module specification

SS5010 - Gender, Ethnicity & Youth Identities (2018/19)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2018/19
Module title Gender, Ethnicity & Youth Identities
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Social Professions
Total study hours 300
72 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
228 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Mind Map
Coursework 50%   Explorative Study - 2500 words
Running in 2018/19

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
No instances running in the year

Module summary

This module provides an opportunity for students to gain an understanding of social theory around gender and ethnicity and the impact on contemporary youth identities.  This will include looking at the complicated and often contradictory ways youth identities are influenced by dominant social structures and cultures and numerous outside environmental factors, such as the family, the media and education.  
Thus, such factors will be analysed in order to gain an understanding of young people’s lived experiences in regards to gender, ethnicity, stereotypes and connotations of the term “youth”.  However, one of the overriding themes that will also be addressed throughout the module is how such complexities around identity may impact on young people’s sense of positive self-identity in regards to issues of self-worth, self-esteem and their overall life journey into adulthood.  Thus, there will be a particular focus on how professional youth work skills and practice can support and aid the development of positive self-identities. 

Therefore, this module aims to be very insightful to students who may wish to work with young people in future employment (Youth & Community Work and Youth Justice Work) or have an interest in issues addressed within in this module (Sociology and Education Disciplines).

Module aims

The module aims to:

1. Provide an insight into the formation of youth identities through analysing the social theory around young people and its link to societal structures and culture
2. Use experiential learning techniques to critically examine social theory through encouraging self-reflection to aid understanding
3. Develop and encourage confidence through the use of appropriate learning, analytical and discursive skills to engage in self-directed learning & research
4. Provide a supportive environment to aid the development of communication skills, through group work activities and discussions.
5. Be able to analyse problems with an awareness of ethics, values and moral codes as well as having an awareness and respect for cultural diversity
6. Be able to link theory to professional practice in youth work and community work, including anti-oppressive practice


This module introduces students to various factors around gender and ethnicity which could have an impact on the formation of youth identities.  The module will start by focusing on the concept of “youth” and theories around identity formation.  Students will then be introduced to social theory around gender ideology, which will then be further analysed by looking at specific ethnic groups and social theory related to race and ethnicity.  Following this, the module will specifically focus on key umbrella themes such as the media, music, relationships, parenting and class, which will allow students to gain a deeper understanding of influences on youth identities.   In the final part of the module, all of the discussed issues will be assessed in the context of developing positive self-identity through practical youth work skills, interventions and supportive agencies.  Thus, throughout the module, students will engage in weekly group activities and discussion around various issues arising, at both the beginning and the end of teaching sessions, and the use of the student’s own experiential learning is encouraged in regards to connecting theory with real life situations and professional practice. 

Syllabus content:
• What is identity?
• Defining concepts of youth
• Exploring race and gender ideology
• Gendered identities of white, black and Asian young people
• Marginalised youth identities
• Challenging gender stereotypes: LGTB young people
• Young people, celebrities and identity
• Music, rebellion and ethnic & gendered identities
• Youth relationships: Parents & peers
• Ethnicity, Gender & Class
• Exploring self-worth, self-esteem and positive self-development
• Professional youth work skills and practice
• Supportive interventions and organisations

Learning and teaching

This module approaches teaching and learning as a collaborative process which recognises the student voice, and will involve the student’s active participation throughout the module. In order to facilitate this and enable students to meet the learning outcomes for this module, a range of teaching/learning strategies will be employed, including the use of students self-reflection of prior experiential learning in regards to their own self identities and experiences which will contribute to the wider learning process.

The module is therefore scheduled as an inter-linked programme, combining:
• Themed presentations
• Weekly Workshop Style Lecture/Seminar Sessions

Supported by:
• Tutorial sessions
• Drop in sessions offered by the library to advise on electronic resources, provided by the subject librarian.

The themed presentations /workshop sessions are designed to:

• Introduce students to the major theories and debates around module themes
• Provide students with an overview of the key substantive studies/findings
•  Further student’s learning through experiential learning strategies
• Check, evaluate and extend the student’s knowledge
• Develop skills in communication and group work
• Prepare for and fulfil the requirements for the assessment for the module 

Students are expected to attend workshop sessions on a weekly basis.  Students must be prepared to:

• Discuss their own ideas/reading relating to the relevant topic
• Consider the issues raised in the preceding workshop
• Participate in a range of group-based exercises, including group discussions and group work activities

Guided Independent Study

Guided independent study is an integral component of the module. It is the means through which students can enhance both their substantive knowledge and understanding of the issues addressed in the module and develop their study and time management skills.

