Introduction to Demography

LSPED1211  2018-2019  Louvain-la-Neuve

Introduction to Demography
5.0 credits
30.0 h
1q

Teacher(s)
Schoumaker Bruno ;
Language
Français
Main themes
The course opens with a short history of how the world came to be populated. This is followed by a multi-disciplinary approach to "demographic issues", the interrelations of statistical population structures and the process of their continuous renewal throughout time. A major part of the course is devoted to the presentation of basic methods of describing and analyzing these structures and demographic processes, through population pyramids, mortality, fertility and migrations. The rest of the course deals with the major theories and demographic doctrines (such as Malthusianism, and transition), the causes and consequences (social, economic and political) of demographic development and the prospects for world populations.
Aims
This course aims to equip students with the basic concepts and tools for analyzing the continuous process of population renewal throughout time, and to make them aware of interrelations of demographic dynamics (fertility, mortality, migration) and a range of contextual factors (social, economic, political and ideological).

The contribution of this Teaching Unit to the development and command of the skills and learning outcomes of the programme(s) can be accessed at the end of this sheet, in the section entitled “Programmes/courses offering this Teaching Unit”.

Content
  • "Awareness-raising" of the demographic issue, through a quick tour of the history of the world population.
  • Definitions, basic concepts, brief history of the discipline.
  • The components of population dynamics and the fundamental demographic equation.
  • Basic indicators: population growth rate, crude birth rate, crude death rate, migration rate.
  • Demographic changes : demographic transition, second demographic transition, demographic prospects until 2100. 
  • Main sources of demographic data: censuses, civil status, registers, surveys.
  • The dimensions of time, a key variable in demographic analysis, and the Lexis diagram, a fundamental tool in demographic analysis.
  • Population size and structure : age pyramid and indicators.
  • Interactions between movement and population structure.
  • Mortality study: mortality table, mortality trends and spatial and social differences, causes of death. 
  • Fertility study: fertility rates, fertility trends and spatial and social differences, proximate determinants of fertility.
  • Theoretical elements on demographic changes.
Teaching methods

Lectures, and use of the Moodle platform for exercises.

Evaluation methods

First session (January)

Written exam in session, including for example exercises, graph interpretation, calculation and interpretation of demographic indicators, commentary on demographic developments using the theoretical elements and examples discussed during the course.  The examination also requires a good command of demographic vocabulary, key concepts and data sources. 

A test is organised on Moodle during the quadrimester. Students who pass the test (>=10/20) have a bonus between 0 and 1 point which is added to the grade of the January written exam. The bonus is calculated as follows (TEST RESULT-10)/10. 

Second session (September)

Written exam in session, similar to the January exam. Any bonuses obtained in the first quarter by the tests on Moodle are not valid for the second session. A test is organised on Moodle during the second quarter. Students who pass the test (>=10/20) have a bonus between 0 and 1 point which is added to the grade of the January written exam. The bonus is calculated as follows (NOTE TEST-10)/10. 

Other information

Course materials available on Moodle

  • Syllabus 
  • Powerpoint slides
  • Interactive exercises
  • Some explanatory and illustrative videos
Online resources

https://www.ined.fr/fr/tout-savoir-population/jeux/population-demain/

https://www.ined.fr/fr/tout-savoir-population/graphiques-cartes/population-cartes-interactives/

https://rstudio.stat.washington.edu/shiny/wppExplorer/inst/explore/

Bibliography
  • Syllabus
  • Diapositives powerpoint
  • Exercices sur Moodle
  • Vidéos d'explication et d'illustration

Rollet, C. (2015). Introduction à la démographie, Armand Colin, Paris.

Meslé F., Toulemon L., Véron J. (2011). Dictionnaire de démographie et des sciences de la population, Armand Colin, Paris.

 

Faculty or entity


Programmes / formations proposant cette unité d'enseignement (UE)

Program title
Sigle
Credits
Prerequisites
Aims
Minor in Population and Development Studies
5
-

Master [120] in Population and Development Studies
5
-

Bachelor in Sociology and Anthropology
5
-

Additionnal module in Geography
4
-

Bachelor in Philosophy, Politics and Economics
5
-