Department of Sociology


SOC 302 • Intro To Study Of Society-Hon

44600 • Haghshenas, Mehdi
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM RLP 0.108
SB
show description

This introductory sociology course is specifically developed for the honor students to mindfully examine the connection between personal experiences and the social structure. The course will explore how social forces in society influence our behavior and shape our thoughts. After all, we are the product of our society and vice versa. Students will be introduced to the basic concept of micro/macro sociological analysis, sociological imagination, mindfulness, and principles of sociological reasoning.  Many societal issues will also be examined through the application of classical theories and sociological perspectives. As we journey through the course, the students will become more familiar with the nature of sociology and its development; the social construction of reality; and concepts such as culture, socialization, social structures, social interaction, self and society, bureaucracy, creativity, and work, social stratification, gender inequality, family structure and relationships. Finally, we will explore the sociology of health, medicine, and the mind-body connection. The course is mainly designed to make the learning process more interactive and give students a better foundation and feedback for their subsequent coursework in social science and in the liberal arts. The course will: a) create an environment that encourages active participation, group interaction, and discussion in the learning process; b) actively encourage critical thinking through mindfulness and sociological imagination; c) use different techniques in the teaching and learning process to develop a deeper understanding of social-psychological reasoning, and d) I will also assess and evaluate your work and give timely feedback.

 

Required Text: James M. Henslin.2020. Sociology:  A Down to Earth Approach

Reading Packet.

 

Gradings:

Exams- 60%

Course project- 24%

Group workshops- 12%

Quiz- 4%


SOC 302 • Intro To The Study Of Society

44605-44690 • Fulton, Kelly
Meets MW 12:00PM-1:00PM BUR 106
SB
show description

This course may be used to fulfill the social and behavioral sciences component of the university core curriculum and addresses the following four core objectives established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board: communication skills, critical thinking skills, empirical and quantitative skills, and social responsibility.

Overview

How are our individual choices shaped by society? How do our choices help shape society? These are two primary questions we will address in Introduction to the Study of Society. The sociological imagination will be one of our primary tools as we explore society and our place within it. Since we are studying society and therefore ourselves, opportunities to use our sociological imaginations are all around us – in everything from our everyday interaction to global events.

The first part of the course explores some of the ways sociologists view society, and also how we study the social world. In addition, we will examine culture, socialization, and the construction of reality.

The second part of the course focuses on inequalities. Stratification takes many forms; we will explore social class, race and gender. During these segments we will pay particular attention to inequalities within the institutions of families and education.

The primary objectives for this course are:

  • To become familiar with major concepts, theories and methodologies of In other words, you will know how to answer the question “What is sociology?”
  • To learn several different theories of understanding society and be able to apply them to groups within our
  • To continue to develop and hone critical thinking skills by participating in class discussions and other group activities and completing writing assignments that require
  • To develop your sociological

Required Texts and Material

  • Conley, Dalton. 2017. You May Ask Yourself: An Introduction to Thinking Like a Sociologist, Core 6th New York: W.W. Norton and Company.
  • You May Ask Yourself InQuisitive – if you purchase a hard copy book there will be a code If you purchase the electronic version of the textbook, it will come with InQuisitive.
  • Additional readings posted on

Books available at the Co-op on Guadalupe. You may also purchase or rent your books from other vendors.

REQUIREMENTS

Students are expected to keep up with the required readings, attend lectures and discussion

sections, take notes in class, and participate in group discussions and exercises. You will have three closed-book exams that together will constitute 85% of your final grade (Exam 1 = 30%, Exam 2 = 35%, Exam 3 = 20%). Attendance and active participation in your discussion section is required and will account for 15% of your final grade.