As with all modules, a time allowance for independent study is built into the programme and students will be expected to undertake reading on a weekly basis (at least one text on the recommended reading list or highlighted by tutor) and other preparatory work. Further guidance will be provided by module tutors.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

1. Compare and contrast different theoretical approaches to the study of ethnic and gendered youth identities.
2. Evaluate various sociological theories around youth identity, ethnicity and gender and connect this to youth and community work theory and anti-oppressive practice
3. Think critically about the formation of youth identities and support their ideas with both research and their own experiential learning
4. Develop further skills in self-directed learning and research
5. Link theory to future professional practice in Youth & Community Work

Assessment strategy

The assessment strategy will consist of a youth identity mind map (50%), and an explorative study (50%). 
The youth identity mind map will be based on students individually selecting a newspaper/journal article and critically addressing how the issues presented in the article would affect a specific youth identity of their choice.  Students are required to back up each of their points with authored references, as well as contribute some of their own ideas to mind maps produced.  The assessment should enable students to apply different theoretical approaches to their understanding of youth identities and evaluate how these approaches can be used to describe the formation of youth identities.

The explorative study around specific, self-chosen gendered and ethnic youth identity, which is different from that presented in the previous assessment.  Students will be required to draw on and evaluate various theoretical approaches that can be applied to youth identity formation.  Students will also be required to provide information on supportive youth work skills, interventions and organisations/agencies which can aid the development of positive self-identity for the young person/youth group being addressed, linking theory to profession practice. 
Finally, students will be required to write a reflective summary on what they have found most interesting in their studies of youth identity (and any relevance to their own identities) and how this information might benefit their future professional practice.


• Alexander, C.E. (2000) The Asian Gang: ethnicity, identity, masculinity.  Berg (Oxford International Publishers Ltd)
• Aronowitz (1992) The Politics of Identity.  Routledge
• Back, L. (1996) New Ethnicities & Urban Culture: Racism and multicultural in young lives.  Routledge & Taylor Francis Group
• Bradford, S (2012) Sociology, Youth and Youth Work Practice (Working with young people). Palgrave MacMillan
• Castells, M (1997) The Power of Identity.  Blackwell
• Cieslik, M and Simpson, D (2012) Youth Studies: Key Concepts. SAGE Publications Ltd
Craib, I. (1998) Experiencing Identity.  SAGE Publications Ltd
• Frith, S (1984) Sociology of Youth.  Causeway Book
• Frosh, S, Phoenix, A & Pattman, R. (2002) Young Masculinities.  PALGRAVE
• Furlong, A (2013) Youth Studies: an introduction.  Routledge (E-book)
• Garrett, D, Roche J & Tucker, S (eds.) (1997) Changing Experiences of Youth.  SAGE Publications Ltd.
• Gauntlett, D (2008) Media, gender and identity.  2nd Edition.  Routledge (E-book)
• Griffin, C. (1993) Representations of Youth.  Polity Press
• Hamilton, M (2008) What’s happening to our girls?. Viking – Imprint of Penguin Books
• Horrocks, R. (1995) Male Myths and Icons; Masculinity in Popular Culture.  MACMILLAN PRESS LTD
• hooks, b (2000) Feminist Theory: From margin to center.  South End Press
• McDonald, R & Marsh, J (2005) Disconnected Youth? Growing up in Britain’s Poor Neighbourhoods.  PALGRAVE MACMILLAN.
• McRobbie, A (1990) Feminism and Youth Culture.  Macmillan Basingstoke
• Mirza, H, S (Ed) (1997) Black British Feminism. Routledge
• Nayak, A. (2003) Race, Place and Globalisation: Youth Culture in a Changing World.  Berg Publishers Ltd
• Nayak, A & Kehily, M.J (2007) Gender, youth and culture: young masculinities and femininities.  Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan
• Roche, J. and Tucker, S. (1997) Youth in Society. Buckingham: Open University Press
• Ruddock, A (2013) Youth and Media.  SAGE Publications Ltd
• Sapin, K (2012) Essential Skills for Youth Work Practice.  Second Edition.  London: SAGE
• Wood, J (2009) Work with young people: Theory and Policy for Practice.  SAGE


Journals/ Magazine
• Young People Now
• Youth and Policy