Punishment and Social Control

Subject CRIM20006 (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2016:

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 25-Jul-2016 to 23-Oct-2016
Assessment Period End 18-Nov-2016
Last date to Self-Enrol 05-Aug-2016
Census Date 31-Aug-2016
Last date to Withdraw without fail 23-Sep-2016

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 30 contact hours per semester: 1 x 1.5 hour lecture and 1 x 1 hour tutorial per week for 12 weeks
Total Time Commitment:

Total of 170 hours

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge:

Criminology at Level 1

Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website: http://www.services.unimelb.edu.au/disability/


Dr Diana Johns



Subject Overview:

This subject is designed to introduce students to the major forms and structures of punishment in our society. The subject examines why we punish individuals, how we do so, and how the punishment process can be viewed in a wider social context. The first part of this subject considers the broad justifications for punishment, and experiences of imprisonment with particular emphasis on hidden groups such as female and indigenous prisoners. We consider the process of punishment, from sentencing to imprisonment and punishment in the community. The second part of the subject examines the work of major writers who have provided a theoretical critique of punishment and the role it plays in our society. By the end of the subject students should have a good understanding of the correctional system and be familiar with the work of important theorists like Foucault, Cohen and Garland.

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this subject students should:

  • Understand and analyse theoretical accounts of the nature and purposes of legal punishment as administered by the state, and how this has developed over the years.
  • Understand and reflect upon key issues in the practice of punishment
  • Describe and analyse the relationship between the institutions and practices of criminal justice and wider social control
  • Communicate effectively in oral and written formats.

  • Topic reflections totalling 2000 words (40%) due mid-semester.
  • A 2000 word essay (60%) due during the examination period.

Hurdle Requirement: Students must attend a minimum of 75% of tutorials to pass this subject. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject. Regular participation in tutorials is required.

Note: Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per working day. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked.

Prescribed Texts:

A subject reader will be available online via the subject LMS site.

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject is available as Breadth to non-Bachelor of Arts students

Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: 200 Point Master of Criminology
Criminology Major
Graduate Certificate in Arts - Criminology
Graduate Diploma in Arts - Criminology
Related Breadth Track(s): Criminology

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