO 3, CLO 4, CLO 5. 

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 Equitable Learning Services if you would like to find out more. 

Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies, procedures and instructions.