Department of Sociology
College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Provides a forum for critical reflection on community-driven service, cross-cultural experiences, and global citizenship. Progresses through a framework, which explicitly links personal experience and readings with regular writing assignments in a journal and class discussion. Reflects on both the purposes of their service work as well as on its limits as a response to specific needs within the community, and more general problems of social justice. Through the experience of interaction and reflection, students learn to apply knowledge and skills in the real world, exercise critical thinking, develop self -learning and helping skills, develop societal knowledge and sensitivity, and enhance personal development. Explores issues of social responsibility and citizenship in relation to the social problems with which they become acquainted through their community work. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor
Considers the range of theoretical explanations for the pervasive violence between intimate partners. Particularly examines the research on intimate partner violence and the implications of this research for programs and policies assisting both the victim and the abuser. Prerequisite: None
Examines the prevalence, causes, and social implications of physical, sexual, emotional, and neglect forms of child abuse in society. Child abuse is studied from the individual, family, and societal level perspectives. Potential intervention strategies will also be considered. Prerequisite: None
Review of fields of medical sociology and anthropology; focuses on such topics as social background of illness, folk medicine, cultural differences in perceptions of health, and social organization of health facilities.
Analyzes disability from a sociological perspective. Includes a consideration of historical and current views of disability and a review of related concepts from the fields of medical sociology and the sociology of deviance. Also includes an analysis of the effects of disabilities on individuals and families through the life course and a consideration of related ethical, economic, political, and social policy issues. The emphasis is on disability as a social construction.
Seminar focuses on specialized areas in the discipline not covered by regular courses. Students will do extensive reading in the area. Courses may be repeated under different subtitles.
Supervised experience in public or private organizations that extends and complements classroom instruction. Students gain practical experience and apply their skills to human service agencies, policy organizations, or research settings. Prerequisite: Permission.
Students wishing to specialize beyond course work are encouraged to work on a one-to-one basis with faculty members in independent study. Students may elect up to a total of six semester hours of independent study.
Focuses on the development of social policy, first and foremost; on the history and development of the social welfare system in the United States with particular attention to the concepts used to discuss and explain social welfare institutions’ policies and programs; on the mechanisms and structures to deliver services; and on the factors that have tended to constrain or facilitate the attainment of social justice. Development of social welfare policy is traced within the context of the social and political economy of the period to gain an understanding of how political, economic, and social ideologies have shaped attitudes about social policy.
Examination of diverse research designs in the social sciences. Focuses on understanding and critique of designs in the social sciences and on integration of theory and research. Special attention given to development of thesis proposal. Required for M.A. in Sociology.
Examination of major systems of sociological theory and major theoretical controversies vying for attention in contemporary sociology. Emphasis given to theories in macrosociology, especially functionalism, neo-Marxian conflict theory, and societal evolutionism. Required for M.A. in Sociology.
Introduction to the theoretical and applied roles of human services in our society. Organizational theories, delivery systems models, and implementation issues are discussed.
Examines the management of human service agencies, including personnel supervision, financial planning, public relations, and social policy issues. Evaluation design, program monitoring, and social impact measurement are also discussed.
Enables students to apply sociological methods such as observation, interviewing, and questionnaire development to direct service situations. Students work with service users in area agencies to help them identify their resources, concerns, and priorities and to develop family service plans.
Examines the contrasting perspectives in the field of medical sociology, the structure of health care institutions, and the operation of health care providers. The social, environmental, and occupational factors in health and disease are considered as well.
The social and personal problems associated with alcohol and drug abuse are considered. Attention is given to the etiology, social factors, and economics of abuse, as well as to prevention and intervention issues.
Assesses the impact of alcohol or drug addiction on individuals and their families. Research on addiction patterns, codependency, and family treatment is discussed. Special attention is given to gender and racial differences in addiction and their impact on the family.
Involves the sociological analysis of the family from a variety of theoretical viewpoints such as functionalism, conflict theory, exchange theory, symbolic interactionism, systems theory, and developmental theory. Special emphasis is placed on the contemporary American family. However, cross-cultural and historical comparisons are made, with the focal theme being the “decline of the family.” Specific topics covered include gender, the family in historical context, power relationships and family roles, parent-child interaction, marital satisfaction, marital disruption, and the interrelationships between race/ethnicity, social class, work roles, the family, and family policy. Prerequisite: Graduate only.
