Courses


    Available courses

    This three-credit, junior-level anthropology course, which has a strong interdisciplinary focus, is designed to provide you with an extensive overview of the theories, methods, and practice of archaeology. It examines the nature and aims of archaeology; the methods and material remains used to reconstruct the past; the economic, social, political, and ideological systems of human experience; the biology of people of the past; the causes of culture change; and the place of archaeology in our contemporary world.

    ANTH 275 focuses on the cross-cultural study of human diversity. Study topics include patterns of social organization, the family, economics, politics, religion, the arts, and language.

    This introductory-level anthropology course is designed to provide an understanding of world prehistory, from the time of the split between human and chimpanzee lineages 4 to 6 million years ago (possibly earlier), to the rise of the first cities and civilizations roughly 5000 years ago.  

    Anthropology 278: Human Evolution and Diversity is designed to introduce you to the varied subjects and avenues of study that comprise the field of biological anthropology. 

    This course examines the behaviour and evolution of modern non-human primates. Primates include monkeys, apes, lemurs and other prosimians, and people. Understanding other primates helps us to contextualize the behaviour, culture and language, and biology of our own species, as well as being fascinating in its own right. Video materials allow the student to observe the behaviour of several different species.

    This course is designed to provide you with an understanding of the early cities, states, kingdoms, and empires that developed in Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas beginning about 5,000 years ago.

    This is a third-year course that focuses on important human ecological relationships, through examining ecological principals and thinking (and their limitations), and the interrelationships of environments with cultures and ways of life.

    Anthropology 336: Evolutionary Anthropology is a three-credit, intermediate-level course that provides a general introduction to various topics related to the evolution of human adaptations, including various human behaviours.

    ANTH 354 introduces students to linguistic anthropology, one of four subfields of anthropology.

    ANTH 362 provides an introduction to the study of North American Aboriginal peoples: Indian, Inuit, and Métis.

    ANTH 362 provides an introduction to the study of North American Aboriginal peoples: Indian, Inuit, and Métis. As the subject matter of Anthropology 362 includes Aboriginal social organization and traditions, an introductory course in cultural or social anthropology is a recommended prerequisite for this course.

    This course explores gender as it affects anthropological research conducted by male and female ethnographers, primatologists, physical anthropologists and evolutionary biologists. Next, we consider various topics that expose the constructed nature of gender, and discuss the contexts within which gender is built, acted out and changed. We end the course with a discussion of gender in the context of globalization.

    This course is designed to provide you with an understanding of the precontact cultures of North America, from the first peopling of the continent to the arrival of Europeans. The course has three major objectives: to foster an appreciation for the dynamic field of North American archaeology, particularly the gathering of information and interpretation of past cultures; to furnish an understanding of the general historical sequence of North America’s past and an appreciation for the diversity of the peoples and cultures that thrived here; and to provide the ability to evaluate the ways in which contemporary archaeologists consider and communicate with other stakeholders in North America’s past.

    Anthroplogy 378: Human Sexualities explores the diversity of expressions of human sexuality within the framework of the discipline of Anthropology.

    Anthropology 384 looks at the family from an international and cross-cultural perspective.

    Anthropology 384 looks at the family from an international and cross-cultural perspective.

    Anthropology 390: Community-Based Research Methods introduces the basic concepts, principles, and issues surrounding community-based research methods. Prerequisites: ANTH 275, or an introductory sociology or indigenous studies course, or permission from the faculty.

    Anthropology 394 City Living: The Anthropology of Urban Life is a senior-level anthropology course is designed to provide you with an extensive overview of urban settlements, from their first appearance some five thousand years ago (or arguably older) to the cities of today.

    ANTH 394 is designed to provide you with an extensive overview of urban settlements, from their first appearance some 5000 years ago, to contemporary cities in the developing and developed world. As you proceed through the course, you will gain a comprehensive knowledge of the development of cities, their physical structures, the diversity of urban groups, and various urban social issues. You will also gain an understanding of the theoretical and methodological approaches taken not only by anthropologists, but also by geographers, sociologists, political economists, and social psychologists as they study cities and city life. Anthropology 394 is best described as having an interdisciplinary approach, but with a strong anthropological focus.

