HIST2015 Looking for Australia: From the Deep Past to Federation

6 points
(see Timetable)

If this unit does not have an online alternative, then students who are presently unable to enter Western Australia and whose studies would be delayed by an inability to complete this unit, should contact the unit coordinator (details given on this page) to ascertain, on an individual case-by-case basis, if alternate arrangements can be made to support their study in this unit.

Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face Predominantly face-to-face. On campus attendance required to complete this unit. May have accompanying resources online.
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Online timetabled 100% Online Unit. NO campus face-to-face attendance is required to complete this unit. All study requirements are online only. Unit includes some synchronous components, with a requirement for students to participate online at specific times.
Semester 1AlbanyFace to face Predominantly face-to-face. On campus attendance required to complete this unit. May have accompanying resources online.
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 option in the History major sequence
  • Level 2 elective
What is Australia? This unit critically interrogates the national framework for Australian history, aiming to explore the continent's long-term history in regional and global context, and its culturally diverse identities. Applying a historical focus to the many ways the continent has been understood, we adopt a case study approach, starting with the concept of ‘Deep Time', our geological and biological history, the arrival of humans, Asian polities and trade, cosmopolitan networks and European ‘discovery' from the 17th century onwards, British imperialism, colonisation and cultural exchange, and key themes in the Australian imaginary over the 19th century such as multicultural economies, gender and empire, and citizenship and rights at Federation in 1901. Through documentary, material and visual sources, the unit aims to develop an informed and critically engaged citizenship, and to give students skills in the historical and cultural analysis of Australia in its global relationships.
Students are able to (1) understand the long-term, global and culturally diverse history of Australian society, and demonstrate familiarity with key themes and case studies from Australia's deep, global and diverse past; (2) demonstrate cultural literacy by developing a personal, social and ethical awareness of the legacies of Australia's deep, global and diverse past; (3) identify and evaluate some of the major debates and key historiographical issues in Australia's deep, global and diverse past; (4) evaluate the authority of different arguments made about the past; (5) express ideas and arguments cogently in written and spoken forums; and (6) deploy the bibliographical skills necessary to find appropriate sources and produce a viable research proposal in order to undertake a research essay.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) an assignment; (2) an essay; and (3) workshop participation—assessed throughout the unit. 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)
Professor Jane Lydon
Unit rules
Advisable prior study:
24 points of study
Contact hours
lectures: 1 hour per week; tutorials: 1 hour per week from week 2.
  • 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.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.