Identity, Equity and Change

Subject EDUC90641 (2013)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2013.

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

This subject is not offered in 2013.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 24 hours
Total Time Commitment:

125 hours. Attendance at all classes (tutorial/seminars/practical classes/lectures/labs) is obligatory. Failure to attend 80% of classes will normally result in failure in the subject.





Recommended Background Knowledge:


Non Allowed Subjects:


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 Overview, Objectives, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and the Disability Liaison Unit:


Education Student Centre
234 Queensberry Street
Phone: +61 3 8344 8285

Subject Overview:

This subject offers an overview and exploration of contemporary theories about difference, equality, justice, globalisation and identity. It maps the recent history and development of these ideas, and situates them in relation to broad socio-cultural and political contexts. The politics and processes of social change are examined, including what claims to social change and social justice involve and some of the central challenges and dilemmas this represents for both theory and practice. Students will gain an understanding of major and influential debates about the above key concepts, and critically explore their relevance to educational research, theory and practice. Examples will be drawn from national and international settings. There will be opportunities for students to develop in-depth study of select concepts and issues. Topics covered include: feminist and postcolonial theories of identity and difference; diverse approaches to understanding subjectivity, such as psycho-social, poststructural, and late modern; new forms of class analysis; anti-racism; social justice and human rights; the impact of theories of difference and identity on social and educational practices; globalisation, nationalism and cosmopolitanism; and the politics of social change.


Students will:

  • Gain knowledge of influential debates and concepts concerning social equity and identity; and develop the expertise to critically analyse such concepts;
  • Deepen their understanding of the relevance of such concepts to the field of educational research and practice;
  • Apply new knowledge to understand the relationship between equity, identity and change in particular settings, such as schools, workplaces, higher and further education;
  • Develop a critical and informed perspective on the implications of social change for educational theories and practices.

2 assignments, totalling 5,000 words
1) An essay that critically reviews key debates regarding equity and identity and nominates select concepts for in-depth analysis. 2,000 words due mid semester, 40%
2) An essay that applies the conceptual insights from the first part of the subject to examine their relevance to a particular educational problem, setting or sector. 3,000 words due in the examination period, 60%

Prescribed Texts:

Subject reader to be provided

Recommended Texts:
  • Dimitriadis, G. and Kamberelis, G (2006) Theory for Education, Routledge, New York
  • McLeod, J and Thomson, R. (2009) Researching Social Change: Qualitative Approaches, Sage. London.
  • Vincent, C. ed. (2003) Social Justice, Education and Identity, RoutledgeFalmer, London.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • Be critical thinkers, with the capacity to be self-directed learners;
  • Have a high level of achievement in writing, generic research activities, critical analysis, problem solving and communication;
  • Be able to engage in meaningful public discourse, with an awareness of community needs and of local and international issues;
  • Have an understanding of social and cultural diversity and its implications for education;
  • Have a high level of presentational, dialogic and written communication skills.
Related Course(s): Master of Education (Stream 100B)Coursework
Master of Education (Stream 150)

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