EURA301-19S2 (C) Semester Two 2019

European Identity and Culture: Multicultural Societies of Europe and the European Union

30 points

Start Date: Monday, 15 July 2019
End Date: Sunday, 10 November 2019
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Friday, 26 July 2019
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Friday, 27 September 2019


This course looks at the social and cultural impacts of European integration. Employing a multidisciplinary perspective, this course aims to answer a set of questions: What are the key issues confronting the European Union (EU) and its citizens? How do current issues facing the EU - immigration multi-cultural and multi-lingual society, religious and political diversity - influence the motivation behind integration? The course examines the notions of Europe and the EU and the roles of individual, national and supranational identities in the EU's interactions with its citizens and the world. There is an emphasis on interactive discussions, small group activities and access to experts in the field.

Brexit, migration, rise of populism, terrorism, inequalities and Euro debt crisis -- currently, Europe and the EU are involved in complex political and socio-economic matters that rank among the most significant changes on the continent since World War II. The changing profile of European societies and the new geo-political settings of the globalising multipolar world serve to underline the necessity for a systematic analysis of contemporary Europe, one of the dominant economic, political and cultural counterparts for New Zealand and the wider Asia-Pacific.

This one-semester course is open to everyone irrespective of their discipline. It covers a range of topics relating to the geo-political implications of European Integration and its social and cultural impacts. The main goal of this course is to examine key issues confronting the EU and its citizens at this turning point in history. The process of European integration -- taking place in the times of a globalising world, changing global order, information revolution and multiple crises in Europe -- impacts the identities of the peoples who inhabit the Union.

The philosophical and historical ideas about “What Europe is?”, “Where its borders lie?” and “Who is European?” are essential for understanding both the initial and changing motivations behind integration and in understanding current debates around issues such as multi-cultural and multi-lingual society, immigration, regional, religious and political diversity. Looking at Europe from beyond its borders, we will also argue the perceived place of Europe in a world of shifting powers.

In this course we discuss different understandings of Europe. These relate to a set of historical and geographical distances we imagine about the world:
 How does our understanding of Europe and the EU change when we see it from local, regional and global points of view?
 How does our understanding on Europe and European integration change in short-, medium- and long-term historical time spans?

Together, we will examine deeply-seated long-term attitudes, thoughts and actions towards the ‘idea of Europe’ – inside and outside Europe – and discuss how they interact with the short-term impacts of multiple crises. We will also examine how these views interact with the spatial understandings of Europe and the EU – from the myth of the “European continent” and conventions of East vs. West of Europe, to the Euro-centric legacy in imagining the world and political consequences of the ‘borderless EU’.

Learning Outcomes

1. This core course will lay the foundation for more specialised European and EU Studies courses offered in the fourth years of the degree (EURO BA Honours), as well as MEURO, MA (by thesis) and PhD in European Studies.

2. For those students who may not continue with European and EU Studies as a degree major, the course will offer a comprehensive introductory overview of the wider Europe and the EU in it –and their multicultural and diverse societies -- which would complement their general educational
experience and allow them to interact more knowledgeably in civil society and local communities.

3. The course will provide a truly interdisciplinary and high quality academic insight to the challenging questions of European integration and European identities by looking at different social and cultural subjects in modern multicultural Europe, and examining the ways in which the EU acts and influences these issues. This course is unique in that it focuses on the concept of Europe as an entity and investigates issues from the European (rather than simply a nation state) perspective. These facets of the course will help students to engage with global and multi-cultural contexts, particularly from a disciplinary point of view and strengthen their own reflections about a culture in their own communities and in the context of bi-culturalism in Aotearoa New Zealand.

4. The use of seminar and group discussion teaching methods will give undergraduate students the ability to hone their skills at analytical debating and develop their confidence in presenting their research. Effective work in groups and collaborations is sought after skill and attribute in the modern-day working environment. Alumni of this course (under- and post-graduate students) will be involved as guest presenters and participants in small group discussions, following tikanga practices.

5. Students will be invited to communicate complex ideas using a variety of techniques and media – another attribute sought by professional communities. Students’ weekly participation in virtual forums will further develop their writing skills essential for successful careers in the future.

6. The course will also expand the opportunities for students to involve themselves in critical thinking concerning Europe and the EU at early levels of their academic career and allow for open discussions. This will facilitate skills in understanding, analysis and development of arguments and ideas within the discipline; and encourage students to think independently and employ specialist disciplinary knowledge to evaluate topics and issues.

7. Research assignments – oral presentation in a team or individual format, participation in the virtual forum, essay and a take-home test -- will allow students to tailor the course to their area of interest and to practice their research and investigation skills. Students will use learned skills to research a topic. These connections between knowledge on the one side and skills and attributes on other is critical to benefit workplaces and communities.

University Graduate Attributes

This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award

Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.

Employable, innovative and enterprising

Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.

Biculturally competent and confident

Students will be aware of and understand the nature of biculturalism in Aotearoa New Zealand, and its relevance to their area of study and/or their degree.

Engaged with the community

Students will have observed and understood a culture within a community by reflecting on their own performance and experiences within that community.

Globally aware

Students will comprehend the influence of global conditions on their discipline and will be competent in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts.


Any 15 points of EURA or EURO 200-level courses OR any 45 points with B average at 200-level in Arts, Commerce, Law, Geography OR any other 45 points with B average at 200-level with the approval of the Course Coordinator.


EURA201, EURO201, EURO301

Course Coordinator / Lecturer

Natalia Chaban


Assessment Due Date Percentage  Description
Small group presentation #1 8%
Small group presentation #2 8%
Individual presentation 9%
Essay 30%
Test 25% (Part I in class, Part II take home)
Virtual Forum contributions (10) 15% following Virtual tutorials
Particpation 5% Regular attendance and participation in class discussions

Textbooks / Resources

There is no single textbook for this course. The collection of selected readings for every tutorial will be available on Learn or provided during lectures.

Course links

Library portal
LEARN The full Course Outline is available on LEARN (only for students enrolled in this course).

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $1,523.00

International fee $6,375.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see Language, Social and Political Sciences .

All EURA301 Occurrences

  • EURA301-19S2 (C) Semester Two 2019