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Honours

We have compiled a list of a sample of courses and programmes to enable potential students and members of the public to see what courses are available that relate to poverty, inequality and social justice, and to identify courses or programmes that may be of interest. In many cases it may only be possible for students to gain access to the courses if they meet the pre-requisites.

Information on the entrance requirements is contained in the Faculty Handbooks.

The courses and programmes have been grouped according to key themes according to the dominant discipline, namely

Entrepreneurship and Livelihood Strategies; 

Gender;

Health;

Land and Agriculture;

Macro-economic policy and Development Theories; 

Public Space, Safety and Violence; 

Social Justice and Social Change,

Social Services and Development;

Towns and Cities; and

Unemployment and Labour.

We have not included general degrees such as Bachelor of Arts Honours, Bachelor of Social Science Honours, etc., as these degrees consist of different combinations of courses to suit the interests of individual students within the requirements laid down for these degrees. It is important to note that many of the electives offered in these degrees may also have an orientation towards building an understanding of poverty and inequality and social justice and some may also include the courses provided in this database.

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ENTREPRENERUSHIP AND LIVELIHOOD STRATEGIES

COURSES

GSB4406F/GSB4506F INNOVATION AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP

The course enables students to aims to understand the complex relationship between innovation and entrepreneurship activity on the one hand and the creation of economic value on the other; be able to analyse the pressures and risks associated with innovation and entrepreneurship; be familiar with organizational processes which can mitigate innovation and entrepreneurship risks and be able to evaluate their effectiveness; be able to analyse how management decisions and actions can mitigate the risks associated with innovation and entrepreneurship and increase their value-creating potential.

DEGREES

CG031BUS03 POSTGRADUATE DIPLOMA IN MANAGEMENT (ENTREPRENEURSHIP)

This qualification aims to provide graduates with an intensive, one-year introduction to entrepreneurship, management theory and practice. The qualification is designed to equip students for entry into a broad range of organisational settings, and teaches entrepreneurship as a guiding principle in organisations of all sizes. Understanding and using technology is a key competency in an increasingly competitive and global business environment, and the programme uses technology and action learning in order to familiarise students with current workplace issues and systems. The course is designed to enable enterprise start-ups, but also to equip students for entry into a broad range of organisational settings. Within the context of a rapidly changing and challenging global business environment, key to the course is the appreciation of competitive advantage, and how creativity and innovation may be harnessed to achieve this.

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ENVIRONMENT AND RESOURCES

COURSES

EGS4033F GEOGRAPHY OF DEVELOPMENT AND THE ENVIRONMENT

Negotiating home, citizenship and the South African city will be framed theoretically by feminist and post-colonial anthropological and geographical literature. Spaces of home, citizenship and the city are physical and material but also constructed, negotiated and reproduced socially and politically. Moreover, meanings change with the bodies that inhabit such spaces. We will therefore explore literature that grapples with the material and socio-cultural dimensions of the multiple spaces that make up South African cities and the contestations about their social and political meanings. Through the examination of the micro politics of space and its access, the course will examine the gendered, placed, sexual and racial character of homes, neighbourhoods, and cities more generally. The course will draw extensively on South African literature but also on bodies of work from elsewhere in the South. The course combines seminars with urban fieldwork with the Valhalla Park United Civic Front, a community-based organisation in Cape Town, to bring together critical engagement with a theoretical, as well as methodological and experiential body of work.

EGS4034F GLOBALISATION AND THE ENVIRONMENT

Globalization is a complex of processes influencing the interplay between environment and development. These processes manifest themselves in diverse ways, but southern Africa, with its diversity of natural environment settings and range of human development characteristics, represents an ideal laboratory in which to study this interplay. The course is founded on an understanding of relevant theory and its application to a number of case studies including, inter alia, the political, economic, social, cultural and biophysical background to globalization in the region, conservation and its impacts on local communities; environmental degradation; agriculture and globalization; urban development and nature conservation. These case studies are illustrated in relation to both the relevant literature and to direct experience through fieldwork.

PBL4502F ENVIRONMENTAL LAW

The course examines the various branches of law applicable to selected environmental problems. The terrestrial and marine environments are considered from an international and national perspective. The following are covered: An introduction to environmental problems; The nature of environmental law; Land-use management (environmental impact assessment, protected areas); Resource conservation (water, marine living resources, biodiversity) ; Pollution law (water, land, air).

