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Course Offerings

Below is a list of available courses offered by the Sociology Department. Consult the Registrar’s Office and the College Catalog for registration information.

Course List

SOC 101 - HUMAN SOCIETIES

A study of the development and structure of human societies. Students are introduced to major sociological concepts, principles, and theories which contribute to a better understanding of the social world. Hours credit: 3. This course cannot be taken on a Pass/Fail basis.

SOC 101T - TRANSFER SOCIOLOGY

SOC 114 - CONTEMPORARY U.S. SOCIETY

An introduction to contemporary social life in the United States through a survey of social structures, social interaction, and social change. Topics include the American family, sports, gender inequality, deviance and social control, electronic media, and the evolving concept of community. Hours credit: 3. This course cannot be taken on a Pass/Fail basis.

SOC 205 - SPORTING AMERICA

An introduction to the cultural history of the United States through the lens of sport. Topics will include immigration and assimilation; the creation and maintenance of ethnic, racial, and national identities; class and leisure; industrialization and incorporation; civil rights; and women's rights. Hours credit: 3.

SOC 209 - DEVIANCE AND SOCIAL CONTROL

Addresses the creation and enforcement of societal rules, why and how rules are violated, the repercussions of violating norms, and the ways that race, class, gender, and sexuality affect those repercussions. General explanations of deviance will be applied to a wide variety of specific examples ranging from gender non-conformity to white collar crime. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: SOC 101 or 114R or permission of the instructor. Alternate years.

SOC 216 - CONTEMPORARY SOCIAL PROBLEMS

An application of sociological and anthropological perspectives toward understanding some widely recognized contemporary social problems such as sexual and racial discrimination, substance abuse, family violence and sexual abuse, AIDS, health care reform, global inequality, overpopulation, and the destruction of natural environments. The class focuses on creative and practical solutions, with particular attention to how countries similar to the U.S. address such problems. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: SOC 101R or 114 or permission of the instructor. Offered alternate years.

SOC 218 - FAMILY AND KINSHIP

An examination of the social construction of family and kinship, with a primary focus on the contemporary U.S. Special attention will be given to the significance of gender, race, and class in systems of kinship and to the interaction between family and other institutions. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: SOC 101 or 114R or permisiion of the instructor. Alternate years.

SOC 222 - HUMAN POPULATIONS & GLOBAL ISSUES

The most challenging problems in the world are tied to changes in human populations and the future quality of life on our planet depends on how people address those demographic changes. This course is an introduction to population processes such as fertility, rapid world population growth and migration, and to human geography. Issues addressed include globalization, urbanization, human trafficking, conflict, geopolitics, and environmental change. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: sophomore standing or one course in sociology.

SOC 231 - AMERICA AT THE MARGINS

An examination of the social construction of difference in late 20th and early 21st century America. This course focuses on social groups and communities that live on the physical and metaphorical borders of American culture such as addicts, queers, criminals, and illegal immigrants. Particular attention will be given to the ways in which their presence shapes contemporary ideological discourse. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: sophomore standing or permission of the instructor. Alternate years.

SOC 262 - TOPICS IN SOCIOLOGY

Concentrated reading and discussion pertaining to a specific area or issue in sociology. Previous topics include Racial and Ethnic Relations, Inequality in American Life, and Mothers and Daughters in American Culture. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: sophomore standing or one course in Sociology.

SOC 265 - SOCIAL THEORY

Discussion of the nature and role of theory in social research. Notable works in sociology will be read, discussed, and evaluated. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: Sociology 101R or 114R or permission of the instructor.

SOC 276 - SOCIOLOGY OF GENDER

An introduction to the sociological way of studying and understanding gender. Gender is social – it affects everyone, regardless of sex, sexual orientation, race, class, religion, etc. This class explores the ways gender is socially constructed and perpetuated. Students study how to examine gender at the micro (individual) and macro (social institutions, culture) levels in society. Identical with Gender Studies 276. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: sophomore standing and SOC 101 or SOC 114R or G ST 201 or G ST 203 or permission of the instructor.

SOC 310 - COMMUNITY

This course is designed to give students some tools for thinking and talking about community, allowing them room to explore the meaning and value of that concept, in various guises and from varied points of view. While focused on the U.S., the course will frequently compare the concepts and practices of community in the U.S. to those of other societies. The course is structured around some large questions within which the class will consider issues or topics related to community. For example, around the question "In what ways does technology affect community?" the class will explore the use of automobiles and INTERNET chat-rooms. Around "How do we encourage or conserve community?" students will examine ecology and architecture. It is better to see the course as an open, ongoing dialog, dynamic and circular, rather than a linear series of lectures about topics in some definite order. The main objective of the course is to leave students with their own, informed sense of community and enough ideas, concepts, skills, and resources to enhance their future understanding of community however they may create or experience it. Hours Credit: 3. Prerequisite: junior standing or permission of instructor. Offered alternate years.

SOC 321 - INDIVIDUAL & SOCIETY

Focusing on sociological social psychology, this course examines how people’s ideas, thoughts, beliefs, attitudes, feelings, and actions are affected by the actual, imagined, or implied presence of others. The class highlights social and institutional influences on individuals, assuming that our lives are directed by both internal and external factors. Students study how cultural expectations about things like gender, race, sexuality, class, religion, agency, power, and inequality affect our self-conceptions and interactions with others. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: junior standing and SOC 101 or 114R or permission of the instructor. Alternate years.