GRADING POLICY

Exam 1 30%

Exam 2 35%

Exam 3 20%

Attendance and participation 15%

Extra credit up to 2%


SOC 302 • Intro To The Study Of Society

44695-44744 • Haghshenas, Mehdi
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:00PM BUR 106
SB
show description

This sociology class is designed to understand how social forces shape our behavior and what our role is in influencing the society’s structure. In the process, we will cover the science of sociology and its relevance to everyday life. During the course, the students will be introduced to the basic concept of sociological imagination, mindfulness, and principles of sociological reasoning. Many societal issues will be examined through the practice of classical theories and sociological perspectives. As we journey through the course, the students will become more familiar with the nature of sociology, social construction of reality, micro and macro sociological analysis, and concepts such as: culture, socialization, social structures, self and society, stratification, gender inequality, sociology of health and medicine, love, marriage, and divorce. In this course, we will: a) create an environment that encourages active participation and group interaction in the learning process; b) actively encourage critical thinking through mindfulness and sociological imagination; c) use interactive techniques in the teaching and learning process to develop a deeper understanding of social-psychological reasoning, and d) we will assess and evaluate your work and give timely feedback.

 

Required Text: James M. Henslin.2020. Sociology:  A Down to Earth Approach

 

Gradings:

Exam-  66%

Quizzes - 10%

Class participation-  24%.


SOC 302P • Physical Activity/Society

44745 • Twito, Samuel
Meets MWF 9:00AM-10:00AM RLP 0.102
CD (also listed as H S 310P)
show description

The principal objective of Physical Activity in Society is to understand the way in which people are physically active in a social context.  We will examine how physical activity is influenced by social forces including cultural, economic, historical, and demographic factors.  The course examines physical activity on both the individual and population levels to better understand the benefits and barriers to activity in society.

 

COURSE OBJECTIVES

By the end of this course, students will be able to:

  • Analyze contemporary issues in physical activity from a variety of disciplinary and professional perspectives.  

  • Understand physical activity on both the personal/individual level as well as the population level. 

  • Critically evaluate (and convey through writing) the assumptions, motives, and evidence that individuals and groups use in discussing physical activity. 

  

COURSE ASSIGNMENTS AND EVALUATION

Specific details on assignments are available on Canvas.  Due dates are on the course calendar (p. 3). Unless otherwise noted, all assignments are due at 11:59PM on Sundays via Canvas.  Late assignments will lose 5 points per 24 hours. See assignment extension on p. 7.  Please contact me as soon as possible if there are conflicts with assignments or if you need help.


Activity Selection (5%)

Choose a physical activity of any kind to research this semester.  Choose a physical activity you currently participate in.  Explain why you chose your activity through the assignment in Canvas.


Activity Observation/Reflection (20%)

An integral part of this class is two observation and/or reflection assignments of the physical activity you have chosen. You will collect data and analyze materials in a physical activity of your choice - sports, dance, exercise, walking, gardening, cycling, etc.  These observations and reflections are the foundation for your final paper.


Quizzes (15%)

Each Sunday you will have timed open-book quizzes about the week’s readings and lecture content.  You will need to complete seven out of fourteen quizzes.


Exams (25%)

There will be two non-cumulative open-book exams covering lecture and the readings.


Annotated Bibliography (5%)

An annotated bibliography is due prior to your final paper.


Final Project (30%)

The semester’s work will culminate in a project wherein you combine your activity observation/reflections with scholarly sources you find to create a larger narrative about how your physical activity functions in society.


Grade Disputes: Any dispute of any grade from assignments, exams, or papers must be made within one week of the grade being posted or it will not be considered.  Please reach out to us early if there are any problems with completing assignments


Overall semester averages will earn the following letter grades: 

93-100: A 90-92:  A-

87-89:   B+ 83-86:  B 80-82:  B-

77-79:   C+ 73-76:  C 70-72:  C-

67-69:   D+ 63-66:  D 60-62:  D- 0-59.9:  F


Course grades will be assigned strictly according to this scale, rounded to the nearest whole number (so 92.4 earns an A-, not an A; 89.5 earns an A-, not an B+).


