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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

45955-45960 • 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 1230pm-130pm WCH 1.120
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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

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 307F • Diversity In Amer Families

46053 • Averett, Kathleen
Meets TTH 930am-1100am WEL 2.256
(also listed as WGS 301)
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Description:

This course will provide a broad examination of the diversity of American families and current debates about family life from a sociological perspective, with an emphasis on how gender, race/ethnicity, social class, and sexualities shape experiences and definitions of family. The course will cover theoretical perspectives on family and kinship as well as recent trends in several aspects of family life, including cohabitation, marriage and divorce, parenthood, family policy, and family structure. Specific attention will be given to marginalized family types, including LGBT families, immigrant families, and interracial families.

Texts:

TBA

Grading and requirements:

Grades will be determined by  tests, in-class assignments, and a couple of written assignments.

 

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 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 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
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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

46140 • Raley, Kelly
Meets TTH 1230pm-130pm CLA 0.122
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Descripton:

The purpose of this course is to teach basic research skills. You can use these skills in a wide variety of settings (not just the ivory towers of academia).  Specifically, students will learn 1) basic research approaches, 2) how to recognize the strengths and weaknesses of these approaches and 3) how to apply these methods to a research problem.

To achieve these goals this course takes a "hands on" approach.  This means that often class time will involve your active participation.  It is essential that you come to class (and labs) having read the assigned material.

Course Grades are calculated as a weighted average of grades on assignments, papers, and exams. A=93-100; A-90-92; B+=87-89; B=83-86; B-=80-82; C+=77-79; C=73-76; C-70-72; D+=67-69; D=63-66; D-=60-62; F < 60.

Exam 1           10%

Exam 2           15%

Exam 3           15%

No make-up exams except in extreme circumstances.  Make ups will be 100% essay.

 

Analysis paper (20%) 

Review Paper (20%) 

Assignments (20% of your grade)-- There will be approximately 7. You may

drop one. All assignments should be word processed unless instructed otherwise.

Note: All late assignments will receive a grade of 0.  If for any reason you are unable to complete one assignment on time you may drop this assignment grade. 

Note Also: Class attendance is required.  Excessive absences will result in a lower grade.

Policy on Scholastic Dishonesty: Students who violate University rules on scholastic dishonesty are subject to disciplinary penalties, including the possibility of failure in the course and/or dismissal from The University.  Since such dishonesty harms the individual, all students, and the integrity of The University, policies on scholastic dishonesty will be strictly enforced. For more information on University policies check the web page: www.utexas.edu/depts/dos/sjs.  Unauthorized collaboration is considered scholastic dishonesty.

Text 

Babbie, Earl. 2007. The Practice of Social Research, 11th edition

Lab -- Most weeks the Thursday lab, held from 9-11, will meet and often an assignment grade will be related to work conducted during the lab.  For some lab assignments you may work as a group, but you should assume that collaboration is not allowed unless you are told specifically that the work is a group effort.  Usually, if you miss a lab you can get the assignment from the T.A., another student, or off of the course website.  However, if you miss the lab you may not collaborate with anyone.  NOTE: The exams occur during lab hours.

Analysis paper -- The purpose of this paper is to teach you how to analyze data, present results, and form a conclusion.  You will use the computer to analyze data from a secondary source (i.e. the General Social Survey). I will supply the data.  You will present your analyses in tables and/or graphs and discuss your findings.  Four to five pages of text, plus tables/graphs, title page and optional bibliography should be sufficient.

Review paper -- The purpose of this paper is to help you learn how to evaluate and improve on research.  You will identify a paper to review through a search of the literature and will write a paper describing this research, evaluating measurement validity, generalizability, and causal validity. 