SOC 327 - SOCIAL STRATIFICATION

A study of the nature, causes, and consequences of social inequality. Students will analyze concepts of class, status, and power, and examine issues such as credentialism and upward mobility, welfare, unemployment, and comparable worth. The course concentrates on distributive processes in the United States but is broadly comparative and includes the study of international inequality. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: Sociology 101 or 114 or permission of the instructor. Offered alternate years.

SOC 335 - DEV COUNTRIES OF THE CARIB BASIN

An exploration of the challenges and obstacles facing the developing countries in this region. The course is structured to address a series of controversial issues such as: Why are some countries developing rapidly while others remain stagnant? Are rates of poverty, hunger or other indicators of social well-being improving over time in countries that post economic gains? What roles, if any, should the United States and other industrialized countries play in providing technology, foreign aid, or other forms of assistance? Topics will include population growth, the emerging roles of women, the impact of transnational corporations and international trade, destruction of natural habitats, and eco-tourism. Students develop case studies of a particular country in the region and may choose to participate in a mock international forum. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: junior standing or permission of the instructor. Offered alternate years.

SOC 342 - ASSUMING WHITENESS

An examination of the creation, representation, and maintenance of "whiteness" as a racial category. It explores the process by which certain groups have moved from racial "other" to "white," the visual representation of "whiteness," and the social, cultural, and political ramifications of being white (and non-white) in America. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: junior standing or permission of the instructor. Alternate years.

SOC 344 - RACE & ETHNICITY IN FILM

This course will provide a history of the representation of racial and ethnic minorities in popular film and its socio-cultural implications, an application of sociological perspectives toward understanding popular film, and an examination of minorities as audiences and filmmakers. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: sophomore standing or one course in sociology.

SOC 367 - RESEARCH PROJECT

An investigation of a sociological problem under the supervision of a member of the Department. Hours credit: 1; 2; or 3. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

SOC 368 - RESEARCH PROJECT

An investigation of a sociological problem under the supervision of a member of the Department. Hours credit: 1; 2; or 3. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

SOC 385 - RACE AND CARTOONS

This course will trace the ways in which "race" has been depicted, manipulated, and promoted through drawn imagery from the 19th to 21st Centuries. By systematic exploration of political cartoons, film, and advertising this class will critically examine the functions of such imagery and how they represent ideological perspectives and power dynamics within a global world. Special focus will also be given to representations of sexuality, gender, religion, and nationality. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: sophomore standing or permission of instructor. One time only.

SOC 386 - BLACK FEMINISM & SOC OF INTERSECTIONALIT

This course examines black feminism as an ideology from its roots in pre-colonial West Africa to its current state in contemporary African Diaspora communities. Students will explore such questions as: What is black feminism? Who can be a black feminist? Where do the stereotypes of black women come from? Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: junior standing or permission of the instructor. One time only.

SOC 394 - SOCIAL RESEARCH & QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS

This course is an intensive, hands-on introduction to the gathering and analysis of qualitative data. Students will be introduced to various techniques for selecting and formulating research problems, designing research projects, and collecting and analyzing qualitative data. Specifically, students will focus on interviews, oral histories, field research, and content analysis. The research, writing, and analysis skills learned in this course are useful for a wide variety of jobs and are necessary for pursuing graduate study in any social science. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: SOC 101 or 114 and junior standing or permission of the instructor.

SOC 395 - SOCIAL RESEARCH & QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS

A practical workshop emphasizing learning by doing, survey research and quantitative analysis. Students will be introduced to basic techniques for selecting and formulating research problems, designing research projects, and collecting and analyzing data. The course is structured to practice basic quantitative skills. These skills are useful toward more advanced study in graduate or professional schools and are immediately desirable for many professions. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: SOC 101 or 114 and junior standing or permission of the instructor.

SOC 495 - SEMINAR ADVANCED SOCIAL RESEARCH

In this capstone course for the major, students will focus on high-level, applied analysis of recent research in the field. Goals include sharpening analytical abilities, honing skills for writing or speaking professionally about important sociological issues, and finishing the major with knowledge of some important studies from major academic journals. Students will also practice skills needed for making the transition to graduate school or employment, including writing critiques of professional research in an area of the student’s interest and selection of a previously written paper to revise as a writing sample. Finally, students will hear presentations or engage in other activities to facilitate meeting their goals following graduation. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: senior standing and either SOC 394 or 395 or the equivalent or permission of the instructor.

SOC 496 - SOCIOLOGY THESIS

Students will undertake an original, independent research project under the supervision of a faculty member. The finished project will approach a paper of publishable quality, suitable for submission to professional conferences. Findings from these projects will, at least, be presented to the faculty and majors. Note: this course is an option for students who meet a minimum QPR requirement in the major and who are advised to pursue the project based on their personal and professional goals. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: senior standing and SOC 495 or permission of the instructor.

SOC 496L - ADVANCED ANALYSIS

Students will collect original data or apply a specific method as part of their thesis project, under the direction of a faculty mentor. Students complete an analysis of data that meets professional standards and gain practical experience in conducting advanced research projects. Highly encouraged for students with plans for graduate or professional school or professional careers that prioritize analytical skills. Hours credit: 1. Corequisite: SOC 495 or 496. Offered on a Pass/Fail basis only.

SOC 497H - HONORS IN THE MAJOR

SOC 498H - HONORS IN THE MAJOR

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