Department of Sociology
 Department of Sociology

SOC 302 • Intro To Study Of Society-Hon

44330 • 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

44365-44390 • Pudrovska, Tetyana
Meets MW 900am-1000am PAI 3.02
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DESCRIPTION

Sociology is the scientific study of human societies, human behavior, and social life. This course will introduce you to the major topics that sociologists study, including culture, socialization, social interaction, stratification, gender, family, medical sociology, crime, deviance, and social institutions. An introduction to the theoretical perspectives and research methods of sociology will enhance your critical reasoning about these social issues. Most importantly, this course intends to develop your sociological imagination, which is the ability to understand how private lives are linked to and influenced by larger social processes.

REQUIRED READINGS

Textbook:

Giddens, Anthony, Mitchell Duneier, Richard P. Appelbaum and Deborah Carr. 2014. Introduction to Sociology, 9th ed. New York: Norton. Chapter 2: Asking and Answering Sociological Questions.

Articles: Required articles will be posted on Canvas.

Required Interactive Tools

Pearson’s Learning Catalytics

Student’s access for six months: $12

https://learningcatalytics.com/student_sign_up

GRADING POLICY

Exam 1                                                30%

Exam 2                                                35%

Exam 3                                                20%

Attendance and participation                    15%

Extra credit                                          up to 3%

 


SOC 302 • Intro To The Study Of Society

44425-44450 • Green, Penny A
Meets MW 100pm-200pm MEZ 1.306
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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., Seagull) 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 (3-4)      70%               

Pop Quizzes:        15%               

Paper (2-3 pages)         15%                                                       


SOC 302 • Intro To The Study Of Society

44455-44480 • Haghshenas, Hossein
Meets TTH 100pm-200pm FAC 21
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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%

Class 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 304 • Society, Health & Happiness

44487 • Durden, Emily
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 0.118
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Description

This course will introduce students to the scientific study of happiness, integrating findings from a variety of fields, including psychology, sociology, neuroscience, and economics. Topics include the nature and measurement of happiness, the bidirectional relationship between physical health and happiness, the social or collective dimensions of happiness, and the role of various institutions and the well-being of society. Students will engage with practical lessons from the scientific study of happiness by applying key insights from research to their own lives.

Required Texts 

Introduction to the Scientific Study of Happiness, Core Questions, and the Value of Happiness

What is happiness? Why does happiness matter?

Lyubomirsky, Sonja, Laura King, and Ed Diener. 2005. “The Benefits of Frequent Positive Affect: Does Happiness Lead to Success?” Psychological Bulletin 131:803-55.

Peterson, C, Park, N, & Seligman, MEP. 2005. “Orientations to Happiness and Life Satisfaction: The Full Life versus the Empty Life. Journal of Happiness Studies 6, 25-41.

The Concept of Happiness

van Deurzen, E. 2013. “Contintental Contributions to our Understanding of Happiness and Suffering.” Pp. 279-290 in SA David, I. Boniwell, & AC Ayers, Oxford Handbook of Happiness. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Veenhoven, Ruut. 2000. “The Four Qualities of Life. Ordering Concepts and Measures of the Good Life.” Journal of Happiness Studies 1:1-39. Available at: http://www2.eur.nl/fsw/research/veenhoven/Pub2000s/2000c-full.pdf.

The Measurement of Happiness

Veenhoven, Ruut. 2008. “Questions on Happiness.” Pp. 1-32 in Happiness in Nations, Introductory Text. Available at: http://worlddatabaseofhappiness.eur.nl/hap_nat/nat_fp.htm.

Happiness around the World/Lessons from Cross-National Studies

Oishi, S, Diener, E, Choi, DW, Kim-Prieto, C and Choi, I. 2007. “The Dynamics of Daily Events and Well-Being across Cultures: When Less is More.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 93: 685-698.

What Makes Us Happy?

Emmons, RA. 2003. “Personal Goals, Life Meaning, and Virtue: Wellsprings of a Positive Life. Pp. 1-5-128 in CLM Keyes, & J. Haidt (eds.), Flourishing: Positive Psychology and the Life Well-Lived. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Emmons, RA and ME McCullough. 2003. “Counting Blessings versus Burdens: An Experimental Investigation of Gratitude and Subjective Well-Being in Daily Life.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 84(2): 377-389.

Lyubomirsky, Sonja. 2008. The How of Happiness. Penguin Press.

