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Social Stratification and Inequalities

SO3270 Social Stratification and Inequalities (10 ECTS credits)

Lecturer(s): Dr Peter Muhlau and Professor Richard Layte

Module Content/Outline:

Part I: Social Inequality

The first part of the module examines the causes and consequences of social inequality in Irish and European society. It describes the nature and extent of social inequality in areas such as income, education, health, and social class. The module puts particular emphasis on the economic basis of social inequality and its justification in society as well as on mechanisms and processes that reproduce inequality across generations. In the second part of the module, leading researchers in Ireland introduce selected areas of inequality research, their policy context and familiarises students with the main issues and findings in these research areas

Part II

In the second part of the module, leading researchers in Ireland introduce selected areas of inequality research, their policy context and familiarises students with the main issues and findings in these research areas.

Learning Objectives:

Students successfully completing this module will be able to

    • Describe social inequalities in Irish society and compare that with the situation in other advanced industrial societies;
    • Critically discuss and evaluate the evidence for theories of causes of social inequality;
    • Critically discuss and evaluate the evidence for theories of consequences of social inequality;
    • Identify and discuss the policy implication of research findings in inequality research.

Lectures & Tutorials/ Contact hours:

One lectures and one tutorial per week.

Workload: Lectures: 22 hrs; Tutorials: 22 hrs; Exams/assignments: 44 hrs; Self-study: 160 hrs. Total: 250 hours

 

Recommended Texts/ Key Reading:

  • Goldthorpe, J. (2007) On Sociology. Volume Two, Stanford University Press
  • Wilkinson, R. and Pickett, K. (2010): The spirit level. Why equality is better for everyone. Penguin Press
  • Fahey, T., Russell, H. and Whelan, C.T. (eds) (2007) Best of Times? The social impact of the Celtic Tiger, Dublin: IPA.

Assessment

Part One of the module will be assessed by course work (50%). Part Two of the module will be assessed by exam (50%).

Penalties for late submission: Without an authorised extension, the mark given will be lowered by one grade

Examination: 1 x 3-hour end-of-year examination