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Christine L. Williams, Chair CLA 3.306, Mailcode A1700, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-232-6300

Course Descriptions

SOC 302 • Intro To Study Of Society-Hon

45860 • Haghshenas, Hossein
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 0.120
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Course Description

This course will closely examine how social forces in society shape our behavior and penetrate our being. After all, we are all the product of our society and vice versa. Our identities, hopes, fears, grievances and satisfactions derive from the patterns of socialization orchestrated within human groups. In this class, students will be introduced to the basic concept of sociological imagination and principles of sociological reasoning. Many societal issues will be examined through the practice of classical theories and sociological perspectives. As we journey through the course, students will become more familiar with the nature of sociology, social construction of reality, micro and macro sociological analysis, and concepts such as culture, socialization, social structures, self and society, stratification, gender inequality, love, marriage, and divorce. Finally, the course will explore the sociology of health, medicine, and the mind-body connection.

Grading Policy

Research paper 24% Three exams 60%Cass project and participation 8%Quiz 8 %

Texts

James M. Henslin, Sociology: A Down to Earth Approach (eighth or ninth edition), 2008Reading packet available at Paradigm (407 W. 24th St.)

SOC 302 • Intro To The Study Of Society

45955-45980 • Shapira, Harel
Meets TTH 330pm-430pm BEL 328
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Descripton:

This course will introduce you to what it means to think about the world like a sociologist. Over the course of the semester, we will read a little bit about a lot of things: culture, race, the economy, crime, cities, to name just a few. In each case, our focus will be on understanding what a sociological analysis of the topic would entail. We will talk about how sociologists analyze big changes taking place in the world like large scale economic change, but also how they examine small everyday situations like going to a movie theatre. Along the way we will also talk about major theoretical approaches to the study of society developed by the “founding” fathers of sociology: Karl Marx, Max Weber, and Emile Durkheim. By the end of the course you should be able to think about the world in a sociological way, including being able to ask sociological questions and develop sociological schemes for acquiring answers.

Course Format, Requirements, and Grading

Three in class exams: 20% (each)

Three short paper (3 double spaced pages): 10% (each)

Participation in sections: 10%

Readings:

Foucault, Michel. 1995 (2nd Edition) [1973] Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison. New York: Vintage Books.

Goffman, Erving. 1959. The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. New York: Anchor Books.

Khan, Shamus. 2012. Privilege The Making of an Adolescent Elite at St. Paul’s School. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

* All other readings will be available online on our course website*

 

 

 

SOC 302 • Intro To The Study Of Society

45985-46010 • Haghshenas, Hossein
Meets TTH 100pm-200pm WCH 1.120
show description

Course Description

This course will closely examine how social forces in society shape our behavior and penetrate our being. After all, we are all the product of our society and vice versa. Our identities, hopes, fears, grievances and satisfactions derive from the patterns of socialization orchestrated within human groups. In this class, students will be introduced to the basic concept of sociological imagination and principles of sociological reasoning. Many societal issues will be examined through the practice of classical theories and sociological perspectives. As we journey through the course, students will become more familiar with the nature of sociology, social construction of reality, micro and macro sociological analysis, and concepts such as culture, socialization, social structures, self and society, stratification, gender inequality, love, marriage, and divorce. Finally, the course will explore the sociology of health, medicine, and the mind-body connection.

Grading Policy

Research paper 24% Three exams 60%Cass project and participation 8%Quiz 8 %

Texts

James M. Henslin, Sociology: A Down to Earth Approach (eighth or ninth edition), 2008Reading packet available at Paradigm (407 W. 24th St.)

SOC 302 • Intro To The Study Of Society

46015-46040 • Green, Penny A
Meets MW 100pm-200pm ART 1.102
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Description:  

This course introduces the science of Sociology by focusing on five broad topics: (1) What is Sociology? (2) The Individual and Society, (3) Social Institutions, (4) Social Inequality, and (5) Globalization and Social Change.  In the process, we’ll examine important concepts, theories, and methodologies used by sociologists working on both the micro and macro levels.  We’ll look at interconnections between social institutions (i.e., the family, education, the economy), as well as the way in which institutional change has caused widening income inequality in the U.S. and around the world.  Widening inequality has had particularly negative consequences for men of color and women of all races and ethnicities.  Finally, we’ll examine the process of globalization and some of its economic, political, and cultural consequences.  Much of the data that we look at will focus on the U.S., but given our increasingly interconnected world, other societies will be considered as well.  Class format will be primarily lecture, due to class size.  We’ll try to demonstrate Sociology’s relevance to everyday life, as well as public policy making.

Required Readings: 

Introduction to Sociology (2014, 9th ed.) by Giddens, Duneier, Appelbaum, and Carr. W.W. Norton.

Any additional readings will be made available in a packet and/or on Blackboard

Attendance Policy:

 Good academic performance requires regular attendance and punctuality.  Students are allowed three (3) non-penalized absences during the semester (excluding our introductory class meeting), regardless of whether these absences are from lecture or lab.  These non-penalized absences are intended to cover such circumstances as illness, family emergencies, university scheduled events, etc.  Students who miss more than three classes, regardless of the reason, will have their semester grades reduced by one full percentage points for each absence beyond the three allowed.  The one exception to this policy concerns absences for religious reasons, assuming advance, written notification is given. 

Grading Policy:

 Exams (4)             70%               

Pop Quizzes:          15%               

Paper (2-3 pages)  15%

SOC 307E • Contemp US Social Problems

46050 • Wang, Ying-Ting
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CLA 1.106
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Course Description

Are we living in the best of times or the worst of times? Surely, compared to what people in the United States decades ago, life has improved- we are living longer better lives. Yet, most people live in the United States say that our society is facing a lot of problems and we are not doing enough to solve them. Dealing with these challenges is not just the job of our political leaders; it is the responsibility of all of us as citizens.

This course provides you the sociological perspective to the contemporary social problems. To begin our course, we will first learn the sociological perspective and core concepts in sociology. Once we have the “tools”, we will use these tools to examine some social issues regarding poverty, race, gender crime, sexuality, work, family and economy. The goal of this course is to identify what the problems are and what should be done about them.

Grading Policy

Three Exams         22% each

The Assignments    24%

In-class discussion 10%

 

Students are required to attend every class. Absence will reflect on your in-class discussions grade.

Required Text

TBA

SOC 307G • Culture And Society In The US

46055 • Tate, Margaret
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am CLA 1.106
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This course will explore the meanings of culture in modern United States society, with a focus on cultural representation.  Course readings and lectures will introduce you to theoretical perspectives on cultural representations and will emphasize how such representations shape our experience and understanding of other social phenomena, such as class, race, and gender. The class will be particularly concerned with the role culture plays in the reproduction of inequality, and therefore will ask students to turn a critical lens toward the cultural practices and representations around them.  Therefore, engagements with current events, even if they do not follow the structure of the syllabus, are always welcome.

 

SOC 307L • Gender/Race/Class Amer Soc

46065 • Collins, Caitlyn
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 0.112
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Description:

 

This course examines the interplay of gender, race, social class, and sexuality in American society. Drawing on lectures, readings, and films, we will explore how gender, race, class, and sexuality operate not simply as ways of categorizing people, but as interrelated differences and inequalities that have very real consequences for the opportunities people have and the challenges they face. We begin by examining each core concept from a sociological perspective – as social constructions that help to rationalize and justify social inequality. We will then focus our attention on the relationships among them – how gender, race, class, and sexuality intersect to shape individual experiences, daily social interactions, and society. Next, we examine how these differences and inequalities matter in a variety of interpersonal and institutional contexts, including popular culture, family life, education, the criminal justice system, and the labor force. Finally, we will evaluate solutions to social inequality and strategies for social change. 

SOC 308 • Critical Issues In Policing

46085 • Kirk, David
Meets MWF 900am-1000am CLA 0.102
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Description

Though most of us cannot imagine society without an organized police force, policing is a relatively modern phenomenon in the United States.  Like other social institutions, policing has experienced significant reforms in purposes and powers over time.  Many of these reform efforts have been implemented in hopes of reducing police abuse of power and corruption, forging positive relationships with the larger community, and improving crime prevention/detection.  In this course we will first consider the purposes and structure of policing and the shifting roles and powers of police officers.  Next we will consider several critical issues in modern day policing, focused on the effectiveness of various police strategies as well as their legitimacy.  Finally, we will consider limits on the ability of the police to control crime, and the ways in which individuals and communities work to police themselves.

Required Texts

Moskos, Peter. 2008. Cop in the Hood: My Year Policing Baltimore’s Eastern District. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Weisburd, David and Anthony A. Braga (eds.). 2006. Police Innovation: Contrasting Perspectives. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Proposed Grading Policy

Exams and Quizzes (100%)

SOC 307T • Punishment And Society

46087 • Beicken, Julie
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm CLA 1.106
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Course Description

 “The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons,” Fyodor Dostoyevsky wrote in 1862. Examining the function, methods, and particularities of punishment in a society reveals a great deal about its social relationships, inequality, and the operation of power. This course seeks to understand the role and complexities of punishment in the United States, from colonial times to the present. It considers what types of behavior we punish, why we punish, how we punish, and whom we punish.

Through a detailed analysis of the criminal justice system, we will evaluate the approaches of the United States to crime prevention, incarceration, and dealing with terrorism. We will begin by looking at the history of punishment in the U.S. and study the birth of the modern prison. We will then consider various theories of criminology and how explanations of punishment are social in nature. From there, we will explore several important issues related to punishment: the massive growth of the prison population in the U.S. at the end of the twentieth century; private prisons; the ‘War on Drugs’ and mandatory minimums; issues for women and mothers in prison; healthcare and HIV/AIDS in prison; prison gangs and violence; capital punishment; representations of prison in popular culture, and finally issues related to the ‘War on Terror:’ torture and surveillance. Through these myriad topics, we will gain insight into punishment in contemporary U.S. society.

         

Course Objectives

 This course will enable the student to: develop an understanding of the theories behind punishment and how they have changed over time; acquire comprehension of the complex relationships between crime, punishment, and inequality; hone analytical skills regarding the relationship between theoretical concepts and empirical realities; and consider the changing landscape of punishment in the twenty-first century and its relationship to the ‘War on Terror.’

Texts

 Welch, Michael. (2005) Ironies of Imprisonment. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. ISBN: 0-7619-3059-0.

Grading and Requirements

Three in-class examinations (30% each) and attendance/participation (10%).

 

 

SOC 308 • Social Determinants Of Health

46089 • Durden, Emily
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm PAR 1
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Description

This course considers the social factors that influence health and longevity, including sex/gender, race and ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and social integration. Our primary purpose will be to examine the link between social position and health patterns in the US.  This course is not on the 2014-2016 UGS Social & Behavioral Sciences Core Course List.  This course is not on the 2014-2016 COLA Social Science Course List.

Required Text

Mirowsky, John and Catherine Ross. 2003. Social Causes of Psychological Distress. Hawthorne, NY: Aldine de Gruyter/Transaction.

Articles available on Blackboard (in order in which they will be covered):

 Sociological Study of Health and Illness:

Evans, Robert G. 1994. “Introduction.” Pp. 3–26 in Why Are Some People Healthy and Others Not? The Determinants of Health of Populations, edited by R.G. Evans, M.L. Barer, and T. R. Marmor. New York: Aldine De Gruyter.

Link, Bruce G. and Jo Phelan. 1995. “Social Conditions as Fundamental Causes of Disease.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior. (Extra Issue):80-94.