Happiness and Human Connectedness

How does social connection promote happiness? What is the role of pro-social qualities such as kindness, compassion, and cooperation in happiness?

Cacioppo, John and William Patrick. 2009. Loneliness. WW Norton & Company.

Christakis, Nicholas A and James H. Fowler. 2011. Connected. Back Bay Books.

Dunn, E. W., Aknin, L. B., & Norton, M. I. 2008. “Spending Money on Others Promotes Happiness.” Science 319(5870): 1687-1688.

Eisenberger, N. I., Lieberman, M. D., & Williams, K. D. 2003. “Does Rejection Hurt? An fMRI Study of Social Exclusion.” Science 302(5643): 290-292.  

Goetz, J., Simon-Thomas, E., & Keltner, D. 2010. “Compassion: An Evolutionary Analysis and Empirical Review.” Psychological Bulletin 136(3): 351–374.

Nelson, SK, Kushlev, K, & Lyubomirsky, S. 2014. “The Pains and Pleasures of Parenting: When, Why, and How is Parenthood Associated with More or Less Well-Being?” Psychological Bulletin 140(3): 846-895.

Olds, Jacqueline. 2010. The Lonely American: Drifting Apart in the Twenty-First Century.

Tabibnia, G. & Lieberman, M.D. 2007. “Fairness and Cooperation are Rewarding.” Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1118: 90-101.

Happy Aging

Calvo, Esteban, Kelly Haverstick, and Steven A. Sass. 2009. “Gradual Retirement, Sense of Control, and Retirees’ Happiness.” Research on Aging 31(1):112-135.

Carstensen, L.L., Isaacowitz, D. & Charles, S.T. 1999. “Taking Time Seriously: A Theory of Socioemotional Selectivity.” American Psychologist 54:165-181.

Siegrist, Johannes, Olaf Von Dem Knesebeck, and Craig Evan Pollack. 2004. “Social Productivity and Well-being: A Sociological Exploration.” Social Theory and Health 2:1-17.

Does Money Buy Happiness?

Arthaud-Day, Marne L. and Janet P. Near. 2005. “The Wealth of Nations and the Happiness of Nations: Why “Accounting” Matters.” Social Indicators Research 74:511-48.

Easterlin, R., et al. 2010. “The Happiness-Income Paradox Revisited.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107(52), 22463-22468.

Kahneman, Deaton 2010. “High Income Improves Evaluation of Life but Not Emotional Well-Being.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107(8): 16489-16493.

Inequality and Happiness

Veenhoven, Ruut. 2005. “Return of Inequality in Modern Society? Test by Dispersion of Life-satisfaction Across Time and Nations.” Journal of Happiness Studies 6:457-87. Available at: http://www2.eur.nl/fsw/research/veenhoven/Pub2000s/2005d-full.pdf.

Yang, Yang. 2008. “Social Inequalities in Happiness in the United States, 1972 to 2004: An Age-Period-Cohort Analysis.” American Sociological Review 73:204-26.

Happiness and Public Policy

Veenhoven, Ruut. 2002. “Why Social Policy Needs Subjective Indicators.” Social Indicators Research 58:33-45.

Grading Policy

Grades will be based on class participation, a series of written and applied assignments, and two exams.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SOC 307C • Amer Families Past And Present

44490 • Grajeda, Erika D
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am CLA 1.106
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Description:

This course focuses on families in the contemporary U.S. It will introduce you to how sociologists study families and along with them, ideals about gender, love, marriage, parenthood, sex and sexuality. A central theme will be diversity and change, as we consider the many ways families have changed over the last 60 years in the U.S., and the myriad forms of family diversity that surround us. We begin with the big questions like “what is a family?” and “what does it mean to look at the family from a sociological perspective?” We will then examine theoretical frameworks for understanding the family, particularly the ways in which gender, race, class, and sexuality intersect to shape different – and often unequal – experiences of family life. 

During the first part of the course, we consider the history of U.S. families from the 19th century to today, focusing on the influence of marriage and changes in family organization over time. We also discuss sociological theories and methods used to study and understand families, including theories of gender and sexualities. In the second part of the course we focus on family experiences, including those of same-sex couples, childless-by-choice marriages, immigration in families, and alternative pathways to parenthood including surrogacy. Specific attention will be given to marginalized family types, including LGBT families, immigrant families, and interracial families. Throughout the course, we will explore, discuss, and debate several key questions:

1)    What is a “family”? How has the definition of family changed over time? How does the meaning of family vary within American society?