    In this course we will review approaches to ethnography, read a series of ethnographies, consider ethics and contemporary issues in ethnography, and gain a sense of present and future directions and significance of ethnography.

    This is a senior level course in anthropological research methods that reviews issues in ethnographic research. The focus is on gaining skills and practice in doing ethnographic research.

    The process set out in this Study Guide for preparing and submitting a research project is intended for projects that are entirely or primarily library-based. And even if your project includes some field-based research, you will still be required to consult some library materials. 

    ANTH 407 provides students with an opportunity to investigate problems or issues in greater depth than is normally possible in an introductory course. For example, a student who has taken an introductory course on Arctic or African ethnology may wish to study a specific problem such as kinship, ritual, or cultural ecology of the peoples of that region. Both the regional and theoretical focus of the course are issues that students discuss with the course professor before being allowed to register in ANTH 407.

    ANTH 434: The History of Anthropological Thought, is a senior-level course that examines the range of responses to the fact of human diversity through the ages, with emphasis on Modern and Postmodern anthropology.

    ANTH 436: Topics in Primate Cognition. The close behavioural and genetic affinities that we share with nonhuman primates makes it easy to assume that they “think just like us,” and that they “see” the world in the same manner as do humans using similar (if perhaps less-developed) intellectual abilities, thought processes, and mental representations. But is this really the case? This course explores this question more deeply, and further asks whether primate cognition is truly unique among other animals.

    Anthroplogy 476: Archaeological Theory is designed to provide you with an understanding of the historical development of the theoretical aspects of the discipline, as well as provide an introduction to current theoretical trends taking place within the field of anthropological archaeology.

    Ethnobiology can be conceived of as the study of the cultural knowledge of living things and the environment.

    Anthropology 499 examines the notion that health and illness are not entities in themselves but rather culturally constituted means of both representing and shaping human experience and reality. The course looks at different medical systems within particular cultural contexts. It also investigates several important themes including healers, medical pluralism, Indigenous medicine, the political economy of health and illness, the medicalization of social life, and the relationship between belief and the construction of clinical realities. The main theoretical approaches in medical anthropology are analyzed in the context of their strengths and weaknesses, which helps explain the ideologies and practices behind each system.

    Anthropology 499: Medical Anthropology critically examines the evolution and geographical distribution of disease and the ways in which people’s medical beliefs and practices are consciously directed at alleviating it and promoting health.

    This course takes as its organizing metaphor Raymond Williams’s remark that “culture is ordinary.” It will provide an introduction to cultural studies by exploring, reflecting on, and evaluating how, on a daily basis, we are immersed in culture.

    You will learn about the history and origins of cultural studies, analyse and discuss some of the key theoretical debates around what constitutes cultural studies, and review examples of the approaches that continue to shape and reshape the ever-expanding boundaries of the field. You will also be given the opportunity to apply this knowledge by producing an analysis of a cultural text or practice—in short, to actually do cultural studies yourself.

    EDUC 201 is an introductory level, three-credit course that provides those interested in becoming teachers with a general and balanced overview of the profession.

    Education 210 is a three-credit, junior-level introduction to the Canadian labour-market training system. Labour-market training comprises policies, programs, and activities intended to result in an adequate number of appropriately trained workers. In Canada, the labour-market training system has four main components: postsecondary education, government labour-market policy, employer workplace training, and community education.

    This senior-level, three-credit course will provide an overview of adult learning and education from the 16th century to the 20th. You

    This course is designed to introduce you to an analysis of the development of Canadian education that takes account of historical, social, cultural, and philosophical influences. The course will help you develop an understanding of the origins of the Canadian public education system and demonstrate the historical roots of many contemporary education debates.

