• Offered by School of Sociology
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Course subject Gender Studies
  • Areas of interest Gender Studies
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course

The last fifty years have witnessed profound changes in the structure and social meaning of relationships, family and marriage. The main goal of this course is to examine these changes in contemporary Australia and  cross-nationally. Students will gain an understanding of demographic changes, shifts in the attitudes to family and marriage, problems of the work-family balance and the effectiveness of government policy in this area.  The course will also introduce sociological and social-psychological theories of marriage and the family.
A large part of the course will be devoted to the examination of special topics including gender, love and sexuality in relationships, the meaning of family and marriage across cultures, singlehood, partner selection; stress, crisis, violence and abuse in relationships; divorce, remarriage and their effect on children; childlessness as a lifestyle, same-sex relationships, globalization and outsourcing of care.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

1. Describe, contrast and compare the leading themes in the research on intimacy, marriage and the family in Australia and overseas.
2. Identify, describe and interpret key concepts informing sociological knowledge of intimacy and the family.
3. Construct a written argument applying these concepts.
4. Design and conduct a small small-scale research project investigating changes in the perceptions regarding intimacy, marriage and family held in the local social environment.

Indicative Assessment

Research proposal and report 2500 words  (50%) Learning Outcomes 1-4
Synoptic essay 2200 (40%) Learning Outcomes 1-4
Tutorial and lab participation (10%) Learning Outcomes 1-4

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130 hours of total student learning time made up from: a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 24 hours of lectures, and 12 hours of tutorials; and, b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have completed 12 units of 1000 level ANU courses; or permission of the convenor. You are not able to enrol in this course if you have previously completed SOCY2057.

Preliminary Reading

Baker, M. (2014). Choices and Constraints in Family Life (3rd). Toronto: Oxford University Press




Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2017 $2856
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2017 $4080
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

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There are no current offerings for this course.

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