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An introduction to the major themes in contemporary sociology in a way that is relevant to New Zealand culture and society.
Exploring Society takes you on a journey through the social aspects of contemporary life. It introduces you to the study of society, social institutions and social relations. It focuses on the social aspects of today’s world, for instance: health, gender and sexuality, religion, death, ethnicity, the city and the environment. The course introduces the core principles and central topics of the discipline, including its main methods for researching the social world.
The question ‘What is the study of society?’ underpins the learning outcomes in this course. This question is used to introduce you to the discipline of Sociology. Sociology explores people and society. It examines our social institutions; our families, the state, and social relationships like gender and ethnicity, to help make sense of how we both experience and interpret our rapidly changing world. In Exploring Society, the topics covered include health, gender, sexuality, death, the city, the environment and religion.As you attend lectures and tutorials in SOCI111 you will begin to engage in and be excited by sociological analysis. You will be involved as both participants and contributors in analysing some of the major trends and events of our time. You will be introduced to key sociological ideas and will use them to explore relationships, meanings, activities, events and taken-for-granted assumptions about social life. In the process, you will be introduced to critical ways of thinking and develop your ‘sociological imagination’. This entails making connections between personal experiences and the social and historical contexts within which such experiences are produced. The course will enable you to reflect on these connections and how you make sense of them. We hope you will find it intellectually challenging and personally rewarding.By the end of this course, you will: Be able to appreciate sociology as a discipline.Have a good understanding of the scope and potential of the sociological endeavour.Have developed reading, writing and reflection skills that will stand you in good stead for involvement in further courses.Be able to think about issues that concern you from a sociological perspective.Demonstrate a familiarity with main topics in the discipline (e.g., gender, health etc).
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.
Students will comprehend the influence of global conditions on their discipline and will be competent in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts.
Students must attend one activity from each section.
You will need to choose a tutorial day and time that suits you and allocate yourself to that tutorial group. However, groups can only accommodate 30 students each, so if a group that suits you is full you will need to choose another.Students are expected to attend the TWO lectures and ONE tutorial per week, complete the set reading BEFORE the tutorial and complete all assignments by their due date. Tutorials are held each week and they build on the previous lectures. Tutorials begin in the second week of the course. Your tutors are your main line of support for this course. They are there to guide you through the weekly tutorials, help you prepare for your quizzes, your essay and final test and also answer any questions you have about the lectures and the course in general.
McManus, Ruth et al;
Exploring society : sociology for New Zealand students
Auckland University Press, 2019.
Assignment Sheet Cover
Referencing for Sociology
Using EndNote for referencing
Writing guides for Sociology
Academic Skills Support
Domestic fee $821.00
International fee $3,750.00
* 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