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Explorations in Sociology

2014 unit code: SOC10002 (formerly LSS102)

Please note that unit codes have changed from 2014.
Credit points12.5 Credit Points
DurationOne Semester
Contact hours36 hours over the semester, normally 3 hours per week

Related course(s)

This is a prescribed unit of study in the Social Science Major/s. It may also be undertaken as a unit of study in any other Swinburne degree program, subject to the prerequisite and degree requirements.
Formerly known as LSS100 Introduction to Sociology and co-badged with PSS100 Introduction to Sociology (online)
As from Semester 1 2014, LSS102 will no longer be offered and will be replaced by HAS111 Sociological Foundations.

Aims and objectives

This unit introduces students to key concepts and debates in sociology and explores contempory issues in Australian society. We explore social identities, social inequalities and social transformations, and examine a range of substantive areas which may include youth culture, consumption, media, popular culture, health and illness, social movements, globalisation and sustainability. After completing the unit, students should be able to:
• understand basic sociological concepts
• think critically about contempory social relations
• apply sociological concepts to the analysis of current social issues
• analyse the ways in which social processes, movements and structures shape individuals, groups and identity in Australian society

Teaching methods

Units will be taught in a variety of modes including face to face, online, distance and blended modes. Delivery of this unit may be through a mixture of lectures, tutorials, laboratories, seminars and online.


Minor Essay 15% - 25%
Reflective Essay 35% - 45%
Final Essay 35% - 45%

Generic skills outcomes

This unit will provide discipline-based knowledge and professional capabilities and expereinces continuing to students’ progress in attaining generic skills such as:
• analysis skills, developed through critical reading of sociological literature
• ability to tackle unfamilar problems, developed through analysis of social issues
• communication skills, developed through written and oral presentations
• ability to work independently, developed through library research


Topics may include:
  • Race and Ethnicity
  • Culture and Socialisation
  • Gender
  • Healthcare
  • Sociological Theory
  • Class
  • Social Movements
  • Sociological Perspective
  • Social Structures, Social Interaction
  • Education
  • Marriage and Family
  • Politics

Reading materials

Bryant, J. 2006, Dare to Know: Thinking Sociologically. Pearson, Frenchs Forest. NSW.

Matson, R. 2008, In the spirit of sociology, Pearson Education, USA.

*There are many worthwhile representative texts for preliminary reading or reference throughout the semester, for example:

Betts, K, Farquarson, K. & Seitz, A. 2005, Writing essays and research reports in the social sciences, Thomson, Melbourne.

Holmes, D, Hughs, K & Juilan, R. 2007, Australian sociology: a changing society, Pearson Education Australia, Frenchs Forest.

Levin, J. (2008) Sociological Snapshots 5. Seeing Social Structure and Change in Everyday Life. Sage.

Macionis, J. & Plumer, K . 2008, Sociology: a global introduction, 4th edn, Pearson Education, N.Y.

Van Krieken, R, 2006, Sociology: themes and perspectives, 3rd edn, Pearson Education Australia, Frenchs Forest.

Willis, E. 2004, The sociological quest, Allen and Unwin, St Leonards.

Text books

Henslin, J. M., Possamai, A. and Possamai-Inesedy, A. (2011) "Sociology A Down-to-Earth Approach", Pearson, Frenchs Forest.