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SOCI410 Alternative Futures

Relying on ‘theory at the margins’, this paper explores alternative forms of social organisation and human relationships.

The course encourages an understanding of what might become possible if we broaden our conceptual horizons and extend our gaze beyond entrenched, Western ways of thinking. We address thought and action that inspire greater social justice and equality and we also think critically about the conditions under which the impetus for change can have dire (sometimes unintended) consequences. We engage in robust debates about future-oriented alternatives in a range of social arenas with the aim of developing a radical imagination for the twenty-first century.

Paper title Alternative Futures
Paper code SOCI410
Subject Sociology
EFTS 0.1667
Points 20 points
Teaching period Semester 1 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,206.91
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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72 300-level SOCI points
Students should have at least a B+ average for an undergraduate qualification in the social sciences.

Teaching staff

Course co-ordinator and lecturer: Associate Professor Marcelle Dawson

Teaching Arrangements
One 3-hour seminar per week. Attendance is compulsory.
Compulsory and recommended reading will be made available via eReserve.
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Scholarship, Interdisciplinary Perspective, Ethics, Self-Motivation, Information Literacy, Global Perspective, Cultural Understanding, Lifelong Learning, Critical Thinking, Communication, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete the paper will:

  • Understand classic and contemporary debates on alternative social futures.
  • Develop a global perspective on the contested nature of alternative futures.
  • Undertake an independent research essay that showcases your conceptual, analytical and writing skills.
  • Present part of the course content to their peers, thus developing verbal communication skills.
  • Actively participate in programme/university/public seminars and engage with senior students and programme staff on a wide range of topics, thereby contributing to the research culture of the programme/school/university.

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Semester 1

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Wednesday 14:00-16:50 9-14, 16-19, 21-22
Thursday 14:00-16:50 20