SOC 307K • Fertility And Reproduction

44748 • Carroll, Caitlin
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM RLP 0.102
CDGC SB (also listed as WGS 301)
show description

Description:

Why do birth rates rise and fall?  How can the U.S. have both record rates of childlessness as well as the highest rates of teen childbearing and unwanted pregnancy in the industrialized world?  Why does educating women lower birth rates faster than any population control program in the Third World?  This course will explore when, why, how, and with whom Americans bear children, and how we compare to other developed and developing countries in the world.  We will explore infertility and its treatments, the ethics of surrogacy, voluntary childlessness, the rapid rise of nonmarital childbearing in the U.S. and other countries, the politics of childbirth and risks of maternal mortality in developed and developing countries, and the declining populations and rapid aging  of  rich countries including Japan, Italy, and Spain where women have basically stopped having children. 

Texts:  Available at Coop

Liza Mundy, Everything Conceivable, NY: Anchor Books, 2007

Michelle Goldberg, Means of Reproduction , NY: Penguin Bookds, 2010

Grading and Rrequirements:

Two opinion essays: 30%

Midterm exam:       40%

Final exam:             20%

Class participation: 10%


SOC 308D • Ethncty & Gender: La Chicana

44750 • Rosas, Lilia
Meets MWF 10:00AM-11:00AM BIO 301
CD SB (also listed as MAS 311, WGS 301)
show description

Among the many catalysts that centralized the narratives of Chicanas into the discourse the U.S. Southwest/Mexican Borderlands, the 1971 La Conferencia de Mujeres por la Raza in Houston inspired how Chicanas/Xicanas, xicanindias, mestizas, indigenous, Mexican American, and brown women defined themselves, asserted their roles and identities, and shared their stories. This course privileges the stories, struggles, contestations, imaginations, writings, and accomplishments of Chicanas in the United States in the mid-twentieth and early twentieth-first centuries. Through a close examination of literature, and attention to historical and theoretical materials, we will create a growing understanding of the significance of gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, class, language, spirituality, and citizenship in affecting the daily lives and social worlds of Chicanas. By end of the semester, we will also gain a complex insight into the importance of how Chicana feminism, Xicanisma, intersectionality, migration, borders, and community are formative in the Chicana experience(s).

 


SOC 308D • Ethncty & Gender: La Chicana

44755 • Rosas, Lilia
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM BIO 301
CD SB (also listed as MAS 311, WGS 301)
show description

Among the many catalysts that centralized the narratives of Chicanas into the discourse the U.S. Southwest/Mexican Borderlands, the 1971 La Conferencia de Mujeres por la Raza in Houston inspired how Chicanas/Xicanas, xicanindias, mestizas, indigenous, Mexican American, and brown women defined themselves, asserted their roles and identities, and shared their stories. This course privileges the stories, struggles, contestations, imaginations, writings, and accomplishments of Chicanas in the United States in the mid-twentieth and early twentieth-first centuries. Through a close examination of literature, and attention to historical and theoretical materials, we will create a growing understanding of the significance of gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, class, language, spirituality, and citizenship in affecting the daily lives and social worlds of Chicanas. By end of the semester, we will also gain a complex insight into the importance of how Chicana feminism, Xicanisma, intersectionality, migration, borders, and community are formative in the Chicana experience(s).

 


SOC 308S • Intro To Health & Society

44760 • Osbakken, Stephanie
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM WCH 1.120
CD SB (also listed as H S 301)
show description

Welcome to HS 301/SOC 308S! The principle objective of this course is to offer students a broad overview of health and illness in society from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. We will examine how social forces influence patterns of health and disease in U.S. society, considering how economic, political and structural factors shape morbidity and mortality rates, and public health policy in the U.S. We will also explore how ingrained cultural beliefs, such as racial/ethnic and gendered biases, among others, shape public perceptions of morality and public health policies. Finally, we will explore how social forces shape the very definitions of health, illness, and disease categories, and thereby medical diagnoses and treatments, and the experience of illness in U.S. society. To this end, our course readings and discussions will help us address current bioethical controversies that continue to influence our beliefs about health and illness and shape our very understandings about human rights and personhood. Our journey this term will be rigorous, but exciting! By the end of the semester you will be able to confidently recognize and analyze all of the social forces that shape health and illness in U.S. society.