Marmot, M. 2005. “Social Determinants of Health Inequalities.” The Lancet 36, no. 9464: 1099-1104.

Schulman et al. 1999. “The Effect of Race and Sex on Physicians’ Recommendations for Cardiac Catheterization.” New England Journal of Medicine 340(8):618-626.

Stress and Illness:

Pearlin, Leonard. 1989. “The Sociological Study of Stress.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 30:241−256.

Methods:

Kaufman and Cooper. 1999. “Seeking Causal Explanations in Social Epidemiology.” American Journal of Epidemiology 150:113-120.

Kaufman, Kaufman, and Poole. 2003. “Causal Inference from Randomized Trials in Social Epidemiology.” Social Science & Medicine 57:2397-409.

Socioeconomic Status:

Adler, Nancy and Joan Ostrove. 1999. “Socioeconomic Status and Health: What We Know and What We Don’t.” Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 896:3−15.

Lantz, Paula, et al. 1998. “Socioeconomic Factors, Health Behaviors, and Mortality.” JAMA 279(21):1703-1708.

Ross, Catherine and John Mirowsky. 2010. “Why Education Is the Key to Socioeconomic Differentials in Health.” Pp. 33−51 in Handbook of Medical Sociology, 6th Edition, edited by C. Bird, P. Conrad, A. Fremont, and S. Timmermans. Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University Press.

Race & Ethnicity:

Hummer, Robert. 1996. “Black-White Differences in Health and Mortality: A Review and Conceptual Model.” The Sociological Quarterly 37:105−125.

Franzini, Luisa, John Ribble, and Arlene Keddie. 2001. “Understanding the Hispanic Paradox.” Ethnicity & Disease 11:496−518.

Williams, David R., Harold Neighbors, and James Jackson. 2003. ‘‘Racial/Ethnic Discrimination and Health: Findings from Community Studies.’’ American Journal of Public Health 93:200-208.

Williams, David R. and Michelle Sternthal. 2010. “Understanding Racial-Ethnic Disparities in Health: Sociological Contributions.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 51: S15-27.

Gender:

Courtenay, Will. 2000a. “Behavioral Factors Associated with Disease, Injury, and Death among Men: Evidence and Implications for Prevention.” The Journal of Men’s Studies 9:81−142.

Courtenay, Will. 2000b. “Constructions of Masculinity and their Influence on Men’s Well-being: A Theory of Gender and Health.” Social Science & Medicine 50:1385−1401.

Verbrugge, Lois. 1985. “Gender and Health: An Update on Hypotheses and Evidence.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 26:156−182.

Family/Marital Status:

Ferraro, Kenneth. 2006. “Health and Aging.” Pp. 238-256 in Handbook of Aging and the Social Sciences, 6th Edition, edited by R. Binstock and L. George. Burlington, MA: Academic Press.

Liu, Hui and Debra J. Umberson. 2008. “The Times They Are a Changin’: Marital Status and Health Differentials from 1972 to 2003.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 49:239-253.

Umberson, Debra. 1987. “Family Status and Health Behaviors: Social Control as a Dimension of Social Integration.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 28:306−319.

Waite, Linda. 1995. Does Marriage Matter?” Demography 32:483-507.

Social Networks/Social Integration:

Berkman, Lisa F. and Thomas Glass. “Social Integration, Social Networks, Social Support and Health.” Pp. 137-173 in Social Epidemiology, edited by L.F. Berkman & I. Kawachi. New York: Oxford University.

Fowler James H. and Nicholas A. Christakis. 2008. “Dynamic Spread of Happiness in a Large Social Network: Longitudinal Analysis over 20 Years in the Framingham Heart Study.” British Medical Journal 337:2338.

Grading Policy

Book Review... 20 points

Exam #1......... 40 points

Exam #2......... 40 points

 

A = 90 – 100

B = 80 – 89

C = 70 – 79

D = 60 – 69

F = 0 – 59

SOC 308D • Ethncty & Gender: La Chicana

46095 • Minich, Julie A.
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am PAR 206
(also listed as AMS 315, MAS 319, WGS 301)
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The purpose of this course is to examine the various experiences, perspectives, and expressions of Chicanas in the United States. This involves examining the meaning and history of the term “Chicana” as it was applied to and incorporated by Mexican American women during the Chicano Movement in areas of the Southwest U.S., such as Texas and California. We will also explore what it means to be Chicana in the United States today. The course will begin with a historical overview of Mexican American women's experiences in the U.S., including the emergence of Chicana feminism. We will discuss central concepts of Chicana feminism and attempt to understand how those concepts link to everyday lived experiences. Specifically, the relationship between gender, race/ethnicity, and class will be key as we discuss issues that have been significant in the experiences and self-identification of Chicanas, such as: family, gender, sexuality, religion/spirituality, education, language, labor, and political engagement. We will engage in interdisciplinary analysis not only concerning cultural traditions, values, belief systems, and symbols but also concerning the expressive culture of Chicanas, including folk and religious practices, literature and poetry, the visual arts, and music. Finally, we will examine media representations of Chicanas through critical analyses of film and television portrayals.

SOC 308G • Rich & Poor In Amer: Soc Persp

46105 • Sullivan, Esther
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CMA 3.114
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Description:

 

Over the last three decades the gap between the very rich and everybody else has grown dramatically. In this class we will explore several broad topics concerning the nature and reproduction of class inequality in the U.S. These topics will include fundamentals of class structure, reproduction of social class over generations, and institutional and cultural systems that help to sustain class inequalities. Exploring these topics will provide a theoretical toolkit for critical thinking about the complexities of social class in the U.S. and help students understand their own experiences as a product of systems of stratification.

Readings

Readings will be posted on Blackboard

Grading:

Two exams 30% each

One end of semester paper 30%

Class participation  105

SOC 308K • Social Change And The Future

46107 • Swed, Ori
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm CLA 1.106
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Description:

The course Social Change and the Future: Conflict as an Engine of Change provides a comparative historical outlook over social change via conflict. It examines the role of conflict in relations to social dynamics in the past, present, and near future trajectories. By applying historical-comparative analysis we will follow the relations and influence of conflict over society, culture, technology, and economy. The course will focus mainly on the practices and institutions responsible for managing and handling conflict- warfare and the military (or parallel institutions). The theme of conflict will serve us as the entry point for other social issues. We will study how conflict constructs social institutions, gender identities and roles, economy, health issues, technological changes, collective memory, and culture.  

The course is organized in chronological order; nevertheless there will be few topics that overreach periods. We will open with the military revolution for context proposes and conclude with near future possible trends in warfare. The perspective of this course is global and treats diverse locales and time periods. Conflict is a global phenomenon and in contemporary global setting is also globally intertwined among nations, policies, and economies. Though the course fosters advance knowledge about numerous locations and periods the students are not expected to possess prior knowledge of those. The students are expected to read the reading material and to be familiar with the events that will be discussed in class through external reading, e.g. internet sources or academic reading material outside the syllabus.

The course has two main goals. The first is to shed light over the relations and effects of conflict over society. As an act that destabilizes existing social structures, conflict is an interesting force that can open the path for new actors and elements to enter into present structure, or in several cases to utterly reshape it. The second goal is to familiarize the students with historical-comparative study and method. The ability to put things in historical perspective and context allows better understanding of the world around us and contemporary events.  

 

Grading Policy:

Participation – 10%

5 Assignments – 15%

Mid-Term Exam (3/18)– 35%

Final Exam (5/3) – 40%

 

Grading

Letter grades will be assigned on the following scale:

A 94-100

A- 90-93

B+ 86-89

B 83-85

B- 80-82

C+ 76-79

C 73-75

C- 70-72

D+ 66-69

D 63-65

D- 60-62

F 0-59

SOC 308M • Sociology Of Identity

46110 • Beaver, Travis
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CPE 2.212
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Description: 

Instead of viewing identities as natural, “true,” or inherent in individuals, this course will examine the ways that identities are socially produced.  Equally important, we will consider how the social construction of identities results in power and privilege for some groups at the expense of others.  The first half of the course will focus on classical and contemporary sociological theorizing about identities.  In the second half of the course we will cover gender, race, class, and sexuality with a focus on the ways that these identity categories intersect.  This section of the course will also examine the role that social institutions (families, schools, religion, media, workplaces, etc.) play in shaping individual identities.  We will conclude this section by looking at the negotiation of, challenges to, and organizing around identities that occurs in subcultures and social movements.

SOC 308S • Intro To Health & Society

46120 • Lodge, Amy
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm WEL 2.246
(also listed as H S 301)
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This course offers a broad multidisciplinary overview that introduces students to the study of health and society. Basic topics include health patterns, health behavior, medical care, and health policy in social, demographic, cultural, economic, political, and ethical contexts. Basic methodological approaches to studying these topics will be covered. This course will include guest lectures by representatives from various disciplines including economics, advertising and communications, public health and health promotion, 1, sociology, and demography. For those students interested in the new College of Liberal Arts major in Health and Society (HS), SOC308S will count as the Introduction to Health & Society course that is required for the HS major. There will be three exams and one essay assignment for this course. Exams will be comprised of multiple choice, short answer, and short essay questions.

SOC 317L • Intro To Social Statistics

46125 • Lin, Ken-Hou
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CLA 1.402
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Description:

This course presents a general overview of the statistical methods used in the social sciences. While it’s important that you gain an understanding of the mathematical concepts behind the statistical analyses, it is of even greater importance that you leave this course with a conceptual and rational understanding of today’s most commonly used (and useful) statistical methods.

Truth claims made with statistics are abundant and often have the quality of facts in U.S. social and political life. Unfortunately, because many people do not understand the statistics undergirding these claims, they receive less scrutiny than they deserve. It is my primary goal to ensure that students learn the basic statistical literacy they need to be smart consumers of information. Our increasing reliance on statistics to understand the social world means that statistical and analytic skills are marketable skills. In fact statistics is one of very few classes that sociology majors take that provides them with concretely marketable skills. I believe that giving undergraduates a solid understanding of statistics is a way of democratizing knowledge and its production. In teaching statistics my goals are:

  •   To demystify statistics so that every student can be a smart consumer of quantitative information.

  •  To teach students to think sociologically with and about quantitative information.

  • To provide students with a solid foundation of quantitative and computing skills that could serve

    as assets in subsequent employment and academic settings.

  •   To demonstrate to students that learning statistics has practical applications outside of the       classroom in everyday life.

Texts:

Salkind, Neil J.. 2012. Statistics for People Who (Think They) Hate Statistics: Excel 2010 Edition. 3rd Edition. SAGE Publications. 

Grading and Reqirement:

I will use a non-competitive grading scale. In other words, the grade you receive will not depend on how well others have performed in class. You can earn a maximum of 115 points in this class. Your grade will be based on your mastery of each of the required tasks in the class. The grading scale for the final course grade is as follows: 115-94=A; 90-93=A-; 87-89=B+; 83-86=B; 80-82-B-; 77-79=C+; 73-76=C; 70-72=C-; 67- 69=D+; 63-66=D; 60-62=D-; 59 & below=F.

I do not give incomplete and will not change the final grade for whatever reason. You have plenty of opportunities to do well in this class. Use them.

If you receive a final grade of B+ or higher, I will write a personal recommendation for you in the future, stating that you have significant quantitative and computing skills.CLASS & LAB ATTENDANCE 10 PTS

As will be addressed later in detail, you have two free absences you can choose. However, I’d recommend you to use them only for emergencies. More than two absences will affect your class attendance grades negatively.

