SOCI 204 - The Family in Canada

This course examines the fundamental structure of the "family" in terms of its importance for the individual and society; the various forms of "family" now found in Canada; the changes from traditional to existing family forms.


Credits: 3


Hours: 45 (Lecture Hours: 3)


Total Weeks: 15



An introductory Sociology course, or consent of the instructor.


Non-Course Prerequisites:






Course Content:
This course intends to improve the student's ability to read critically, to evaluate and analyze the available theories and perspectives, and to apply them to their own lives and experiences. The primary goal of the course is to inspire students to use the principles of what they have learned, and to form coherent opinions about the family life, and the shape and the future of Canadian society with regard to this issue. As part of the learning procedure, the students are required to be involved in peer group discussions, presentations, and reviews. Therefore, participation consists of attendance, as well as completing the readings before the assigned date, and being prepared to give a brief summary of that reading, and being able to offer some sort of evaluation of it in a short time (minute papers). 1% will be deducted from the overall 10% of class participation mark for each session that a student may miss.
The classes will primarily follow a lecture format, interspersed with class discussion and possibly occasional videos and small group activities.
- Introduction to the course
- Family Relationships
- Family Relationships and Historical Perspectives in Canada
- Historical Perspectives
- How Families Begin
- Types of Intimate Couples
- Ways of Being Close: Interaction, Communication, Sex, and Trust
- Parenting: Childbearing, Socialization, and Parenting Challenges
- Work and family life: The Domestic Division of Labour
- Stress and Violence: Family dynamics
- Stress and Violence: Realities of Family Life
- Divorce and Ending Relationships
- Family Transitions and innovations
- Family Transitions and The Future of Canadian Families

- The Future of Canadian Families


Learning Outcomes:
By the end of the course the students will be able to:
- Develop an inclusive definition of "family"
- Examine the structure and function of the family as a "small social organization" and as a fundamental social organization
- Explore the nature of the impact of issues such as global industrial capitalism on household and family structures, family relationships, male/female division of labour and changing roles and relationships, and parenting
- Critically evaluate the impact of power and authority in the family and family dynamics

- Examine martial roles and family transitions, and relations between the family and the state.


Grading System: Letters


Passing Grade: D (50%)


Percentage of Individual Work: 100


Textbooks are subject to change.  Please contact the bookstore at your local campus for current book lists.