ANTH 4001 - Honours Anthropological Theory

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2019

This course provides an advances introduction to anthropological theory, building on knowledge gained at the undergraduate level. It introduces students to some of the major theoretical perspectives that have shaped social and cultural anthropology since the advent of the modern discipline, and explores the relevance of these ideas for anthropological practice in the present. It also looks at how anthropologists have tried to make sense of some of the major issues of our day. Throughout, emphasis will be placed on the empirical nature of anthropological theory, or in other words, its essential relationship with both the praxis and writing of ethnography. The course explores a variety of issues and examples, including but not restricted to: social structure and agency; the place of theory in anthropology; processes, networks and material worlds; theories of culture; personhood and relatedness; and globalisation and virtual worlds. The course also has a dissertation seminar as an essential element, which is designed to support students through the stages of producing a dissertation. In particular, in the first semester, it aims to assist students to arrive and articulate a relevant topic; to turn this topic into an anthropological problem appropriate to the task of writing a thesis; to aid in the consideration of useful theoretical perspectives; to help identify and locate material and relevant literature.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code ANTH 4001
    Course Honours Anthropological Theory
    Coordinating Unit Anthropology and Development Studies
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 6
    Contact 4 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Prerequisites Completed degree (72 units) with a 24 unit major in Anthropology
    Restrictions Available only to students admitted to the relevant Honours program
    Course Description This course provides an advances introduction to anthropological theory, building on knowledge gained at the undergraduate level. It introduces students to some of the major theoretical perspectives that have shaped social and cultural anthropology since the advent of the modern discipline, and explores the relevance of these ideas for anthropological practice in the present. It also looks at how anthropologists have tried to make sense of some of the major issues of our day. Throughout, emphasis will be placed on the empirical nature of anthropological theory, or in other words, its essential relationship with both the praxis and writing of ethnography. The course explores a variety of issues and examples, including but not restricted to: social structure and agency; the place of theory in anthropology; processes, networks and material worlds; theories of culture; personhood and relatedness; and globalisation and virtual worlds.

    The course also has a dissertation seminar as an essential element, which is designed to support students through the stages of producing a dissertation. In particular, in the first semester, it aims to assist students to arrive and articulate a relevant topic; to turn this topic into an anthropological problem appropriate to the task of writing a thesis; to aid in the consideration of useful theoretical perspectives; to help identify and locate material and relevant literature.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Alison Dundon

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1 To provide students with an understanding of the major theoretical developments and paradigms which have shaped the modern
    discipline of Anthropology.
    2 To encourage students to critically engage with and reflect on what ‘theory’ is and does in Anthropology.
    3 To encourage students to critically engage with the kinds of knowledge produced through Anthropological ‘theorising’.
    4 To promote knowledge of, and discussion about, the relationship between Anthropology and cognate disciplines.
    5 To explore the contribution that Anthropological theory can make to wider debates in the twenty-first century.
    6 To provide a dissertation seminar designed to support students through the stages of producing a dissertation. In the first semester, it aims to assist students to arrive and articulate a relevant topic; to turn this topic into an anthropological problem appropriate to the task of writing a thesis; to aid in the consideration of useful theoretical perspectives; to help identify and locate material and relevant literature.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    1
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    3
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    6
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    4, 5
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • Able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    2
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    6
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Honours seminars are based on a model of a reading seminar, which is based on guided reading and subsequent dissemination
    and discussion of the issues raised in the literature on a weekly basis. This will be a venue also for the analysis of essay questions and further research.

    Workload

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    WORKLOAD TOTAL HOURS
    2 x 2 hour seminar per week 48 hours per semester
    5 hours mandated reading per week 60 hours per semester
    5 hours further research per week 60 hours per semester
    10 hours writing work (drafting, editing, and
    re-writing) per week
    120 hours per semester
    Additional assessment finalisation and
    submission (conclusion of course)          
    24 hours per semester
    TOTAL = 312 hours per semester
    Learning Activities Summary
    The scheduled learning activities covered in this course include:

    1. Principle areas of subject knowledge including the major theoretical developments and paradigms in Anthropology, in the past and well as in the contemporary context;

    2. Development of a clear understanding of the role of ‘theory’ and ‘theorizing’ in Anthropology;

    3. Development of skills associated with the location and understanding of these primary theoretical texts and paradigms; and the synthesis of these within the evidential, research base of Anthropology;

    4. The skill to see the relationship between Anthropology and cognate disciplines and its potential for application in wider debates of the twenty-first century.



  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Task Type Weighting Learning Outcome
    2000 word Research Proposal Formative and Summative 100% 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
    Assessment Detail

    No information currently available.

    Submission

    No information currently available.

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M11 (Honours Mark Scheme)
    GradeGrade reflects following criteria for allocation of gradeReported on Official Transcript
    Fail A mark between 1-49 F
    Third Class A mark between 50-59 3
    Second Class Div B A mark between 60-69 2B
    Second Class Div A A mark between 70-79 2A
    First Class A mark between 80-100 1
    Result Pending An interim result RP
    Continuing Continuing CN

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

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  • Policies & Guidelines
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