ASOA15109U Family sociology for a changing society

Volume 2021/2022

Elective course

Course Package (KA 2015):

Welfare, inequality and mobility

Knowledge, organisation and policy

Culture, lifestyle and everyday life



This course will help students to understand family behaviors from a life-course perspective and an ecological system perspective. Each life stage is interrelated. Changes in the public sphere (such as the education system, the labor market etc.) interact changes in the family sphere. An individual family behavior is correlated with the macro social background.

A central theme of family studies is diversity and change.

The course will cover topics such as: dating and mate selection, cohabitation and marriage, sexual life, parenting, work and life balance, gender and domestic work, break-up/divorce, intergenerational relationship, as well as family policies, etc.

It not only introduces recent and hot research topics of family studies, but also provides a historical review on how family behaviors and policies change with the development of a society. The course will introduce theories, empirical research, research design and methods under family sociology. The course will be follow a topic-specific and a case-specific approach.

Throughout the semester, we will explore the diversity of life experience in the family sphere and the determinants of family behaviors.

Learning Outcome


Students have a deeper understanding of family behaviours and how these behaviours are related with the social changes.


Students are equipped with more updated theories and methods in family sociology, and can perform basic empirical research on family issues.


Students are aware of the important impact of social changes and family policies on family behaviours. Students can have multiple perspectives to explore family behaviours and its determinants.

There is no required textbook for this course. Readings from journal articles, books and internet sources will be assigned on a weekly basis and links will be made available on Absalon

Basic social scientific training, including ability to read and understand quantitative research papers.
The teaching is lecture and discussion based.
The course will take a discussion-lecture-discussion approach to cover the specific topics: students will have a pre-reading discussion on a specific topic to express their common sense understating; then, a lecture on findings of researchers; finally, students will refer back to the topic and discuss what they know and don’t know after reading literature and the lecture. The students will be asked to pick up a family issue of their interest within a given list. During the course they will then work on this issue with the tools and theories presented in the course. They will present their own work in the later part of the course in a peer- and teacher supervised format.
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 42
  • Preparation
  • 104
  • Exam
  • 60
  • Total
  • 206
Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Not relevant

Continuous feedback during the course of the semester. Depending on participant numbers we will make use of specific models, hereunder peergrade, classroom presentations and feedback or group based feedback.

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment, -
A written take-home essay is defined as an assignment that addresses one or more questions. The exam is based on the course syllabus, i.e. the literature set by the teacher.
The written take-home essay must be no longer than 10 pages. For group assignments, an extra 5 pages is added per additional student.
Further details for this exam form can be found in the Curriculum and in The General Guide to Examinations at KUnet.
Exam registration requirements

You need to be signed up for the course to attend the exam

All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Exam period

Find more information on your study page at KUnet.

Exchange students and Danish full degree guest students please see the homepage of Sociology; under Education --> Exams


Written take-home essay with NEW formulated questions




An elective subject is usually offered regularly, but we cannot guarantee it will be offered more than once. Please be aware that the exam for this course is only offered 3 terms after the course has ended.

Criteria for exam assesment

Please see the learning outcome