2)    How do definitions of the family shape family policy in the United States, and how does family policy shape meanings and experiences of family?

3)    What is the relationship between family diversity and family inequality?

Required Texts:

  1. Sarkisian, Natalia and Naomi Gerstel. 2012. Nuclear Family Values, Extended Family Lives: The Power of Race, Class, and Gender. Routledge.
  2. Risman, Barbara J. (Editor). 2010. Families as They Really Are. Norton.
  3. Various articles, available on Canvas (http://canvas.utexas.edu)

 Evaluation:

Two exams (2 x 25 points)         50 points                                                      

In-class pop quizzes                   25 points

Group presentation                    15 points

In-class participation                  10 points

                                               100 points

Exams (25 points each): Exams will be short answer format. Make-up exams will be given only to those absent for university-approved reasons, and must be taken within one week of the exam date. Arrangements for a make-up exam must be made prior to the test date. About one week before each exam, I will hand out a review sheet with possible exam questions. The actual exam will consist of questions selected from the review sheet. Exams are on [insert two dates here].

In-Class Quizzes (25 points): Periodic in-class pop quizzes will be given, usually based on the reading for that week, at the start of class. These are meant to encourage your attendance and completion of the readings, and will be graded as check, check plus, or 0. These quizzes will not be announced in advance, and you must be present in class the day of the quiz in order to take it. Missed quizzes cannot be made up.

Group Presentation (15 points): Students will be assigned to groups of 4-6 and each group will be given a date on which they will give a short (7-10 minute) presentation of an example of “diversity in American families” found either in popular culture or the news. More detailed information about the presentation will be handed out a few weeks into the course.

In-Class Participation (10 points): The success of this class depends upon the participation of its students, and the quality of our in-class discussions will depend on each of you. Participation includes attending class, demonstrating that you have read and thought critically about the assigned readings, contributing productively to class discussion, and asking relevant questions. Our discussions are a vital part of the learning in this course; a class cannot be made up simply by coping a classmate’s notes.

Final Grades: These are based on the standard scale set by the university:

A   = 93–100   

A – = 90–92.9   

B + = 86–89.9 

B    = 83–86.9

B – = 80–82.9    

C    = 73–76.9 

C + = 77–79.9  

C -  = 70–72.9                      

D+ = 67–69.9 

D    = 63–66.9    

D -  = 60–62.9          

F = 60 and below

                            

                                                     


SOC 307F • Diversity In Amer Families

44504 • Fulton, Kelly
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 0.118
(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.

 


SOC 307K • Fertility And Reproduction

44514 • Neely, Megan
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CMA 3.114
(also listed as WGS 301)
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Description

Why do birth rates rise and fall? Why is fertility falling in over half of the world? Why does the United States have high rates of childlessness, delayed parenting, teen childbearing, unplanned pregnancy, and maternal and infant mortality? Why is the U.S. exceptional among industrialized nations in terms of fertility and reproduction? And why do countries in the Global South face unique issues when it comes to family planning and population control?

This course will explore when, why, and how people bear children around the world. We will explore the social factors associated with declining fertility, voluntary childlessness, unplanned fertility, non-marital and teen childbearing, delayed parenting and infertility, assisted reproduction, adoption, maternal and infant mortality/morbidity, population control, family planning, and government support for families. Throughout the course, you will develop your sociological imagination by learning how to connect what happens in individual’s lives to broader, demographic trends that transform the economic and political landscape of societies worldwide.

The course will feature current publications by sociologists and journalists. The format will be a combination of lectures and discussion.

Grading and requirements:

Students will be evaluated on two exams, two short essays, and class participation.

 


SOC 307N • Sociology Of Development

44520 • Neumann, Pamela
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm CLA 1.106
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Description:

In 2013, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the top 10 wealthiest countries was $48.5 Billion, more than 25 times higher than the combined GDP of the rest of the world ($1.86B). The average life expectancy in the U.S. is 79 years, while in other countries people may live less than 50 years. Why, despite decades of foreign investment, and efforts by non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and other institutions, do such global inequalities persist? In this course we will examine issues related to global poverty and inequality using a sociological lens. In the first half of the course, we will consider the historical legacy of colonialism and the rise of the “development industry,” as well as some of the various theoretical explanations for “underdevelopment”. In the second half of the course, we will delve into a series of specific topics related to development in our globalized world, including foreign aid, NGOs, microcredit, gender, the environment, democracy, and violence and insecurity. Throughout the course, students will be expected to critically engage with important questions such as: How do we define “development”? Who benefits from globalization and why? What are the social, political, and economic consequences of global inequality? How should such inequalities be addressed?