For those students pursing the Health and Society major in the College of Liberal Arts, this course is required. For others, this course can be used to fulfill the social and behavioral sciences component of the university core curriculum and addresses the following four core objectives established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board: communication skills, critical thinking skills, empirical and quantitative skills, and social responsibility. This course also carries a cultural diversity flag.

COURSE OBJECTIVES

By the end of this course, students will be able to:

  • Analyze contemporary health issues from a variety of disciplinary and professional perspectives.
  • Explain how one’s social location, the media, and economic forces shape health behaviors and outcomes.
  • Explain how social and cultural factors shape contemporary understandings and experiences of health and illness and death and dying in the U.S.
  • Critically evaluate the assumptions, motives, and evidence that individuals and groups use to make specific claims about health and illness.

READINGS AND OTHER COURSE MATERIALS

Course readings consist of scholarly journal articles, book chapters, timely news articles, blog posts, and other social media posts related to health and illness. Unless otherwise indicated, these are all available on Canvas, under the Files tab, organized in folders by class day. Please read and watch all assigned course materials before arriving to class any given day. Most readings are listed below and 3 posted on Canvas early in the term, but I am likely to add additional short, newsworthy articles on health and illness that occur during the term. You’ll also find that I have assigned several TED Talks and other online videos too. Finally, near the end of the semester we’ll read one book that you are responsible for purchasing or borrowing from the library—any edition is fine. It is listed below.

Gawande, Atul. 2014. Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End. New York: Metropolitan.

GRADING AND EVALUATION OVERVIEW

Your final course grade will be calculated as follows:

  • Squarecap responses = 10%
  • Exam #1 = 25%
  • Exam #2 = 25%
  • Exam #3 = 25%
  • Reading Responses = 15%

Total 100%


SOC 309C • Creating Sustainable Socty

44765 • Swearingen, William
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM RLP 0.128
E SB (also listed as GRG 309C)
show description

Description:

The course will offer students an overview of sustainability as something human beings must strive to create in an era of global warming and ever greater social inequalities; both between countries and within countries.   The focus of the course will revolve around the core issues of sustainability: what does sustainability mean?  Why do we need to remake human societies in more sustainable ways?  And what does social equity have to do with sustainability?  One of the problems we have in teaching about sustainability today is our focus on two of the "E's" without much attention to the third. We talk mostly about Environment, secondly about Economy, and then tend to pay short shrift to Equity.  This course will address all three, but put a greater focus on Equity than is usual.  The course will be taught from a social sciences perspective, which approaches human relationships with the natural world (Environment) in the context of their relationships with each other (Environment and Equity).  Global warming (environment) is main reason we are talking about Sustainability today, but global warming is both cause and effect of our economies and inequalities.

Required Texts

Carolan, Micheal,  Society and the Environment; Pragmatic Solutions to Ecological Issues. Westview Press, 2013.

Grading Policy

There will be three essay assignments and one group project.  Each will count 25% of the grade


SOC 317L • Intro To Social Statistics

44780 • Lin, Ken-Hou
Meets MWF 12:00PM-1:00PM RLP 1.404
QR MA
show description

Description:

This course presents a general overview of the statistical methods used in the social sciences. While it’s important that you gain an understanding of the mathematical concepts behind the statistical analyses, it is of even greater importance that you leave this course with a conceptual and rational understanding of today’s most commonly used (and useful) statistical methods.