DEGREES

EM027CIV06 PGDIP, MENG AND MPHIL IN TRANSPORT STUDIES

The programme offers degrees specialising in transport studies, with a specific focus on the planning and management or urban passenger transport systems. The primary aim is to produce graduates from a range of postgraduate disciplines with the necessary knowledge and skills to engage effectively with the challenge of creating affordable, efficient, sustainable, safe, equitable and environmentally sound urban transport systems, and to contribute to the implementation of new and demanding policy directives. Curriculum content is cross-disciplinary in orientation and exposes students to a broad range of the analytical, evaluative, planning and management issues they are likely to encounter in the field.

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GENDER

COURSES

AXL4106F INTRODUCTION TO GENDER AND TRANSFORMATION

This course will offer an introduction to contemporary issues concerning gender, post colonialism, development and research. The course will be structured through discussion of themes particularly relevant to issues of gender and transformation: post-colonial identities, the interaction of civil society and the nation-state, information technologies and knowledge production, sexuality and violence. The course will also prepare incoming students for the kinds of critical reading and writing essential to undertaking new research in gender and transformation.

AXL4104F GENDER, PEACE AND JUSTICE

The development of peace-building initiatives in Africa has been mirrored by the expansion of various models of transitional justice. These encompass a range of judicial and non-judicial approaches adopted by post-conflict societies to address human rights abuses of the past such as war crimes tribunals and truth and reconciliation commissions. Despite increased attention by the international human rights community to the gender dimension of violations perpetrated during conflict, women’s experiences have generally received inadequate attention in transitional justice processes. Neglecting gendered patterns of abuse ultimately affects both women and men in their access to justice. This course will explore the evolution of transitional justice mechanisms in Africa and will analyse their successes and failure in addressing gender-based human rights violations.

PBL4605F WOMEN AND LAW

The course aims to introduce students to literature and debates on the relationship between women and the law, allowing them to examine specific aspects of South African law in the light of feminist theory. In the seminars we consider feminist theories of law and the position of women in South African Law. For these seminars students are required to read and reflect on prescribed texts and participate in discussions. Attention is also paid to research skills and research methodology. Students can research a subject of their choice. Possible subjects include feminist and social theory; the constitutional protection of women; family law including divorce, maintenance, adoption and custody, abortion and surrogate motherhood; the law relating to violent crimes against women, including rape and domestic violence; employment law, including sex discrimination, equal pay, maternity benefits, sexual harassment and domestic workers; aspects of customary law; and the law governing censorship and pornography.

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HEALTH

COURSES

SOC4022S PUBLIC HEALTH AND SOCIETY

This course looks at patterns of health and disease and their interpretation, within the context of social inequality in South Africa. It argues that good health is not simply a medical matter but has social determinants. The course therefore interrogates the key theoretical concepts of class, race, gender and culture, and their intersection and discusses how they impact on health and disease. It looks at the policy implications of using ‘race’ based categories in the production of health statistics. Through case studies of key public challenges - malnutrition (over-and under-consumption), Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS – the course investigates approaches to address them. It pays particular attention to Health Promotion.

QUALIFICATIONS

MG017ECO07 POSTGRADUATE DIPLOMA IN HEALTH ECONOMICS

The curriculum gives a thorough introduction to economics as applied to health and the health care sector such as efficiency, equity, resource allocation, priority setting, economic evaluation, health care financing, economics of health systems and current development in health economics. The diploma runs between February and November each year and takes two years to complete on a part-time basis. It is the first online Postgraduate Diploma in Health Economics to be available from an African university.

MG009PPH04 POSTGRADUATE DIPLOMA IN HEALTH MANAGEMENT

The Diploma in Health Management was initiated just after the first democratic elections in South Africa, in 1994. The then Department of Community Health at the University of Cape Town sought to offer training that would provide new health managers with skills relevant to their roles in transforming the health system, and to support a community of leaders who could work together in shaping that transformation. Over time, the post-graduate Diploma has become a core part of a broader health management programme called the Oliver Tambo Fellowship Programme. This name was chosen, after consultation with the Tambo family, in recognition of Oliver Tambo's strong and inspiring leadership. It is the only programme of its kind in South Africa, geared primarily towards senior public health managers, focused on the practice of management practice and involving both formal post-graduate teaching and continuing and wider engagement with the community of health managers. Since its inception until 2009, nearly 200 senior managers have been trained through the post-graduate diploma course.

