Unit description and aim
To be effective in youth work requires advanced knowledge and understanding of the social contexts that impact on young people's lives. In particular, understanding the ways in which school, ethnicity, family, gender, class, geographic location and culture shape the experience of being a young person is required to inform the development of skills needed to engage with young people. To help students gain an understanding of the histories that influence our thinking about young people and their issues today this unit will investigate the major socio-historical forces and institutions impacting on their lives.
The aim of this unit is to develop insight into the lived experiences of young people, particularly in the Australian context.
On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:
LO1 - Describe the ways historically generated perspectives influence how young people are represented and treated in contemporary Australian society (GA1, GA2, GA4, GA5)
LO2 - Explain key youth issues, impacting on young people (GA1, GA2, GA4)
LO3 - Critically evaluate the ways in which key social structures (such as institutions and cultural discourses) shape the opportunities available for young people (GA4, GA6, GA8)
LO4 - Articulate a sociological understanding of the nature of social relationships and institutions, patterns of social diversity and inequality as they impact on the experience of youth (GA1, GA2, GA4, GA9)
GA1 - demonstrate respect for the dignity of each individual and for human diversity
GA2 - recognise their responsibility to the common good, the environment and society
GA4 - think critically and reflectively
GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession
GA6 - solve problems in a variety of settings taking local and international perspectives into account
GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information
GA9 - demonstrate effective communication in oral and written English language and visual media
Topics will include:
- Social constructions of young people
- Social divisions and the youth experience (class, ethnicity, gender and sexuality)
- Social institutions and young people (family, school and work)
- Social identities and young people. (youth cultures, technology)
- Social Issues (crime, violence, public space)
Learning and teaching strategy and rationale
This 10-credit point face-to-face unit provides hands-on learning, including collaborative learning. It takes the form of a face-to-face class incorporating activities through which students will gain a deep understanding of the ways historically generated perspectives influence how young people are represented and treated. Key learning activities will include debating, learning to ‘read’ and interpret writing on youth work and other key sources, reading, writing, group discussion, finding scholarly sources, and problem-solving. The lectures provide students with content and analytical frameworks necessary for understanding and analysing the nature of social relationships and institutions, patterns of social diversity and inequality as they impact on the experience of youth while tutorials give students the opportunity to discuss, debate, look at case studies and examples from the Australian setting.
Assessment strategy and rationale
The assessments in this unit encourage students to engage with the scholarship surrounding sociological theories of youth (tests), critically examine social context and develop skills around communicating ideas and theories about young people (film review) and apply a sociological understanding of the nature of social relationships and institutions, patterns of social diversity and inequality (sociological autobiography) in order to develop an understanding of young people’s social context.
Overview of assessments
|Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment Tasks||Weighting||Learning Outcomes||Graduate Attributes|
Students will explore how social context is represented in one of the films showed in class
LO1, LO2, LO3
GA1, GA2, GA4, GA5, GA6, GA8
2.In class tasks
Students will engage with the scholarship surrounding sociological theories of youth.
GA1, GA2, GA4, , GA6, GA8
Students will apply a sociological understanding of the nature of social relationships and institutions, patterns of social diversity and inequality to their experience of adolescence
LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4,
GA1, GA2, GA4, GA5, GA6, GA8, GA9
Representative texts and references
Bradford, S 2012, Sociology, youth and youth work practice, Palgrave Macmillan, London.
Furlong, A 2013, Youth studies: An introduction, Routledge, Oxon, UK.
Kehily, M 2007, Understanding youth: Perspectives, identities and practices. Sage, London.
Robards, B & Baker, S 2017, Youth and youth subcultures: Australian perspectives. Routledge, London.
Ruddock, A 2013, Youth and media, Sage, London.
Wyn, J & Woodman, D 2014, Youth and generation: Rethinking change and inequality in the lives of young people, Sage, London.
White, R, Wyn, J & Robards, B 2017, Youth and society. 4th edn, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Vic.