Families and Society

University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Families and Society

  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    (SOCI 101 or SOCI 102 or SOCI 103) or 54 points

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    The form and function of families, and major issues and forces shaping families in Aotearoa/New Zealand.

    This paper introduces key ideas and concepts about the family, as well as considering how issues like poverty and disability impact upon the family. This paper will help students consider multiple perspectives on the family; engage in key debates about the family and its construction; and reflect on their own personal experiences and reactions to the family in all its forms in the broader structural contexts of Aotearoa/New Zealand society.

    Course Structure
    Key topics will include:
    -Historical perspectives on the family
    -Theories of family
    -Multiple answers to the question, 'What is family?'
    -Family policy and the 'politics' of the family
    -Roles, functions and forms of family
    -Family belief systems
    -Disability and families
    -Gender, ethnicity and class perspectives on family
    -Parenting, children and families

    Learning Outcomes
    -This course will enable students to critically evaluate knowledge and theory about families and the structure and history of 'the family' with relevance to contemporary Aotearoa/New Zealand
    -It will also enable students to demonstrate an awareness of the forces shaping the contemporary context of family life, including an exploration of intersecting issues of gender, power, ethnicity and class
    -It will encourage students to debate and engage in issues regarding families and society

    Text books are not required for this paper, but readings will be listed in study outlines and will be available on Blackboard.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.