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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Sociology of the Lifecourse
Module Code SC200
School 76
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Lorraine Delaney
Semester 2: Lorraine Delaney
Autumn: Lorraine Delaney
Module TeachersLorraine Delaney
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 15
Pre-requisite SC100
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None

This intermediate module explores key sociological themes in relation to the lifecourse. It begins by examining the sociology of generations, sociological perspectives on childhood, midlife and ageing. The module focuses on a number of applied case studies such as cyberbullying, the global cruise industry and social robotics and social care. Finally, the module considers researching children.

Learning Outcomes

1. Identify key sociological perspectives on the lifecourse and relate these to relevant psychological perspectives
2. Demonstrate a knowledge of key sociological research on the lifecourse
3. Identify and critically assess major sources of social science data in relation to the lifecourse
4. Critically assess historical and sociological perspectives on childhood, midlife and ageing
5. Demonstrate a knowledge of social constructionist approaches to key aspects of the lifecourse
6. Critically assess the relationship between digital technologies and the lifecourse
7. Reflect on personal experience of the lifecourse and bring the outcome of such reflection into informed debate with peers

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Tutorial18Face to face and online tutorials
Online activity60Student-Tutor and Student-Student interaction through Loop based discussion forums and other media.
Independent Study297Using self-directed online learning resources, textbooks and mulitmedia artefacts
Total Workload: 375

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Part 1 introduction/overview
a) the life course approach in sociology b) The sociology of ‘generations’ c) Key sociological themes and theories in relation to the lifecourse d) Constructing knowledge of the lifecourse: sources of data

Part 2 Childhood
a) The construction of childhood through time - socio-historical perspectives b) The sociology of children and childhood c) Researching children: where is the child? d) Children’s rights e) Children’s cultural worlds

Part 3 Midlife
a) Demographic change and the shifting territory of ‘mid-life’ b) Construction of the ‘mid-life crisis’ c) Work, leisure and midlife d) Social, psychological and medical perspectives on the menopause e) Midlife and digital technologies

Part 4 Ageing
a) Demographic patterns: the ‘ageing timebomb’ in global perspective b) Ageing and inequality: intersectional issues c) Ageing and care d) Ageing and technology e) Endlife: the sociology of death and dying

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
AssignmentDocumentary Based Project20%n/a
Completion of online activityOnline Group Discussion20%n/a
AssignmentAnnotated bibliography20%n/a
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 1
Indicative Reading List

  • Gray, J., R. Geraghty & D. Ralph: 2016, Family rhythms: The changing textures of family life in Ireland, Manchester University Press, Manchester,
  • Hunt, S: 2017, The life course: A sociological introduction, Palgrave MacMillan, London,
  • Chambers, D: 2012, A sociology of family life: Change and diversity in intimate relations., Polity, Cambridge,
  • Connolly, L.: 2015, The ‘Irish’ family, Routledge, London,
  • Green, L.: 0, Understanding the life course: Sociological and psychological perspectives., Polity, Cambridge,
  • May, V.: 2011, Sociology of personal life, Palgrave MacMillan, London,
  • Shanahan, M., J. Mortimer & M. Kirkpatrick Johnson (eds): 2016, Handbook of the lifecourse, Springer,
  • Smith, C. & S. Greene: 2014, Key thinkers in childhood studies, Polity, Bristol,
Other Resources

Programme or List of Programmes
BABA in Humanities
BADIPDiploma in Humanities
BAPYBA in Humanities (Psychology Major)
BASMBA Single Module
PYDIPDiploma in Humanities (Psychology Major)

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