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Course Descriptions

SOC 1001: Human Origins
What have humans and their ancestors been doing the last five million years? What did we look like and how did we act 4 million years ago, 1 million years ago, and 20,000 years ago? Did our minds evolve, as well as our bodies? How do we know? Did different “races” of humans evolve? When was the “creative explosion” that turned our species into religious, symbolic artists? How and when did we spread around the world? What have been the consequences of farming and congregating in cities? What are some of the issues facing contemporary indigenous people? This course will draw on evolutionary theory, paleoanthropology, archaeology, linguistics and cultural anthropology to explore and answer these questions.
3 credits

SOC 1002: Cultural Anthropology
Humans are cultural creatures, and in this course we will take a broad yet integrative view of how humans shape, and are shaped by, the social and cultural systems they inhabit. We will first use anthropological perspectives to explore the culture concept, a brief history of cultural anthropology, language and culture, and the cultural construction of race. We will then examine the cross-cultural variety of types of subsistence, kinship, marriage and households, and gender roles. The second half of the course employs a more psychological or cognitive perspective to examine how culture helps form meaningful identities, memories, symbols, rituals, and senses of place.
3 credits

SOC 1003: Social Problems
This course covers sociological theory and research about pressing difficulties in contemporary American society, including: poverty, crime, political abuse, and economic elites.
3 credits

SOC 1011: Introduction to Sociology
This course provides the student with a basic understanding of the place sociology fills among the social sciences, its areas of concern, limitations, and methodology. The student is introduced to the sociological way of looking at human experiences.
3 credits

SOC 2001: American Minorities
This course acquaints the student with the social processes underlying the interaction of racial and ethnic minority groups in contemporary society. Special attention is given to several prominent minority groups in contemporary society.
3 credits

SOC 2003: Independent Study in Sociology I
In this course, students conduct independent reading, research, or other projects under the supervision of a faculty mentor. They must complete the Independent Study application before registering. Independent studies are necessarily subject to availability of a faculty mentor.
Prerequisite: Sophomore standing.
3-4 credits

SOC 2005: Women’s Studies
Women’s Studies uses an interdisciplinary approach to examining the experiences of women and their place in society. The course explores the meaning of sex and gender, gender role socialization, issues regarding women’s role and treatment in society, and the consequences for women. 3 credits

SOC 2007: Social Stratification
This course studies differentiation and ranking within societies. The theories of social stratification and the social processes by which inequality comes to be seen as legitimate, natural, or desirable will also be covered.
3 credits

SOC/WST 2013: Women Across Cultures
This course focuses on the status of women in various cultures, their needs and problems, priorities and potential. Different perspectives applicable to women’s lives and experiences are covered. Special emphasis is given to women in non-Western societies.
3 credits

SOC 2015: Special Topics in Sociology/Anthropology
This course will be offered upon sufficient demand provided an instructor is available. The topics covered will vary according to the preferences of students and instructor.
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.
3 credits

SOC 2023: Marriage & the Family
This course acquaints the student with basic family concepts, their origins and impact on contemporary American society. Consideration is also given to dating, courtship, marriage, alternative lifestyles, and the future of the family.
3 credits

SOC 3000: Practicum I
This course involves 60 hours of participation and observation in an off -campus institutional setting under close faculty supervision. Students will record observations in a daily journal, conduct a project- related to their work at the institution and write a formal paper describing their work and the institution. Students meet on a regular basis with faculty for guidance and on-going assessment. Final evaluation of faculty advisor will include an evaluation by the student’s on-site supervisor. Prior to registration for this course, the student must fill out an application and obtain the permission of a faculty supervisor.
3 credits

SOC 3001/ ENV 3021: Human Ecology
This course draws strongly on anthropology and ecology, as well as a variety of other disciplines, in order to study humans and human societies from ecological perspectives. We will examine both the benefits and difficulties associated with the application of ecological concepts to humans. Topics include human adaptation; continuity and change in human ecosystems; human epidemiology and infectious disease; and the role of symbolic cognition, politics and power, and globalization as they affect human ecosystems.
3 credits

