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SOCI3085 – Social Order and Social Control

2020 – Session 1, Fully online/virtual

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, any references to assessment tasks and on-campus delivery may no longer be up-to-date on this page.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff
Peter Rogers
Credit points Credit points
Prerequisites Prerequisites
130cp at 1000 level or above
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description

In this unit students will develop an advanced understanding of social order and social control. Students will synthesise theory and research to better understand how we are ruled in different ways at different times. We engage in individual and group work, to formulate an answer to the question 'are you truly free or do you just THINK you are?'. Theories of crime, order, control and freedom are developed to highlight the importance of social values, cultural contexts and historical events in shaping the 'soul' of Western civilisation. We explore how certain institutionalised ways of thinking emerge and which organisations benefit in each time period, with a focus on how crime, criminals and deviancy shape social order. We also discuss how controls applied at the boundaries of acceptable behaviour change over time, testing the limits of real and imagined freedom.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at https://students.mq.edu.au/important-dates

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  • ULO1: understand key concepts and theoretical approaches used in the sociology of crime and criminology
  • ULO3: plan, design and conduct a team-based research project in collaboration with others
  • ULO2: critique the social construction of criminology at different time periods, specifically using a theory of institutions and organisations
  • ULO5: offer a clearly reasoned argument with a logical structure; take part in and reflect upon discussion and debate with an open mind; to generate information for diverse audiences or user groups through a range of media
  • ULO4: evaluate and justify both individual and group performance through active participation and continuous learning
  • ULO6: describe, analyse, synthesise and reflect upon information from critical theory across disciplines as well as diverse data sources

Assessment Tasks

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Assessment details are no longer provided here as a result of changes due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

General Assessment Information


Please check iLearn for all assessment deadline dates and times. Click the TURNITIN links for each assessment component or check the ASSESSMENT section in iLearn. If you cannot find the information check the GENERAL QUESTIONS thread in the General Discussion Board on iLearn.



The essay will be chosen from one of the set questions used in this unit. These questions will be posted online (in iLearn) by the end of March.

The essay should address the key themes of the unit drawing on the usual range of academic sources, including (but not limited to) required readings, recommended readings and independent research on related topics or themes as conducted by the student.


  1. The essay must be your own work. Harsh penalties are imposed for plagiarism, ghost writing or other 'cheating' as per the academic honesty policy
  2. The essay must show evidence of both an understanding of core unit content & substantial wider independently researched reading on the appropriate topic
  3. The Major Essay must be written on a different theory and/or topic to your group presentation. If in doubt ask your tutor for advice.
  4. Marks will be deducted for improper referencing. Students are required to use standard Harvard (author-date) referencing style in the in-text content, citations and bibliographic references used throughout the final submission.

For more information and answers to your frequently asked questions we have prepared a 'MAJOR ESSAY - Guidance on RUBRIC and FAQs' sheet in iLearn. For general support on essay writing you can also check out the MQ library website.





The assessment policy requires that "at least 50% of group work assessment shall be allocated to individual performance". To comply with this policy the group project is divided into 3 components - two group components and an individual component. These grades are then combined to give students a final mark for the group project assessment:

  • Group component 1. PROJECT PROPOSAL = 10% of GROUP PROJECT final mark
  • Individual Component. COLLABORATION WIKI = 50% of GROUP PROJECT final mark
  • Group Component 2. FINAL PRESENTATION = 40% of GROUP PROJECT final mark 

The groups will usually be allocated in week 3, but no later than week 5. This varies depending on unit enrollments each year. Please check iLearn for the confirmed assessment deadlines for each component.

Please also refer to the 'GROUP PROJECT - GETTING STARTED (and FAQs)' in iLearn




Group component 1. PROJECT PROPOSAL

  • The proposal is a collaborative group assessment. This means that all group members must contribute, and that all group members receive the same mark for the proposal; unless otherwise notified by the convenor.
  • The word limit for the group project proposal is roughly 1000 words, including -/+ 10% leeway. This does not include any figures or tables (such as the Gantt chart and the task list - if this is presented in a table format).
  • The proposal is submitted by uploading a word or pdf file to the wiki. Instructions on how to upload files to the wiki are included on the wiki start page. The final submission should include the group number in the title (e.g. GROUP 1. GROUP PROPOSAL DOCUMENT. FINAL).


  • clearly demonstrate the title and topic / focus of the project 
  • generate a properly formatted Gantt chart that can be used to track progress on the project throughout the session
  • provide an initial task list / division of labour for individual contributions to the group project
  • provide evidence of communication and group planning (e.g. minutes of first meetings)
  • show basic language skills (e.g. grammar, referencing)

Please also refer to the 'PART 1. GROUP PROJECT PROPOSAL. RUBRIC & CHECKLIST' sheet provided in iLearn.




Individual Component. COLLABORATION WIKI.

For this assessment students must complete KEY TASKS in the GROUP COLLABORATION WIKI to demonstrate an individual contribution to the project.

  • Examples of KEY TASKS are listed on the 'GROUP COLLABORATION WIKI RUBRIC AND GUIDANCE' sheet - Check the ASSESSMENTS section in iLearn to access/download this document.
  • You decide how to structure your wiki as a team - even though you receive an individual mark for the wiki it is still part of the project. We can give you some guidance, but each group must take on responsibility for managing the wiki content as a team
  • You decide how to divide up the KEY TASKS amongst your group - everyone must contribute to receive an individual grade, it is recommended that you keep a record of the task allocations in the wiki.
  • Learn to use the wiki - even if you are not familiar with using a wiki you are required to try. Learning how to use the wiki is a key skill being assessed in this unit. All students must try to develop their wiki skills throughout the session. As such each individual student should try to complete at least one key task in wiki every week.
  • If it isn't in the wiki we cannot mark it. Please bear this in mind when deciding how you are going to work, and document your work, as a group. ONLY contributions documented in the wiki are included in your assessed work so it is vital that students learn to use the wiki and document all aspects of their individual contributions to the group project in this virtual learning space.
  • All wiki activity is monitored weekly by academic staff. Bulk uploads of content at the end of term are not a replacement for weekly work. 

