Disabling worlds: Exploring disability in the global north and south SOCIO4130

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

It is estimated that around 15 per cent of the world's population are disabled. In the global north, critiques of the biomedical view of disability from within the disabled people's movements has led to a flourishing of scholarship and recognition of rights for disabled people. Yet 80 per cent of disabled people live in the global south. This course will introduce you to key concepts within disability studies and consider their significance in a global setting. In what ways have disabled people's rights been recognised at the global and national levels and what role have disabled people played in the development of rights? How is disability framed within development agendas of the global north? What points of commonality and difference in disabled people's lives in the twenty first century on the global scale?



Requirements of Entry

In order to take this course, students need to have met the requirements for entry into the Sociology Honours Programme. This means achieving a grade of 'D' or better in Sociology 1A and 1B and a 'C' or better in Sociology 2A and 2B. Students also have to comply with the College of Social Science regulations for progression to Honours.

Excluded Courses





Summative assessment 1: 2,250 word essay (50%)


Summative assessment 2: 1.5 hour written exam (50%), 1,500 words.

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. Where, exceptionally, reassessment on Honours courses is required to satisfy professional/accreditation requirements, only the overall course grade achieved at the first attempt will contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

To introduce students to key theoretical concepts in disability studies and consider their applicability in different settings

To provide students with an understanding of the disabled people's movement at the local and global levels and their role in advancement of rights for disabled people

To enable students to critically interrogate disability theory, policy and practice across the globe

To introduce students to the relationship between disability and development

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of the course, the students will be able to:

Define key issues facing disabled people globally;

Engage with and critically evaluate the key theoretical debates within disability studies

Demonstrate an understanding of disablism and ways in which it manifests in different settings;

Assess and critically evaluate the ways disability is measured at national and international levels;

Outline key critiques of development approaches to disability.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.