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SOCI204 Special Topic: Sociology of Health

Examination of health and wellbeing from a societal perspective, linking individual experiences to social structure and uncovering health inequalities across the lifecourse.

Health and wellbeing are integral to society. They represent an essential aspect of everyday life that is often taken for granted until something goes wrong, making this an ideal topic to be uncovered by sociological theory and research. This paper takes a society-level approach to health and wellbeing by examining conceptualisations of health, health inequalities, and health and wellbeing across the lifecourse. It discusses the health-related implications of current topics such as social media and Big Data. Students of all majors are invited to take this paper. The course is internally-assessed, and for the assessment students will choose a health issue as the focus of a report that will use official statistics and other data to uncover patterns in New Zealand society.

Paper title Special Topic: Sociology of Health
Paper code SOCI204
Subject Sociology
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points
Teaching period Second Semester
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $904.05
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $3,954.75

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(SOCI 101 or SOCI 102 or SOCI 103) or 54 points
Schedule C
Arts and Music

Students of all majors are invited to take this paper.

Teaching staff

Course Co-ordinator: Dr Bryndl Hohmann-Marriott

Teaching Arrangements
Two-hour on-campus lecture and one-hour tutorial per week.


Kevin Dew & Allison Kirkman (2002). Sociology of health in New Zealand.  South Melbourne, Vic: Oxford University Press.

Adademic articles will be available through the Library's e-Reserve.

Government reports are available online.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Ethics, Information literacy, Research, Self-motivation.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete the paper will

1. Relate health to sociological theory and knowledge.

2. Compare health across social groups.

3. Demonstrate understanding of health sociology through written and oral communication.

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Second Semester

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
L1 Tuesday 10:00-11:50 28-34, 36-41


Stream Days Times Weeks
T1 Thursday 11:00-11:50 29-34, 36-41