• Offered by School of Sociology
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Course subject Sociology
  • Areas of interest Sociology
  • 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:

  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; and
  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

  1. Research proposal 1500 words (25) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  2. Workshop participation (10) [LO 1,2,4]
  3. 4 Quizzes x 5% each (20) [LO 1,2]
  4. Research report 2500 words (45) [LO 1,2,3,4]

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130 hours of total student learning time made up from:

a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 12 hours of lectures, 24 hours of student-led workshops; and,

b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have completed 12 units of 1000 level ANU courses, or with permission of the convenor. You are not able to enrol in this course if you have previously completed GEND2057.

Prescribed Texts


Assumed Knowledge





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

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you 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). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found 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
2022 $3840
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $4980
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

There are no current offerings for this course.

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