Truth claims made with statistics are abundant and often have the quality of facts in U.S. social and political life. Unfortunately, because many people do not understand the statistics undergirding these claims, they receive less scrutiny than they deserve. It is my primary goal to ensure that students learn the basic statistical literacy they need to be smart consumers of information. Our increasing reliance on statistics to understand the social world means that statistical and analytic skills are marketable skills. In fact statistics is one of very few classes that sociology majors take that provides them with concretely marketable skills. I believe that giving undergraduates a solid understanding of statistics is a way of democratizing knowledge and its production. In teaching statistics my goals are:

  •   To demystify statistics so that every student can be a smart consumer of quantitative information.

  •  To teach students to think sociologically with and about quantitative information.

  • To provide students with a solid foundation of quantitative and computing skills that could serve

    as assets in subsequent employment and academic settings.

  •   To demonstrate to students that learning statistics has practical applications outside of the       classroom in everyday life.

Texts:

Salkind, Neil J.. 2012. Statistics for People Who (Think They) Hate Statistics: Excel 2010 Edition. 3rd Edition. SAGE Publications. 

Grading and Reqirement:

I will use a non-competitive grading scale. In other words, the grade you receive will not depend on how well others have performed in class. You can earn a maximum of 115 points in this class. Your grade will be based on your mastery of each of the required tasks in the class. The grading scale for the final course grade is as follows: 115-94=A; 90-93=A-; 87-89=B+; 83-86=B; 80-82-B-; 77-79=C+; 73-76=C; 70-72=C-; 67- 69=D+; 63-66=D; 60-62=D-; 59 & below=F.

I do not give incomplete and will not change the final grade for whatever reason. You have plenty of opportunities to do well in this class. Use them.

If you receive a final grade of B+ or higher, I will write a personal recommendation for you in the future, stating that you have significant quantitative and computing skills.CLASS & LAB ATTENDANCE 10 PTS

As will be addressed later in detail, you have two free absences you can choose. However, I’d recommend you to use them only for emergencies. More than two absences will affect your class attendance grades negatively.


SOC 317L • Intro To Social Statistics

44770 • Powers, Daniel
Meets MWF 10:00AM-11:00AM RLP 0.128
QR MA
show description

This is an introductory course in statistics for undergraduates covering descriptive and inferential statistics. Descriptive statistics involves organizing and summarizing important characteristics of the data.  Statistical inference involves making informed guesses about unknown characteristics of a population based on known characteristics of a sample. This course aims to equip students with the necessary skills for understanding and using a range of statistical techniques that can be applied to real-world problems.

Required Text:

  1. Stinerock (2018) Statistics with R: A Beginner’s Guide. Sage Publications ISBN-978-1-4739-2490-1

Course Requirement:

Exams: There will be three in-class examinations graded on a 100-point scale.  Roughly 70% to 80% of the points on the examinations are accounted for by problems requiring the student to work toward a solution, with the remainder accounted for by true/false and short answer questions.  Examinations will be based entirely on topics covered in lectures. In-class examinations are non-cumulative; they cover only the material since the previous exam. Students must take all exams to pass the course. Make up exams will be given only in the case of documented emergencies or illness.

Homework: There will be four homework assignments worth a total of 200 points. Homework problems are designed to enhance learning of key concepts and applied statistical methods. Homework must be received in class no later than the dates indicated. Students can receive extra credit by completing optional computer exercises.

In-Class Assessments: There will be approximately 20 in-class exercises carried out at various points during the course to assess understanding of current topics. These will count 100 points towards the total grade.


SOC 320C • Cancerland

44790 • Osbakken, Stephanie
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM WCP 5.102
CDWr (also listed as H S 340)
show description

This course has several objectives. First, students will learn to step beyond their personal understandings of cancer to cultivate a more sociological and analytical approach to understanding this complex disease. By the end of the term, students will be able understand the cultural and structural forces that shape the occurrence, treatment, and experience of cancer in the U.S. The second goal of this course is to develop students’ writing skills. Through various writing assignments, students will cultivate an effective argumentative writing style as they critically evaluate cancer research and the social factors that influence how the disease is understood, treated, and depicted in popular culture. Students will spend considerable time honing their own writing, learning about the importance of revisions as they engage in rigorous edits of their peers’ work. The peer review process not only familiarizes students with basic editing skills, but also encourages collaboration and teamwork. Finally, by acting as a codiscussant once during the term, students will gain experience and confidence leading a discussion on a course topic of their choice.