COLLABORATIVE LEARNING 10 PTS

You will be assigned to a team with two or three other students. Team members should meet weekly and collaboratively learn the materials, practice how to use Excel, and prepare for the exams. At the end of the semester you will be asked to evaluate other team members on a 0 to 10 scale based on their contribution to the team.

THREE (3) EXCEL EXAMS 15 PTS (5 PTS EACH)

You will be given 3 Excel exams during the lab hours to increase your Excel proficiency. These exams should be done independently without the help from other students.

THREE (3) STATS EXAMS 65 PTS (20/20/25 PTS)

You will be given three exams (which will be cumulative). These exams will consist of multiple-choice questions as well as short-answer question.

EXTRA CREDITS #1: PODCAST 5 PTS

You have two opportunities to earn extra credits. The first opportunity is to listen and review two Radiolab podcasts:

Numbers http://www.radiolab.org/2009/nov/30/

Stochasticity http://www.radiolab.org/2009/jun/15/

To earn the extra credits, you should listen to the two podcasts carefully and write a 1-page single-space review, which talks about what you learn from the podcasts. 

EXTRA CREDITS #2: BOOK REVIEW 10 PTS

The second opportunity is to review the book Numbers rule your world: the hidden influence of probabilities and statistics on everything you do by Kaiser Fung. An electronic version of this book is available at the library, so you do not have to purchase this book or wait in line to borrow it. To earn the extra credits, you should read this book thoroughly and write a 2-page single-spaced review, which includes 1) a brief summary of the book, 2) a more in-depth discussion on your favorite chapter, and 3) a discussion on how you view certain things differently after reading the book. 

 

SOC 317L • Intro To Social Statistics

46130 • Powers, Daniel A.
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am PAR 105
show description

Description:

This is an introductory course in statistics for undergraduate majors in sociology.  The basics of descriptive and inferential statistics and quantitative reasoning will be covered.  Descriptive statistics involves organizing and summarizing important characteristics of the data.  Statistical inference involves making informed guesses about the unknown characteristics of a population based on the known characteristics of a sample. Students are expected to know how to carryout elementary mathematical operations.

Required Text:

R. Johnson and P. Kuby (2012) STAT, 2e. Cengage Learning ISBN-10: 0538733500  ISBN-13: 978-0-538-73841-5  (available from http://books.google.com)

Course Requirement:

Exams: There will be 3 in-class examinations graded on a 100 point scale.  Roughly 75% to 90% of the points on the examinations are accounted for by problems requiring the student to work toward a solution, with the remainder accounted for by true and false or multiple choice questions.  Examinations will be based entirely on topics covered in lectures. In-class examinations are non-cumulative; they cover only the material since the previous exam. Students must take all exams to pass the course. Make up exams will be given only in the case of documented emergencies or illness.

Problems: There will be 5 problem sets worth a total of 200 points. Problem sets include material from the book as well as handout problems. Problem sets must be received in class no later than the dates indicated. No credit will be given for assignments turned in late.

In-Class Assessments: There will be approximately 20 in-class exercises carried out at various points during the course to assess understanding of current topics. These will count 100 points towards the total grade.

 

SOC 317M • Intro To Social Research

46141 • Pedulla, David
Meets MW 1000am-1100am CLA 1.302D
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Course Description:

How do social scientists know what they know? This course strives to address that question by introducing students to the research methods used by sociologists to understand the world around them. The following are among the topics covered in this course: 1) How to link social theory with empirical inquiry; 2) How to identify the relative strengths and weaknesses of qualitative and quantitative approaches to social research; 3) How to critically understand and evaluate the claims made by social scientists about their research findings; 4) How to analyze, interpret, and present survey data; and 5) How to conceptualize and design a research project. The course will also cover the ethics and politics of conducting social research. Additionally, there will be a lab component to this course, which will take a “hands on” approach to the material covered in class and provide students with the necessary skills to analyze survey data.

Required Readings:

In addition to articles and readings that will be provided on the course website, we will use the following textbook:

Babbie, Earl. 2013. The Practice of Social Research (13th Edition). Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

Course Grading:

Grades for the course will be based on two exams (exam 1 = 20%, exam 2 = 20%), an analysis paper (15%), a class presentation (5%), a research proposal (20%), lab assignments (15%), and class participation (5%).

Attendance in class and at the lab is required and will be factored into the class participation component of the grade. Make-up exams will not be allowed, except in extreme circumstances. Late assignments will only be accepted if approved in advance by the professor.

SOC 317M • Intro To Social Research

46145 • Angel, Ronald J.
Meets MW 900am-1000am CLA 0.118
show description

Course Description:

In this course we will investigate the methods used in social scientific research.  We will examine such issues as how one establishes causality and just what “proof” consists of in social scientific inquiry.  We will investigate the nature of data and examine the strengths and weaknesses of qualitative and quantitative data.  We will also deal with issues related to ethics and the uses to which social scientific research can legitimately be put.

The final project consists of a research proposal for a theoretical project on a topic you will choose in consultation with the Professor or the Teaching Assistant.  In it you will outline all relevant aspects of the project, including sampling and questionnaire construction, but you will not actually carry out the research itself.  In preparation for the final research proposal two preliminary papers are required.  In these you will (1) define the research question and (2) outline the research methods to be used to address it.   The course includes a lab in which material presented in class will be elaborated and in which computer applications will be discussed.  All course materials will be available on Blackboard.  Assignments, schedule changes, and announcements related to the course will appear on Blackboard and students are responsible for keeping informed.

The course includes three Internet assignments that involve answering a particular question using information you locate online.  These assignments will be related to the development of the final research proposal.

Course Requirements:

In the course we will do a good bit of data analysis with an eye toward understanding what numbers and graphs can tell us and what they cannot.  The required text is Earl Babbie, The Practice of Social Research, tenth edition or later, Thompson publishers.  Other readings are provided in the Readings file on Blackboard and will be assigned in class.  We will use the computer lab in Burdine.  All of the software and manuals are available on line.  The Teaching Assistant is available to provide whatever help you need.

Grading:

The final grade will be based on three equally weighted hourly exams (together 40% of the final grade), graded lab work (10% of the final grade) and two graded writing assignments, the first of which is a draft of the problem statement of the final research proposal (15% and 35% of the final grade).  Attendance at class and lab are mandatory and will be factored into the final grade.  All assignments must be turned in on the date they are due.  Late work will be accepted only with prior approval.  The lab sessions will be critical in developing the proposal.

 

SOC 317M • Intro To Social Research

46154 • Robinson, Keith
Meets TTH 1230pm-130pm CLA 2.606
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COURSE DESCRIPTION

Sociology 317M is a general introduction to social research methods.  It is designed to introduce students to the intent and procedures of contemporary research methods.  For instance, we will discuss the factors determining the selection of particular data gathering techniques, their strengths and weaknesses, and the ethical and political issues that researchers may encounter during the research process.  A large part of the course will focus on the various methods used in research and data analysis.    

REQUIRED READINGS

Russell K. Schutt.  Investigating the Social World (5th edition, Pine Forge).  It is available at the Co-op bookstore. 

GRADING

Your overall grade for this course will be based on your performance on three in-class exams, five assignments (one of which is a final research paper), class participation and a presentation based on your final paper.  There will be a total of 250 available points for this course. No extra credit points will be available.

 A = 225-250                        D = 150-174                       

B = 200-224                        F = 149 and below                       

C = 175-199          

Exams                                     

There will be three in-class exams: the first will cover Chapters 1, 3, and 4; the second will cover Chapters 5, 6, and 8; the third will be considered a final exam and will cover Chapters 7, 9, 10, 14.  Exams will not be cumulative. 

POINT BREAKDOWN:

Assign 1= 5

Assign 2 = 20  

Assign 3 = 25

Assign 4 = 35 

Assign 5 (Final Paper) = 55

Exam 1 = 25  

Exam 2 = 35  

Exam 3 (Final) = 40

Participation = 10

Extra Credit = 5, 10 (see below)

Assignment #1: (5 points)

Group activity on validity. 

Assignment #2: Take-Home (20 points)

The focus of this assignment is the development of a preliminary research question for the final paper.  This assignment will be 1.5-2 pages in length double spaced. 

Assignment #3: Sampling (25 points)

 Assignment #4: Take-Home (35 points)

This assignment is meant to further develop your final research paper.  It will involve expanding what you did on assignment #2.  Paper length will be 5 pages. 

Assignment #5: Final Research Paper (55 points)

Students will be required to write a 10-page research paper.  Guidelines for the research paper will be distributed later in the semester.  

PARTICIPATION (10 points)

Participation points are part of the total 250 points.  Participation points have to be earned.  Simply coming to class is not considered participating.  Rather, receiving points is based on the contribution you make to a particular lecture discussion.  Asking questions (excluding ones for clarification), furthering the discussion with relevant points, answering questions posed by classmates or myself are ways to gain participation points. A maximum of 1 point per lecture can be gained through participation.  Only excused absences from lecture that constitute an emergency will allow you to make up points that were lost due to your absence. 

EXTRA CREDIT - PRESENTATIONS (10 points for presenters)

12 students will present an 8-10 minute Powerpoint slide on their research paper.  More details will be given during the course.

EXTRA CREDIT DURING PRESENTATIONS (5 points for non-presenters)

Non-presenters can gain a total of 5 points by contributing to the presentation discussion.  More details will be given in week 11. 

LATE ASSIGNMENTS & LATE RESEARCH PAPER

Will be marked down 5 points for every day the assignment is late unless a valid excuse is provided.  Assignments are officially late if not turned in by the end of the lab session in which they are due.  Late final papers will be accepted, but with a penalty for each day late.  Papers turned in after 3:00pm will be reduced by 5 points. Each day thereafter (a day ends at 3:00pm) will result in an additional 5 point deduction.  Papers that have not been turned in within four days of the due date will count for 0 points.

PLAGIARISM

Do not do it.

SOC 319 • Intro To Social Demography

46155 • Hummer, Robert A.
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 0.102
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Description:

This course provides an introduction to the study of public health from a sociological perspective. The course focuses most centrally on understanding the national, state, county/city, and neighborhood level social contexts that are so important for the health of individuals and populations. A substantial portion of the course will be geared toward understanding how social contexts operate to produce health disparities across subgroups of the U.S. population, particularly those defined by race/ethnicity, nativity, and socioeconomic status.

Required Texts:

Yaukey, David, Douglas L. Anderton, and Jennifer Hickes Lundquist. 2014. Demography: The Study of Human Population, 4th Edition. Waveland Press, Inc.

Grading Policy

Exam 1: 25%

Exam 2: 25%

Exam 3: 25%

Exam 4: 25%

SOC 321E • Economy, Culture, & Society

46165 • Fridman, Daniel
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 1.106
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Description:

 

This class introduces students to the study of the intersections between economy and culture. ster.