SOC 3002: Social Theory
This course will cover the classical theorists, including Weber, Marx, Durkheim, Simmel, Cooley, and others. Prerequisite: Junior standing or permission of instructor.
3 credits

SOC 3003: Independent Study in Sociology/Anthropology II
In this course, students conduct independent reading, research, or other projects under the supervision of a faculty mentor. They must complete the Independent Study application form before registering. Independent studies are necessarily subject to availability of a faculty mentor.
Prerequisite: Junior standing.
3-4 credits

SOC 3009: Cultural Dimensions of Globalization
This course draws on social theory to investigate the cultural dimensions of globalization (the increasing transnational flow of capital, people, commodities, ideas, and ideologies). We will consider: definitions of globalization, its historical roots, the role of capitalism, diasporas, commodity chain analysis, cultural imperialism, identity and hybridity, ethnonationalism, hegemony and resistance, globalization and localization, and homogeneity versus fragmentation. We will use cultural anthropology in order to focus on how these trends and issues affect real people living real lives throughout the world. Student participation is essential.
Prerequisite: SOC 1002 Cultural Anthropology or permission of instructor.
3 credits

SOC 3010: Social Research I
This course provides an introduction to research design, measurement, and analysis including: survey and observational designs, operational definitions, reliability, validity, sampling, sampling distributions and confidence intervals, statistics of central tendency and variability, uses of the normal distribution and interpretation of other statistical distributions such as t, c2, and r. Basic elements of hypothesis testing will be studied. Students will use SPSS to analyze data sets and learn to present and interpret data in graphic form.
Prerequisite: ELA math completion or Level 4 math placement or permission of instructor.
4 credits

SOC 3011: Anthropology of Contemporary China
China is currently experiencing fascinating and complex changes. A socialist economy is transforming into a largely capitalistic one, affecting all levels of Chinese society. At the same time, deep cultural traditions and values are increasingly interacting with global forces in ways that are transforming peoples’ lives. In this course, we will therefore use the lens of cultural anthropology to examine how social and economic forces are effecting peoples’ everyday lives, including wealth and class, family and work life, internal migration, religious practice, gender roles and sexuality, national and ethnic identity, environmental issues, and ideologies of development and modernization. Students are expected to contribute actively through discussion, writing, and at least one presentation.
3 credits

SOC 3012: Social Research II
The second course in a two semester sequence, this course provides opportunities for student generated research projects which involve significant library research, the collection of data, and the production of a journal style paper in APA format. Experimentation, content analysis, and research ethics will be studied. Students will gain experience in the analysis of multivariate problems using correlation, regression, and analysis of variance with post hoc determinations. Students will use SPSS to analyze data sets and present summaries in graphic form.
Prerequisite: SOC 3010 Social Research I.
4 credits

SOC 3013: Third World Developments
This course examines recent international events with an emphasis upon Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America. It includes a contrast among Russian, Chinese, and Latin American communism as well as a contrast between Japanese and American capitalism. Prerequisite: Two SOC courses or permission of the instructor.
3 credits

SOC 3015: Special Topics in Sociology/Anthropology
This course will be offered upon sufficient demand provided an instructor is available. The topics covered will vary according to the preferences of students and instructor.
Permission of instructor.
3 credits

SOC 3016: Asian Art
The course represents an overview, across the ages, of how various oriental religions and cultures transformed their artistic impulses into distinctive forms of aesthetic expression. The course will explore not only painting, but also sculpture, architecture, and everyday (antique) objects. Historical, sociological, and anthropological insights will be applied to interpret common and divergent styles of art.
Prerequisites: at least one course in Sociology/Anthropology, Art, or Asian Studies, or permission of the instructor.
3 credits

SOC 3021: Social and Psychological Dimensions of Leisure
This course primarily examines the significance of play, recreation, and leisure throughout the life cycle relative to the individual’s attitudes, values, behaviors, and use of resources. Theories of social psychology pertinent to individuals in the recreation field are explored through the examination of applicable leisure practices and research.
Prerequisite: Junior standing or permission of the instructor.
3 credits

