Course Descriptions

Sociology and Criminology Courses

Faculty

Professors: James Chriss, Philip Manning (Chair),  Peter Meiksins, William R. Morgan; Professors Emeriti: William C. Bailey, Henry M. Barlow, Mareyjoyce Green, Sarah H. Matthews, Hans Nagpaul; Associate Professors: Dana L. Hubbard, Stephanie L. Kent, Robert Kleidman, Teresa LaGrange, Wendy Regoeczi, Rongjun Sun; Assistant Professors:  Miyuki Fukushima.

Course Descriptions

SOC 101 Introduction to Sociology (3-0-3). Introduction to the sociological perspective, forms of social relationships, groups, institutions, and societal organization. Required for majors. Return to top

SOC 201 Race, Class and Gender (3-0-3). Survey of major theoretical approaches to race, class and gender; examination of empirical evidence regarding the extent of these kinds of inequality, the ways in which they are produced and reproduced and their consequences. Attempts to overcome the harmful consequences of race, class, and gender inequality, both through the affirmation of identity and difference and through efforts to reduce and/or eliminate these forms of stratification will be reviewed. Return to top

SOC 201H Race, Class and Gender (4-0-4). Prerequisite: Honors standing or permission of university Honors Program. This course introduces students to major sociological approaches to the study of race, class and gender in contemporary American society. Students will survey the major theoretical approaches to race, class and gender and will examine empirical evidence regarding the extent of these kinds of inequality, the ways in which they are produced and reproduced, and their consequences. Consideration will also be given to the complex interaction among race, class and gender in American society. Return to top

SOC 203 Sociology of Poverty (3-0-3). Analysis of the evolution and significance of poverty in the United States, the characteristics of the poor and the experience of poverty, competing explanations for poverty, and evaluation of the impact of social policy on the poor and society as a whole. Return to top

SOC 210 Introduction to Sociology of the Third World (3-0-3). Explore the diversity of the Third World by examining the experiences of several specific countries and regions. Will consider the characteristics, problems, and dynamics they have in common. Special attention will be given to the origins of social conflict in the Third World and to the prospects for social change. Return to top

SOC 211 American Culture and Society (3-0-3). Prerequisite: SOC 101 or permission of instructor. Analysis of major social systems and dominant themes in contemporary American culture and society. Return to top

SOC 215 Black/White Interaction (3-0-3). Patterns of exploitation, survival, conflict, accommodation, and cooperation between white majority and black minority in a changing society. Return to top

SOC 250 Introduction to Criminology (3-0-3). This course provides an overview of the field of criminology, including an examination of the causes, types, and distribution of crime in American society. Students are also introduced to the major components of the criminal justice system. Explores the collection and interpretation of crime data and contemporary issues relating to crime. Return to top

SOC 260 Deviance in the United States (3-0-3). An examination of deviant behavior in American society. Topics covered are definitions and theories of deviance as well as various types of deviant behavior, including drug use and alcoholism, mental illness, crime, prostitution and other forms of sexual deviance. Return to top

SOC 280H Science, Technology and Society (4-0-4). Prerequisite: Honors standing or permission of university Honors Program. This course uses concepts and methods from the social sciences to explore the relationship between science and technology and society. How do culture and social structure affect the production of scientific and technical knowledge? How do scientific and technological developments affect society. Return to top

SOC 302 Women in Corporate America (4-0-4). Prerequisite: Written permission of instructor. Study of life course and mobility patterns of women managers in the private, public and nonprofit employment sector. Students are introduced to action research through participant observation. Each student has an on-site assignment with three female managers. Cross-listed with UST 320. Return to top

SOC 305 Urban Sociology (4-0-4). The study of metropolitan development and social life. Examines the role of economic, political, and cultural factors at the global, national, and regional levels. Explores the history of urban sociology and contemporary perspectives. Analyzes the process of social change at the metropolitan level. Return to top

SOC 310 Sociology of Marriage and Family (4-0-4). Prerequisite: SOC 101 or permission of instructor. The course focuses on contemporary issues in American family, including mate selection, marital communication, transition to parenthood, parenting, sexuality, extended kin, family disruptions, relationship between work and family, and the effects of changing gender roles. Return to top