COURSE MATERIALS

Course materials include various articles and book chapters and video links, most of which are available on Canvas. Please note that I reserve the right to remove, add or substitute assigned materials. There are also two required books for the course.

  • Mukherjee, Siddhartha. 2010. The Emperor of all Maladies: A Biography of Cancer. New York: Simon and Schuster.
  • Kalanithi, Paul. 2016. When Breath Becomes Air. New York: Random House.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS AND EVALUATION

To successfully complete this course, you must read all assigned texts before each class, attend and participate regularly, co-facilitate a discussion once during the term, complete and submit assignments on time, and present on your research topic at the end of the semester.

Attendance (5%)

Attendance is mandatory in a discussion-based, writing intensive class. You can miss two classes without penalty during the term. Absences #3, #4 will result in a 10-point deduction from this portion of your grade and a loss of participation points for the day. For absences #5 and beyond, I will deduct 10 points from your final course grade for each additional absence.

Participation (20%)

Students are expected to have read all assigned readings before each class period and participate actively and respectfully in class. Students are also required to regularly respond to blog-post prompts on our discussion board. There will be a total of 16 prompts posted, and you will need to 3 thoughtfully respond to at least 12 prompts during the semester. It is also a good idea to write your own questions on the readings. Come to class willing to share your questions and actively participate in our discussions.

Leading Discussion (10%)

Students will be asked to co-facilitate a discussion once during the semester. I will pass around a sign-up sheet on 1/28 so you have plenty of time to plan with your co-discussant. I will also discuss my evaluation guidelines in advance so that you are aware of my expectations. Your attendance on the date you are leading discussion is MANDATORY.

Paper #1 (10%)

Students will write a 2-3 page (double-spaced) short paper. 

Paper #2 First draft (15%)

Students will write a 5-page paper (double-spaced) that applies course concepts and theories to an analysis of a specific social or cultural issue relating to cancer research or treatment.

Peer Review Reports (5%) Students will provide peer-review feedback for Paper #2. This will entail providing marginal comments and also writing a one-page peer review report for two or three of your studentcolleagues. I will distribute detailed guidelines about this process.

Paper #2 Revised Draft (20%)

After receiving my feedback, you will revise Paper #2 and resubmit it.

Paper # 3 (15%)

Students will write a 5-page paper (double-spaced) that applies course concepts and theories to a social or cultural issue relating to the experience of cancer.

Overall semester averages will earn the following letter grades:

  • 93-100: A
  • 90-92.9: A
  • 87-89.9: B+
  • 83-86.9: B
  • 80-82.9: B
  • 77-79.9: C+
  • 73-76.9: C
  • 70-72.9: C
  • 67-69.9: D+
  • 63-66.9: D
  • 60-62.9: D-
  • 0-59.9: F

SOC 320K • Political Sociology

44795 • Charrad, Mounira
Meets TTH 5:00PM-6:30PM RLP 0.122
Wr (also listed as GOV 355P)
show description

Writing Flag 

Course Description:

This course surveys classical theories and major contemporary debates in political sociology.  It is designed to provide students with a general understanding of the different theoretical perspectives on the study of power and politics. The empirical focus of the course includes the US and other countries and the approach is comparative.  We consider issues such as state building, nations, civil society, political parties, elites, social movements, protest, and democracy.  We discuss recent developments both in the US and internationally. Students use major theories and concepts in Political Sociology to analyze these events.

