DEVT 4001 - Honours Development Studies: Contested Concepts

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2016

This course examines debates surrounding some of the key concepts and buzzwords that are used in contemporary development policy and practice. While the need for things such as `poverty reduction', `empowerment', `participation', `state-building', and `social capital' may seem straightforward on the surface, the way in which these concepts are used in development policy and practice reflects particular political and social interests and values as well as particular understandings of what development, itself a contested concept, is and how it occurs. The purpose of this seminar component will be to explore the interests, values and understandings that underpin concepts such as these and assess their implications for development policy and practice.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code DEVT 4001
    Course Honours Development Studies: Contested Concepts
    Coordinating Unit Anthropology and Development Studies
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 6
    Contact 2 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Prerequisites Bachelor of Development Studies or completed degree (72 units) with a 24 unit major in Development Studies
    Restrictions Available only to students admitted to the relevant Honours program
    Course Description This course examines debates surrounding some of the key concepts and buzzwords that are used in contemporary development policy and practice. While the need for things such as `poverty reduction', `empowerment', `participation', `state-building', and `social capital' may seem straightforward on the surface, the way in which these concepts are used in development policy and practice reflects particular political and social interests and values as well as particular understandings of what development, itself a contested concept, is and how it occurs. The purpose of this seminar component will be to explore the interests, values and understandings that underpin concepts such as these and assess their implications for development policy and practice.
    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. Secure and accurate understanding of key and contested concepts and terms explored in this course

    2. In-depth knowledge of the ways in which these concepts and buzzwords play a role in the theory, policy and practice of international development

    3. Knowledge of and insight into key issues and concerns raised by these concepts in international development.

    4. Ability to explain the values, interests, and understandings of development inherent in these concepts. 

    5. Capacity to critique these concepts and how they are employed by donor and other development organisations.

    6. Ability to design and implement a research project/essay based on a critical analysis of a contested topic or buzzword and explore the implications for development policies and programs.

    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, 2
    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, 4
    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
    4
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources

    The required readings are available on MyUni as well as online or in the Reserve collection of the Barr Smith library. Students who wish to read beyond the required readings are advised to make use of Google Scholar and the electronic databases in the library to construct a reading list of their own.
    Online Learning
    You will find articles in the following journals particularly useful: World Development, Journal of Development Studies, Third World  Quarterly, Journal of International Development, Progress in Development Studies, Development-in-Practice, Development and Change, IDS Bulletin, Development Policy Review, and Development Bulletin.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    The learning and teaching modes for DEVT 4001 are two hour weekly seminars, with six seminars in total aross the semester.
    Workload

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

    • 2 x 2 hour seminar per week
    • 5 hours mandated reading per week
    • 5 hours further research per week
    • 10 hours writing work (drafting, ediitng and re-writing) per week
    • Additional assessment finalisation and submission 24 hours per semester
    Learning Activities Summary
    Week One - Poverty
    Week Two - Fragile States, Failed States and Collapsed States
    Week Three - Gender and Empowerment
    Week Four - Social Capital
    Week Five - Community Participation
    Week Six - Corporate Social Responsibility
    Small Group Discovery Experience


    Students are expected to participate in seminar discussions each week. To do this, you will need to (i) attend the seminars and do the required readings for each week and (iii) contribute to classroom discussions. There are six weeks in the course consisting of two-hour seminars per week. Each student is required to attend these seminars, as they are the primary teaching and learning mode of the course.

  • 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

    No information currently available.

    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.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

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