Organisations, Power and Society

Subject SOCI20011 (2011)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2011.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2011:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: Thirty contact hours per semester. 2 x one hour lectures and 1 x one hour tutorial per week for 10 weeks. The lecture and tutorial programs are staggered and cover the 12 weeks of semester
Total Time Commitment: Not available


Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: Sociology 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:


Dr Reza Hasmath


Dr. Reza Hasmath
Subject Overview:

In this subject, we will undertake a critical exploration and analysis of a phenomenon central to contemporary societies around the world: the organisation. The subject engages with theoretical debates and empirical research that focus on different organisational forms, their emergence and their dynamic interaction with their social, political and economic context. We will explore organisations comparatively, both by looking at organisations in different nations and by analysing organisations from diverse sectors, including the private, state, and not-for-profit sectors. Through such analyses, we will come to see organisations as contested sites of power and authority. You should complete the subject with an understanding of the social, political and economic roles of organisations, and be able to assess critically the interactions between organisations, power and society.

  • understand contemporary theoretical and empirical social science approaches to organisations in global and comparative contexts
  • be able to make effective use of contemporary social science studies of organisations and their transformation
  • have a good knowledge of research on comparative organisational practices
  • be able to critically engage with research on organisations that uses social science research methods
  • be able to critically assess major social science theoretical approaches to organisations both critically and empirically

An essay of 1000 words (25%) due in the first half of the semester, a take-home test of 1000 words (25%) due mid-semester, and a research essay of 2000 words (50%) due at the end of the semester.

This subject has a minimum Hurdle Requirement of 75% Tutorial attendance. Students who fail to meet this hurdle requirement will be deemed ineligible to submit the final piece of assessment or sit the final examination. Regular participation in tutorials is required.

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. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Prescribed Texts: A Subject Reader will be available for purchase from the University Bookshop
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
Generic Skills:
  • Research: through competent use of the library and other information sources, and the definition of areas of inquiry and methods of research.
  • Critical Thinking/Analysis: through recommended reading, essay writing and tutorial discussion and, by determining the strength of an argument.
  • Thinking in Theoretical Terms: through lectures, tutorial discussion, essay writing and engagement in the methods of the social sciences.
  • Thinking Creatively: through essay writing, tutorial discussion and presentations, conceptualising problems, forming judgements and arguments from conflicting evidence and by critical analysis
  • Understanding of Social, Ethical and Cultural Context: through the contextualisation of judgements, developing a critical self-awareness, being open to new ideas and by constructing an argument.
  • Communicating Knowledge Intelligibly and Economically: through essay writing and tutorial discussion.
  • Written Communication: through essay preparation and writing.
  • Verbal Presentation: through tutorial discussion and class presentations.
  • Time Management and Planning: through managing and organising workloads for recommended reading, essay and assignment completion and examination revision.
Notes: This subject is available as breadth to non-Arts students
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Sociology
Sociology Major

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