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Maxwell School
Maxwell / Department of Sociology

Courses

Undergraduate Course Descriptions

SOC 101 Introduction to Sociology (3) Principal concepts, methods, and findings in sociology. Societal structures, processes, institutions, and social roles from both macro- and microanalytic human behavior perspectives.

SOC 102 Social Problems (3) Application of sociological theory and methods to identification, description, and analysis of contemporary social problems. Critique and analysis of alternative strategies for social change.

SOC 230 Intergroup Dialogue (3) Guided intergroup communication skills. Cycle of socialization; social identities, and social structures that create and maintain inequality; power of dynamic of racism, sexism, and other systems of oppression.  Students explore conflict and enact collaboration to deepen understanding.

SOC/WGS 248 Ethnic Inequalities and Intergroup Relations (3) Identification of individuals and groups by self and others as members of ethnic categories. Consequences of ethnic identifications for individual, group, and societal interaction. Emphasizing ethnic inequalities, group interactions, social movements and change, racism, prejudice, and discrimination.

SOC/AAS 254 Comparative Study of American Ethnic Communities (3) Variety of ethnic communities in American society. Comparative analysis of similarities and uniqueness. Issues of group conflict, diversity, and unity.

SOC/WGS 281 Sociology of Families (3) Families and their connections to other social and economic institutions. Diversity of family forms and experiences. Formation and dissolution of relationships. Trends and changes.

SOC 300 Comparative Aspects of Suicide (3) This course examines various social aspects of suicide; including culture, social integration, social capital, gender roles, marital status, economic conditions, class, occupation, labor market outcomes, and media reporting. It also discusses suicide awareness and suicide prevention strategies. 

SOC 300 Environmental Sociology (3) In this course we will examine the ways in which our contemporary society depends on natural resources from around the world and the ways that social institutions create environmental problems and attempt to solve them.

SOC/WGS 305 Sociology of Sex and Gender (3) Social forces shaping women’s and men’s lives in contemporary societies. Changing gender expectations. Intersections of gender with race and ethnicity, class, and age. Social movements for women’s and men’s liberation.

SOC/WGS 309 Race, Gender and Sexuality in African Diaspora (3) To introduce students to the reality of how racism informs the common sense understanding of Black sexuality.

SOC 318 Introduction to Research (3)Techniques and problems of research in sociology. Research design, measurement, and data collection using surveys and other techniques. Computer analysis skills for social science data. Research project.

SOC 319/WGS 317 Qualitative Methods in Sociology (3) Field research methods including participant observation, unstructured interviewing, life histories, and case studies. Preparation and analysis of field notes and interview data.

SOC 334 Criminal Justice (3) Organization of criminal justice system in the United States and relations between its parts. Ideal versus actual roles of police, courts, and corrections in maintaining social control.

SOC 335/635 Political Sociology (3) Relationships between society and politics. Impacts of individuals, groups, parties, and institutions on state power in global perspective. Additional work required of graduate students.

SOC 343 The Deviance Process (3) Social processes that define behaviors or people as “deviant.” Theories of anomic and nonconforming behavior. Individual, interpersonal, and structural consequences of labeling and exclusion.

SOC/AAS 353 Sociology of the African American Experience (3) Theory and research of African American sociologists in the historical, social, and political context of American sociology. Relation of their work to the African American experience and its reception and impact in the public policy arena.

SOC 354 Gender, Militarism, and War (3) Militarism and war are examined by focusing on their relationship to gender. What does gender have to do with war? How do masculinity and femininity along with race work to create soldiers and enemies?

SOC/WGS 355 Sociology of Health and Illness (3) Conceptions of health and illness in society. The nature and organization of health professions and health delivery systems. Social aspects of health related behavior.

SOC 363 Urban Sociology (3) Influence of the urban way of life. Ecological and population structure and changes in the modern composite city and metropolitan region. Urban planning in relation to economic patterns, family, education, government, recreation, and religion.

SOC/WGS 364/664 Aging and Society (3) Current policy issues in an aging society. Health care, end-of-life, social security, productive aging, and generational equity. Special problems facing elderly women and minorities. Additional work required of graduate students.

SOC 367 Sociology of Sport (3) Sport and race. Class and gender. College sports. Inter-relationships among sport, media, and business/industry.

SOC 373 Sociology of Work (3) Meaning and significance of work for individuals and societies. Changing nature of work. Structures of work and the labor force. Occupational recruitment, socialization, mobility, and discrimination.

SOC 377 Class, Status, and Power (3) Structures, causes, and consequences of socio-economic inequalities in modern societies. Poverty and wealth, social mobility, and the persistence of inequality. Comparison and assessment of theories of social stratification.

SOC 397 Criminology (3) Nature and significance of crime. Historical and modern explanations of crime. Varieties of crime. Issues in measuring crime and assessing its effects. Evaluation of crime control strategies.

SOC 400 Selected Topics in Sociology (1-3)

SOC 406 Sociological Theory (3) Introduction to classic and contemporary theory in sociology. Relevance of theory to research and analysis of social issues.

SOC/AAS 410 Seminar on Social Change (3) Changes in African American communities or in the circumstances of African-Americans within a particular institutional arena. Movements to promote change and obstacles to change. Substantive focus varies.

