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

Fall 2007

SOC 302 • Introduction to the Study of Society (47325-47535)

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
47525 MW
1:00 PM-2:00 PM
MEZ 1.306

Course 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 a mixture of lecture and discussion, with an emphasis on the former. In both cases, however, we'll try to demonstrate Sociology's relevance to everyday life, as well as public policy making.

Grading Policy

Exams (4) 65%
Pop quizzes 10%
Paper (3-4 pages) 15%
Class Participation 10%

Good academic performance requires regular attendance and punctuality. Students are allowed three (3) absences during the session without penalty (excluding our introductory class meeting), regardless of whether these absences are from lecture or lab. These allowed 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 proper notification is given. Conversely, I'll add two percentage points to the semester grades of students with perfect attendance. One percentage point will be added to the semester grades of students with only one absence.


Giddens, Duneier, and Appelbaum, Introduction to Sociology (2007, 6th ed.) W.W. Norton
Any additional readings will be made available in a packet and/or on Blackboard


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