Course Requirements and Grading Policy

Students are encouraged to take an active role in discussing readings and raising questions.  I expect students to attend class and to complete the assigned readings prior to coming to class.  This is a Writing Flag course that involves writing papers, revising them, and giving comments to your peers on their writing.  Course requirements include one position paper and 2 papers, a team presentation and participation in class discussions. Grading is as follows: Position Papers (500 words): 15%; Paper no. 1 (750 words):  20%; Paper no. 2 (1200 words):  40%; Team presentation: 10%; Class participation: 10 %; Peer review of papers: 5%.  

Papers are evaluated in terms of quality of research, depth of thought, strength of argument, and clarity of expression (i.e., writing style).  Presentations are done in teams.

Text/Readings:

Karl Marx, Communist Manifesto, On line at UT Library

Tocqueville, Democracy in America.  On line at UT Library. Author’s Introduction, chs. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8. 

Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism.  One Line at UT library.  Preface, Intro, chs 1, 2, 4 a. 

Dan Smith, The State of the World Atlas.  10th ed. Penguin. 2021

  1. M. Charrad, States and Women’s Rights:  The Making of Postcolonial Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco. Berkeley:  Univ of California Press, 2001 (SWR)

Articles, TBA.

Audiovisuals: Audiovisuals are an integral part of the course. They are used to cover current events.


SOC 321G • Global Health Issues/Systems

44805 • Jeon, Jiwon
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM RLP 0.118
GCWr
show description

This course provides an overview of global health challenges in the world today. It is essential to understand the links between health, education, poverty, and development with an appreciation of the values, beliefs, and cultures of diverse groups. The first half of the course will review critical global health issues from biosocial, cultural and environmental perspectives. A biosocial approach to global health equity is the underlying theme. The second half of the course will review various health systems in the World Health Organization geographic regions and will compare and contrast the various regions, as well as countries within regions, with regard to the specific health challenges they face.

This course carries both the Writing flag and Global Cultures flag. We will use writing to improve critical thinking skills and understanding of global health issues as well as to improve upon the ability to formulate ideas with an emphasis on the ASA writing style. In this class, you can expect to write regularly during the semester, complete substantial writing projects, and receive feedback from your instructor to help you improve your writing. You will also have the opportunity to revise one or more assignments, and you may be asked to read and discuss your peers’ work. Global Cultures courses are designed to increase your familiarity with cultural groups outside the United States. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from writing assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one non-U.S. cultural group. This course may be used to fulfill the social and behavioral sciences component of the university core curriculum and addresses the following four core objectives established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board: communication skills, critical thinking skills, empirical and quantitative skills, and social responsibility.

Course Objectives

  1. Describe global health issues, trends, and policies
  2. Understand how population growth, disease, environmental changes, and economic and political activities impact global health
  3. Assess and analyze global health program interventions and their impacts
  4. Compare and contrast health issues and policies between economically developed countries and developing countries
  5. Synthesize findings to highlight common patterns and unique differences in health challenges between and within major world regions

SOC 321K • Race, Science And Race Science

44810 • Reece, Robert
Meets MW 2:30PM-4:00PM RLP 1.102
CDWr
show description

Description:
This course is designed to explore the broad history of how race has shaped the development
of science in the United States from the 1800s to the present, including medical treatments,
diagnostic criteria, technological developments, and business ventures. We will examine how
people of color suffered experimental practices that furthered medical science in particular (such
as birth control experiments in Puerto Rico), and through a reading of defunct theories of
inherent racial difference, we will examine how an obsessive focus on biological ideas of race
stunted scientific progress. Moreover, we will examine how ideas built on racial difference
shaped how Americans viewed their bodies and science (such as how the early weight loss
industry targeted white Americans). Finally, we will discuss the reemergence of old ideas about
racial difference through industries such as genetic ancestry testing and pharmaceutical use of
racialized medicine.