SOC 311 Individual and Society (4-0-4). Interaction between the individual and society; and examination of the ways in which society impinges upon the individual's behavior, with special emphasis upon socialization, self-concept, attitudes, and social roles. Return to top

SOC 312 Sociology of Mental Illness (4-0-4). This course examines three central issues: our changing understanding of mental illness, the variety of approaches for the treatment of mental illness and the impact of social policy on the lives of the mentally ill. By combining historical, medical, and sociological perspectives, this course provides a broad introduction to the study of mental illness. The material is drawn primarily from the United States. Return to top

SOC 313 Sociology of Education (4-0-4). Education as socialization; the dual role of the school as change and conservation agent, characteristics of school populations, changing roles of private and parochial education, organization and structure of authority and decision-making processes in public and private schools. Return to top

SOC 314 Sociology of Sports (4-0-4). This course focuses on sports as social and cultural phenomena. Students will learn to use sociological concepts and critical thinking to discover how sports affect multiple spheres of our social life. The main focus will be on sports in the United States. Sports in other societies will be explored to help us better understand United States sports through comparison and contrast. Students will be encouraged to reflect on their own experiences as participants and spectators, and to connect these with larger social issues. Return to top

SOC 315 Population Problems (4-0-4). Sociological significance of population size, distribution, composition, and density; population and economic development; United States population data in relation to other major countries; programs of family planning; population policies. Return to top

SOC 316 Sociology of Aging (4-0-4). Critical analysis of the social status and participation of older persons in modern societies. Included topics such as theories of aging, demography, family ties, economic status, health-care delivery systems and long-term care, dying and death, and the U.S. as an aging society. Return to top

SOC 317 Sociology of Gender (4-0-4). Examines the significance of gender differences in the experiences of women and men in social institutions (such as family, education, economic, legal, political), the theoretical perspectives utilized to analyze these differences, and the effects of changing expectations on gender roles and identities. Return to top

SOC 318 Sociology of Childhood and Adolescence (4-0-4). Explores the place of children and youth in society by examining conceptions of children that guide adults' expectations of children and social policies, and how age, gender, ethnicity/race, and social class affect the way children are treated by one another and by adults in families, schools, and neighborhoods in Western societies. Return to top

SOC 319 Sociology of Religion (4-0-4). The course will present and compare/contrast major sociological theories of religion, examine historical and contemporary patterns of religious belief and participation, and the relationships between religion and other institutions including politics. The empirical focus will include both the contemporary United States and a comparative look at other societies. Return to top

SOC 320 Globalization (4-0-4) A comprehensive analysis of globalization including social, cultural, demographic, economic, and environmental issues. Key sociological concepts and theories informing this analysis include the meaning of globalization, the balance between flows and barriers, the roles of transnational corporations and political organizations, cultural differentialism, cultural hybridization, the impact of colonialism, and global inequality. Return to top

SOC 335 Drugs, Alcohol, and Crime (4-0-4). Course examines issues in licit and illicit drug use and alcohol misuse, their relationships to crime, and criminal justice system responses. Includes an overview of the history of drug use and related laws in the U.S., methods of studying alcohol and drugs, theories of drug use, and models in prevention and treatment. Return to top

SOC 341 Juvenile Delinquency (4-0-4). Examination of criminal and other forms of youthful misconduct in the context of the place of children and adolescents in American society. Particular emphasis placed upon the causes of various forms of delinquency and community-based prevention and corrective programs. Return to top

SOC 342 Sociology of Law (4-0-4). Society and law, foundations of law, legislation and judicial interpretation for regulating behavior, law and social change, the legal profession. Return to top

SOC 343 Medical Sociology (4-0-4). The role of social and cultural factors in health, research on the use of health services, the health professions, health-care organizations, and major issues in public policy and health care. Return to top

SOC 344 U.S. Criminal Justice Systems (4-0-4). Prerequisite: SOC 250. Course provides an overview of the development and function of the criminal justice system in the United States. Examines theories of justice and punishment; emergence and development of contemporary police and court systems; structure and functioning of corrections; corrections as a form of social control; and the roles of criminal justice personnel, including police, parole, and correctional officers. Return to top