    This course begins with an examination of the contending views and interests in contemporary public education. It explores the alternatives to mainstream public schooling and considers the problems of teaching in a pluralist society, particularly one based on concepts of multiculturalism and equality.

    The overall intent of this course is to spur deep critical reflection on two broad concepts: culture, and the complexities and ramifications of schooling's socialization/enculturation function in contemporary Canada's multicultural society-specifically, the feasibility of schooling's libratory ideals.

    Education 309: The Purposes of Adult Education is designed to introduce the purposes and foundations of adult education. The course provides an overview of adult education theory and practice, but it is not intended as a comprehensive examination of all areas of adult education. It will, however, give you tools for examining other areas of adult education and related fields of study.

    This course introduces students to human resource development, a systematic approach to providing employees with opportunities to learn the skills, knowledge, and abilities necessary for their current roles, and to prepare them for future job demands.

    Welcome to Education 317: Training and Development in Organizations, a three-credit, senior level introduction to human resource development. This course introduces students to human resource development, a systematic approach to providing employees with opportunities to learn the skills, knowledge, and abilities necessary for their current roles, and to prepare them for future job demands. Students will learn and practice using the concepts, designs, and tools typically employed in organizational training and development. Students will also have the opportunity to reflect on and develop a critical understanding of these practices. To get started, review the online Student Manual,and read through the Course Information. If you are new to online learning, see Moodle Orientation. When you have oriented yourself, begin Unit 1 in the Study Guide. If you have any questions about the course or how to proceed with your studies, please contact your tutor.

    Educ 411 is a senior-level, three-credit course which allows students, under supervision, to engage in individual research projects. Students will submit a proposal and complete a major research paper on a topic of their choice in consultation with the course professor. Enrolment in the course will be subject to the approval of the course professor.

    Educ 412 is a senior-level, three-credit course which allows students, under supervision, to engage in individual research projects. Students will submit a proposal and complete a major research paper on a topic of their choice in consultation with the course professor. Enrolment in the course will be subject to the approval of the course professor.

    HIST 336: History of Canadian Labour offers extensive and detailed insights into Canadian labour and working-class history from pre-colonial times until the present.

    The course is designed to provide you with an extensive and detailed investigation of Canadian labour and working-class history.

    Workers’ compensation systems are the way Canada chooses to compensate workers for the effects of work-related injuries. This course describes and analyzes the way workers' compensation systems compensate, provide benefits, and, where possible, ‘make whole’ workers who have been injured or diseased as a consequence of their work. The course will also critically examine some of the major challenges WCBs face today, almost a hundred years after they were born.

    Workers’ compensation systems are the way Canada chooses to compensate workers for the effects of work-related injuries. This course describes and analyzes the way workers' compensation systems compensate, provide benefits, and, where possible, ‘make whole’ workers who have been injured or diseased as a consequence of their work. The course will also critically examine some of the major challenges WCBs face today, almost a hundred years after they were born.

    HRMT 386 is designed to provide an introduction to the theoretical and practical aspects of human resource management (HRM) in contemporary organizations.

    Human Services 201 Social Work and Human Services explores social welfare including shared values, historical foundations, and critical perspectives. In addition to studying social work approaches and theories, students will develop a personal philosophy statement of social welfare. They will then apply their foundational learning to specific populations. Students are to model ethical behaviour in all of the activities associated with the course for the purpose of demonstrating their understanding of the standards of conduct expected of generalist social workers and human service workers.

    This general interest course introduces students to the profession of social work, the related field of human services, and the social policy context within which they are practiced. The course explores social welfare through social work and human services lenses, including their shared values, historical foundations, and critical perspectives.

    As a student registered in Human Services 306, you will self-assess your educational goals and prepare to implement a personal learning plan. The course asks you to look back at the post-secondary education you have already completed and to look forward to your completion of an undergraduate degree, academic credential, or other educational goals.

    Human Service 306 Critical Reflection for Practice is a project course that students normally take following completion of two years of study at the junior level.

