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

This interdisciplinary course will introduce students to contemporary understandings of addiction and drug and alcohol use, from a socio-cultural perspective. It addresses the question of why addiction and drug use have such prominence as medical and social problems in contemporary Western cultures and provides a range of concepts and tools for understanding their significance. The course examines alcohol and drug use as socio-cultural practices which occur within specific social contexts. The course will also investigate the continued debates about 'what' addiction is and what these debates reveal about medical science and conceptions of health. The significance of gender, race, age and class in structuring patterns and experiences of drug use will be explored.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. explain contemporary theories of addiction and drug use from a critical and sociological perspective;
  2. analyse drug use as a social practice;
  3. interpret and evaluate qualitative data on drug and alcohol use;
  4. evaluate different social, legal and medical responses to drug use and addiction; and
  5. reflect on their own learning as it relates to the content of the course.

Other Information

Co-taught with GEND2036 and SOCY6065.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Learning journal, 1600 words (30) [LO 1,3,4,5]
  2. Written Paper 1, 1750 words (35) [LO 1,4]
  3. Written Paper 2, 1750 words (35) [LO 2,3]

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


130 hours of total student learning time made up from:

a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks (recorded lecture, reading workshop and tutorial)

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 36 units of ANU courses towards a degree, or with permission of the convenor. You are not able to enrol in this course if you have previously completed GEND2036 or SOCY6065.

Prescribed Texts

The prescribed reading for this course will be available on wattle. It will include texts from the disciplines of sociology, anthropology, history, critical public health, social medicine and gender studies.

Assumed Knowledge

Although this is an interdisciplinary course, some familiarity with sociological and/or anthropological knowledge would be advantageous. In addition some familiarity with critical approaches to health and medicine would be helpful. Students without this background are able to do the course, but they may need to do additional reading.


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
2024 $4080
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2024 $5280
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

There are no current offerings for this course.

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