Gift-giving seems to be at first sight a trivial topic for sociology. Like many other phenomena that happen in our everyday life, gifts appear to vanish into what Erving Goffman once called the ‘dust’ of social life. Yet, the gift is a true mystery that social scientists are still trying to uncover. Why and how do we give and receive gifts? Is a gift an act of pure generosity? Do you think of gifts received before giving one? The latter question brings up a set of more uncomfortable questions: Is a gift a simple act of exchange? What is the difference between a gift and a mercantile exchange? Our answers to the questions above will lead us to explore some of the core issues that sociology has dealt with: social organization and social structure, social norms, the relation between individual and society, the nature of economic and non-economic exchange, reciprocity, obligation, cultural meanings and power, among others. Our answers will have an impact on our ideas of who we are: Are we altruistic and generous? Are we selfish and self-interested? What are the conditions under which generosity and self-interest work or do not work? These questions have also timely political relevance. With the recent expansion of neoliberalism, market arrangements based on rational and self-interested individuals have been posed as an efficient and desirable form of organizing social life in various realms. An exploration of the nature of gift-giving and its workings in current contexts may help us evaluate those neoliberal claims and explore alternative arrangements.

The readings will take us from pre-modern to current societies; from the potlatch in Western Canada to understanding who pays for dinner or drinks; from the decoration of gifted money to charity and philanthropy; from economies of care to organ and blood donation; from garage sales to State Diaspora bonds; from expressing gratitude to tipping. I expect that, in our discussions, we will broaden even more the repertoire of social phenomena that involves some form of gift-giving.

Readings (tentative)

  • Marcel Mauss, The Gift: The Form and Reason for Exchange in Archaic Societies, W.W. Norton, 1990 [1923].
  • Jacques Godbout and Alain Caille, The World of The Gift, McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2000.
  • Kieran Healy, Last Best Gifts: Altruism and the market for human blood and organs, University of Chicago Press, 2006.
  • Michael Sandel, What Money Can’t Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets, Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 2012.
  • Online readings.

Grading policy (tentative):

Exams: 60%

Short Paper: 25%

Participation/online responses: 15%

SOC 321G • Global Health Issues/Systems

46167 • Jeon, Jiwon
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CBA 4.344
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 Course Description

 This course provides an overview of global health challenges in the world today. It is essential to understand the links between health and education, poverty, and development with an appreciation of the values, beliefs, and cultures of diverse groups. The first half of the course will review critical global health issues from biosocial, cultural and environmental perspectives. A biosocial approach to global health equity is the underlying theme. The second half of the course will review various health systems in the World Health Organization geographic regions and will compare and contrast the various regions, as well as countries within regions, with regard to the specific health challenges they face.

This course carries both the Writing Flag and Global Cultures flag. We will use writing to improve on critical thinking skills and understanding of global health issues as well as to improve on ability to formulate ideas with an emphasis on the ASA writing style.  In this class, you can expect to write regularly during the semester, complete substantial writing projects, and receive feedback from your instructor to help you improve your writing. You will also have the opportunity to revise one or more assignments, and you may be asked to read and discuss your peer’s work. Global Cultures courses are designed to increase your familiarity with cultural groups outside the United States. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from writing assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one non-U.S. cultural group.

Course Objectives

 Describe global health issues, trends, and policies

  1. Understand how population growth, disease, environmental changes, and economic and political activities impact global health
  2. Assess and analyze global health program interventions and their impacts
  3. Compare and contrast health issues and policies between economically developed countries and developing countries
  4. Synthesize findings to highlight common patterns and unique differences in health challenges between and within major world regions

 Required Text and Readings

Farmer, Paul., J.Y. Kim, A. Kleinman and M. Basilico. 2013. Reimagining Global Health: An Introduction, University of California Press

Skolnik, Richard. 2011. Global Health 101. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers

Recommended readings

 Kidder, Tracy. 2009 Mountains Beyond Mountains: The quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, A man who would cure the world, Random House

Reid, T.R. 2010 The Healing of America, Penguin Books

Additional readings:  In addition to above textbooks, other course materials including additional readings will be posted on Blackboard each week.  Readings should be completed for the week they are assigned.

Course requirements

There are two major paper assignments and one exam. The assignments are due at the beginning of the class and must be turned in as hard copies.  Please do not submit papers as e-mail attachments. Late papers will be marked down one letter grade for each day past the deadline. Papers more than one week late will not be accepted.

Assignment 1 (25%)

Each student is required to write a research paper (5-6 pages) about global health issues. This assignment should allow the student to examine the rise and fall of global health issues with a more critical view.  There will be peer reviews (5%) as well as instructor comments on this assignment.  You will submit a memo detailing your revision with the final draft.  Detailed instructions and criteria for evaluation will be posted on Blackboard

                                

  • Assignment 2: Group Project Paper & Presentation (30%)
    • Paper (15%)
    • Presentation (10%)
    • Peer evaluation (5%)

Students are required to form a group to prepare a short presentation at the end of the semester and to write a research paper (not more than 10 pages). Students should work together as a team to analyze the political, social and economic determinants of health and analyze how delivery systems for preventive and curative health services might be strengthened in developing countries. Group members will conduct an evaluation of their fellow group members for the final project and presentation. Detailed instructions and criteria for the group project and criteria for evaluation will be posted on Blackboard

 Exam 20%

Class Participation 25%

Discussion group summary 15%

Class participation: contribution during class discussions 10%

Assignment 1 (mentioned above) 25%

Assignment 2 (mentioned above) 30%

There will be small group discussions during class and each student will submit a short written summary report.  Each member will be encouraged to participate and contribute substantially to small group discussi

SOC 321K • Medical Sociology

46172 • Durden, Emily
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CLA 0.122
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Description

This course will explore the social context of health, illness, and the health care system in American society. Topics to be addressed include processes of medicalization and demedicalization, social factors influencing health and health care, the organization of the health care delivery system and patient outcomes, and the social meaning and experiences of illness.

Required Texts

Freund, Peter, Meredith McGuire, and Linda Podhurst. 2003. Health, Illness, and the Social Body: A Critical Sociology. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Articles/Excerpts available on Blackboard (in order in which they will be covered):

Overview:

Mills, C. Wright. 1959/1976. “The Promise of Sociology.” In The Sociological Imagination. New York: Oxford University Press.

 Social Determinants of Health:

Hummer, Robert. 1996. “Black-White Differences in Health and Mortality: A Review and Conceptual Model.” The Sociological Quarterly 37:105−125.

Link, Bruce and Jo Phelan. 2010. “Social Conditions as Fundamental Causes of Health Inequalities.” Pp. 3−17 in Handbook of Medical Sociology, 6th Edition, edited by C. Bird, P. Conrad, A. Fremont, and S. Timmermans. Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University Press.

Mirowsky, John and Catherine Ross. 2010. “Why Education is the Key to Socioeconomic Differentials in Health.” Pp. 33−51 in Handbook of Medical Sociology, 6th Edition, edited by C. Bird, P. Conrad, A. Fremont, and S. Timmermans. Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University Press.

Rieker, Patricia, Chloe Bird, and Martha Lang. 2010. “Understanding Gender and Health: Old Patterns, New Trends, and Future Directions.” Pp. 52−74 in Handbook of Medical Sociology, 6th Edition, edited by C. Bird, P. Conrad, A. Fremont, and S. Timmermans. Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University Press.

Rosenfield, Sarah and Dena Smith. 2013. “Gender and Mental Health.” Pp. 277−298 in Handbook of the Sociology of Mental Health, edited by C. Aneshensel, J. Phelan, and A. Bierman. New York: Springer.

Ross, Catherine and John Mirowsky. 2000. “Does Medical Insurance Contribute to Socioeconomic Differentials in Health?” The Milbank Quarterly 78:291−321.

Williams, David and Michelle Sternthal. 2010. “Understanding Racial-ethnic Disparities in Health: Sociological Contributions.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 51(Extra Issue):S15-S27.

Social Context/Social Responses to Health:

Brown, Phil. 1995. “Naming and Framing: The Social Construction of Diagnosis and Illness.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior (Extra Issue):34-52.

Conrad, Peter. 1992. “Medicalization and Social Control.” Annual Review of Sociology 18:209-232.

Conrad, Peter.  2005. “The Shifting Engines of Medicalization.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 46:3-14. 

Conrad, Peter. 2004. “Medicalization, Markets, and Consumers.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 45 (Supplement):158-176.

Quillan, Daniel David. 1914. “Racial Peculiarities A Cause of the Prevalence of Syphilis in Negroes.” American Journal of Dermatology 10:277-279.

Starr, Paul. 1984. The Social Transformation of American Medicine. Basic Books. pp. 3-29, 79-144.

Wertz, Richard and Dorothy C. Wertz. “Notes on the Decline of Midwives and the Rise of Medical Obstetricians.” In Sociology of Health and Illness, edited by Peter Conrad and Valerie Leiter.

Grading Policy

Book Review.... 0-20 points

Exam #1........... 0-40 points

Exam #2........... 0-40 points

 

A = 90 – 100

B = 80 – 89

C = 70 – 79

D = 60 – 69

F = 0 – 59

 

SOC 321K • Mental Hlth In Social Context

46173 • Pudrovska, Tetyana
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am WAG 201
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Course Description:

This course is an overview of a sociological approach to mental health and illness. We will focus on the social antecedents and consequences of mental illness and the extent to which mental disorder is socially constructed. We will combine sociological, psychological, epidemiological, and biological approaches to better understand the social dimensions of mental health and how the social aspects of mental illness interact with intra-individual processes. We’ll also emphasize the diversity of mental health and illness by gender, race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and marital status. The objective of this course is for you to become familiar with micro-macro processes through which mental health and illness are affected by society and in turn affect social functioning of individuals. At the end of this course you will be able (1) to critically apply a sociological perspective to mental illness as a social phenomenon that transcends the individual level and (2) to understand the social etiology of and social inequality in mental health.

 Required Reading:

Textbook: William C. Cockerham. (2010). Sociology of Mental Disorder, 9/E. Pearson.

Additional readings will be sometimes included in the lectures. All these readings will be posted on BB. 

Grading and Requirements:

Exam 1                                    25%

Exam 2                                    25%

Exam 3                                    25%

Course paper                            10%

Attendance                                10%

Participation                              5%

 

FINAL GRADE CALCULATION

A   = 95%-100%

A-  = 90%-94.9%

B+ = 87%-89.9

B   = 84%-86.9%

B-  = 80%-83.9%

C+ = 77%-79.9%

C   = 70%-76.9%

D   = 60%-69.9%

F    = below 60%

 

 

SOC 321K • Politics, Power, And Society

46175 • Shapira, Harel
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CMA 5.190
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Course Description

Through reading classical works in political philosophy as well as contemporary sociological essays, fiction, and watching films, this class will explore the nature and dynamics of political life. We will wrestle with some of the most fundamental questions of human existence, including: what is the relationship between individual rights and state authority? What does it mean to be a citizen? What is power and who has it? Is violence compatible with democracy? How, when, and why do revolutions take place?

Although we will mostly read texts from the 19th and 20th century, throughout the course we will turn to contemporary politics in Texas as a guide for our discussions and students will be asked to apply concepts from the readings to political issues playing out around us.

Course Format, Requirements, and Grading

The requirements of the course and related grading scheme are as follows:

Class Presentations and Participation: 30%

Research Paper: 30%

Mid Term Exam: 20%

Final Exam: 20%

Readings

Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism (Harcourt, 1973 Edition)

Erikson, Wayward Puritans (Prentice Hall, 2004 Edition)

Fanon, Wretched of the Earth (Grove Press, 1963 Edition)

Freud, Civilization and Its Discontents (Norton, 2010 Edition)

Orwell, Animal Farm (Signet, 1996 Edition)

Rousseau, The Basic Political Writings (Hackett, 2nd revised Edition 2012)

* All other readings will be available online on our course website*

 

SOC 321K • US Immigration

46185 • Rodríguez, Néstor P.
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm CLA 1.106
(also listed as MAS 374)
show description

 

II.  Course Aims and Objectives

Immigration patterns have significantly affected the development of U.S. society since its inception.  In the 1990s, the United States experienced a record number of new immigrants, and the present decade is maintaining a high volume of immigration, perhaps heading to another record.  This course uses a sociological perspective to address various impacts of immigration in U.S. society.