Required texts:

McMichael, Philip. 2012. Development and Social Change (5th edition)

Other readings will be posted on Canvas and/or are available online.

Grading:

Class Participation: 10%

Short Reflection Papers (3 papers, 2-3 pages each): 25%

Exams (2): 40%

Final Paper: 25% 

 


SOC 307T • Punishment And Society

44530 • Zarrugh, Amina
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am CLA 0.102
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Course Description

Power is all around us – it determines where we live, which schools we attend, what types of jobs we perform, with whom we make friends and partners, and, importantly, how we perceive the world. In this course, we will develop a sociological understanding of power to consider how particular forms of behavior are deemed punishable by society. In the process, we will study how power influences norms of social behavior and determines the consequences for failing to observe such norms. We will explore key foundational texts in sociology to understand how power, and by extension forms of punishment, have shifted historically from primarily visible, physical forms of repression (incarceration of the body) to invisible, ideational forms of control (incarceration of the mind). Attention will be paid to how power operates in the legal system and contributes further to the production of inequalities based on gender, race and ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and sexuality. A clear and nuanced understanding of how power functions and where it is located is an important point of departure for understanding how it affects our daily lives, a focus that will grow throughout the course.

This course will engage a variety of interdisciplinary perspectives including sociology, anthropology, and critical literary studies to better understand the relationship between power and punishment. The following questions will guide us throughout the course:

  • What is power, who has it, and how is it exerted in society?
  • What are social norms and what is deviance?
  • What is punishment and what social function does it perform?
  • What relationships exist between norms, punishment, and key sociological categories such as gender, sexuality, race and ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and age?

The course will address the issue of punishment comparatively in both the U.S. context and in other settings across the world. We will discuss a range of topics related to different types of laws and norms (such as anti-sodomy laws), punishment (such as forced disappearance), and forms of incarceration (such as immigration detention centers).

Grading and Requirements

Everyone is expected to regularly attend class and engage as much as possible with the course material. The course will utilize and address many forms of learning; information will be communicated through lecture, discussions, multimedia, and in-class group work. Your final grade will be determined by your participation, your performance on in-class examinations, and writing assignments that encourage you to apply key concepts discussed in class to contemporary events. 


SOC 308D • Ethncty & Gender: La Chicana

44535 • Uzendoski, Andrew G.
Meets MWF 900am-1000am PAR 101
(also listed as AMS 315, MAS 311, WGS 301)
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The purpose of this course is to examine the various experiences, perspectives, and expressions of Latinas in the United States. Specifically, the relationship between gender, race/ethnicity, and class will be key as we discuss issues that have been significant in the experiences and self-identification of Latinas, such as family, gender, sexuality, religion/spirituality, education, language, labor, and political engagement. We will also explore the emergence of Latina and U.S. Third World (or woman of color) feminisms and what it means to be Latina in the United States today. We will engage in interdisciplinary analysis not only concerning cultural traditions, values, belief systems, and symbols but also concerning the expressive culture of Latinas, including folk and religious practices, literature and poetry, the visual arts, and music. Finally, we will examine media representations of Latinas through critical analyses of film and television portrayals.


SOC 308D • Ethncty & Gender: La Chicana

44538 • Uzendoski, Andrew G.
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm GWB 1.130
(also listed as AMS 315, MAS 311, WGS 301)
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The purpose of this course is to examine the various experiences, perspectives, and expressions of Chicanas in the United States. This involves examining the meaning and history of the term “Chicana” as it was applied to and incorporated by Mexican American women during the Chicano Movement in areas of the Southwest U.S., such as Texas and California. We will also explore what it means to be Chicana in the United States today. The course will begin with a historical overview of Mexican American women's experiences in the U.S., including the emergence of Chicana feminism. We will discuss central concepts of Chicana feminism and attempt to understand how those concepts link to everyday lived experiences. Specifically, the relationship between gender, race/ethnicity, and class will be key as we discuss issues that have been significant in the experiences and self-identification of Chicanas, such as: family, gender, sexuality, religion/spirituality, education, language, labor, and political engagement. We will engage in interdisciplinary analysis not only concerning cultural traditions, values, belief systems, and symbols but also concerning the expressive culture of Chicanas, including folk and religious practices, literature and poetry, the visual arts, and music. Finally, we will examine media representations of Chicanas through critical analyses of film and television portrayals.

