Anthropology: Studying Human Diversity

Subject ANTH10001 (2015)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2015.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 1 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2015:

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 27-Jul-2015 to 25-Oct-2015
Assessment Period End 20-Nov-2015
Last date to Self-Enrol 07-Aug-2015
Census Date 31-Aug-2015
Last date to Withdraw without fail 25-Sep-2015

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 1 x 2 hour lecture and 1 x 1 hour tutorial each week
Total Time Commitment:

170 hours

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
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:


Prof Andrew Dawson


Prof Andrew Dawson

Subject Overview:

Anthropology explores the different ways people live their lives. In this subject, an introduction to foundational knowledge in the discipline, students will be exposed to a variety of social and cultural forms around the world and the methods and theories developed to understand them as diverse expressions of a shared human condition. Topical issues that will be encountered include how different peoples around the world experience and react to pleasure, suffering and death, use ritual, religion and magic to understand and change their worlds, organise their sexual and family lives and their friendship networks, create and maintain their identities (individual, gendered, ethnic and youth sub-cultural) and maintain and resist the relations of power in which they are all enmeshed. On completion, students will have developed a foundational knowledge of the discipline of anthropology. They will also have developed an appreciation of both anthropology's distinctiveness and its complementarity with other social science disciplines such as sociology, criminology, geography, political science, history, philosophy and gender studies. Finally, and most importantly, they will, through cross cultural comparison, understand the peculiarity of their own taken-for-granted ways of being.

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this subject students should:

  • Develop a foundational understanding of key theoretical debates and ethnographic case studies in social and cultural anthropology;
  • Develop a basic understanding of how anthropology has developed as a discipline since the turn of the 20th century and the social, historical and intellectual contexts that have contributed to this development;
  • Develop skills in conducting research, and speaking, writing and reading carefully and critically;
  • Work with reflexivity and sensitivity to understand and appreciate cultural diversity within a community of scholars as well as in the wider community.


An ethnographic observation exercise of 1000 words (25%) due week 5, a one hour (1000 word) in class test (25%) scheduled in week 12, and a 2000 word essay (50%) due during the examination period.

Hurdle Requirement: This subject has a minimum hurdle requirement of 75% tutorial attendance. 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:

Readings will be provided online through the subject's LMS site prior to the commencement of semester.

Recommended Texts:

Additional Readings will be available through LMS

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
Links to further information:
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Anthropology
Development Studies
Environmental Studies
Related Breadth Track(s): Anthropology - ritual, meaning and performance
Anthropology - self and society
Anthropology - structures, identity and power

Download PDF version.