SOC 345 Social Control (4-0-4). Course investigates the meaning of social control, both as a formal and an informal system of constraint. Offers a historical account of the emergence and development of the prison in both Europe and the United States. Considers competing historical accounts of the birth of the prison in addition to exploring contemporary issues concerning surveillance and the use of technology to exercise control over a modern, predominantly urban population. Return to top

SOC 346 Corporate and Governmental Deviance (4-0-4). Reviews the extent, types, causes and consequence of crime and deviant behavior both within and by organizations. The focus of the course is on sociological analysis of organizations and crime. Consideration is also given to various policy options designed to deter and/or punish organizational crime. Return to top

SOC 347 Sociology of Policing (4-0-4). Examines the roles of police in American society. Includes theories on the function of law enforcement; the history and development of modern police agencies; the structure and functioning of contemporary U.S. policing; and contemporary issues in policing including police discretion, use of force, and diversity. Course emphasizes a sociological understanding of police agencies as social institutions. Return to top

SOC 348 Sociology of Corrections (4-0-4). Examines the nature of punishment of criminal offenders in the United States. Major topics include competing perspectives on the goals of punishment; the social world of the prison, including prison subculture and prison violence; the organization of corrections and correctional administration; and the efficacy of imprisonment as a means of reducing crime, including an examination of the death penalty. Return to top

SOC 349 Women and Crime (4-0-4). Course provides an overview of issues surrounding women and crime, as offenders, victims, and criminal justice system professionals. Students will analyze changing social views of women and women's roles, and the impact of feminism and affirmative action policies. Topics will include theories on female crime; the implications of social class and race in female offending; the ways in which women are processed through the criminal justice system; patterns of female victimization; and the roles of women in law enforcement and corrections. Return to top

SOC 351 Criminological Theory (4-0-4). Prerequisite: SOC 250 or permission of instructor. Provides an overview and summary of classical and contemporary theories on conforming and deviant behavior. These theories help explain why some forms of behavior are defined as deviance in society, as well as why some members of society are more prone to such forms of behavior. This examination of prevailing theories helps us understand how society defines and creates deviance, and how people become deviant. Return to top

SOC 352 Sociological Theory (4-0-4). Prerequisite: SOC 101 or permission of instructor. Study of the work of the most important contributors to the development of sociology as an academic discipline. Required for Sociology majors. Return to top

SOC 354 Quantitative Sociological Research (4-0-4). Prerequisite: SOC 101 or permission of instructor. Introduction to the logic of quantitative data analysis, including measures of central tendency and dispersion, measures of association, and tests of significance for appropriate levels of measurement. Required for majors. Return to top

SOC 355 Race, Class and Crime (4-0-4). This course is designed to give students a multiracial and multiethnic view of crime and justice policies. Students will learn how race and class intersect with crime, criminological theories, and criminal justice policies. Students will understand the trends and patterns of crime associated with people of color and those living in poverty.Return to top

SOC 356 Database Management for Social Research (4-0-4). Prerequisite: SOC 354 or equivalent, or permission of instructor. Develop skills to access and manipulate machine-readable data files for social-science research, such as data from the U.S. Census Bureau and the General Social Survey. The course is a combination of lecture and lab with students learning by doing. Return to top

SOC 360 Sociology of Interpersonal Violence (4-0-4). A sociological examination of the topic of criminal violence, including approaches to and methods for studying violence, explanations of violent behavior, violence across different historical time periods and places, the social construction of violence, and violence prevention. Considers specific subtypes of violence and their control, such as robbery, sexual assault, intimate partner homicide, and serial killing. Return to top

SOC 380 Racial and Ethnic Inequality (4-0-4). Prerequisite: SOC 101 or permission of instructor. Historical antecedents and cross-societal comparisons of patterns of dominant and subordinate groupings based upon ethnic, cultural, and racial differentiations; patterns of interaction within and among these groups with special attention to prejudice and discrimination. Return to top

SOC 382 African American Communities (4-0-4). Analysis of the changing status of African American communities and their relationship to the class, status, and power structure of the larger community. Return to top

SOC 383 Political Sociology (4-0-4). Analysis of the nature, distribution, and effects of power in contemporary society. Study of the relationship between political, economic, and cultural institutions and power. Exploration of topics including the state, political parties, voting, and collective behavior and social movements. Return to top