 


SOC 308D • Ethncty & Gender: La Chicana

44539 • Uzendoski, Andrew G.
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm GEA 127
(also listed as AMS 315, MAS 311, WGS 301)
show description

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

 


SOC 308N • Compar Relig/Politics/Culture

44555 • Swed, Ori
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm WEL 2.256
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Description

The course Comparative Religion, Politics and Culture compares and contrasts three different countries’ political systems; each represents a different culture and religion using the historical comparative method of analysis. In this course we will examine the complex interplay between politics, local religion, and culture following the similarities and dissimilarities among the three case studies, U.S., Iran and Israel. The course addresses fundamental political and societal issues on the role of the state, religion, culture, and the distribution of power. The three case studies illustrate different approaches and solutions for political questions and the dispersal of power between the secular state and religious institutions. Each political system serves as a window to the local culture, ethos, history, and identity, and presenting idiosyncratic political, religious, and cultural model.

The course organized in five sections: Theory, US, Iran, Israel, and Integration. We will open with the theoretical framework that will guide us throughout the course and provide us with the conceptual toolkit for comparison and analyzing. The next three sections will focus on each case study and portray their history, political system, religious structure, and culture. In each the students will evaluate media reports for causality, validity and accuracy and analyze demographic data in the light of sociological theories. The last section, the integration, will juxtapose the three case studies and examine them with the theoretical toolkit we acquired. Here, the students will work both with empirical and theoretical models, appreciating their explanatory and predictive powers.

The course has two main goals. The first is to clarify the dynamics and relations between politics, religion, and culture and how this triangle influences day to day life in a given society. The second goal is to familiarize the students with the Israeli and Iranian culture from a different perspective than the one often presented by the media.

The course consists of readings with class discussion that confront theory with the case studies. Required and recommended readings are listed on canvas or can be accessed through the UT library services. The course grade will be based on two exams, four course assignments and class discussions. The midterm will focus on the theory section and the first case study and the final exam will cover the entire course material. The assignments are short essays, uploaded to the course’s blog, which requires analysis of theory with data. 

Grading Policy:

Participation – 30%

Blog Assignments (4 Assignments) – 10%

Mid-Term Exam (3/18)– 30%

Final Exam (5/3) – 30%

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 308S • Intro To Health & Society

44557 • Durden, Emily
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm CLA 0.102
(also listed as H S 301)
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This course offers a broad multidisciplinary overview that introduces students to the study of health and society. Basic topics include health patterns, health behavior, medical care, and health policy in social, demographic, cultural, economic, political, and ethical contexts. Basic methodological approaches to studying these topics will be covered. This course will include guest lectures by representatives from various disciplines including economics, advertising and communications, public health and health promotion, sociology, and demography. There will be three exams and one essay assignment for this course. Exams will be comprised of multiple choice, short answer, and short essay questions.


SOC 308S • Intro To Health & Society

44559 • Durden, Emily
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am CLA 0.126
(also listed as H S 301)
show description

This course offers a broad multidisciplinary overview that introduces students to the study of health and society. Basic topics include health patterns, health behavior, medical care, and health policy in social, demographic, cultural, economic, political, and ethical contexts. Basic methodological approaches to studying these topics will be covered. This course will include guest lectures by representatives from various disciplines including economics, advertising and communications, public health and health promotion, sociology, and demography. There will be three exams and one essay assignment for this course. Exams will be comprised of multiple choice, short answer, and short essay questions.


SOC 317L • Intro To Social Statistics

44560 • Lin, Ken-Hou
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CLA 1.404
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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.

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

44565 • Powers, Daniel A.
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am CLA 0.124
show description

Description:

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

Required Text:

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

Course Requirement:

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

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

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

 


SOC 317M • Intro To Social Research

44570 • Raley, Kelly
Meets TTH 930am-1030am CLA 0.118
show description

Description:

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.

Grading:

Three exams:  the first one is worth 10% and the second and third are 15% each

Be sure to mark your calendar!  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.

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.

Lab -- Most weeks the Wednesday held from 3:00-5:00, 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. 