SOC 317M • Intro To Social Research

46145 • Angel, Ronald J.
Meets MW 900am-1000am CLA 0.118
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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 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 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 • Population Processes & Models

46180 • Potter, Joseph E.
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm CLA 3.626C
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Description:

This advanced course provides grounding in the principal techniques of demographic analysis together with an understanding of how mortality and fertility determine the growth and structure of human populations.  Topics include demographic rates and measures, the life table, population projection, as well as accessing and analyzing large publicly available data sets to study emerging population trends in the state of Texas.  In the second half of the course, students will work in groups to carry out a population projection for a specific region of the state of Texas. 

Required Texts:

The initial readings for this course will be four chapters  Demography: Measuring and Modeling Population Processes by Samuel Preston, Patrick Heuveline, and Michel Guillot (Malden, Mass.: Blackwell, 2001).  In addition to chapters from this text, some journal articles will be assigned to complement the text, either as background, or as additional material.  A slightly more accessible basic text that corresponds fairly well to the subject matter we will cover is Colin Newell's Methods and Models in Demography(Guilford, 1990), which participants may wish to consult for an alternative presentation of some material.  Many of the classroom presentations and homework exercises will use Excel. 

 Grading Policy:

There will be two mid-terms and a final project paper for this course, as well as weekly or bi-weekly homework assignments.  The homework will account for 30 percent of the course grade, the mid-terms will account for 50 percent, and the final project for 30 percent. 

 Prerequisites:

While there are no formal prerequisites for this course, some mathematical background is necessary, and a course in Calculus and / or basic statistics would be useful. 

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 MURPHY, 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)
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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 321T • Sociology Of Africa

46200 • Weinreb, Alexander
Meets MWF 900am-1000am CLA 1.106
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Description:

This course provides a broad introductory survey to Africa from a sociological perspective. Bridging classical macro and micro-sociological approaches, it has two principal aims: to deepen our understanding of Africa and African societies; and to help enrich sociological thought by incorporating Africa – long ignored – into the sociological mainstream.

The course is divided into three sections. The first addresses the problem of representation. How do we learn about Africa? How has the tension between Philo-Africans, those who romanticize Africa, and those driven to improve life on the “Dark Continent”, affected what we claim to know about Africa? How do Africans themselves feel and think about Africa? What are “authentic” African cultural forms and behavior?

The second section deals with political structure. By this we refer not only to the formal structure of African states and political authority, but also to constraints on states’ ability to project their formal authority. Some of these constraints are internal, related to specific countries’ ethnic and geographic characteristics. Others are external, stemming from African states’ embeddedness in global or transnational authority structures.

Having identified those constraints, the third and major section of the course deals with three key institutions that, either in addition to the state or in response to its failures, affect life on the ground. These three are: the extended family, religious institutions, and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). We will describe the key features and functions of each of these, document how they have changed over the last few decades, how they are likely to change in the near future, and outline the debates about how they should change (if at all).

The course is designed for upper-level undergraduates. Course reading will draw on both academic and popular non-fiction.

Readings: 

The coursepack will include chapters from:

Barley, Nigel. 1983. The Innocent Anthropologist: Notes from a Mud Hut. Penguin Books.

Herbst, Jeffrey. 2000. States and Power in Africa: Comparative Lessons in Authority and Control. Princeton University Press

Maren, Michael. 1997. The Road to Hell: The Ravaging Effects of Foreign Aid and International Charity. New York: Free Press.

Olivier, Roland. 1991. The African Experience: Major Themes in African History from Earliest Times to the Present. New York: HarperCollins.

Trinitapoli, Jenny and Alexander Weinreb. 2012. Religion and AIDS in Africa. Oxford University Press

van de Walle, Nicholas. 2001. African Economies and the Politics of Permanent Crisis, 1979-99. Cambridge University Press

wa Thiongo, Ngugi. 1986. Decolonizing the Mind: The Politics of Language in African Literature. London: Heinemann

Articles in leading academic journals (mainly sociological) will also be assigned. These include:

Dodoo, Francis, and Nicola Beisel. 2005. “Africa in American Sociology: Invisibility, Opportunity, and Obligation.” Social Forces 84(1): 595-600