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LAND AND AGRICULTURE

COURSES

APG4002Z LAND USE PLANNING & TOWNSHIP DESIGN

This course aims to provide students with both a theoretical and a practical background in land use planning and the design of townships in the Southern African context. Topics include: historical and theoretical bases of land use planning, hierarchy of land use plans, land use control and management; sub-division and township layouts; site analysis; social, financial and economic considerations; institutional frameworks; property development and current development issues.

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MACRO-ECONOMIC POLICY AND DEVELOPMENT THEORIES

COURSES

ECO4020S ECONOMIC CHALLENGES IN AFRICA

After independence, many parts of Africa suffered serious relative economic decline. Recent growth rates have been very promising. This course is about the challenges confronting economic development in Africa (generally excluding South Africa). It seeks to provide a detailed overview of African development, and exposes students to debates regarding past problems, current issues and future possibilities. The focus is applied and policy oriented. Topics include the state in Africa, challenges of managing capital flows, aid, resources and conflict, agriculture and industrialisation.

ECO4029S EXPERIMENTS IN ECONOMICS

The first part of the course provides an overview of economic experiments, especially those that explore the role of fairness, generosity, trust and reciprocity in economic transactions. Are humans fair? Why do we often willingly trust strangers or cooperate with them even if those actions leave us vulnerable to exploitation? Does this natural inclination towards fairness or trust have implications in the marketplace? Traditional economic theory would perhaps think not, perceiving human interaction as self-interested at heart. There is increasing evidence, however, that social norms and norm-driven behaviour such as a preference for fairness, generosity or trust have serious implications for economics. We will look at how norm-driven behaviour can often lead to significantly different outcomes than those predicted by economic theories.

In the second part of the course we will focus on the use of randomised experiments in development. Using many of the same design ideas embodied in lab and field experiments, randomised experiments aim to test some key ideas if the field of development economics, with the aim of improving development policy and enhancing welfare at the individual, household, community and national level. We will end the course by considering alternative evaluation options that one might rely on when randomisation is not possible.

SOC4010H DEVELOPMENT THEORIES

This course introduces students to the literature of development theories. These include modernisation and underdevelopment theories, post-modernist and globalisation perspectives. Theory in development policy is considered with reference to topics such as development aid, the Millennium Development Goals and the developmental state.

ECO4051S DEVELOPMENT ECONOMICS

This course covers a range of macro and microeconomic issues of particular relevance to developing countries. While precise topics covered will vary‚ examples include the nature and measurement of development‚ sustainable development and climate change‚ poverty and inequality‚ privatisation and deregulation‚ financial liberalisation‚ industrialisation and trade strategy‚ globalisation‚ transnational corporations and foreign investment and the role of the state and industrial policy. While key theoretical issues are dealt with‚ the approach is primarily applied with extensive use made of actual policy experience in a wide range of developing countries.

SWK4026S DEVELOPMENT PLANNING 

This course is designed to improve students' knowledge and understanding of the broad field of social development planning. Social development planning includes development planning, social planning, strategic planning and programme planning. The course provides:

  • A theoretical framework as well as applied techniques in planning
  • The macro planning context of South Africa is examined and the impacts of globalisation on both planning processes and outcomes are analysed
  • Planning and planning tools that could be used in promoting people centred development within the framework of reconstruction and development in South Africa
  • It challenges the purely technocratic approach to planning. It emphasises the need for an understanding of the socio-political processes involved in development planning; and
  • The dilemmas facing post-apartheid South Africa as we engage in a global political economy.

DEGREES

BA/BSOCSC HONS AND MPHIL SPECIALISING IN DEVELOPMENT STUDIES

This specialisation prepares students for entry primarily into the professional development community. This community straddles many spheres including community and non-governmental organisations, research organisations, agencies at various levels of government, media organisations and possibly corporate social responsibility offices. It is envisaged that MPhil (Development Studies) graduates will eventually take leading positions in this community; developing and disseminating knowledge about those sectors of society worst affected by socio-economic inequity, and devising strategies for them to gain access to resources and grow their capacity to optimise these resources.