Aims

This course is designed to help students develop an awareness of the significance of immigration in U.S. society.  In the course, students learn to use sociological approaches to better understand the nature of immigration in U.S. society, including an understanding of how immigration affects large (macro) and small (micro) social units.

 Specific Learning Objectives

Gain background information on the development of immigration patterns in U.S. society and discuss the social forces that affect these patterns from the perspective of historical and recent immigration trends.

Review and discuss different social perceptions and attitudes about immigration trends in U.S. society.

Review and analyze government statistical reports concerning annual immigration conditions and characteristics.

Develop an awareness of the significance of immigration for the development of U.S. society.

Review major laws affecting immigration patterns in U.S. society

Gain an ability to analyze current immigration dynamics from a sociological perspective

Format and Procedures

The course is designed with the expectation that it will follow an intertwined format of lectures and class discussions.  A key expectation is that students will come to class prepared to discuss thematic issues covered in the class, or at least come to class with a curious and critical predisposition to become intellectually engaged in the class. All students are expect to contribute to class discussion, with a high regard for an open academic dialogue, which values respect for the ideas, opinions, and views of others. Class attendance is expected and highly encouraged.

During the course students will be asked to give formal and informal anonymous feedback regarding the teaching techniques and progress of the course.  The purpose of the student feedback is to help create an effective learning experience.

Assumptions

My assumptions about the nature of immigration in U.S. society is that it a) follows an historical course, b) flows from the interaction between human agency and social structures, c) takes normal paths of social division and degrees of accommodation and social incorporation, d) is partly affected by social constructions regarding different national-origin groups, and e) has its most profound significance within the dynamics of social reproduction.

Course Requirements

1. Class attendance and participation policy

To get the most out of this class you should attend all classes and arrive on time.  Also, you should review previous lecture notes and bring questions to class about points you did not clearly understand—including points from the assigned readings.  Please be attentive in class (turn off phones or set to vibration). You are greatly encouraged to participate in class discussion, and please do so in a manner that respects the rights of others to also participate.  If you have a problem hearing the lectures and discussion, or viewing class presentations, please let me know immediately. Class participation is taken into consideration (10%) for the final grade.

Texts

a) Required books/readings:

Portes, Alejandro, and Ruben Rumbaut.  2006.  Immigrant America:  A Portrait.  Berkeley, CA:  University of California Press. (PR)

Min, Pyong Gap.  2006.  Asian Americans:  Contemporary Trends. Thousand Oaks, CA: Pine Forge Press. (M)

 On-line articles (these are free on-line articles accessible through the UT library or other public sources)

 b) Websites to review: let’s make sure that these are the websites that are reviewed for each topic section.

Census Bureau: http://www.census.gov/

Population Reference Bureau: http://www.prb.org/

Office of Immigration Statistics: http://www.dhs.gov/ximgtn/statistics/

Migration Policy Institute: http://www.migrationpolicy.org/

Pew Hispanic Center: http://pewhispanic.org/

UT Austin Center for Mexican American Studies: http://www.utexas.edu/depts/cmas/

UT Austin Center for Asian American Studies: http://www.utexas.edu/cola/centers/aas/

UT Austin Center for African and African American Studies: http://www.utexas.edu/cola/centers/caaas/

Assignments, Assessments, Evaluation, Dates

a) The course contains three regular exams and a “replacement” final exam. Regular exams will consist of multiple-choice items and an essay question, and the final exam will consist of essay questions. The final exam can be taken to replace the grade of a regular exam.  All exams have to be taken on the dates specified; the only exception to this rule are cases involving a truly pressing situation (medical) or involving authorization by UT Austin.  In such exceptional cases, makeup exams for the first two regular exams have to be taken within a week after the originally designated dates in the sociology room for make-ups. In the rare possibility that a student needs to take a makeup for the third exam, arrangements with have to be made with me. Makeup exams will consist of essay questions. Students who miss a scheduled exam must alert me beforehand and consult with me regarding the makeup.  There is no procedure for making up the final exam outside of cases that are of a true exceptional and unusual personal pressing situation. Students have to take all exams on the dates and times specified.  Exams cannot be taken earlier or later than the dates and times specified.

 b) Students are required to submit a report (minimum of 6 pages double space) based on a review of two articles on immigration-related research that have been published in peer-reviewed journals.  Guidelines for writing this research report are given at the end of this syllabus.  I have selected the following journals for students to review and select the articles: International Migration Review, American Journal of SociologyAmerican Sociological Review,Ethnic and Racial StudiesBlack StudiesJournal of Asian American Studies, Social Forces, and Social Science Quarterly. Additional journals may be added to this list during the semester. Please consult the course schedule below for the due date of the research report.  Late research reports will be accepted up to one class meeting late, but will be assessed a 10-point late penalty. Students have to give the URL address of the articles if they are accessible on-line, or provide a copy of the first page of each article if they are not accessible on-line.

 c) All dates specified in this syllabus for course topics, exams, and papers are subject to change given unforeseen developments.

 4. Use of Blackboard

It is my intention to use Blackboard (http://courses.utexas.edu) to help manage the course and to pursue interaction with students.  I plan to use Blackboard to make announcements, distribute information, communicate with students, and post grades.  Students are encouraged to use Blackboard to communicate and share comments and information.  Please check your Blackboard site regularly to look for communications from me or from other students in the class.  Support for using Blackboard can be obtained from the ITS Help Desk at 475-9400, Monday through Friday, from 8am to 6pm. 

Grading

 a) Three regular exams (40 multiple-choice items and an essay question): 100 points per exam x 3 regular exams = 300 points

 b) Research report: 40 points

 c) Final course grades will be determined based on the percent of total points made out of a grand total of 340 points:  90%-100% = A, 80%-89.5% = B, 70%-79.5% = C, 60%-69.5% = D, below 60% = F.

 

SOC 321L • Sociology Of Education

46188 • Irizarry, Yasmiyn
Meets MWF 200pm-300pm JES A207A
(also listed as AFR 321L)
show description

This course is an introduction to current issues in the sociology of education. The goal of this course is to ask some fundamental questions about the relationship between education and society. In this course, we will look at the structure, practices, content, and outcomes of schooling, in light of their relationships to the wider society in which schools are situated. We will note the link between schools and social stratification, discuss the outcomes of schooling and how these outcomes are produces, and consider sociological perspectives on contemporary education reform.

In addition to having an overview of current topics in schools, this class should help you to start thinking critically about your own schooling experiences, as well as those of others'. You will ultimately begin to understand schools as societal institutions that influence and are influenced by other societal groups, as well as the intersection between schools, family, and community.

SOC 321P • Pol/Society In Latin Amer

46190 • Auyero, Javier
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm ART 1.120
(also listed as LAS 325)
show description

Description: 

This course provides a broad introduction to present-day Latin American politics and society. During the semester, we will focus on drug-trafficking and urban destitution in Brazil and Mexico, party politics, collective action, and environmental suffering in Argentina, the current political situation in Chavez’s Venezuela, and migration from Central American and the Caribbean to the United States. In each case, we will study what is specific to the national histories of each country and what can be analyzed as common to the history and present reality of the sub-continent.   

Texts:

Robert Gay. Lucia. Testimonies of a Brazilian Drug Dealer’s Woman

Javier Auyero. Routine Politics and Collective Violence

Javier Auyero and Debora Swistun. Flammable. Environmental Suffering in an Argentine Shantytown.  

Course Requirements:

Since the class is organized around lectures, discussions of the required readings, group presentations, and films ATTENDANCE IS MANDATORY.There will be FIVE quizzes (10 questions each) on the assigned readings. Dropping your lowest score, the sum of the remaining FOUR stands for 50% of your final grade. There will also be a final exam (10 page paper). Note on grades: If your final grade (addition of FOUR best quizzes and final) is: 100-93, then your grade is an A; 92-90, then your grade is an A --; 89-85 then you grade is a B +; 84-80 then your grade is a B; 79-76 then your grade is a C; 75-65 then your grade is a D; 64 or below is an F.50% of your grade: Best four of five quizzes50% of your grade: Final examYou can earn extra-credit by doing oral presentations on assigned readings  

SOC 321Q • Social Inequality

46195 • Lin, Ken-Hou
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CLA 0.102
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Description;

Social inequality is the study of the unequal distribution of resources that are scarce (but are commonly desired), and of the processes by which these resources are allocated to individuals and groups. It encompasses the study of income and wealth inequality, occupational and class hierarchies, inequality of educational opportunities, poverty, social mobility within and across generations, gender and racial/ethnic inequalities, and the consequences of various forms of inequalities. The class would articulate questions such as: How likely are children to end up in the same social stratum as their parents? What is the extent, and how widespread is the inequality of opportunity, and is this inequality increasing over time? Does education equalize opportunity or widen the gap between more or less successful people? Is the inequality growing in U.S, and if so, why? As a part of the course, concepts, theories, facts, and methods of analysis used by sociologists to understand the social production and reproduction of inequality, would be covered.

Texts:

TBD

Grading and Requirement:

A non-competitive grading scale would be used. In other words, the grade received will not depend on how well others perform in class. A maximum of 115 points can be earned in the course.

The final grade will be based on the mastery of each of the required tasks in the class. The grading scale for the final course grade is as follows:

115-94=A; 90-93=A-; 87-89=B+; 83-86=B; 80-82-B-; 77-79=C+; 73-76=C; 70-72=C-; 67-69=D+; 63-66=D; 60-62=D-; 59 & below=F.

I do not give incomplete and will not change the final grade for whatever reason. You have plenty of opportunities to do well in this class. Use them.

 

SOC 322R • Race, Sport, And Identity

46206 • Carrington, Ben
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm CLA 0.118
(also listed as AFR 374D)
show description

Description:

This course explores the sociological significance of sport in relation to the construction of racialized identities.  Focusing primarily, although not exclusively, on the black experience in sport, the course examines the changing social meanings given to sport from the start of the 20th century through to today.  The African-American experience is used as a paradigmatic case study through which to locate the ways in which the expression of identity in sport has been used as a form of cultural resistance to racism.  The sociological and historical importance of sport within African-American life is located within the broader context of the African diaspora  in order to understand the wider political significance of sport in the context of global movements of people, images and ideologies. 

Assessment criteria

There are two aspects to how your final grade is reached:

1.            40%        Book Review (6 pages)

2.            60%        End of term essay (12 pages after rewrite)

 

Required reading:

Course pack

 

SOC 322S • The Sociology Of Sport

46210 • Carrington, Ben
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm WEL 2.312
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Course Description:

Over the past four decades, as the social significance of sport has increased, the sociology of sport has emerged to become a significant sub-discipline of sociology.  Scholars within the sociology of sport have drawn on a wide range of theoretical perspectives to understand the enduring appeal of sporting practices, as well as the various processes of conflict, control and power in and around the institutions of sport.  The course examines the main perspectives in the sociology of sport in order to better understand the complex and contradictory relationship between sport and society.  Further, the course examines the theoretical points of conflict between the different sociological perspectives, which do not merely provide different points of view, but also present the student of sport sociology with competing analytical frameworks on how society itself is structured and works.  The course examines various topics and issues such as gender and representation, violence and deviancy, sexuality and homophobia, commercialization and college sport, race and inequality, and sport and the media. 