Text 

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


SOC 317M • Intro To Social Research

44575 • Osbakken, Stephanie
Meets MW 1000am-1100am CLA 0.118
show description

Description:

How do sociologists understand and study the world around them?  This course introduces students to the ways in which social scientists pose and answer questions.   First, this course begins by considering how knowledge production is situated within a specific historical and cultural context and is shaped by power relations within society.   Some questions are simply easier—politically, logistically, legally—to ask and answer.  Other questions are difficult to broach or effectively investigate, and are sometimes fraught with ethical concerns.  We will also explore how theory is linked to empirical discovery, which in turn, tests, builds, and/or refines theoretical understandings of the social world.  Students will examine the process of social research by 1) considering the research questions that social scientists routinely ask, 2) examining the methodological approaches social scientists use to answer their research questions, 3) analyzing the claims authors make in existing research studies, and 4) investigating the ethical issues that shape the context of inquiry and the process of social research.  This course adopts a hands-on approach to research methods.  As such, students will be expected to collect and analyze data in labs as well as outside of class.

 

Readings: 

Textbook TBA, other readings to be posted to Canvas


SOC 317M • Intro To Social Research

44585 • Weinreb, Alexander
Meets MW 900am-1000am CLA 0.118
show description

Description:

This “standard” sociological research methods course introduces students to the core professional challenge in sociology: how to collect the data that we use to answer our research questions. In this course we accomplish the same goal, but in a non-standard way. We employ a tag-team instructional approach involving two professors and a “flipped” classroom, meaning the emphasis will be upon learning outside the traditional classroom—via a series of online instructional modules—followed by in-person practical application during lab sequences.

Spanning what are known as “qualitative” and “quantitative” approaches, the course covers basic principles in a few main areas: the meaning of variables, understanding causation, study design, basic sampling, and modes and methods in data collection. Throughout, we draw on examples from published studies in sociology and other social sciences, looking at how other researchers have navigated commonplace methodological pitfalls. We also present brief modules featuring other University of Texas sociologists. They introduce their research programs and methods, and describe how they avoided some of the methodological pitfalls that might have damaged their research agendas.

By the end of the course, students should be able to both critically evaluate the methodological underpinnings of much social research. They should also be able to construct their own study, on paper at least, without falling into the most common and destructive traps. We also hope that this course will make students more skilled consumers of information in the real world. People are enveloped in data and arguments based in data. It is important to know how to evaluate the quality of those data. Engaged citizenship demands it.


SOC 317M • Intro To Social Research

44590 • Regnerus, Mark
Meets MW 1100am-1200pm CLA 0.118
show description

Description:

This “standard” sociological research methods course introduces students to the core professional challenge in sociology: how to collect the data that we use to answer our research questions. In this course we accomplish the same goal, but in a non-standard way. We employ a tag-team instructional approach involving two professors and a “flipped” classroom, meaning the emphasis will be upon learning outside the traditional classroom—via a series of online instructional modules—followed by in-person practical application during lab sequences.

Spanning what are known as “qualitative” and “quantitative” approaches, the course covers basic principles in a few main areas: the meaning of variables, understanding causation, study design, basic sampling, and modes and methods in data collection. Throughout, we draw on examples from published studies in sociology and other social sciences, looking at how other researchers have navigated commonplace methodological pitfalls. We also present brief modules featuring other University of Texas sociologists. They introduce their research programs and methods, and describe how they avoided some of the methodological pitfalls that might have damaged their research agendas.

 By the end of the course, students should be able to both critically evaluate the methodological underpinnings of much social research. They should also be able to construct their own study, on paper at least, without falling into the most common and destructive traps. We also hope that this course will make students more skilled consumers of information in the real world. People are enveloped in data and arguments based in data. It is important to know how to evaluate the quality of those data. Engaged citizenship demands it.


SOC 321E • Economy, Culture, & Society

44600 • Fridman, Daniel
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 0.128
show description

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 321L • Sociology Of Education

44608 • Irizarry, Yasmiyn
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 1.106
(also listed as AFR 321L, WGS 345)
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. To answer these questions, we will take an in depth look at the structures, practices, content, and outcomes of schooling, in light of their relationships to the wider society in which schools are situated. We will identify the role(s) of schools and schooling, note the link between schools and social stratification, discuss the outcomes of schooling and how these outcomes are produced, and consider sociological perspectives on contemporary educational inequality and reform. Throughout the course, you will have opportunities to reflect upon your own educational experience and worldview, while also thinking critically about how various social forces have come to shape your own schooling experiences, as well as those of others around you.

