Course Title: Sociology

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2010

Course Code: HUSO5134

Course Title: Sociology

School: 365T Global Studies, Soc Sci & Plng

Campus: City Campus

Program: C6077 - Advanced Diploma of Justice

Course Contact : Anthony Trevan

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 99254512

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Nominal Hours: 68

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

There are no pre-requisites

Course Description

This course explores the nature and development of Australian society, the major forces and historical events that have shaped Australian society, the nature and experience of inequality, the power structures and processes that influence and maintain inequality and some of the major theories that explain why our society operates in this way

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

VBQM392 Sociology

Learning Outcomes

See Elements

Details of Learning Activities

Learning Outcome 1

Outline the development of Australian society
1.1 Define the terms ‘society,’ ‘culture’ and ‘ethnocentricity’
1.2 Describe the cultural background of early Australian settlers
1.3 Identify the main cultural beliefs of early Australian settlers
1.4 Describe the impact of European settlers on the Aboriginal culture
1.5 Identify the major characteristics of the Australian migration policy from 1900-1995
1.6 Explain the relationship between migration and cultural change in Australia

Learning Outcome 2
Outline the historical development of sociology
2.1 Define the term ‘sociology’
2.2 Describe the relationship between philosophy, sociology and psychology
2.3 Explain why sociology is regarded as an ‘empirical science’

Learning Outcome 3
Outline the development of Social Theory
3.1 Explain how philosophical beliefs led to the development of social theories
3.2 Identify and outline four major social theories
3.3 Explain how social theories are helpful in understanding human behaviour

Learning Outcome 4
Describe the bases of power in society
4.1 List the factors which influence power in a society
4.2 List the groups most likely to experience powerlessness in society
4.3 Identify aspects of social theories that explain why some individuals and groups do not have access to power in society

Learning Outcome 5
Identify major institutions in society and explain how they impact on power and inequality
5.1 Explain the concept of an institution as an agent of socialisation
5.2 List the ‘primary agents’ of socialisation in society
5.3 Explain the relationship between education and power in society
5.4 Outline the role of the family in defining individual power and equality
5.5 Explain the function of work in society
5.6 Describe the relationship between social institutions and individual or group power

Learning Outcome 6
Explain how value systems, social roles and gender contribute to the perpetuation of inequalities
6.1 Explain how value systems are formed
6.2 Describe the relationship between value systems and inequality
6.3 Define the term ‘social role’
6.4 Explain how social roles are adopted
6.5 Describe the relationship between social roles and inequality

Learning Outcome 7
Describe how inequality affects particular groups in society and explain how this affects behaviours and experiences  

7.1 Identify ways in which inequality impacts on the individual’s access to services and resources
7.2 Describe how limited access to services and resources affects behaviour and experience

Teaching Schedule

Week One: Introduction and Overview of Subject

Week Two: The History of Sociology and the Development of Social Theory

Week Three: Australian Society and Cultural Values

Week Four: Gender, Social Roles and Identity

Week Five: Family

Week Six: Education, Media and Popular Culture

Week Seven: Class, Work and Inequality

Week Eight: Sports, Disability and ethnic Groups
Semester Break-no classes

Week Nine: Power and the State

Week Ten: Deviance or Different?

Week Eleven: Cause, Construct, Control and Compliance

Week Twelve: Globalisation

Week Thirteen: Work on group presentations- no class

Week Fourteen: Group Presentations

Week Fifteen: Group Presentations

Week Sixteen: Exam Review

Week Seventeen: Public Holiday- no class

Week Eighteen: Exam

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Students should purchase a copy of ‘Public Sociology’ ed. Germov and Poole form the RMIT City Bookshop in Little Latrobe St prior to the start of semester. Additional recommended readings can be downloaded from the Learning Hub or will be handed out in class.


Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

Assessment will consist of: participation in classroom and Learning Hub activities, a group work project, two presentations and a research report (TBC)

Assessment Tasks

There are 4 assessment tasks in this subject, as follows:
1. Participation in Class Discussions (15%). Students are expected to prepare for and attend all classes, and to actively participate in class and on-line discussions. This portion of the final grade will be based upon the student’s critical engagement with the subject matter and readings, as demonstrated in the quality and quantity of their involvement in class discussions and debates. No marks are awarded simply for attendance; however as absence clearly precludes participation, it must be expected that consistent absences will impact upon the overall course grade. (Assesses all elements)

2. Group Presentation (30%). Students will be placed in groups of 4-5. Your group is to analyse the concepts of ‘normality and deviance’ by exploring where and how ‘people like you’ live. Your group may use powerpoint, video, live drama & dress-up, posters, photo’s, and other forms of media, to be part of your group’s presentation. Grades will be awarded on an individual basis besides collectively the group’s effort.
*Presentations will take place in Weeks 14 & 15. (Assesses elements 5-6)

3. Essay (30%) Students are to conduct a sociological investigation of one of the following social ‘phenomena’:
a) A sport or sporting event
b) Retail shopping
c) ‘Gender’ & body image
d) Music scene/The Arts
e) The night club
f) On-line communities
Answer the following questions (use sub-headings if you wish) in this assignment:
1. What is going on?
2. What is the history of this phenomenon?
3. Who is included?
4. Who is excluded (in terms of race, age, gender, wealth, health, ethnicity, ability etc)
5. How do you explain the phenomenon in sociological terms. Include at least two major theories covered in this subject.
(Assesses elements 4-7).

You must present your findings as a 2000 word essay, supported by a minimum of 6 referenced resources (maximum of 3 electronic resources will be accepted, e.g. websites, e-books, e-journals).Due Week 9.

4. Exam (25%). A closed book exam will be conducted in class in week 18. Consisting of multiple-choice questions, the exam will be based on the materials on the Learning Hub, in class notes and handouts, and the text ‘Public Sociology’ by Germov and Poole (students should purchase this book). The exam will run for 2 hours. Assesses all elements. Conducted in class in Week 18.

Assessment Matrix

Course Overview: Access Course Overview