1 x 1-hour lecture weekly
1 x 1-hour tutorial weekly
1 x .5-hour on-line exercises weekly
Enrolment not permitted
1 of DVST9002, GEOG9050, POAD9023, PPHR2001, PPHR2721, PPHR9004, PPHR9701, SOCI9014 has been successfully completed
Topic description

Demography concerns itself with the study of the size, distribution and structure of populations, the processes whereby these undergo change and the relationships between such phenomena and the other social, cultural and ecological realms of human existence. This topic seeks to introduce students to the study of demography by focusing on important aspects of demographic theory and methods and contemporary demographic problems including population-environment issues in both developed and less developed countries. In this topic basic techniques are introduced only to assist in the analysis and understanding of the major processes and problems of population change and their interpretation. After discussing the general nature of the subject and the sources of population data, various theories of population change are introduced. This is followed by discussion of the three components of population change (fertility, mortality and migration) including the ways in which population projections are constructed.

Educational aims

The topic perspective is not tied specifically to the examination of the demography of one particular region but and it looks at population trends in both developed countries and less developed countries. The tutorial discussions focus on demographic issues of particular relevance to present day Australia. After discussing the general nature of the subject and the sources of population data, various theories of population change are introduced. This is followed by discussions of selected aspects of the three components of population change (fertility, mortality, and migration) including the ways in which these basic demographic attributes are measured. Other aspects of population, namely marriage, urbanisation and population policy issues of particular relevance to Australia, are also introduced. Students are encouraged during the topic to evaluate how population dynamics impacts on the environment and on issues relevant to environmental management and social and welfare issues.

Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to be able to:

  1. Describe and understand the major population trends and issues of concern to policy makers both in Australia and internationally
  2. Be aware of the linkages between population growth and changes in the composition of population and the natural environment
  3. Be aware of the possible consequences of the impact of population growth on the future health and welfare of human populations
  4. Describe current fertility levels in developed and developing countries and explain the reasons for these levels
  5. Describe mortality levels and mortality differentials in developed and developing regions of the world
  6. Explain the concept of the epidemiological transition
  7. Understand the construction of a basic life table
  8. Describe the process and progress of population ageing and its major consequences in Australia and in developing countries
  9. Estimate net migration and be able to describe major patterns of international migration
  10. Describe the major characteristics of Australia's indigenous population
  11. Explain how a population projection is carried out
  12. Explain Australian population policies and immigration to Australia

Key dates and timetable

(1), (2)

Each class is numbered in brackets.
Where more than one class is offered, students normally attend only one.

Classes are held weekly unless otherwise indicated.


If you are enrolled for this topic, but all classes for one of the activities (eg tutorials) are full,
contact your College Office for assistance. Full classes frequently occur near the start of semester.

Students may still enrol in topics with full classes as more places will be made available as needed.

If this padlock appears next to an activity name (eg Lecture), then class registration is closed for this activity.

Class registration normally closes at the end of week 2 of each semester.

Classes in a stream are grouped so that the same students attend all classes in that stream.
Registration in the stream will result in registration in all classes.
  Unless otherwise advised, classes are not held during semester breaks or on public holidays.