Examines the impact of societal structures on children in the United States today. Emphasizes the adverse impact of poverty and related conditions, such as poor health care, neglect, homelessness, parental drug abuse, and neighborhood violence. Economic, political, and cultural factors that produce these conditions are reviewed and compared with those in other countries with better child outcomes. This review and comparison lead to a consideration of implications for social policy change.
Examines structure and exercise of corporate power. Attention is given to relationships between industry, government, and communities and the transformation of the workplace in the twentieth century.
Relationship between individual deviance and social and cultural factors is examined. How different groups set limits for acceptable behavior is analyzed in comparative and historical context.
Considers the position of women and men in society. Examines current perspectives and research on the nature of gender differences and causes of gender inequality. Explores how gender is structured and maintained in both public and personal lives, in such arenas as family, education, and work, and in gendered interactions of friendship and love, sexuality, and violence.
Examines central theoretical perspectives on social inequality. Considers such topics as the nature of social classes and inequality; characteristics of working class, poor, and super-rich; gender and racial inequality; and how social policies affect inequality in the United States.
Explores nature and consequences of social change, alternative theoretical perspectives on social change, and how social change might be implemented. Also discusses lessons to be learned from various planned change efforts.
Focuses on the social problems encountered by aging individuals in various societies. The impact of sociological factors, such as social class, ethnicity, and technological change, on the lives of the elderly is studied. The institutional structures and services designed to cope with changing demographics are also discussed.
Introduces students to statistics and their use in analyzing and understanding social phenomena and social data. In particular, helps students develop the skills and knowledge needed to conduct their own quantitative research, both as graduate students and as professionals, and to better understand and critique research which students come across in their work. By the end of the course, students will have an understanding of the concepts underlying the use of statistics, the ability to critique and question statistics they encounter in daily life, the ability to use professional statistical software (such as SPSS) comfortably, and the ability to use many different statistical techniques in their own research. Course will also provide a foundation for learning more advanced statistics.
Examination of diverse research designs in the social sciences, with a particular emphasis on quantitative research designs. The course will focus on understanding and critiquing quantitative research designs. Special attention will be given to the integration of theory and research. Specific content includes concepts such as causality, internal validity, external validity, reliability of measurement, operational validity, sampling, and specific research designs.
Emphasis on advanced social science quantitative methods relevant to students in sociology, human services, and administration and leadership studies. Specific topics include multiple regression, reliability analysis, factor analysis, and logistic regression.
Qualitative research represents one main branch of social inquiry into the human experience. This course will provide students with a solid understanding of the key principles associated with qualitative research, as well as a framework for understanding how this approach compares with quantitative research. Particular emphasis will be placed on the philosophical, social, and ethical dimensions of assuring quality and credibility in social inquiry and the resulting methodological implications. The course also offers an overview of the various types of qualitative research, such as case study, ethnography, phenomenological study, and grounded theory. Against this background, students will develop skills in the specific methods associated with qualitative research design, including sampling, data-gathering, data analysis, representation, and assurance of quality. Students will experience the range of skills involved through actually designing, conducting, and reporting on a small qualitative study.
Examines various aspects of the teaching process: effectively developing course goals and objectives, lecturing and leading discussion, using alternative pedagogical approaches, designing instruments to evaluate student performance, developing course syllabi, addressing diversity issues in the classroom, etc. Students will develop skills and practice in these aspects of teaching sociology. Prerequisite: Graduate standing in Sociology or permission of the instructor.
For the student writing the master’s thesis. A thesis proposal must be submitted to the department’s graduate coordinator and approved by the Sociology Master’s Committee prior to registering for thesis credits. A completed thesis involves a supervised research project approved by a committee composed of the student’s thesis advisor and two additional faculty members.
Examines the use of classical social and organizational theories for understanding social relations and phenomena, the role of theory in the social sciences, and the historical roots and the development of both classical social theories and foundational applied organizational theories. The emphasis is on understanding the contributions and limitations of these theories, how they inform current understanding of societal relations, and critically analyzing these theoretical perspectives.
Examines the use of contemporary and developing social and organizational theories for understanding social phenomena, the role of contemporary theories in the social sciences, and their relationship with classical social and organizational theories. The emphasis is on understanding the contributions and limitations of these theories, how they inform current understanding of societal relationships, their use in research, and critically analyzing these theoretical perspectives. Prerequisite:SOC 802 Classical Social and Organizational Theories.
*Indicates dual-listed class
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