    This course provides an overview of the relation between human services' programs and activities as provided by practitioners and the policy making that designs the provision of human services.

    Ideology and Policy Evolution provides an overview of ideology and its influences on human services policy and on the historical evolution of North American human services policy in particular.

    As a capstone course, Human Services 489 will guide you to coordinate the many concepts, theories and approaches you have used during your studies to complete the Bachelor of Professional Arts – Human Services degree. It is intended for students who have completed, or very nearly completed, their BPA-HS degree. In addition to the breadth and depth of your knowledge of the human services and the proficiency you have developed in the general education outcomes prescribed, demonstration of your mastery of several aspects of the program content will be required.

    IDRL 215: Introduction to Labour Relations is an introduction to the economic, legal, political, and social aspects of union-management relations, and serves as a foundation for other IDRL courses. Specifically, it looks at contemporary issues in labour relations and examines union organization and structure, labour legislation, and how collective agreements are negotiated and administered. It does so within the context of exploring the nature of employment and the key theoretical perspectives that inform the study of labour relations.

    Industrial Relations 308: Occupational Health and Safety is a three-credit, senior-level course that examines issues of worker health and safety (and life and death) within their political and economic contexts and in the workplace. Over the past three decades, the field of occupational health and safety has grown and developed, and an extensive amount scientific and technical knowledge on the subject has accumulated. Nevertheless, conflicts among practitioners and scholars, on even the most basic questions, still persist. These disagreements are driven by inherent differences in interest and power between workers and employers (or labour and capital, if you will), which together form the conditions of industrial relations. Scientific arguments often disguise the real debate, which concerns the value attached to preserving the life and health of workers in the workplace. Occupational health and safety cannot be examined without also considering the power dynamics that operate both within and around the job.
    Industrial Relations 309/ Legal Studies 310: Human Rights, the Charter and Labour Relations examines the discourse and operation of human rights in Canada. Although our focus in this course is predominantly on “what is” (i.e., how human rights presently operate), we will also consider what “could be” through reference to natural law theory and proposals for minority unionism.

    Industrial Relations 316: The Practice of Labour Relations is a three-credit, senior-level course that builds upon the foundations introduced in IDRL 215: Introduction to Labour Relations and examines the topics of bargaining and arbitration in greater detail. It looks at both the formal rules and procedures involved in these processes as well as the informal dynamics that arise. It aims to provide a solid grounding in these two rather technical areas of labour relations. It provides insight into the practice of bargaining and arbitration by offering tips on how to navigate the processes. The course also examines how bargaining and arbitration fit into the broader context of labour relations and conflict between workers and employers.

    Industrial Relations 316: The Practice of Labour Relations is a three-credit, senior-level course that builds upon the foundations introduced in IDRL 215: Introduction to Labour Relations and examines the topics of bargaining and arbitration in greater detail.

    IDRL 320 examines the legal frameworks related to work and employment in Canada. It covers all aspects of work law in an integrated and accessible fashion, including common law, employment law affecting all workplaces, and labour law addressing unionized workplaces. 

    IDRL 320 is a senior-level introductory course that examines the legal framework of labour relations and collective agreements

    This course is written primarily for non-lawyer practitioners, trade unionists and their representatives, managers, employers, and employees who are involved in collective bargaining in their workplaces. It is intended for those whose work requires a detailed understanding of the law governing labour relations, including collective bargaining, as well as those who just want to further their understanding of this important area of study.

    Welcome to IDRL 496: Comparative Labour Education, a three-credit, senior-level course about learning in, and for, the labour movement. It showcases the efforts that unions and other organizations have made to educate workers about their role in society and about the opportunities they have had to improve their working conditions and lives through collective action throughout the 20th century.

    This course explores the economies of rich countries like Canada from the perspective of working people. It follows them to labour markets, into the production process and to markets for consumer goods. The course also explores economic policies and international economic relations. Working people encounter company owners and managers in all of the aforementioned markets and institutions. The course shows the conflict of interest between these two different groups of people and concludes with a unit on the prospect of labour movements.

