Ageing, Society And Social Policy

Subject SOCI90006 (2012)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2012.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2012:

March, 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

March intensive

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: March Intensive: 9:00am – 5:00pm 16, 17, 18 March 2012
Total Time Commitment: Not available




Recommended Background Knowledge:

Social Policy, Sociology, Public Policy

Non Allowed Subjects:

Students who completed PPMN90003 Social Policy: Special Topics in 2011 are not permitted to enrol in this subject.

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:


Prof Simon Biggs


Prof. Simon Biggs

Subject Overview:

This subject offers an opportunity to critically consider the place of older adults in contemporary societies and in social policy. We will examine together how adulthood, from midlife on into deep old age, is socially constructed and the ways in which particular aspects of adult ageing are emphasised in the policy arena. To this end, the subject involves three elements: Firstly, an introduction to key concepts and theories that can be used to understand adult ageing. Secondly, an examination of social problems associated with later life. Thirdly, some of the policy approaches aimed to address problems as identified. Students will be encouraged to reflectively examine their own experience, national policy frameworks and professional practice as part of this process


By the end of the subject students should be able to appreciate and understand:

  • the different ways in which adult ageing is socially constructed
  • how to apply concepts from social gerontology to a variety of policy settings
  • the influence of adult ageing on personal identities
  • the influence of adult ageing on intergenerational relationships
  • the relationship between social structures, cultures and ageing
  • the problems of ageing societies and their relevance to the helping professions
  • a broadened understanding of the influences affecting national and international policy on ageing.

1. A Report of 2,500 words: Evaluation of the ‘age-friendliness’ of one area of public space, supported by the relevant academic literature, worth 50% Due Monday 16 April 2012.
2. Final essay of 2,500 words: A critical assessment of one area of social policy on adult ageing drawn from a national or international context, worth 50% Due Monday 14 May 2012.

Hurdle Requirement: As this is an Intensively-taught subject, Lecture/Seminar attendance is compulsory on all 3 days. Students who fail to meet this hurdle requirement will be deemed ineligible to submit the final piece of assessment for this subject. Regular participation in class is required.

Assessment that is submitted after the due date and up to 10 working days late without an approved extension will be marked on a pass/fail basis only. Assessment that is submitted later than 10 working days will not be accepted or marked. 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 and from LMS.

Recommended Texts:


Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • be able to demonstrate competence in critical, creative and theoretical thinking through essay writing, seminar discussion and presentations, conceptualising theoretical problems, forming judgments and arguments from conflicting evidence, and by critical analysis.
  • be able to demonstrate proficiency in the application of policy analysis skills to empirical problems.
  • be able to demonstrate an understanding of the academic protocols of research and presentation.
Related Course(s): Master of Social Policy
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Sociology

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