IMED1108 Issues in Women's Health Across the Lifespan

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 1 option in the Gender Studies major sequence
  • The area of knowledge for this unit is Society and Culture
  • Category A broadening unit for Bachelor of Science students where relevant according to the broadening requirements for each student
  • Level 1 elective
Determinants of our health include the social, economic and physical environments in which we live, and our individual characteristics and behaviours. In particular, our sex and our gender have significant impacts on our health. Whilst life expectancy is higher for women than men in most countries, there are a number of health and social factors that combine to create a lower quality of life for women.
This unit explores determinants of women's health across the lifespan: from conception, through childhood, into the reproductive years and beyond. With a particular focus on health promotion, a fundamental part of this unit is to examine interesting case studies, including Indigenous and global health issues.
There is also the potential for students to extend their educational and research interests in women's health in the Levels 2 and 3 elective units, IMED2208 Issues in Women's Reproductive Health and IMED3301 Issues in Women's Health Research, as choices within their academic course pathway.
Students are able to (1) explain how sex and gender relate to key determinants of women's health.; (2) describe how key stakeholders in women's health interact during decision making process for both individual and community health needs; (3) describe in relation to women's health the basic principles of bioethics; health policy and governance at local, national and global levels; health promotion; and evidence-based healthcare.; (4) identify, in a global and cultural context, sex and gender differentials in morbidity, mortality and health outcomes for the female fetus, girl child, female adolescent, reproductive woman, and adult and older women.; (5) discuss the concepts of selective female abortion, rights of the unborn child, genetic mapping and gender selection, and their implications for women's health in a global and cultural context.; (6) discuss in a global and cultural context issues affecting the girl child including: female genital mutilation, child abuse and maltreatment.; (7) discuss global and cultural diversity in female puberty, sexual debut, adolescent pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections, substance use, diet, physical activity, mental health in adolescence.; (8) discuss aspects of global and cultural diversity in custom, practice and tradition in maternal health around the world including infertility, advances in assisted reproduction and birthing practices; (9) discuss issues surrounding violence toward women, female depression and suicide.; (10) discuss influences on the health of older women including socioeconomic factors, managing disabilities and caring for older women in contemporary society.; (11) identify and discuss the impact of local, national and global policies in women's health.; and (12) demonstrate effective written and oral communication skills both independently and in a group.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) tests; (2) individual written assessments; and (3) group project. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a bachelor's pass degree student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 overall and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Demelza Ireland
Contact hours
lectures: 2 hours per week; tutorials: 2 hours per week
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available via the Booktopia Textbook Finder, which has the functionality to search by course code, course, ISBN and title, and may also be posted or available at the appropriate school's administrative offices. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.