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Youth and Popular Culture (EDUC30067)

Undergraduate level 3Points: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelUndergraduate Level 3
Subject codeEDUC30067
Semester 2
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject explores how children and young people construct and reconstruct their sense of selves against the backdrop of pervasive contemporary popular cultures. It examines contrasting approaches to identity (e.g. developmental, sociological, feminist, post-structuralist) and contemporary debates about the place of popular culture and the media and entertainment industries in children and young people's lives.

The subject analyses the ways in which children and young people appropriate and colonise symbols, meanings, images and styles from different popular cultural media. Popular cultures provide resources for identity construction, for meaning-making and for political uses. The subject explores the ways in which popular cultures draw on global images in local settings.

An indicative list of topics in this subject is: the uses of cultural commodities in children and young people's construction of gendered, classed and racialised identity/ies; childhoods, global capital and multinational companies; the role of the Internet; children and young people as cultural consumers and as cultural producers.

Intended learning outcomes

On completing this subject, students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the inter-relationships between children’s and young people's identity formation and popular culture
  • Critically evaluate different theoretical perspectives on the role of popular culture in the making of childhood and youth cultures
  • Clearly identify the place of global capital and the media and entertainment industries in the commodification of childhood
  • Understand the impact of new technologies on popular youth cultures
  • Clearly identify the place of global forms of popular culture and how these are appropriated by youth to frame local cultures.

Generic skills

On completing this subject, students should be able to:

  • Sharpen their analytical skills by identifying and analyse theoretical perspectives on the role of popular culture in children’s and young people's lives;
  • Enhance their skills of scholarly critique through reading widely in diverse journals and texts;
  • Become more confident in planning their own work by engaging in analysis and presentation of case-studies of specific popular culture icons and iconography in the construction of children’s identities;
  • Gain enhanced skills in written communication through deepening their understanding of how discourses construct meaning in daily life.

Eligibility and requirements





Non-allowed subjects


Core participation requirements

The University of Melbourne is committed to providing students with reasonable adjustments to assessment and participation under the Disability Standards for Education (2005), and the Assessment and Results Policy (MPF1326). Students are expected to meet the core participation requirements for their course. These can be viewed under Entry and Participation Requirements for the course outlines in the Handbook.

Further details on how to seek academic adjustments can be found on the Student Equity and Disability Support website: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/student-equity/home



Essays and assignments comprising 4000 words or equivalent. Report mid-semester, Essay (2500 words) end of Semester.

This subject has a minimum hurdle requirement of 80% attendance at all tutorials, seminars and workshops.

Dates & times

  • Semester 2
    Principal coordinatorHernan Cuervo
    Mode of deliveryOn Campus — Parkville
    Contact hours36 hours
    Total time commitment170 hours
    Teaching period29 July 2019 to 27 October 2019
    Last self-enrol date 9 August 2019
    Census date31 August 2019
    Last date to withdraw without fail27 September 2019
    Assessment period ends22 November 2019

    Semester 2 contact information

Time commitment details

170 hours

Further information

Last updated: 18 July 2019