Please also refer to the 'PART 2. GROUP COLLABORATION WIKI RUBRIC (Individual Component)' guide provided in iLearn





A group presentation of no more than 15 minutes duration will be presented in the final week of term as the culmination of the GROUP PROJECT. Please consider that:

  • general guidance on this component of the assessment will be made available in several of the lectures - please check the lecture recordings.
  • workshops have been built into the tutorials to assist group with development and general preentation skills during term.
  • a template for power-point presentation will be provided in iLearn.
  • not all group members are required to speak in the final presentation - if not all group members present then there must be an reasionable distribution of workload to account for this division of labour.
  • the timetable for final presentations will be uploaded to iLearn no later than WEEK 11.

Please also refer to the 'PART 3. FINAL PRESENTATION RUBRIC' provided in iLearn for more useful information





  • Rubrics, alongside more detailed guidance on both the assessment criteria for each assessment and some useful steps for students to consider when undertaking assessments, have been included in the iLearn site. Please check them for guidance.
  • Students are advised to post all general questions to the general discussion board. Before posting your queries: 
    • Information is provided in a number of locations, it is a good idea to check the following before posting a question:
      • the unit guide
      • rubrics
      • iLearn site
      • assessment guidance 
    • Check previous thread titles and topics to see if your question has been asked / answered already
    • REMEMBER - duplicate threads or questions answered elsewhere may not receive a response. It is your responsibility to read the provided guidance.


REVIEW MEETINGS (optional). Part of the group project is learning how to collaborate. This requires you to work within the group to resolve any issues that arise, however we acknowledge that academic guidance may be required in some situations. If you experience difficulties within your group that you are unable to resolve - e.g. if a group is not working well, a group member experiences a serious disruption to study, or the team falls far behind schedule (as outlined in thier Gantt chart) - the convenor may require OR students may request a 'review meeting' to discuss the progress of the group. A review meeting can be requested at any time during term, but the convenor will often schedule these meetings for the first week or two after the mid-session interval (usually around WEEK 8). Review meetings are arranged on a needs only basis, but can be requested by appointment. All group members should try to attend a review meeting if one has been arranged, but we also allocate time in tutorials throughout the session to discuss the group work as a whole. Externals are welcome to skype in for workshops and/or review meetings.

Delivery and Resources

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Any references to on-campus delivery below may no longer be relevant due to COVID-19.

Please check here for updated delivery information: https://ask.mq.edu.au/account/pub/display/unit_status


  • The lectures for this unit are pre-recorded. Please check iLearn to view the weekly lectures and check the unit announcements in iLearn (sent to your university email address) for updates.


  • Whilst active participation is no longer assessed in this unit the weekly reading is considered a required part of preparing for your study each week.
  • All students are strongly encouraged to attend all lectures and tutorials.
  • REMEMBER - Students who regularly do not attend almost always see a reflection of this lack of engagement in thier final marks.
  • FOR ALL TIMETABLE INFORMATION go to the MQ timetable website.
  • Rooms may change so check regularly for updates.


We do our best to upload all readings to ilearn or e-reserve though this is not always possible.

IMPORTANT NOTESeveral of the texts we use will be only available on e-reserve for a limited time due to copyright restrictions imposed by the publisher. Please manage your reading schedule accordingly, this is not something that academic staff are able to influence. Be mindful that accessing the readings whilst they are available is YOUR responsibility.  

  • We do not use one single core text for this unit. Readings are drawn from a number of sources. If you do wish to focus on ONE book you may find this particularly useful:

White, R.; Haines, F., Asquith, N. (2012) Crime and Criminology, Oxford: Oxford University Press (5th edition)

  • There are also many copies of the earlier editions by White and Haines in the library. For this text in particular the earlier editions have similar content. Another important text from which required readings are drawn, is:

North, D. C., Wallis, J. J., & Weingast, B. R. (2009). Violence and social order: A conceptual framework for interpreting recorded human history. Cambridge: New York.

  • Reading BEFORE you attend lectures and tutorials is mandatory in this unit. Contribution to discussions in the seminars & online is much more difficult if you do not read & come to class prepared for a discussion of the reading material.

Unit Schedule

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

The unit schedule/topics and any references to on-campus delivery below may no longer be relevant due to COVID-19. Please consult iLearn for latest details, and check here for updated delivery information: https://ask.mq.edu.au/account/pub/display/unit_status

See iLearn

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central). Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Students seeking more policy resources can visit the Student Policy Gateway (https://students.mq.edu.au/support/study/student-policy-gateway). It is your one-stop-shop for the key policies you need to know about throughout your undergraduate student journey.

If you would like to see all the policies relevant to Learning and Teaching visit Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central).

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/study/getting-started/student-conduct​


Results published on platform other than eStudent, (eg. iLearn, Coursera etc.) or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au or if you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to help you improve your marks and take control of your study.

The Library provides online and face to face support to help you find and use relevant information resources. 

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

If you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Changes since First Published

Date Description
05/02/2020 updated assessment due date for 2020