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PUBLIC SPACE, SAFETY AND VIOLENCE

COURSES

AXL4101F GENDER AND VIOLENCE

This course provides feminist analysis of the connections between gender, culture, sexuality and violence in African contexts and more broadly. It examines the development of theories and the history of organisational and State-based efforts to combat particular forms of violence, especially those commonly identified as 'gender-based violence’. It also explores current dilemmas -theoretical, strategic and political- facing feminist activists and researchers with a commitment to challenging 'gender-based' violence in the SADC context.

DEGREES

MG024PRY10 POSTGRADUATE DIPLOMA IN ADDICTIONS CARE

This course provides students with an understanding of evidence-based treatment for addictive disorders. Students are exposed to evidence-based principles of treatment and learn about the theoretical foundation, core concepts and principal techniques of several evidence-based psychosocial treatment models, including (but not limited to) motivational enhancement therapy and cognitive behavioural treatment approaches. This course has a large practical component that will allow students to apply the theoretical knowledge they have gained in real-world treatment settings.

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SOCIAL JUSTICE AND SOCIAL CHANGE

COURSES

PBL4604F SOCIAL JUSTICE AND THE CONSTITUTION

The course is intended to give students an opportunity to engage with a number of discrete constitutional law problems in more detail than is possible in the general introductory Constitutional Law course offered in the preliminary year. The course is aimed at providing a space for contestation, critical discussion and reflection on important constitutional law issues and the manner in which lawyers, judges and legal academics engage with such issues against a broader socio-political background. Aiming to go beyond a black letter law discussion of constitutional law principles and legal precedent (but not ignoring such principles and precedent), the course encourages students to ask questions about the nature of constitutional adjudication; the interaction between law, politics and values; and the various ways in which social and political issues should be dealt with from a constitutional perspective. After an introductory seminar dealing with the role of constitutional law in effecting social change, the course will engage with issues around race, sexual orientation, gender and redress as well as other diversity issues. Social and economic rights issues will also be discussed. The broad theme of the course is the use of constitutional law in achieving social justice through respect for the dignity of each individual’s moral worth.

RDL4602S CIVIL JUSTICE REFORM

This course will consider the theoretical and philosophical debates around access to civil justice. To this extent, the writings of the famous Venetian proceduralist, Prof Mauro Cappelletti, and many other jurists will be studied to give content to s 34 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996. Secondly, there will be an analysis of the strengths or weaknesses of the South African civil justice system, and how foreign jurisdictions have dealt with challenges in civil justice. For example, the Woolf reforms in England and Wales will be considered. Thirdly, different litigation models will be studied to understand the similarities and differences in adjudication styles between civil law and common law systems.

RDL4605S LEGAL PLURALISM, RELIGION, CULTURE AND HUMAN RIGHTS

This course aims to provide final year law students with an understanding of how a plurality of laws operate in a multicultural society such as South Africa, both at official and unofficial levels. By drawing on among others, legislation and case law, attention is paid to historically marginalised religious, cultural and customary laws including personal and family laws emanating from (but not limited to) Islam, Hinduism, Judaism and traditional and non-traditional customary laws. Students are encouraged to consider how, if at all, non-dominant systems of personal and family laws can be addressed within a secular legal framework and what the human rights implications of that are (or would be). Comparative perspectives are offered to enhance the students’ understanding of the debates and applications of multiple legal systems in the international arena.

RDL4606F PRIVATE LAW AND HUMAN RIGHTS

The course deals with current issues in private law from a theoretical perspective. Topics include: The potential of private law, as infused by the Constitution, to resolve the dilemmas of social democracy with specific reference to the apartheid reparations debate.

