Students

SOCI3070 – Social Inequality

2021 – Session 1, Online with attendance for exam, Exam centre within Australia

Notice

As part of Phase 3 of our return to campus plan, most units will now run tutorials, seminars and other small group activities on campus, and most will keep an online version available to those students unable to return or those who choose to continue their studies online.

To check the availability of face-to-face and online activities for your unit, please go to timetable viewer. To check detailed information on unit assessments visit your unit's iLearn space or consult your unit convenor.

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff
Shaun Wilson
Credit points Credit points
10
Prerequisites Prerequisites
130cp at 1000 level or above
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
The organisational and institutional dynamics of modern societies are powerful generators of social inequality and yet they equally generate resources through which inequalities can be identified and challenged. This unit explores the social mechanisms that drive inequalities and surveys the impact of socio-economic inequality on a wide range of areas of social life (gender, culture, employment, and the economy). The unit considers how sociological theory can explain the emergence and persistence of social inequalities, the normative conflicts and struggles that inequalities produce, and the ways social institutions overcome, respond or merely adapt to inequality. We conclude the unit by looking at whether democratic societies can survive widening socio-economic inequalities and how we might explain the improvement in some types of inequality and discrimination and the curious persistence of others.

Important Academic Dates

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

Learning Outcomes

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

  • ULO1: demonstrate an advanced understanding of the foundations, generative mechanisms and multi-dimensional nature of social inequality
  • ULO2: demonstrate an understanding of the technical and sociological measurement of inequality
  • ULO3: demonstrate an ability to interpret debates and policy, political and social-movement responses to inequality

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Hurdle Due
Examination 60% No Formal examinaiton period at end of Semester One
Assignment 30% No Saturday April 24 at 9pm
Weekly participation 10% No Weekly

Examination

Assessment Type 1: Examination
Indicative Time on Task 2: 2 hours
Due: Formal examinaiton period at end of Semester One
Weighting: 60%

Final examination at the end of Semester


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • demonstrate an advanced understanding of the foundations, generative mechanisms and multi-dimensional nature of social inequality
  • demonstrate an understanding of the technical and sociological measurement of inequality
  • demonstrate an ability to interpret debates and policy, political and social-movement responses to inequality

Assignment

Assessment Type 1: Problem set
Indicative Time on Task 2: 55 hours
Due: Saturday April 24 at 9pm
Weighting: 30%

Responses to six questions about interesting readings and problems in the field of social inequality.


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • demonstrate an advanced understanding of the foundations, generative mechanisms and multi-dimensional nature of social inequality
  • demonstrate an understanding of the technical and sociological measurement of inequality
  • demonstrate an ability to interpret debates and policy, political and social-movement responses to inequality

Weekly participation

Assessment Type 1: Participatory task
Indicative Time on Task 2: 0 hours
Due: Weekly
Weighting: 10%

Participation in at least 8 weeks of lectures and tutorials across the Semester OR ONLINE PARTICIPATION for online students


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • demonstrate an advanced understanding of the foundations, generative mechanisms and multi-dimensional nature of social inequality
  • demonstrate an understanding of the technical and sociological measurement of inequality
  • demonstrate an ability to interpret debates and policy, political and social-movement responses to inequality

1 If you need help with your assignment, please contact:

  • the academic teaching staff in your unit for guidance in understanding or completing this type of assessment
  • the Writing Centre for academic skills support.

2 Indicative time-on-task is an estimate of the time required for completion of the assessment task and is subject to individual variation

Delivery and Resources

SOCI 3070 has a weekly online lecture which will be posted on Tuesday morning so it can be watched at 2pm Mondays. 

Tutorials follow on Tuesday afternoon and evening.

There is no tutorial in the first week of classes, so the first tutorials are down for Tuesday, 2 March.

See https://timetables.mq.edu.au/2021/ for details of classes.

There is an I-Learn page with readings and a guide to the tutorials.

Unit Schedule

week Topic Tutorial  
1 Intro: the challenge of social inequality in the 21st century (23 Feb) None  
2 The economics and sociology of measuring inequality (2 Mar) Discrimination as a sociological process  
3 Better or worse? Trends in global inequality (9 Mar) Should we focus on poverty or inequality? A look at current debate  
4 Thomas Piketty on inequality: Trends and reactions (16 Mar) Does inequality promote political authoritarianism?  
5 Two concepts: exploitation and opportunity hoarding (23 Mar) How does precarious employment contribute to inequality?  
6

Status, hierarchy, and organisation (30 Mar)

Mid semester break follows

Restorative justice and the prison system  
7

Inequality and social justice--theory, equal opportunity & affirmative action (20 Apr)

 

How does work reinforce gender inequalities?  
8 Inequality and the labour market (27 Apr) How does social class shape life chances & Australian society?  
9 Building blocks of mobility: secure work, housing and education (4 May) Battle of the generations  
10 Inequality and the politics of identity (11 May) A look at contemporary social movements focused on inequality   
11 Inequality and backlash movements (18 May) The Trump electorate in the US. Trends in Australia   
12 Social futures: AI, automation and the basic income (25 May) Basic income trials around the world, the Jobs Guarantee  
13 Unit revision and extensions (1 June) Revision ahead of final exam  

 

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central (https://policies.mq.edu.au). Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

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

To find other policies relating to Teaching and Learning, visit Policy Central (https://policies.mq.edu.au) and use the search tool.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/admin/other-resources/student-conduct

Results

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 Services and 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.

Student Enquiries

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

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 from Previous Offering

New lectures, slightly revised assessment within advertised requirements