SOC/ELA 3022: Ethnoecology
Ethnoecology, with theoretical roots in cognitive science and environmental anthropology, investigates local, folk systems of knowledge pertaining to plants, animals, and ecological dynamics. Since the 1950s, ethnoecological case-studies around the world have demonstrated the internal coherence, complexity, and adaptiveness of indigenous systems of classification. While this is still a central goal, contemporary ethnoecologists also apply their findings to goals such as the conservation of biological diversity, rural development, sustainable use of common property resources, and negotiation of intellectual property rights. Ethnoecology has therefore also become politicized: we are now interested in how “native” systems of knowledge and behavior are embedded in systems of unequal distribution, access and power.

In this course, students will learn about the theoretical underpinnings and development of approaches to ethnoecology; become acquainted with case-studies from the Americas, Africa, Asia, and Australia; and become trained in basic ethnoecological methods and use them to produce a significant research project and present your findings.
3 credits

SOC 3023: Social Psychology
An examination of individual and group responses to social influence. Emphasis is on major theories, research methods, and current research topics in social psychology. This course may also be taken as Psychology 3023.
Prerequisites: SOC 1011 Introduction to Sociology or one 2000 level SOC or PSY course.
3 credits

SOC 3025: Ethnographic Field Methods
This is a hands-on methodology course for students interested in conducting ethnographic fieldwork, or the first-hand study of people in their everyday, cultural settings. We will explore critically the purposes, issues, ethics, and techniques of ethnographic fieldwork methodology through readings on fieldwork methods and by “doing ethnography.” Students will learn about research design, gathering data, analyzing data, and how to write up their conclusions. Throughout the course students will conduct a series of fieldwork exercises as they work toward completion of a longer, final ethnography.
Prerequisite: SOC 1002 Cultural Anthropology or permission of instructor.
3 credits

SOC 3032: Criminology
This course deals with the various aspects of crime and delinquency as well as the American criminal justice system. It will attempt to explain why people commit crimes, why society formulates laws, and how law breakers are dealt with. Some alternate solutions to the problems of crime will be considered.
Prerequisite: one SOC course or ELA 1023 Contemporary Social Issues or permission of instructor.
3 credits

SOC 3063: Independent Research I
With the assistance and advice of a faculty mentor, the student will investigate a topic or issue of particular interest using one of the methods in social research: e.g., survey, content analysis, experiment. The results of the research will be presented in a formal paper in the style of a journal article.
Prerequisite: PSY 3014/ SOC 3012 Social Research II or SOC 3025 Ethnographic Field Methods and permission of the instructor.
3 credits

SOC 4000: Practicum II
This course involves 60 hours of participation and observation in an off -campus institutional setting under close faculty supervision. Students will record observations in a daily journal, conduct a project related to their work at the institution and write a formal paper describing their work and the institution. Students meet on a regular basis with faculty for guidance and on-going assessment. Final evaluation by faculty advisor will include an evaluation by the student’s on-site supervisor. Prior to registration for this course, the student must fill out an application form and obtain the permission of a faculty supervisor.
Prerequisite: Junior standing and permission of instructor
3 credits

SOC 4003: Independent Research II
With the assistance and advice of a faculty mentor, the student will investigate a topic or issue of particular interest using one of the methods in social research: e.g., survey, content analysis, and experiment. The results of the research will be presented in a formal paper in the style of a journal article.
Prerequisite: SOC 3012 Social Research II or SOC 3025 Ethnographic Field Methods and permission of the instructor.
3 credits

SOC 4013: Senior Seminar
This course provides an opportunity for in-depth study, analysis, and discussion of issues in sociology and anthropology which are of special interest to students and faculty. It may be taken more than once for credit as the topic changes each year. It may also be taken by non-majors only with permission of the instructor.
Prerequisite: Junior or Senior Standing.
3 credits

SOC 4015: Special Topics in Sociology/Anthropology
This course will be offered upon sufficient demand provided an instructor is available. The topics covered will vary according to the preferences of students and instructor. This course will satisfy the requirement of course electives within the Division at the 4000 level. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.
3 credits

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