GEND 3016OL - Encountering Human Rights: Global Citizenship III

Online - Semester 2 - 2020

Since the ratification of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, a global human rights industry has emerged, making human rights abuses ever more visible, yet global injustices and abuses are arguably as common and entrenched as ever. This course will take a critical approach both to human rights violations, and to the human rights discourses and campaigns that seek to remedy them. We will look at case studies involving rights issues in globalised contexts, for instance refugees, human trafficking, international women's rights campaigns and global Indigenous movements. We will explore the ways in which universal rights have been embraced, problematised and reconfigured as they travel the globe. We will also look at different ways of presenting rights issues - through reports, campaigns, and visual documentary - seeking the most effective ways of presenting rights issues to global publics. Considering these questions we will explore our own reactions to human rights imagery and victims' testimonies, and discuss the most productive ways to respond to the ways in which we are positioned as global citizens with a responsibility for responding to rights issues. The course will offer the opportunity to pursue individual interest in a particular rights issue, and is suitable for those who want to take their interest in social justice into advocacy, campaign or development work, for those who want to cover human rights issues in creative or media work, and for those who simply want to think about how to be ethical and engaged global citizens.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code GEND 3016OL
    Course Encountering Human Rights: Global Citizenship III
    Coordinating Unit Sociology, Criminology and Gender Studies
    Term Semester 2
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s Online
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week online
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites At least 6 units of Level II undergraduate study
    Incompatible GEND 2016/EX, GSSA 2019/EX, GSSA 3002/EX
    Assessment Short essay (500 word) 30%, Group presentation 20%, Research essay (2,000 word) 40%, Tutorial presentation 10%
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Anna Szorenyi

    Course Timetable

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

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1 Participate in informed discussions on human rights issues in a variety of local and global contexts
    2 Show leadership in arguing for the importance of protecting human rights in their various dimensions
    3 Articulate both benefits and limitations of conceiving of social justice issues in terms of human rights
    4 Identify and discuss the major rights issues currently evolving under 21st Century globalisation
    5 Conduct informed, independent research on particular human rights issues, paying attention to local context, and report findings to a professional standard6Evaluate specific human rights campaigns in terms of social justice, ethics, and empowerment
    7 Identify and/or develop innovative and effective ways of presenting rights issues to various publics and stakeholders
    8 Engage respectfully and enthusiastically in cross-cultural contexts and debates
    9 Construct a clear, coherent and independent argument which responds to a particular question and is supported by appropriate scholarly evidence, within identified timeframes.
    10 Demonstrate interpersonal, leadership and teamwork skills in group activities
    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)
    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
    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
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    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
    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
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    MyUni site including set readings, recorded lectures, and online discussion.
    Recommended Resources
    An extensive list of further resources will be provided during semester. These include:
    A list of further readings on each topic
    Resource guides on Harvard referencing and essay writing
    Assistance with finding library research materials
    Online Learning
    This is the Online version of the course:  the entire course takes place online via the course MyUni page found at

    This site includes announcements, readings, discussion boards, recorded lectures, assignment submission and further resources.

    Students wishing to study the course on campus and attend lectures and workshops in person should enrol in the internal course GEND 3016, rather than GEND 3016 OL.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Online learning:
    Recorded Lectures (audio and slides) - Critical overview of course material and introduction to key concepts.
    Online Seminars - extended group and self-guided learning, via online discussion board. You will discuss readings, debate issues, pursue case studies and share resources.
    Group activities - you will form a small group to work on group projects and engage in peer research. Several methods will be provided for interaction including discussion boards, email and file sharing. Other methods may be offered during semester.

    Independent study:
    Reading of scholarly texts and research reports
    Independent library and internet research on a chosen topic
    Designing and writing an independent research project.

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

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

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

    You are expected to spend 12 hours per week on this course during each week of semester.
    1 hour lecture
    2 hour workshop
    9 hours independents study, including:
    2-4 hours on weekly set readings
    5-7 hours on further research, reading and assignment preparation

    Learning Activities Summary
    The following topics will be covered during semester:

    • Introduction and history of the concept of human rights
    • What's wrong with rights? Critiques of human rights
    • Alternatives and possibilities: What could rights become?
    • Mediating wrongs: Rights and representation
    • Reaching audiences: Inspiration vs. denial
    • State terror: Arbitrary imprisonment, torture and genocide
    • Gender and Human Rights
    • Moving rights: forced migration, migrant labour and trafficking
    • Human rights and Indigenous sovereignties
    • New rights issues: Corporations, environment and genetics
    Small Group Discovery Experience
    Group presentations/SGDE: Students will work in groups of 5-6 members to choose and research a human rights issue over the second half of semester, creating a slideshow or wiki to be shared with the rest of the class. Students will be expected to find and share materials on their chosen topic, and work together to discuss their topic, plan and prepare presentation materials. The aim is not only to inform the class about the issue, but also to carefully consider options for presenting the issue to an audience in the light of critical views on the ethics of human rights texts, as covered in the course. The teacher will be available via email and discussion board to provide advice as well as giving feedback on the presentation. Students will be asked to evaluate their own performance in the team and also to comment on the group process.
  • 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 Due Weighting Learning Outcome
    Short critical essay Formative and Summative

    Week 5

    30%, 1000 words 1,2,3
    Group research presentation Formative and Summative To be scheduled for second half of semester 20% 1,2,4,5,6,7,8,9,10
    Research Report/Essay Summative End of semester 40%, 3000 words 1-10, especially 5,9
    Online participation Formative and Summative Weekly throughout semester 10% 1,2,3,4,6,8,10

    Modified arrangements have been made to assessments and the details provided here reflect recent updates.
    1. Group research presentation - now research presentation - still 20%
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Regular online participation is compulsory. There are regular weekly topics and you cannot leave it until the last minute.

    For their group project, students must contribute regularly and not let their fellow students down. Self and peer assessment components will mean that individual students who do not participate will be marked down. Students who do not contribute at all will receive zero for the presentation.
    Assessment Detail
    Short essay 1000 words
    You will write an essay outlining your understanding of a key theoretical issue in human rights. Specific topics will be provided during semester. 30%

    Group presentation
    You will work with a group to select a human rights issue, research it, discussand develop the best way to present it, and present your findings to the rest of the class. (Note this assignment will contain components of peer and self-assessment). 20%

    Research essay 3000 words
    You will apply your learning in the course to developing a critical report on a human rights issue of your choice. Specific guidance will be provided during semester. 40%

    Online Participation
    You will be assessed on your contribution to the learning atmosphere of your online seminar, including evidence of preparation, verbal and non-verbal participation, level of comprehension, engagement in group and class exercises, and respect for and consideration of other students. 10%
    Assignments will be submitted online, and checked for plagiarism using Turnitin.
    Course Grading

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

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    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 ( 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.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.