Grading Policy:

There are three aspects to how your final grade is reached:

30%                Midterm Exam on Sociological Theories of Sport

30%                Six to eight page book review of a book

40%                Final Exam on Social Issues in Sport

Texts:

Andrews, David L. and Carrington, Ben  (2013) A Companion to Sport, Blackwell.

SOC 322V • Race/Gender/Surveillance

46215 • Browne, Simone A.
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CLA 0.102
(also listed as AFR 372C, WGS 322)
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Descripton:

This course will provide an overview of theories in the emerging field of Surveillance Studies, with afocus on race and gender. We will examine transformations in social control and the distributions ofpower in U.S. and global contexts, with a focus on populations within the African diaspora. As such,this is a Black Studies course. Course topics include: the Trans-Atlantic slave trade; prisons andpunishment; the gaze, voyeurism and reality television watching; social media; travel and stateborders; biometrics and the body.

Students will be encouraged to develop critical reading and analytical skills. Through the use of filmsand other visual media students will be challenged to better understand how surveillance practicesinform modern life.

Your participation grade will be based upon your informed participation and not solely on yourattendance. You are expected to contribute informed opinions based on a close reading of the coursematerials and engagement with the themes of the course. Sharing your personal opinions, whileimportant, will not solely constitute informed discussion.

Students who acquire six or more unexcused absences will receive a failing grade.

Grading:

A: 100-94

A-: 93-90

B+: 89-88

B: 87-83

B-: 82-80

C+ 79-78

C: 77-73

C-: 72-70

D+: 69-68

D: 67-63

D-: 62-60

F: 59-0

Your grade in this course will be based on:

Participation, Attendance &In-class Assignments 10%

Everyday Surveillance Assignment 15%

Film Review 15%

Mid-Term Test: 20%

Social Media Project: 20%

Final Test 20%

Final grades will be determined on the basis of the above rubric. To ensure fairness, all numbers are absolute, and will not be rounded up or down at any stage. Thus a B- will be inclusive of all scores of 80.000 through 83.999. The University does not recognize the grade of A+.

Attendance and Informed Participation

Students who acquire six or more unexcused absences will receive a failing grade.

Please note that this is an upper level undergraduate seminar and your success in this course depends on close reading and engagement with the texts (readings, films, audio recordings, videoclips, video games and weblinks posted to Blackboard), as well as active participation in class discussions. You will be responsible for checking the Blackboard course site regularly for additional texts and announcements.

Class participation will be based on attendance and meaningful participation in class discussions.

Meaningful participation is taken to be analytic engagement with the texts, not vague commentary or generalizations. You are expected to come to class prepared to discuss the readings.

Over the course of the semester you will be ask to respond, in writing, to texts discussed during the lecture.

These assignments will form a part of your participation grade.

SOC 323 • The Family

46220 • Lodge, Amy
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm GAR 1.126
(also listed as WGS 345)
show description

This course analyzes the family as a social institution, using the sociological perspective. 

Studying the family can be tricky in that we all have our own experiences being part of families.  It is important, then, to go beyond our own experiences to explore both the private aspects of the family as well as public aspects of the family using various kinds of empirical data.  Shifting definitions of the family are the context for a brief history of the family.  Throughout the course we will explore family change. Specific topics will include dating, “hooking up” and marriage; parents and children; cohabitation, divorce and stepfamilies; and how the family intersects with, is shaped by, and shapes other social institutions, with particular attention to the economy and the world of work as well as state and social policies.

SOC 325K • Criminology

46225 • Warr, E. Mark
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 0.102
show description

UPPER-DIVISION STANDING REQUIRED. COMPLETION OF SIX SEMESTER HOURS OF SOCIOLOGY.

Course Description

An investigation into the nature of criminal events including, homicide, rape, robbery, property crimes and white-collar crimes. Also examines the US criminal justice system.

Grading Policy

Three tests (no final) Occasional quizzes

Texts

Mark Warr, Companions in Crime, Cambridge University Press

SOC 325K • Criminology

46230 • Warr, E. Mark
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm CLA 0.102
show description

UPPER-DIVISION STANDING REQUIRED. COMPLETION OF SIX SEMESTER HOURS OF SOCIOLOGY.

Course Description

An investigation into the nature of criminal events including, homicide, rape, robbery, property crimes and white-collar crimes. Also examines the US criminal justice system.

Grading Policy

Three tests (no final) Occasional quizzes

Texts

Mark Warr, Companions in Crime, Cambridge University Press

SOC 325L • Sociology Of Criminal Justice

46235 • Kelly, William R
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm GEA 105
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Course Description

This course will provide an introduction to the American criminal justice system, its policies and procedures. The primary focus will be on the roles and functions of the police, the courts and corrections, with a special emphasis on how well or not so well the system operates. We will also spend some time on recent innovations in criminal justice policy.

The class periods will be devoted to lectures, guest speakers, and videos. The lecture material will sometimes correspond very closely with the material in the text and sometimes it will supplement the assigned readings. I encourage class discussions and questions and hope that the material will be sufficiently interesting and controversial to motivate class participation.

Grading Policy

There will be four exams - three during the session and a comprehensive final. The exams will be multiple choice/true false. The three exams during the session will count 20% toward the final grade and will consist of 50 questions. The final exam, which is comprehensive, is worth 40% and will consist of 100 questions. The exams will cover all of the material - assigned readings, lectures, guest speakers and videos.

I do not grade on the basis of need and I do not negotiate grades. If you "need" a particular grade, you can figure out what it will take to obtain that grade. There is no extra credit and it is not possible to change the exam dates.

Grades for the course are determined in the following manner.90 to 100 A80 to 89 B70 to 79 C60 to 69 D< 60 F

Regarding rounding of grades, in my book, 88.7 is not 90, 79.1 is not 80 and 57.7 is not 60. If your final grade is .5 or higher, I will round up to the next whole percent. If you are taking the course pass/fail, a pass is 60 or above.

Texts

James Inciardi, Criminal Justice,9th edition

SOC 330P • Sociology & Social Psychology

46240 • Rose, Mary
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am JGB 2.324
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Course Description

This course is designed to give you a broad introduction to the field of social psychology, a topic that is investigated in both psychology and sociology departments. I have three aims for the course: (1) I want to provide you with an overview of the field of social psychology; (2) I want to introduce you to the various research methodologies that social psychologists use to investigate a phenomenon empirically; and (3) I want you to be able to spot applications to the “real world” of the material we discuss. Students enrolled in this course should have upper division standing, and, ideally, they should have taken courses in either sociology or psychology. This course is not cross-listed with psychology, which means that it does not count towards the requirements for a degree in psychology (but of course you still get credit for it as an upper-division sociology course). 

Even in a class of this size, I will occasionally call on people and ask them to give me their understanding of a topic we are discussing. Although I do not restrict lecture topics to what appears in the text, the most effective discussions – and the way for you to get the most out of this class in general – is to do your readings prior to the class for which they are assigned. This will help you immensely with lectures and ultimately with the tests. 

Texts

John D. DeLamater, & Daniel J. Myers, Social Psychology (7th edition). Thompson/Wadsworth (2010). [PLEASE NOTE: This version of the book is a restructured one; do not rely solely on older editions without a close comparison to the 7th] 

Grading

Final grades are based on three exams, in-class exercises, and a brief writing assignment. 

SOC 335 • Society Of Modern Mexico

46250 • Ward, Peter
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm BUR 130
(also listed as GRG 356T, LAS 325, URB 354)
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COURSE AIMS AND PURPOSE

This course seeks to understand Mexico through three lenses. First to introduce students to modern Mexico - its geography, economy, polity and society, and to examine in detail the nature and the forces of change that have impacted so dramatically upon the country during the past two decades. Second, we will examine Mexico-US bi-lateral relations both historically as well as in the contemporary sphere. Third, our lens will focus attention upon “Mexico Here”, and will analyze the dramatic Hispanic “rise” in the USA since 1990, with a special emphasis upon the ways in which the minority majority of Mexicans and Mexican Americans are shaping our own society, economy and polity of central Texas.

The first half of the course will offer an overview of the modern Mexico – its economic and political opening, challenges of overcoming poverty, and more recently the instability born of the drug cartels. Here too we will examine the key bilateral issues between the two countries: immigration reform; insecurity; and economic integration.  The second half of the course is designed to analyze the demographic and socio-cultural changes and policy challenges that Mexican-origin populations confront today in here Central Texas: in education, health care, citizenship aspirations, access to housing, justice and human rights and wellbeing. The aim is to gain a more sensitive and nuanced awareness of how Mexican populations specifically, and Hispanic populations more generally, are transforming the cultural and political landscape of Texas and the US, in order to offer a broad-brush introduction that will allow us consider the public policy dilemmas and imperatives that we have to confront today.

The course will comprise a substantial writing component including three essays. In class participation is expected, and in addition an important element of the class assessment will comprise two group projects about how Mexicans and Mexican-American identities are shaping politics, society & culture (broadly defined) here in Central Texas. There will be one midterm exam, but no final.

Assessment

Essays and Papers 40%

Participation 25%

Mid-term 15%

Group Projects 20%

 

SOC 336C • American Dilemmas

46255 • Green, Penny A
Meets MWF 900am-1000am CLA 1.108
(also listed as WGS 345)
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Description:  

This course examines critical American social problems that threaten the very fabric of our collective life as a nation.  These include problems in the economy and political system, social class and income inequality, racial/ethnic inequality, gender inequality and heterosexism, problems in education, and problems of illness and health care.  The course has three main objectives.  One involves providing students with the theoretical and methodological tools needed to critically analyze these problems from a sociological perspective.  A second involves providing students with current data and other information documenting the seriousness of these problems.  The final objective focuses on evaluating social policies addressing these problems (e.g., welfare-to-work programs, pay equity legislation), with special reference to questions of social justice, the common good, as well as public and individual responsibility.  Class format will be a mixture of lecture and discussion, with a strong emphasis upon the latter. 

Required Readings: 

A packet of readings to be purchased from Austin Text Books at 2116 Guadalupe (i.e., the Drag)

Additional readings will be made available on Blackboard

Attendance Policy:

Regular attendance and punctuality are expected.  You’re allowed three absences without penalty during the semester (excluding our introductory class meeting).  The nonpenalized absences are intended to cover such situations as illness, family emergencies, university sponsored trips, etc.  Students who miss more than three classes, regardless of the reason, will have their semester grades reduced by one full percentage points for each absence beyond the three allowed.  The one exception to this policy concerns absences for religious reasons, assuming advance, written notification is given.

Grading Policy:

Four Short Papers (2-3 pages)            65%

Class Participation                             20%

Pop Quizzes                                     15%

SOC 352 • Social Movements

46270 • Young, Michael P
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am CLA 0.102
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DESCRIPTION

Protests and social movements are vital to public life.  They are important sources of social change.  They may even be prophetic.  This course explores why people rebel, demonstrate, occupy public spaces, riot, bomb buildings, sign petitions, organize trade unions, demand equal rights, save baby seals, block abortion clinics, and burn draft notices.  In this course, we will ask what are protests and social movements?  Why do people start them and join them?  What are protesters motivated by?  Are they after personal or group rewards?  Do protesters act rationally or emotionally?