    This course is about workers and their organizing efforts. In other words, it is about efforts carried out in order to improve the working and living conditions of people who have to find paid employment to make a living.

    Labour mobility examines the geographic mobility of workers. Approximately 44% of Canadians regularly cross at least one municipal, provincial, territorial, or national boundary on their way to and from work. About 10% of these workers work in transient or mobile workplaces. There are also over 300,000 foreign nationals working temporarily in Canada today, and approximately 270,000 new immigrants to Canada each year. This course examines these various forms of labour mobility and how they affect workers, their families, and the sending and receiving communities.

    LBST 332 course explores the relationship between women and unions from a global perspective.

    LBST 335 follows workers and workers movements from Caribbean slave plantations and Atlantic slave trade in the 18th century to today’s global production and distribution networks. After a theoretical introduction, the course explores working class formation and the organization of unions and workers parties in the 18th and 19th century. It then looks at 20th century labour in the West, the East, and the Global South. The course ends with an overview of global labour in the 21st century. Each unit of the course looks at the ways in which race and gender differentiated the global forces of labour.

    LBST415: Sex Work and Sex Workers is a three-credit, senior-level course that introduces you to sex work in Canada. This course offers an overview of the sex industry in a variety of theoretical and material contexts, as well as an in-depth focus on sex work in the Canadian context.

    This course is an information portal for program students.

    This course is an information portal for program students.

    Political Science 350: Women in Canadian Politics introduces you to the study of women's participation in Canadian political life.

    This course examines a variety of topics in psychology that are of specific relevance to women. The course discusses scientific findings and sexist myths about male and female differences, and looks at issues related to gender from a feminist perspective. 

    Psychology 347: Introduction to Feminist Counselling is about feminist theory and the development of a feminist model of counselling. It is also about your development as a feminist and as a counsellor.

    Welcome to Sociology 321: Sociology of Work and Industry, a three-credit senior-level course. The focus of this course is work: how it developed into its present forms; how it is organized; how individuals experience it; and the social relationships and institutional frameworks so essential for it to occur.

    Welcome to Sociology 321: Sociology of Work and Industry, a three-credit senior-level course. The focus of this course is work: how it developed into its present forms; how it is organized; how individuals experience it; and the social relationships and institutional frameworks so essential for it to occur.

    The focus of this course is work: how it developed into its present forms; how it is organized; how individuals experience it; and the social relationships and institutional frameworks so essential for it to occur.

    WGST 200 offers the opportunity for students to begin feminist research, and it provides suggestions for assessing the research of others. A range of approaches, methodologies and methods will be examined. Students will have a chance to consider ethical dilemmas, the researcher-participant relationship and some of the problems associated with feminist collaboration in research projects. Students will go through the research process step by step, defining their research question, choosing their methods and then conducting their own study.

    Women's and Gender Studies 266: Thinking from Women's Lives—An Introduction to Women's Studies (WGST 266) sets out to clarify exactly what feminism is.

    WGST 301 aims to provide students with a deeper understanding of the workings of gender in contemporary North American society. It will begin by challenging the notion that gender roles are dualistic, fixed, and rooted in biology. This will entail familiarizing students with social constructionist theories of “doing” gender and postmodern theories of gender as a performance. Both feminine and masculine identities and representations will be studied. The course will also examine gender and disability as well as queer and transgender sexualities.

    This course explores a number of topics on the subject of communication and encourages you to examine your own style of communication and to increase your personal self-awareness.

    This course broadly explores women’s health issues. Rather than approaching the study of health from the perspective of specific medical conditions, diseases, or treatments, the course will focus on the political, social, cultural, and economic underpinnings contributing to women’s health and wellness. This course approaches the study of women’s health from both care and policy perspectives. Although specific medical concerns are addressed, these are introduced as exemplars to highlight the roles that critical theoretical analyses play in both defining and understanding women’s health issues, as well as their roles in finding solutions that will ensure women’s health and wellness.

