This unit (ACW2020) introduces students to the discipline of Gender Studies. Gender Studies is an independent scholarly discipline that intersects with other humanities and sociology disciplines, such as, anthropology, literary studies, cultural studies, film studies, politics, history, psychology and philosophy. Students will consider the complex notions of sex and gender, sexualities and gendered subjectivities. Gender is introduced as a socially constructed category and the ways in which this construction impacts on our everyday lives. This unit examines the complex array of processes at work which produce specific types of gendered subjects. The unit challenges traditional gender binaries, gender stereotypes and questions conventional beliefs about sex and gender.

Unit details

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Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Analyse and apply gender approaches and theories to a variety of contexts;  
  2. Critically examine social and cultural influences in the construction of gender, gendered subjectivities, and understandings of sexuality;  
  3. Apply and utilise qualitative research methods in a research setting relevant to developing a gendered awareness;  
  4. Assess and apply contemporary gender debates and approaches in a variety of contexts; and  
  5. Decode key processes informing gendered hierarchies and gender organisation.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Test In-class test (15 mins) 10%
Review Write a review of an article related to the unit 20%
Presentation Group presentation on the observational project (15 mins) 20%
Project Observational research project (submitted in 2 parts). 50%

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Study a single unit

This unit can be studied on its own, without enrolling in a full degree. Learn more about single units of study at VU.

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