SOC 388 Sociology of Work and Organization (4-0-4). Introduction to the sociology of work in contemporary society. Analysis of the meaning of work for men and women and of the different experiences of work in specific occupations. Topics covered include the organization of the workplace, the relationship between work and family, work and gender, and the effects of social policy on workers and employers. Return to top

SOC 389 Sociology of Non-Western Societies (4-0-4). An analysis of social behavior and organization in the emergent institutions of new nations outside the western hemisphere, as rooted in indigenous, colonial, and eastern cultural forms. Institutions to be examined include family, education, work, and religion, utilizing modernization and social conflict perspectives on societal change. Region to be studied will be listed in the semester course schedule. Return to top

SOC 390 Service Learning in Sociology and Criminology (4 to 8 credits). Prerequisites: Major or minor in Sociology, junior or senior standing, and 3.0 average in Sociology or Criminology. Exceptions with permission of department chairperson. Students will combine meaningful work at a public or private non-profit agency or organization that meets identified community needs, with sociological reflection and learning. In weekly seminar meetings, students will discuss their work and will learn about social, economic, and political dynamics of northeast Ohio, the range of approaches taken by community agencies to solving community problems, and related topics. Return to top

SOC 393 Special Topics in Sociology (4-0-4). Important current trends in sociology. Topics will be announced. May be taken twice for different topics, with departmental permission. Return to top

SOC 394 Special Topics in Criminology (4-0-4). Important current trends in criminology. Topics will be announced. May be taken twice for different topics, with departmental permission. Course counts as an elective for the Criminal Justice minor. Return to top

SOC 400 Capstone Course in Sociology and Criminology (4-0-4). Prerequisites: Sociology Majors: SOC 101, SOC 201, SOC 352, SOC 354 and senior standing; Criminology Majors: SOC 101, SOC 201, SOC 250, SOC 344, SOC 351, SOC 354 and senior standing. This course uses the explication of research methods to provide a capstone experience to Sociology and Criminology majors. Students integrate and extend knowledge and skills gained through previous courses to deepen their understanding of how social science knowledge is produced by writing a research paper/proposal. Required for majors. Return to top

SOC 455 Ethnographic Research Methods (4-0-4). Prerequisites: Major or minor in Sociology, completion of required core courses for major or minor, junior or senior standing, and 3.0 average in Sociology. Exceptions with permission of instructor. Collecting, analyzing, and writing research reports based on qualitative data (field notes, transcripts of intensive interviews, and archives) about an organization or setting. Ethical obligations to host organizations and to the research community. Simultaneous enrollment in SOC 490 advised. Return to top

SOC 490 Sociology Internship (4-0-4). Prerequisites: A major in Sociology, completion of required courses for major or minor, junior or senior standing, and 3.0 average in the major. Permission of Internship Coordinator required. Written application must be submitted to the Internship Coordinator no later than six weeks before the start of the semester during which the student will be enrolled in the Internship. Course consists of field placement in public or private non-profit agencies that combine work experience, typically unpaid, with academic research and analysis. Requires a minimum of 10 hours per week on-site at the internship agency. Work expectations for each intern are contracted with instructor and placement supervisor. Regular meetings with instructor, weekly submission of work logs, readings as assigned, and final paper required. May be repeated for up to 8 credit hours. Return to top

SOC 491 Criminology Internship (4-0-4). A major in Criminology or Sociology or minor in Criminal Justice, completion of required courses for major or minor, junior or senior standing, and 3.0 average in the major. Permission of Internship Coordinator required. Written application must be submitted to the Internship Coordinator no later than six weeks before the start of the semester during which the student will be enrolled in the Internship. Course consists of field placement in criminology related and criminal justice settings that provide firsthand experience and knowledge of careers in the area, including probation, parole, policing, juvenile and adult court systems, corrections and treatment programs. Requires a minimum of 10 hours per week on-site at the internship agency. Work expectations for each intern are contracted with instructor and placement supervisor. Regular meetings with instructor, weekly submission of daily internship logs, readings as assigned and final paper required. May be repeated for up to 8 credit hours. Return to top

SOC 496 Independent Readings in Sociology (1 to 4 credits). Prerequisites: Senior standing, major in sociology and instructor's permission. Faculty-supervised and directed selected readings in areas of special interest to the student. May be repeated for credit for a maximum of 8 credit hours. Return to top

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