1 x 1-hour lecture weekly
1 x 1-hour tutorial weekly
Enrolment not permitted
1 of WMST1001, WMST2005, WMST8002, WMST8004 has been successfully completed
Assumed knowledge
This topic assumes that students have no familiarity with Women's Studies. As a second-level introductory topic in the Women's Studies major sequence, it assumes a familiarity with the kind of knowledge and skills that would be acquired by the completion of at least 9 units of first-level topics from any Arts major sequence.
Course context
Associated majors: Women's Studies; Public Policy

Bachelor of Government and Public Management
Topic description
This topic introduces students to Women's Studies, and to questions of gender and power in everyday life. It emphasises three key aspects of women's studies: representations of gender (that is, how we 'see' gender); the inter-relationship of gender with other categories of identity (such as ethnicity, 'race' and sexuality); and the significance of gender in social problems and social problem-solving. Students will encounter and explore key terms and debates in gender studies, and build a platform for extending their knowledge about gender and feminism not just in Women's Studies topics, but in a range of fields.
Educational aims
The aim of this topic is to introduce some basic concepts of Women's Studies through issues and debates about sex and gender in Australian society. This involves providing a framework within which to consider: how ideas about sex and gender are created and circulated in society; and the diversity of women's experiences in contemporary Australian society formed through race, ethnicity, class and sexuality.
Expected learning outcomes
After successfully completing this topic students should be able to:
  • Explain the concepts of gender, sex and identity and use them appropriately within and across disciplinary boundaries
  • Identify and analyse the ways understandings of gender affect power relations in Australian society
  • Identify and analyse the ways race, ethnicity, class and sexuality affect gender identity and experience in Australia
  • Criticise and rebut popular misconceptions about sex/gender
  • Critically analyse a variety of representations, which may include advertisements, film, life stories and academic scholarship
  • Improve their research and communication skills (written and oral) in collaborative, independent, and ethical ways