Fame and Celebrity - 2016

Unit summary


  • Level of Study: Undergraduate Level 3
  • Study load: 0.125 EFTSL
  • Delivery method: Fully Online
  • Prerequisites: No
  • Duration: 13 weeks
  • Government loans available: FEE-HELP, HECS-HELP
  • Availability for 2016: SP1 , SP3
  • Assessment: Analysis Task - Weekly worksheets (25%) , Case Study (35%) - Learn more

Unit provided by

2016 Fees
Domestic 782.00
HECS 782.00
International 1,032.00

This unit explores key concepts in the sociology of celebrity and considers ways in which fame is produced in contemporary society. A historical approach is incorporated, with discussion of the conceptualisation of celebrity since the early 20th century. In examining how society assigns, generates and uses fame and celebrity status, the course emphasises the way cultural industries construct celebrities and what the resulting omnipresence of fame means for individuals and society.

At the completion of this units students will be able to:

  1. engage in critical analysis of established theories that explain the production and consumption of fame, celebrity and stardom;
  2. demonstrate knowledge of key concepts in the sociology of celebrity and deploy critical thinking about the assumptions and foundations of fame and celebrity in the 21st century;
  3. deploy research skills, particularly library and database research skills;
  4. analyse, evaluate and synthesise a range of contemporary images and texts;
  5. demonstrate an ability to apply and test theoretical understandings through various assessment criteria;
  6. develop sustained, logical and informed arguments.
  • Analysis Task — Weekly worksheets (25%)
  • Case Study (35%)
  • Non-Invigilated Exam (25%)
  • Online Discussion (15%)

There are no prerequisites for this unit.

Note: Level 3 units normally assume a moderate level of prior knowledge in this area, eg from studying related Level 1 and 2 units or other relevant experience.

  • Broadband access

This unit addresses the following topics.

1The cultural industries approach to the production of celebrity.
2Definitions and historical understandings of celebrity
3The human pseudo-event: celebrity as communication enterprise
4Power and the celebrity elite
5Stardom and the movies
6Authenticity and the popular music system
7Magazines, newspapers, fashion and the tabloidization of celebrity
8Reality TV and 'ordinary' celebrity
9Celebrity politics

This unit is delivered using the following methods and materials:

Instructional Methods

  • Discussion Forum/Discussion Board
  • Online Quizzes/Tests
  • Online assignment submission
  • Podcasting/Lecture capture
  • Standard Media
  • Web links

Online materials

  • FAQs
  • Online Assessment
  • Printable format materials
  • Resources and Links

This unit is part of a major, minor, stream or specialisation in the following courses:

This unit may be eligible for credit towards other courses:

  1. Many undergraduate courses on offer through OUA include 'open elective' where any OUA unit can be credited to the course. You need to check the Award Requirements on the course page for the number of allowed open electives and any level limitations.
  2. In other cases, the content of this unit might be relevant to a course on offer through OUA or elsewhere. In order to receive credit for this unit in the course you will need to supply the provider institution with a copy of the Unit Profile in the approved format, which you can download here. Note that the Unit Profile is set at the start of the year, and if textbooks change this may not match the Co-Op textbook list.
This unit does not have a prescribed textbook(s).

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