Frye, Margaret. 2012. “Bright Futures in Malawi’s New Dawn: Educational Aspirations as Assertions of Identity.” American Journal of Sociology, 117(6), pp. 1565-1624

Manglos, Nicolette and Alexander Weinreb. 2013. “Religion and interest in politics in sub-Saharan Africa” Social Forces 92 (1): 195-219

Swidler, Ann, and Susan Cotts Watkins. 2009. “‘Teach a Man to Fish’: The Sustainability Doctrine and Its Social Consequences.” World Development 37 (7): 1182–1196

Tavory, Iddo, and Ann Swidler. 2009. “Condom Semiotics: Meaning and Condom Use in Rural Malawi.” American Sociological Review 74 (2): 171–189

Trinitapoli, Jenny, and Sara Yeatman. 2011. “Uncertainty and Fertility in a Generalized AIDS Epidemic.” American Sociological Review 76 (6): 935-954

Weinreb, Alexander A. 2006. “The Limitations of Stranger-Interviewers in Rural Kenya.” American Sociological Review 71 (6): 1014-1039

Weinreb, Alexander A. 2001. “First politics, then culture: Accounting for ethnic differences in demographic behavior in Kenya.”  Population and Development Review 27 (3): 437-467

Grading Policy:

The final course grade will be based on:

  • A single written assignment/research paper (40% each) due by the end of the semester
  • two exams (25% each)
  • class participation (10%)

 

In each case, students will receive a +/- letter grade, based on the following performance levels:

A

95-100%

Excellent grasp of subject matter; explains concepts clearly provides  relevant details and examples; draws clear and interesting connections, exceptionally original, coherent and well-organized; ideas clearly written/stated, outstanding classroom participation

A-

90-94%

Very good grasp of subject matter; explains concepts clearly; provides relevant details and examples; draws clear connections; ideas clearly written/stated

B+

87-89%

Good grasp of some elements above, others need work

B

83-86%

Satisfactory grasp of some elements above

B-

80-83%

Uneven, spotty grasp of the elements above

C+

77-79%

Limited grasp of the above

C

73-76%

Poor grasp of the above

C-

70-72%

Very poor grasp of the above

D

60-69%

Little evidence of grasp of material, having done readings, attended class, or completed assignments

F

<60

No evidence of having done readings, attended class, or completed assignments

 

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)
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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
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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 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 336G • Gender Pol In Islamic World

46260 • Charrad, Mounira
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 1.106
(also listed as ISL 373, MES 341, WGS 340)
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Description:

The course is devoted to the study of gender politics in the Islamic world. It is designed to help students gain a better knowledge of the Islamic world and, at the same time, increase their understanding of major sociological concepts such as gender, social organization, culture, and politics. It shows how culture is mediated by politics, resulting in diverse interpretations of the cultural tradition and in different policies with respect to gender. We start by examining the themes and issues that are part of the common denominator of the Islamic tradition. We then consider how the diversity can be explained and what factors contribute to it. The focus is on women’s rights, which have been a key political issue in several countries and internationally.

Texts:

E.W. Fernea, Guests of The Sheik: An Ethnography of an Iraqi Village. Anchor, (GS) 1965.

M. M. Charrad, States and Women’s Rights: The Making of Postcolonial Tunisia, Algeria and

Morocco. Berkeley: Univ of California Press, 2001 (SWR)

Fadela Amara, Breaking the Silence: French Voices from the Ghetto. Berkeley: UC Press 2006 (BTS).

Joni Seager, The Penguin Atlas of Women in the World. 4th ed. Penguin. 2009. (Atlas).

Articles will be placed on Blackboard.

Grading and Requirements:

Students are encouraged to take an active role in discussing readings and raising questions. I expect students to attend class and to complete the assigned readings prior to coming to class.

Exam 1 25%

Exam  2 40%

Exam 3 20%

Team presentation 10%

Class participation 5%

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 4.106
(also listed as LAH 350)
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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)
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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)
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 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 358D • Health Policy & Health Systems

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

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
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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
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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

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