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Sociology Department The content below is information specific to this academic department's fields of interest.

Course Descriptions


101. The Sociological Perspective (3) provides an introduction to the traditions, concepts, and methods of social inquiry. Students examine such topics as culture, social interaction, deviance, inequality, and social change.

120. Perspectives in Multicultural Leadership (1) provides an opportunity for students to examine leaders in the community and identify their own strengths to assist others. Through service-oriented action, students come to a greater understanding of being socially responsible in a multicultural setting. Prerequisite: Completion of LEAP Workshop or permission of instructor.

216. Social Problems in Contemporary America (3) examines the origins and consequences of some of the major social problems and dilemmas facing Americans today. Behavior related to problems such as race, class and gender, chemical dependency, sexual variation, crime and the environmental crisis are studied from the sociological perspective.

270. American Corrections (3) uses a sociological perspective to examine the history, institutions, and practice of American corrections; specifically, issues of incarceration, probation, prisoner release, and criminal justice. Prerequisite:
101. See listing under Criminal Justice 366

301. American Society: Class and Culture (3) surveys some of the major theories and scholarly studies on social stratification, national power structure, and corporate culture. Prerequisite: 101 or 216

320. Racial and Cultural Minorities (3) examines the way in which certain groups in society are defined as minorities and subjected to discrimination. The social-psychological, historical, cultural, and sociological sources of prejudice and discrimination are covered as well as the dynamics of change in relations between dominant and minority groups. Prerequisite: 101

321. Social Psychology (3) examines psychological principles and concepts involved in causal attribution, social cognition, attitude formation and change, social influence, and interpersonal relationships. Prerequisite: Psychology 101 and one additional psychology course. See listing under Psychology 321

330. Human Sexuality (3) explores the social influences that impact concepts of sex, sexuality, reproduction and gender. Emphasis is placed on historical, political, global and technological issues. The course also includes fundamental instruction in reproductive anatomy and physiology. Prerequisite: Sociology 101

335. Social and Political Philosophy (3) considers theories of the nature and legitimacy of the state and its laws, the rights and responsibilities of citizens and groups, ethics in political decision-making economic justice, punishment, race and gender oppression, the nature and value of political and cultural identity, and the value and meaning of democracy. See listings under Philosophy 343, Political Science 343

342. Gender. Film, and Society (3) applies a sociological lens to gendered aspects f film and their socetal correlates. Prerequisite: 101.

345. Sociology of the Family (3) examines the various forms and functions of the family in the United States as well as other cultures. The developmental cycle of the family is followed through mate-selection, marriage, parenthood, and old age. Family change is also analyzed by covering such topics as industrialization and sex roles. Prerequisite: 101

350. Social Change in an International Perspective (3) focuses on the international aspects of social change such as the gap between the rich and poor countries, social movements in Third World countries, and the theoretical perspectives that illuminate and explain such change. Case studies are drawn from current events. Prerequisite: 101 or Anthropology 201

352. Selected Topics in Sociology (3) presents an opportunity to read and discuss in depth topics not covered or only partially covered in regular courses. Prerequisite: 101 or Anthropology 201

360. Social Research Methods (3) introduces the student to the research process through the analysis of research designs and the various methods of collecting data and of drawing inferences from that data. Emphasis is placed on practical experience in developing research skills. Prerequisite: 101 or Anthropology 201

369. Peacemaking (3) takes a multidisciplinary approach towards peacemaking. Moves back and forth between personal applications in one’s daily life on the one hand and more academic applications of the social sciences (sociology, anthropology, history, psychology and criminal justice) and humanities on the other. Emphasis on writing and class discussion.

370. Environmental Sociology (3) constructs a framework for the study of how cultures and societies influence and in turn are shaped by the natural environment Prerequisite: 101.

380. Visual Sociology (3) explores documentary filmmaking as a method of sociological research. Documentary filmmaking is of increasing interest to sociologists as an effective form of public sociology, activist sociology and sociology as a form of service learning that involves sociologists and students in community issues.

418. Deviance and Crime (3) surveys trends and theories of criminal behavior and crime control. Major emphasis is on the relationship between social and cultural patterns and deviant behavior. Prerequisite: 101, 216 recommended. See listing under Criminal Justice 418

422. Sociological Theory (3) offers a descriptive and analytical survey of intellectual traditions and trends in the discipline of sociology from its origin to the present. Prerequisite: 101

490. Round Table (1) encourages free and open conversation between students and faculty on sociological issues and applications. Graded S/U. Prerequisite: 15 hours in Sociology/Anthropology

495. Senior Studies (2) provides an opportunity for the student to engage in the groundwork for guided independent study on an approved topic. Prerequisite: 101 or Anthropology 201

496. Senior Studies (2) enables the student to complete a guided independent study on an approved topic. Prerequisite: 495


201. Cultural Anthropology (3) is an introduction to the basic concepts, theories, and methods of cultural anthropology. It deals with the origin, nature, and dynamics of culture, and provides a cross-cultural comparison of the ways of humankind.

352. Selected Topics in Anthropology (3) See Sociology 352.