Sociologist & Ethnographer


Social Problems (SOC 120)
Fall 2017
Tuesday and Thursday 12:40PM – 2:05PM
Room: Centennial 1404

Social analysis, critical thinking, and problem solving are introduced as basic social science skills. These skills are applied to major contemporary social problems related to deviant behavior, social inequality, social change, and problems associated with major societal institutions. A variety ofmindividual and collective responses and social policy strategies at local, national, and international levels are examined. This course invites students to the field of sociology through the examination of social problems in the contemporary world. Students will become introduced to the sociological imagination as a unique way to understand the world from the global problems of today to the personal orbits of our own lives. We will cover a wide variety of topics that include an analysis of capitalism and democracy, wealth and power, population growth and inequality, demography and immigration, urban and rural issues, race and gender inequality, poverty and the welfare state, “crime” and drugs, and other issues facing the world. We look at social problems particularly from the unique perspective of sociology and learn how to diagnose the causes of social problems. We will discuss some of the most pressing problems of the world and, after theorizing about their causes, make attempts to think about how to solve them. At the end of this course, students will be able to think like a sociologist about social problems using the sociological imagination.
Syllabus TBD

Sociology 321
Fall 2017
Tuesday and Thursday 2:15PM – 3:40PM
Room: Centennial 3104

This course is an overview of the sociological study of delinquency, with special emphasis on competing theoretical perspectives. In the process of learning about theoretical perspectives aimed at explaining delinquency, this course will pay special attention to gender delinquency, gangs, current events regarding delinquency and the U.S. juvenile justice system. Prerequisite: SOC 110 or SOC 120 or ANT 101.

Syllabus TBD

Qualitative Explorations
Sociology 416
Fall 2017
Tuesday  6:00PM – 8:45PM
Room: Wimberly 340

This senior capstone course is designed to use your sociological skills to complete an original qualitative research project that demonstrates your competency in the discipline. The purposes of this course is twofold: One, develop the major techniques sociologists and social scientists use in qualitative data collection and analysis. This will engage the student/scholar with training on field methods in sociological research, and in particular “fieldwork,” with emphasis on such qualitative methods as participant-observation, intensive interview, content analysis, and oral history, among others. Two, establish a forum to direct student work and creative energies towards social, environmental, and political issues in the public sphere. This approach allows the student/scholar to discover “communities,” create channels of communication, find ways of continual engagement and project development, and bring knowledge beyond the immediate workings of the community and into the realm of culture. The place of these kinds of techniques in social research, as well as the issues raised by them, will be considered. This course will also address the links among theory, data, and methods to provide you with a critical appreciation for the qualitative tradition in social sciences. Students/scholars will conduct individual research projects using one or more of the methods discussed to not only become acquainted with various techniques and issues, but also to conduct field research that is descriptively interesting, theoretically illuminating, and potentially publishable. The course will follow a seminar format emphasizing reading, group discussion, in- and out-of class exercises, oral presentations, original research and writing. This class is essential for anyone who wants to advance as a student/scholar.

Syllabus TBD

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