Required Texts:

Schools and Society: A Sociological Approach to Education 5th Edition, edited by Jeanne H. Ballantine and Joan Z. Spade.

Additional readings are available on Canvas. 

Grading Breakdown:

Reflection Papers 30% 

Current Events Essay 15%

 Quizzes 10%

 Exams 45% 


SOC 321G • Global Health Issues/Systems

44609 • Jeon, Jiwon
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 0.106
show description

Course Description

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

This course carries both the Writing flag and Global Cultures flag. We will use writing to improve on critical thinking skills and understanding of global health issues as well as to improve on ability to formulate ideas with an emphasis on the ASA writing style.  In this class, you can expect to write regularly during the semester, complete substantial writing projects, and receive feedback from your instructor to help you improve your writing. You will also have the opportunity to revise one or more assignments, and you may be asked to read and discuss your peers’ work. Global Cultures courses are designed to increase your familiarity with cultural groups outside the United States. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from writing assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one non-U.S. cultural group. This course may be used to fulfill the social and behavioral sciences component of the university core curriculum and addresses the following four core objectives established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board: communication skills, critical thinking skills, empirical and quantitative skills, and social responsibility.  


Course Objectives

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

Required Text and Readings

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

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

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

Recommended readings

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

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

Recommended resources (for writing)

https://owl.elglish.purdue.edu/owl/resources/583/1

www.asanet.org/student/quickstyle guide.pdf

Course requirements

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

  • Assignment 1: Individual paper (30%)

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

  • Peer review (5%)
  • Paper (25%)

                                       

  • Assignment 2: Group project paper & presentation (25%)

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

  • Paper (10%)
  • Presentation (10%)
  • Peer evaluation (5%)

 Two Exams (20%)

    • Exam 1 (10%)
    • Exam 2 (10%)

 Class participation (25%)

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

  • Discussion group summary (15%)
  • Class participation: contribution during class discussions (10%)

 


SOC 322V • Race/Gender/Surveillance

44630 • Browne, Simone A.
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CLA 0.102
(also listed as AFR 372C, WGS 322)
show description

Race, Gender and Surveillance will provide an overview of theories in the emerging field of Surveillance Studies, with a focus on race and gender. We will examine transformations in social control and the distributions of power 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 and punishment; the gaze, voyeurism and reality television; social media; sports; airports; biometrics and drones. Students will be encouraged to develop critical reading and analytical skills. Through the use of films, videos and other visual media students will be challenged to better understand how surveillance practices inform modern life. 

Required Texts:

John Gilliom and Torin Monahan. 2013. SuperVision: An Introduction to the Surveillance Society. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Dave Eggers. 2013. The Circle. New York: Random House

A course packet of all other required readings will be available for purchase at Speedway Printers. 

Grading Breakdown:

Participation, In-class Assignments and Quizzes: 10%

Film Review 10%

Mid-Term Test: 25%

Current Event Analysis: 10%

Research Project: 20%

Final Test: 25%


SOC 323 • The Family

44635 • Osbakken, Stephanie
Meets MW 300pm-430pm BUR 214
(also listed as WGS 345)
show description

 Description:

This course explores the family as a social institution in American society. The primary goal of this class is to encourage students to step beyond their personal experiences and cultivate a more sociological and analytical approach to the family.  By the end of the term, students will be able understand the cultural and structural forces that shape family life, and how these dimensions can shift, but also resist change over time. We will begin with a historical overview of the family where we will contextualize and challenge nostalgic depictions of the family in popular culture.  Throughout the term we will chart multiple dimensions of family life, including dating, cohabitation, marriage, parenting, childhood, and divorce, and changing ideas of the American family, to name a few.  We will adopt a sociological perspective, considering how gender, race, class, sexuality, and other social factors shape family relationships and family life.  We will also consider alternate family structures that were once dismissed as deviant (e.g. having children outside marriage and gay marriage) but are increasingly common and continue to shape public policy in the 21st century.  This course carries a writing flag designation and so also seeks to develop students’ writing skills throughout the term.