We will also ask what triggers protests or movements? What structures or shapes them?  Do they follow regular patterns of development?  What is the relationship between different movements? What affect do protests and movements have on society?  Do they provide valuable insights into society? Do they advance social justice? Do they contribute to our social wellbeing? Or do they lead to disorder and exact costs that outweigh benefits?  Might they foreshadow the future?

We will explore these many questions and look for answers in an historical sociology of collective efforts to change America. This course will track American protests and social movements from the 18th century to the present.  In short, this course surveys the history of American protest and theories trying to explain their emergence, development, and impact.

REQUIREMENTS

There will be a midterm examination (40% of grade), a final examination (50%), and a field report on an event of activism or protest.  The two exams will cover material from lectures, readings, and a series of documentaries that will be viewed throughout the semester.  Although there is some overlap among these three components of the course, a thorough familiarity with each will be crucial to the doing well in the two examinations.

SOC 352D • Boundaries And Dilemmas-Honors

46273 • Ekland-Olson, Sheldon
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 1.302D
(also listed as LAH 350)
show description

This is a research and writing course designed to explore moral imperatives, violation of these imperatives, and perhaps most interestingly how we justify such violation. 

 Why is the title of the course Boundaries and Dilemmas? A good deal of the semester will be spent on how communities establish boundaries to determine lives more or less worthy  of protection and support than others. We will also spend time on how communities weigh one imperative against another when confronted with moral dilemmas.

  The first portion of the course will offer quick overviews of specific questions. With these overviews in hand, you will be asked to choose a specific topic, such as physician assisted suicide, capital punishment, eugenics, or war. You will be asked to develop a set of ideas consistent with the general framework developed in the early sessions of class. You and I will meet one-on-one to discuss your ideas. You will then be asked to make a 15 (or so) minute presentation to the class. 

 I consider the material we cover to be very important. The assigned paper will be graded with high standards, as will the class presentation. Both will require substantial work. You will love it! 

There is one assigned book:  WHO LIVES, WHO DIES, WHO DECIDES.

I see class discussions as very important to the success of this class.

 0% of your grade will come from class participation, primarily from postings on Discussion Board. Attendance is required. More than three absences will lower your grade one full point -- A to B, B to C etc. I know this is tough, but so am I.... Never fear, I will make every effort to ensure classes are worth attending.

 This course is designed to hone various communication skills. Individually, you will be asked to write a 16-20 page paper on a topic of your choice. This paper will be handed in for initial grading and editorial comment. Your grade on the initial draft will constitute 40% of your final grade. The paper will be handed back to you for revision. You will be asked to hand in the revised version at the end of the semester. This final version of the paper will be graded and will also constitute 40% of your grade.

 I look forward to many lively and fruitful discussions throughout the semester.

SOC 352E • Media Industrs/Entreprenrs

46275 • Chen, Wenhong
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm CMA 3.116
(also listed as AAS 320)
show description

Flag: Cultural Diversity in the U.S.

Media industries have been challenged by large social forces such as globalization and technological advancements from analog to digital, wired to wireless, and desktop to cloud. Web 2.0 and social media facilitate former members of the audience to actively participate in media production. While legacy media learn to adapt to a new landscape, new media experiment with and search for viable business models and legitimacy. Great challenges bring unprecedented opportunities and risks for organizational innovations, entrepreneurship, and social change.Drawing on literatures from media studies, management, sociology, and communication, this course helps students to develop a critical understanding of the media industries. We start with a survey of the media landscape. In the second part, we examine the social, political, and economic contexts in which media and culture are produced, distributed, and monetized. Special attention is paid to new media and communication technologies such as Web 2.0, social media, gaming, and mobile phone and apps and the implications of these disruptive innovations for media production and consumption. Cases in old and new media industries from different countries will be analyzed. 
 

SOC 352M • Lang & Speech In Amer Socty

46280 • Hosemann, Aimee
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm SAC 4.118
(also listed as AMS 321, ANT 325N, LIN 373)
show description

 

 In this course, we take as our central concern an exploration of American society through language use by Latin@ populations. We understand that this is a tremendously diverse population as we take “America” in its broad hemispheric sense, and so we seek to understand differences and similarities in the ways Latin@ groups (those tracing some Latin American descent) use language to create and participate in society. We do so by investigating how language is used by individuals from these communities on a daily basis, in a wide variety of contexts. As part of our investigation leads us to consider identity-building processes, which are a product of interaction, we consider also the ways non-Latin@s talk to/about Latin@s. We make use of the existing scholarly literature, as well as more “popular” sources. Students will construct and carry out original research projects.

SOC 354K • Sociology Of Health & Illness

46288 • Jeon, Jiwon
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm ART 1.110
show description

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to central topics in the sociology of health and illness. The material covered in this course will encompass individual, institutional and theoretical approaches to health & illness.  The course is designed to provide a critical framework for exploring how social, political, economic and cultural forces shape the understanding and experience of health and illness.  We will explore the following themes: 1) the social production and distribution of disease and illness; 2) the meaning and experience of illness; 3) the social organization of medical care; 4) health politics and health systems.

Course Objectives

At the completion of this course, the student will learn and understand:

  1. how the concepts of health and illness are socially constructed
  2. how social, political and economic factors shape an individual’s experience of health and illness
  3. the major methods and theories used to understand the distribution of health and illness in society
  4. the structure and organization of the health care system and the construction of medical knowledge from a critical perspective

Required Text and Readings

Conrad, Peter & Valerie Leiter. 2013.  The Sociology of Health and Illness: Critical Perspectives (9th Ed.) Worth Publishers (ISBN-10: 1-4292-5527-7).

Additional readings:  In addition to above textbooks, other course materials including additional readings will be posted to Blackboard each week.  Readings should be completed for the week they are assigned.

Course requirements

Your grade will be determined by three criteria:

1) Three exams 75%

2) assignment: short paper 15%

3) class participation 10%

Exams: three in-class exams (75%)

 There will be three in-class exams worth 75 points each.  The in-class exams will cover the readings and lecture materials covered prior to that exam. The format of the in-class exams will be multiple-choice, true and false, and short/medium-answer questions. Missed exams will be counted as zero unless arrangements are made in advance.  Make-up exams will be given only if a physician’s note or other verifiable document is provided.

Assignment: short paper (15%)

 Each student is required to write a paper no more than 5 double-spaced pages in length involving a sociological perspective of health, illness and health care.  Papers must be presented in ASA format and be based upon a review of the appropriate literature.  The information and guidelines for the assignment will be posted on Blackboard.

 The paper assignment is due by the beginning of class.  Late paper grades will be deducted 10% each day beyond the due date, and papers more than one week late will not be accepted.  In such an incidence, a grade of zero will be given and factored into the final grade.

 Class participation: In-class discussions and quizzes (10%)

The in-class components will be measured by pop quizzes and class participation.  There will be several pop quizzes given periodically at the instructor’s discretion, based on weekly readings, class discussions, and films shown during class.  In addition, students will engage in short discussions or working sessions as a group during class and will submit a written report.  This report will include the discussion results and the names of students who participated in the discussion sessions.  There will be NO in-class make-up quizzes and discussion reports regardless of the reasons for absence.

 Attendance and Participation Policy

 Attendance: Class attendance will not be formally taken. However, participation in class discussions will be a proxy for attendance and this may influence your final grade. You are allowed three non-penalized absences during the semester.  Students who miss more than three classes, regardless of the reason, will have their semester grade reduced by one grade. In the event of absence, you will be responsible for all information presented in class.

Student conduct: Every student will be actively involved in classroom discussions.  In order for everyone to feel comfortable voicing opinions or asking questions, a climate of tolerance and respect is essential. 

 

  • Use of laptops in class for taking notes: Use of laptops in class is allowed for taking notes only.  Other uses—like surfing the web or checking email—can be a distraction to those around you and are not permitted.

 

SOC 358D • Health Policy & Health Systems

46290 • Angel, Ronald J.
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm BUR 224
show description

Cross listed with PBH 358D

Course Description: 

This is a new course that covers the essentials of health policy in the United States and compares the health care financing and delivery system in this country to those of other developed nations.  Students will learn the history of health-related legislation in the United States and investigate why this nation, unlike others, developed an employment-based health care financing system based on an insurance model rather than a publicly funded universal system.  Students will investigate the major political forces that have determined the structure of the health care system in the U.S. and examine issues related to differential access for minority Americans and those in marginal jobs that do not offer insurance coverage. 

Students will also become familiar with the legislative history of Medicaid and Medicare and the various changes that have been introduced to these programs since their introduction.  The course will examine mechanisms of reimbursement to doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers.  We will also examine the role of the pharmaceutical industry and investigate the control and regulations of drugs.  Students will learn about the structure and role of the National Institutes of Health and other major funders of medical research. 

Given the fact that the debate concerning the implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (health care reform) will be a central political issue for the next few years, students will learn about the history of health care reform over the twentieth century and debate various aspects of health care reform.  After taking this course the student will understand the various issues involved in the current health care debate and their implications for the future of American medicine and the health of the population.  In the future difficult debates concerning the rationing of care, end-of-life issues, and other difficult decisions will have to take place.  After taking the course the student will be equipped to engage in these debates.

The course will consist of two lectures per week and a discussion session in which students will form small groups and discuss the issues raised in lecture.

Prerequisites:   

Introduction to Public Health with a grade of at least B for public health majors; upper division standing for sociology majors.  The course is restricted to public health and sociology majors.

Required readings: 

T.R. Reid (2009).  The Healing of America:  A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care.  New York:  Penguin. 

Web-based readings will also be assigned.

Grading: 

The final course grade will be based on two hourly examinations and a short essay (approximately ten pages) on a topic of the student’s choice.  To determine the final grade these weighted scores will be summed and the weighted total curved so that approximately 15% of the class receives an A, 15% A-, 15% B+, 15% B, 30% C, etc.  Attendance is mandatory and will be factored into the final grade.  Three unexcused absences will result in an automatic full letter grade drop in the final grade.  More than six unexcused absences will result in a failing grade.

SOC 366 • Deviance

46293 • Osborne, Lynette
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm RLM 5.122
show description

Course Description

This course examines deviant behavior in the US.  The course begins by defining different types of deviance (negative and positive).  Discussions of types of deviance, how/why we define certain activities as deviant, how deviance changes over time, and how we understand deviant behavior through theories will be the main focus of the course. Empirical, peer reviewed journal articles will be used to learn about current deviance research findings.  Theory articles will be used to demonstrate core theories and how they can be used to understand and predict behavior.

Learning Objectives

By the end of a successfully completed term, students will be able to:

  • define deviance and understand the difference between positive and negative deviance;
  • explain how ideas about what counts as deviance changes over time and how these changes are reflected in society;
  • discuss current research on deviance in the US; 
  • explain and apply various theoretical approaches to deviant behavior.

Additional Objectives

This course is also designed to teach and/or improve the following skills:

  • critical thinking
  • professional/academic writing
  • comprehension of challenging material

Required Materials:                 

Articles:  required articles will be posted on Bb as .pdf or .doc attachments.

Films:  viewing several films is also required.  Titles are on the schedule.  You may find them online or order them from a source like Netflix or iTunes.

Grading:

In class participation  75 point

Reading Briefs           50 points

Journal Analysis         25 points

Three exams             50 points each

Project                     100 points

Grading scale

100-90 = A, 89-88 = B+, 87-80 = B, 79-78 = C+, 77-70 = C, 69-68 = D+, 67-60 = D, below 59 = F

As a general rule, I do not assign minuses (-).  If you earn an 80%, you get the B.  However, in circumstances when the grade is earned by rounding up, a minus will be assigned (e.g.:  79.9=B-).