    This course looks at a variety of topics related to Aboriginal women's health and wellness, with a sustained focus on a holistic Aboriginal world view.

    This course will engage you in issues and practices critical to working with First Nation, Métis, and Inuit women in culturally appropriate ways that promote principles of human dignity, decolonization, and self-sovereignty.

    The course examines an empowerment model of counselling women and its application to crisis intervention and counselling women. The emphasis is on skill development, building upon the theoretical foundation laid in WGST 302.

    WGST 320 aims to provide students with a deeper understanding of the ways in which gender, identity and sexuality operate in contemporary North American society.

    The course presents the historical and theoretical underpinnings of western colonial sexualities in Canada and the United States. Students examine the power of sex and sexuality, and the regulation of sexualities into categories of normal and abnormal. Students consider how sex and sexualities are normatively defined through discourses produced by various institutions, including colonial governments, popular media, corporations, and educational, scientific and medical bodies. Students engage with feminist, queer, Indigenous, and racial theories that trouble and deconstruct these social constructions of normative sexuality.

    Women’s and Gender Studies 333: Goddess Mythology, Women’s Spirituality, and Ecofeminism, is a 3-credit, intermediate-level course designed to introduce you to women’s, indeed humanity’s, earliest experience of the sacred and a source of inspired political action for many contemporary ecofeminists.

    This course examines the changing nature and patterns of women’s work in Canada, the meaning work has for women, and the value of women’s work to society. A central concern of the course is the extent to which work contributes to equality and disadvantage for women. It also considers how significantly gender shapes a common experience of work, and the extent to which women’s working lives differ depending upon other social factors such as class, age, and race.

    If you walked into a computer science or engineering classroom at any Canadian university in 1978, you would expect the majority of students to be male. If you did the same today, you would be confronted by a similar gender imbalance. Why do women continue to be underrepresented in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM)? Why do those women who begin studies in STEM switch out at faster rates than their male counterparts? Why do more female than male STEM professionals switch career pathways or careers? Do you think that science and technology are gender neutral subjects or are they shaped by “socially created notions of ‘masculinity’ and ‘femininity’” (Bystydzienski & Bird, 2006, p.2)? If you are interested in learning more about the theories being used and the research being done to answer these questions, then WGST 350: Gender, Science and Technology is the course for you. Welcome!

    Women's and Gender Studies 401: Contemporary Feminist Theory offers an overview of feminist theories and women's movements in Canada and elsewhere in the world, and a critical discussion of varieties of feminism as they pertain to issues such as gender violence, reproduction, work, families, and sexuality.

    WGST 421: Advocacy from the Margins introduces you to the meaning, history, tools, group processes, and strategies associated with advocacy for women and other marginalized groups who face injustice around the world. The course stresses the importance of advocacy group processes as well as advocacy strategies and tools. It also encourages you to begin advocating with those who are on the margins and faced with injustice.

    The course examines the subject of violence against women from a human rights perspective. The extent, forms, and impact of violence against women are explored from national and global perspectives. The course looks at the impact that specific social, cultural, political, and economic factors have on women’s vulnerability to and experience of violence worldwide.

    This course looks at motherhood and mothering within the context of Western society. As you study the materials in this course, you will be encouraged to distinguish between ‘mothering’ as a construct that informs personal identity and ‘motherhood’ as a role determined and shaped by gendered, social, economic, and cultural structures.

    Feminism is one of the great social movements of modern times. Using the personal writings of some of its most famous proponents this course we will trace the history of feminist thought from the late 18th century through to the early 20th century.

    This independent study course is designed through consultation between professor and student. It will include a significant component of advanced and more theoretical reading. A major written piece of work will generally be required; the form it will take is dependent upon the focus of the work. Students are responsible for obtaining access to all necessary materials.

    This three-credit course is designed to enable you to integrate the knowledge and skills you have gained through the coursework you completed in Athabasca University’s University Certificate in Counselling Women (UCCW) program.