SOC/AAS 413 There Goes the Neighborhood: US Residential Segregation (3) Chronicles patterns of racial residential segregation in the US by examining the methods that maintain racially distinct neighborhoods. Explores link between segregation and education, social mobility, health, and mortality.

SOC 415 Millennial Cities (3) Urbanization, economic development, population dynamics, and politics have been important topics in Sociology for more than a century.  This course provides a survey of dominant paradigms in Urban Sociology with a focus on global cities.

SOC/AAS 416 Race, Crime and Punishment (3) The multiple and complex relationships between race, the power to punish, and crime control policies and practice. Exploration of the theories of crime and punishment from classic to postmodern.

SOC/WGS/CFS 422 Work & Family in the 21st Century (3) The impact of paid work on families and of families on paid work.  The large-scale movement of mothers into the labor force, growing diversity in fathers' roles, and the impact of technology and globalization on employment opportunities across race and class.

SOC 423 Technology, Science & Society (3) How do technology and science shape and re-shape our experiences of 'self' and 'body'?  Our visions of 'nature'?  We will use history, theory, science fiction, art, and our sociological imaginations to explore these and other questions.

SOC/DSP 424 Representations of Ability & Disability (3) Representations of disability in autobiographical accounts and professional narratives, and implications of these representations for educational practice and policy.

SOC/WGS 425 Feminist Organizations (3) Women's movement history in the United States and internationally. Successes and problems of organizations built by feminist activism. Implications for a new generation of feminist (and other) activism. 

SOC 426 Social Issues & Deliberative Democracy (3) Examination of social issues and public policy through the process of public deliberation.  Implementation of scholarship in action through class projects involving community forums.  Social research, critique and analysis of public policy and social change.

SOC/AAS/WGS 427 New York City: Black Women Domestic Workers (3) Historical understanding of Black women's engagement in paid domestic work in the United States, increasing need for domestic workers in the ever-changing economy and family, and the social construction of Black women as "ideal" domestic workers.

SOC/DSP/WGS 432 Gender and Disability (3) This course will investigate the intersection of gender and disability and how it impacts such issues as representation/self-representation, art and poetry, illness, education, sexuality, reproduction and motherhood, and caring work.

SOC/WGS 433 Race, Class, and Gender (3) Intersection of oppression and privilege via socially constructed categories of "race", "class", and "gender". Racism, sexism, institutional authority, and multiculturalism.

SOC 434 Globalization and Social Change (3) How globalization is reshaping people's lives in the US and other societies. Causes, directions, consequences. Linking and standardization of patterns of consumption, culture, and production around the world.

SOC/WGS 435 Sexual Politics (3) Social construction of sex and sexuality. Formation and organization of sexual communities, of sexuality as a form or social control. Social issues related to sexuality.

SOC/DSP 438 Disability and Popular Culture (3) Explore representations of disability through the analysis of books, movies, television, cartoons, and journalism. It will examine how disability is portrayed by people with and without disabilities, and discuss influences on public perceptions of disability.

SOC/DSP 440 Sociology of Disability (3) A theoretical understanding of disability through the lens of sociology and that of disability studies and demonstrates how cultural institutions shape conceptions of disability in society.

SOC/NAT 441 Federal Indian Policy and Native American Identity (3) Shifts in Federal Indian Policy and the social constructions of American Indian identity. Identity struggles and identity politics in relation to blood and descent, community, land and sovereignty.

SOC/NAT 444 Contemporary Native American Movements (3) Sociological analysis of Native American movements from 1960's to the present. national and regional movements in relation to jurisdictional issues and human rights. Red Power and pan-Indian movements are considered.

SOC/AAS/WGS 445 The Caribbean: Sex Workers, Transnational Capital and Tourism (3) A political economy approach to educating students about the human and capital costs of tourism to the Caribbean. The integral relationship between sex work and Caribbean tourism exposes the region's development that has resulted in its current configuration.

SOC 446 The Social Impact of the Internet (3) Sociological implications of instantaneous communication, online publishing, identities and interactions, communities transcending geographic borders, and openly available information and opinion.

SOC 447 Social Change and Conflict in Modern China (3) Social and economic transformations in China in terms of social classes, cultural patterns, urban change, family patterns, ethnic tensions, and struggles over political rights. Questions of Taiwan and Tibet. How China's development affects the US.

SOC/QSX/WGS 456 LGBT Studies in Sociology (3) Recent sociological research in lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender studies addressing sexuality, identity, community, representation, politics, social change and their interrelations.

SOC 466 Organizations and Society (3) Nature and types of organizations and organizational processes. Dynamic relationships of organizations to societies and individual identities.

SOC 470 Experience Credit (1-6)

SOC 485 Collective Behavior and Social Movements (3) Spontaneous and self-consciously mobilized forms of group behavior such as crowd phenomena, fads and fashions, public opinion, cults, disasters, riots, social and political movements, and world revolutions.

SOC 490 Independent Study (1-6)

SOC 495 Senior Thesis (3) Students complete an independent, original research project in consultation with a Sociology faculty advisor and the undergraduate director. Data are collected, analyzed, and summarized. Students write a research paper and present at a departmental colloquium.

SOC 513 Statistics for Social Science (3) Designed for first-year graduate students and sociology majors considering graduate study. Measures of central tendency and dispersion, hypothesis testing, and indices of association between variables. Application of statistics to social science data. Prereq: Completion of quantitative skills or permission of instructor.