 

 

SOC 368D • Social Context Of Public Hlth

46295 • Hummer, Robert A.
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 0.128
show description

Description:

This course provides an introduction to the study of public health from a sociological perspective. The course focuses most centrally on understanding the national, state, county/city, and neighborhood level social contexts that are so important for the health of individuals and populations. A substantial portion of the course will be geared toward understanding how social contexts operate to produce health disparities across subgroups of the U.S. population, particularly those defined by race/ethnicity, nativity, and socioeconomic status.

 Required Texts 

Holmes, Seth M. 2013. Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies: Migrant Farmworkers in the United States. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.

Klinenberg, Eric. 2002. Heat Wave: A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

 National Research Council and Institute of Medicine. 2013.. U.S. Health in International Perspective: Shorter Lives, Poorer Healt, edited by Steven H. Woolf and Laudan Aron. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

 Grading Policy

Exam 1: 25%

Exam 2: 25%

Exam 3: 25%

Exam 4: 25%

 

 

 

SOC 369K • Population And Society

46300 • Cavanagh, Shannon E.
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm CLA 0.102
show description

Description

Population studies or demography is an interdisciplinary field, encompassing the study of the size, distribution, and composition of human populations, and the processes of fertility, mortality, and migration through which populations’ change. These processes are closely connected to many of the pressing problems facing contemporary societies. For instance, the funding of health care in developed countries is a major issue because of declining fertility and population aging. Civil unrest in parts of Africa and the Middle East are, in part, a function of persistently high fertility rates. These processes are also important drivers of many contemporary environmental problems. Finally, a grasp of population processes is important for a deeper understanding of the population explosion in urban areas and the higher transmission and impact of AIDS in the developing world. 

This course provides an overview of the field of population studies. A sociological approach is emphasized, but economic, geographic, anthropological, and biological perspectives will also be used. Attention will be given to a) the demographic concepts needed to objectively evaluate population issues and b) the substantive content of the population issues. Emphasis will be given to evaluating the evidence regarding debates on population topics. 

Reading Materials 

Required text: Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues, 10th edition, John R. Weeks. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing Co. ISBN-10: 0495096377 

On-line Readings: There are a number of short reading assignments, marked with an [EL]. These readings can be found in External Links section of the class Blackboard site and should be read prior to class period. 

Grading and Requirement:

You are expected to complete all readings for the day's class before coming to class. Read as actively as possible. Class time will be an opportunity to discuss and further explore the readings, so it is essential that everyone comes prepared to participate. Our class periods will be more productive and enjoyable when we all begin with the same materials. 

There will be TWO examinations during the semester, each worth 20% of your final grade. The exams will draw from both readings and class discussions. The exams are not cumulative. Each will include multiple choice and short answer questions. Make-up examinations will not be administered except in extreme circumstances and only if I am notified beforehand. All make-up examinations are 100% essay. 

You must also complete TWO assignments and ONE short paper during the semester. The assignments—on mortality and fertility—are designed to familiarize you with demographic data on the web, give you an overview of your country of choice, and help you identify your country’s population angle that most interests you and that you will explore in more detail in the short paper. Each assignment is worth 15% of your final grade. The short paper is worth 25% of your grade. 

The final 5% of your grade is based on attendance/class participation. I expect you to show up and engage (i.e., not text, sleep, or read the newspaper) with classmates, the TA, and me in the class. 

SOC 679HA • Honors Tutorial Course

46305
Meets WF 1100am-1200pm CLA 0.124
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Description:

This double-semester seminar was created after feedback from former Honors students and faculty supervisors.

The idea is to provide structure, instruction, and assistance throughout the duration of your thesis project, as well as to enable you to interact with and support one another.  Seminar participation should not increase your overall workload, as the assignments will help you become more efficient in your research and writing, resulting in a higher quality thesis.  Seminar format is a mixture of discussion, oral presentations, and guest speakers. 

Required Books:

C. Wright Mills (1959) The Sociological Imagination. Oxford University Press.

Howard S. Becker (2007) Writing for Social Scientists. (2nd ed.) University of Chicago Press. Any additional readings will be provided in a small packet or on Blackboard Attendance Policy:

Regular attendance and active seminar participation are expected of all Honors students.  If you miss more than six (6) classes during the double-semester program, regardless of the reason for the absences, your 679HA grade will be reduced by one full percentage point for each absence beyond the six allowed.  This policy excepts absences for religious holidays, assuming advance, written notification is given. 

Grading Policy:

First Semester:

1. An annotated bibliography comprised of 20 strong sources relevant to your thesis (20%) 2. A 6-7 page research proposal (20%) 3. A detailed outline of your research project by the end of the first semester (20%) 4. Quality of seminar participation (e.g., oral presentations, discussions, giving peer feedback) (40%)

Second Semester:

1. A well-written draft of a chapter of your thesis (20%) 2. Quality of seminar participation (e.g., oral presentations, class discussions, giving peer feedback) (60%) 3. Oral presentation of your thesis at the Sociology Honors Colloquium (20%) At the end of your first semester in Honors, you’ll be assigned an “incomplete.”  At the end of your second semester, after you’ve submitted your signed thesis to the Sociology Department, I’ll remove the incomplete and assign a grade for SOC 679HA, based on your two semesters of work and participation in the Honors Seminar. Your thesis supervisor will assign your grade for SOC 369HB, based on the quality of your thesis.

SOC 679HB • Honors Tutorial Course

46310
Meets WF 1100am-1200pm CLA 0.124
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Description:

This double-semester seminar was created after feedback from former Honors students and faculty supervisors.

The idea is to provide structure, instruction, and assistance throughout the duration of your thesis project, as well as to enable you to interact with and support one another.  Seminar participation should not increase your overall workload, as the assignments will help you become more efficient in your research and writing, resulting in a higher quality thesis.  Seminar format is a mixture of discussion, oral presentations, and guest speakers. 

Required Books:

C. Wright Mills (1959) The Sociological Imagination. Oxford University Press.

Howard S. Becker (2007) Writing for Social Scientists. (2nd ed.) University of Chicago Press. Any additional readings will be provided in a small packet or on Blackboard Attendance Policy:

Regular attendance and active seminar participation are expected of all Honors students.  If you miss more than six (6) classes during the double-semester program, regardless of the reason for the absences, your 679HA grade will be reduced by one full percentage point for each absence beyond the six allowed.  This policy excepts absences for religious holidays, assuming advance, written notification is given. 

Grading Policy:

First Semester:

1. An annotated bibliography comprised of 20 strong sources relevant to your thesis (20%) 2. A 6-7 page research proposal (20%) 3. A detailed outline of your research project by the end of the first semester (20%) 4. Quality of seminar participation (e.g., oral presentations, discussions, giving peer feedback) (40%)

Second Semester:

1. A well-written draft of a chapter of your thesis (20%) 2. Quality of seminar participation (e.g., oral presentations, class discussions, giving peer feedback) (60%) 3. Oral presentation of your thesis at the Sociology Honors Colloquium (20%) At the end of your first semester in Honors, you’ll be assigned an “incomplete.”  At the end of your second semester, after you’ve submitted your signed thesis to the Sociology Department, I’ll remove the incomplete and assign a grade for SOC 679HA, based on your two semesters of work and participation in the Honors Seminar. Your thesis supervisor will assign your grade for SOC 369HB, based on the quality of your thesis.

SOC 379M • Sociological Theory

46315 • Adut, Ari
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CLA 1.106
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Description

The purpose of this course is to introduce the student to some of the more important theoretical foundations of the discipline of sociology and to current debates in modern social theory. The first part of the course covers select classical theorists. The second part provides an introduction to twentieth-century social theory and critical perspectives on the classical foundations of sociology. The third and final part presents a highly influential response to these challenges by a leading sociological theorist of our day. Throughout the course, the main topics of interest are the rise and transformation of modern society, the changing relationship between the individual and social institutions, the role of social structures and agency in social theory, the role of moral and instrumental action in agency theory, the challenge of critical theory to the social sciences, and contemporary attempts at a critical and multidimensional theory of society.

This course challenges students to think theoretically and critically about society and its material and cultural construction. The readings for the course are difficult but not inaccessible. This course will be fruitful if, and only if, students make a serious commitment to do the reading and to attend class. If this commitment is made, the social world might never look and feel quite the same. At least this is my goal and I aim to deliver.

Grading Policy

Three short papers 75%

Three one to two page memos on reading 15%

Class participation 10%

Short papers: Students must write three papers, each approximately five pages in length. One paper is due for each of the three parts of the course.

Memos: For the first part of the course, I will ask you to write three memos, each approximately one page in length. One memo will be on Karl Marx. The second memo will be on Emile Durkeim. And the final memo is on Max Weber.

Texts

All texts have been ordered through MonkeyWrench Books (110 E. North Loop, Austin, TX 78751; tel. (512) 407-6925)

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, The Marx-Engels Reader, ed. Robert Tucker, Norton

Emile Durkheim, On Morality and Society, ed. Robert N. Bellah, Chicago

Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, Roxbury

Georg Simmel, On Individuality and Social Forms, ed. Donald Levine, Chicago

Sigmund Freud, Civilization and Its Discontents, Norton

Michel Foucault, The Foucault Reader, ed. Paul Rabinow, Pantheon

Jurgen Habermas, Jurgen Habermas on Society and Politics: A Reader, ed. Seidman, Beacon

SOC 379M • Sociological Theory

46320 • Adut, Ari
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm CLA 1.106
show description

Description

The purpose of this course is to introduce the student to some of the more important theoretical foundations of the discipline of sociology and to current debates in modern social theory. The first part of the course covers select classical theorists. The second part provides an introduction to twentieth-century social theory and critical perspectives on the classical foundations of sociology. The third and final part presents a highly influential response to these challenges by a leading sociological theorist of our day. Throughout the course, the main topics of interest are the rise and transformation of modern society, the changing relationship between the individual and social institutions, the role of social structures and agency in social theory, the role of moral and instrumental action in agency theory, the challenge of critical theory to the social sciences, and contemporary attempts at a critical and multidimensional theory of society.

This course challenges students to think theoretically and critically about society and its material and cultural construction. The readings for the course are difficult but not inaccessible. This course will be fruitful if, and only if, students make a serious commitment to do the reading and to attend class. If this commitment is made, the social world might never look and feel quite the same. At least this is my goal and I aim to deliver.

Grading Policy

Three short papers 75%

Three one to two page memos on reading 15%

Class participation 10%

Short papers: Students must write three papers, each approximately five pages in length. One paper is due for each of the three parts of the course.

Memos: For the first part of the course, I will ask you to write three memos, each approximately one page in length. One memo will be on Karl Marx. The second memo will be on Emile Durkeim. And the final memo is on Max Weber.

Texts

All texts have been ordered through MonkeyWrench Books (110 E. North Loop, Austin, TX 78751; tel. (512) 407-6925)

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, The Marx-Engels Reader, ed. Robert Tucker, Norton

Emile Durkheim, On Morality and Society, ed. Robert N. Bellah, Chicago

Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, Roxbury

Georg Simmel, On Individuality and Social Forms, ed. Donald Levine, Chicago

Sigmund Freud, Civilization and Its Discontents, Norton

Michel Foucault, The Foucault Reader, ed. Paul Rabinow, Pantheon

Jurgen Habermas, Jurgen Habermas on Society and Politics: A Reader, ed. Seidman, Beacon

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