Texts:                         

TBA

Grades:           

Two Papers 45%

 Journal Writing Assignments  20%

Peer Reviews   5%

 Attendance and Participation  20%

Group Presentation on a topic about the Family 10%

                        


SOC 325K • Criminology

44645 • Warr, E. Mark
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 0.102
show description

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

Course Description

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

Grading Policy

Three tests (no final) Occasional quizzes

Texts

Mark Warr, Companions in Crime, Cambridge University Press


SOC 325K • Criminology

44650 • 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 • Soc Of Criminal Justice

44655 • Kelly, William R
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 0.126
(also listed as URB 354)
show description

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.

 


SOC 330P • Sociology & Social Psychology

44660 • Rose, Mary
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am GAR 0.102
show description

Course Description

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

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

Texts

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

Grading

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


SOC 335 • Society Of Modern Mexico

44665 • Ward, Peter
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm CLA 1.104
(also listed as GRG 356T, LAS 325, MAS 374, URB 354)
show description

FLAGS:   CD  |  GC

Description: 

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

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

Grading:

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

Essays and Papers 45%

Participation 20%

Mid-term 20%

Group Project 15% 


SOC 336C • American Dilemmas

44670 • Green, Penny A
Meets MWF 900am-1000am CLA 1.108
(also listed as URB 354, WGS 345)
show description

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.

Tentative Grading Policy:

Four Short Papers (2-3 pages)            65%

Class Participation                              20%

Pop Quizzes                                        15%

 


SOC 336D • Race, Class, And Health

44674 • Jeon, Jiwon
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm CLA 1.106
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Course Description

This course critically examines health status and health care disparities among racial/ethnic minority groups in the United States. We focus on the patterned ways in which the health of these groups is embedded in the social, cultural, political, and economic context of the U.S. We review the complex relationship between social class (socioeconomic status) and health status, the effect of race/ethnicity on health outcomes and access to healthcare, as well as specific health issues facing major racial/ethnic minority groups in the U.S. Topics include conceptual issues central to understanding how low socioeconomic status leads to poor health, how conscious, unconscious, and institutionalized racial bias affects medical care and health outcomes, as well as a consideration of policies for reducing health disparities among racial/ethnic minorities.

Course Objectives

  1. Define concepts of population health, social class, and race/ethnicity
  2. Describe social determinants of health
  3. Understand biological and psycho-social mechanisms through which the determinants of population health operate
  4. Analyze the interaction effect of race/ethnicity and social class in predicting health outcomes
  5. Examine policies that address health disparities in the United States

Required Text and Readings

Barr, Donald A. (2014) Health Disparities in the United States: Social Class, Race, Ethnicity, and Health, Second edition.  The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.

LaVeist, Thomas A. (2013) Race, Ethnicity and Health: A Public Reader. Jossey-Bass, A Wiley Imprint.

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

Course requirements and Exams:

 Exams (total 300 points/60% of the grade):There will be three in-class exams worth 100 points each.  The in-class exams will cover the readings and lecture materials covered prior to that exam. The format of the in-class exams will be multiple-choice, true/false, and short/medium-answer questions. Missed exams will be counted as zero unless arrangements are made in advance.  Make-up exams will be given only if a physician’s note or other verifiable document is provided.

Essay (total 100 points/20% of the grade):In addition to exams, students will write one short paper designed to assess the understanding of current health status and causes of health disparities among racial/ethnic minorities in the U.S. and the complex relationship between socioeconomic status and race in U.S. health care systems. This paper should be no longer than 5 pages (double spaced) and must returned in person in class.  E-mail attachments will not be accepted.

Class Components (total 100 points/20% of the grade): The in-class component will be measured by pop quizzes and class participation.  There will be 10 pop quizzes given periodically at the instructor’s discretion, based on weekly readings, class discussions, and short-films shown during class.


SOC 352E • Media Industrs/Entreprenrs

44678 • Chen, Wenhong
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am CMA 3.124
(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 366 • Deviance

44679 • Osborne, Lynette
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm CLA 0.118
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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 369K • Population And Society

44680 • Cavanagh, Shannon E.
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm CLA 0.102
(also listed as WGS 322)
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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

44685
Meets F 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  workload, but the discussions and assignments will help you become more efficient in your research and writing.  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. 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 excludes 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

44690
Meets F 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  workload, but the discussions and assignments will help you become more efficient in your research and writing.  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. 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 excludes 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.



  • Department of Sociology

    The University of Texas at Austin
    305 E 23rd St, A1700
    CLA 3.306
    Austin, TX 78712-1086
    512-232-6300