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SOCIAL SERVICES AND DEVELOPMENT

COURSES

SWK4013F SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: THEORIES AND APPLIED APPROACHES

This course is designed to give students an understanding of Social Development, with the framework and constraints of a national and global development environment. The following aspects are dealt with:

  • Basic concepts in the field of Social Development
  • The historical framework of development as a discipline
  • Globalisation of social and economic development
  • Some theoretical models which are used to overcome poverty
  • Poverty and underdevelopment in South Africa, and possible strategies for reducing and overcoming these, and
  • Models for people-centred development

SWK4004S YOUTH JUSTICE

The course contextualizes juvenile justice in South Africa and examines the alternatives for juvenile offenders through diversion programmes. Areas covered in the course are:

  • Introduction to youth justice including international instruments for the administration of youth justice
  • Policy and legislation in South Africa
  • Institutions linked to the administration of youth justice e.g. places of safety, secure care, prisons, pilot projects and programmes of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Young Persons at Risk; and
  • Theory and practice: the intersection between justice and welfare

DEGREES

SWK4014S INTRODUCTION TO SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

This course is designed to promote social and economic reconstruction and development within a people-centred development framework. It includes:

  • Social development facilitation through projects and programmes, as well as social mobilisation
  • Adult learning; and
  • Strategies of economic empowerment

BSOCSC HONS SPECIALISING IN SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

The Social Development specialisation prepares students for leadership, professional competency and research in the field of Social Development, Development Policy and Development Planning and Management. It highlights the links between national development processes and international systems of economic global governance and management.

BSOCSC HONS SPECIALISING IN SOCIAL POLICY AND MANAGEMENT

The Social Policy and Management specialisation aims to equip persons managing social welfare, community and other social service organisations in both the public and private sectors with knowledge and skills in social policy and management.

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TOWNS AND CITIES

COURSES

APG4023S URBAN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PROCESSES

This course aims to develop an understanding of the economic (formal and informal) drives of contemporary urban development processes; relevant actors and institutions, the role of planning in the urban economic growth and change. Land/property-related factors shaping urban development are also covered.

EGS4039F URBAN FOOD SECURITY

Topics include an overview of poverty and urbanization in Southern Africa; urban food security, methods and issues; urban poverty and vulnerability debates; food security and HIV/AIDS; managing urban food systems (ecological, regulatory and fiscal dynamics).

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UNEMPLOYMENT AND LABOUR

COURSES

CML4605F LAW DEVELOPMENT LABOUR AND SOCIAL POLICY

The aim of this course is to introduce students to selected debates around the role of law in development, specifically in the context of labour market regulation in the era of globalisation. Topics may include developments in case law, social security principles and implementation, statutory and extra-legal social dialogue arrangements, the harmonisation of labour standards and social policy in Southern Africa, workplace discrimination, affirmative action, freedom of association, HIV/AIDS in the workplace, dispute prevention and resolution, and health and safety.

ECO4113S LABOUR AND DEVELOPMENT ECONOMICS

The Honours course in labour economics intends to introduce a number of topics that are important for the analysis of economies in developing countries as well as our own. The course will focus on the following topics: labour demand and supply; informal labour markets and segmentation; unemployment and labour force participation; discrimination; child labour and household labour supply; migration and remittances; wage differentials; nutrition and efficiency; wages; centralised bargaining; labour markets and growth; labour regulation; schooling.

SOC4003H LABOUR REGULATION IN SOUTH AFRICA

The focus of the course is on how key areas of the new labour regulatory framework are impacting on the labour market and economic development, particularly small business development. The course draws on current research and has strong legal and empirical themes. These are situated within an examination of the broader policy context within which the labour regulatory framework is operating, for example, macroeconomic policy and industrial policy. A central issue is how the concept of 'regulated flexibility' has sought to balance competing pressures.

SOC4014S GLOBALISATION AND LABOUR RELATIONS

Globalisation is a process that is changing how firms network with each other internationally and increasing the phenomenon of global commodity chains. It is also having an effect on economic, political and social relations around the world. All these changes impact on the workplace and how industrial relations are conducted. The course examines these processes. It starts with a global perspective and then focuses in on particular regions including Southern and South Africa.

SOC4023S HUMAN RESOURCES DEVELOPMENT

This course focuses primarily on the skills shortage challenge facing South Africa, but it also deals with conceptual, theoretical and international issues. Among the issues that are included in the course are: What are skills? What do we understand by human resource development? Which countries, especially developing countries, have successful skills development programmes and what are the reasons for their success? South Africa’s past and present skills development strategies; in-depth sectoral and occupational studies of skills shortages; what can and is being done to alleviate the skills shortage?

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