Required Texts
Fatal Invention by Dorothy Roberts
The Social Life of DNA by Alondra Nelson
Fearing the Black Body by Sabrina Strings
Medical Bondage by Deirdre Cooper Owens

Grading Policy
Students will be graded based on short weekly response papers that evaluate their critical
understanding of that week’s texts, a mid-term research paper on a relevant topic of their choice
where they will be given in-depth feedback on their writing and analysis in preparation for a final
term paper and an accompanying in-class presentation.


SOC 321L • Sociology Of Education

44820 • Carroll, Jamie
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM RLP 1.108
Wr (also listed as AFR 321L, WGS 345)
show description

DESCRIPTION:

We all have many years of experience in schools and we know what happens in schools. Do schools provide opportunities for people to have a better life? Are schools an equalizer? Are they failing? This course is designed to challenge and think critically about what we think we know about schools and education. We will study sociological research on what schools do, for people, for communities, and for our society. We will consider how people of different social class, race and ethnicity, gender, and disability statuses interact with schools and how inequality in achievement comes about. And we will question what policies might improve schools. The course objective is to better understand the role of education as a social institution and how it contributes to and reduces social inequality.

The course objectives are to use sociological principles and empirical research to:

• Understand schooling and education. What do schools do and how do they do it?
• Analyze how education both contributes to and reduces social inequality.
• Understand the roles that education plays in society. We will consider these roles of education in a historical context and how they have and haven’t changed over time.
• Critically evaluate which school practices and policies contribute to (1) learning among students from different socio-demographic subgroups and (2) exacerbating and reducing inequality.
• Develop a deeper appreciation of our own experiences in education as a child and student (and, if applicable, a parent or a teacher), and the potential experiences that you will have in the future.

Learning goals:

• Use empirical evidence reported in sociological research to discuss how schools work and, how people from different socio-demographic subgroups interact with educational institutions, and the ways that schools may exacerbate or reduce social inequality.
• Discuss and critically evaluate how the institution of education shapes individuals’ behaviors, attitudes, opportunities, and life course outcomes.
• Read and critically analyze empirical evidence reported in research in the sociology of education.
• Apply the knowledge produced by empirical research to analyze practices

GRADING:

Your final grade will be calculated using this distribution:
• Exam 1 (February 6) 15%
• Exam 2 (March 6) 20%
• Exam 3 (April 5) 20%
• Project 25% total (Part 1 [due April 12] 5%; Part 2 [due May 3] 20%
• Homework Assignments 20%


SOC 322F • Mental Hlth In Social Context

44830 • Pudrovska, Tetyana
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM RLP 0.128
show description

This course will focus on the social antecedents and consequences of mental health and illness with respect to key variables reflecting individuals’ social experiences: gender, race/ethnicity, social class, sexual orientation, marital status, and age. We will combine sociological, psychological, epidemiological, and biological approaches to understand how the social aspects of mental health and illness interact with individual processes. At the end of this course you will be able (1) to apply a sociological perspective to mental illness as a social phenomenon, and (2) to understand the social etiology of and social inequality in mental health

Required Texts (the Dean’s Office will not accept “Course Packet” or “TBA”)

Textbook: William C. Cockerham. (2016). Sociology of Mental Disorder, 10/E. Pearson.

Available at UT library as an e-book: https://search.lib.utexas.edu/permalink/01UTAU_INST/apl7st/cdi_askewsholts_vlebooks_9781317211594

Required articles will be posted on Canvas in advance.

  • “Madness Through the Ages”
  • “Working class growing pains”
  • “Minority Stress and Mental Health in Gay Men”
  • “Responses to discrimination and psychiatric disorders among Black, Hispanic, female, and lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals”

 Grading Policy

Exam 1                                    25%

Exam 2                                    20%

Exam 3                                    15%

Course project                        30%

Participation in Discussions   10%

Extra credit opportunity up to 2%


SOC 322J • Economic Sociology Of Hlth

44835 • Palmo, Nina
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM PAR 101
(also listed as H S 340)
show description

Description  

This course provides a look at the economics of health and health care through a sociological lens. In neoclassical economics, rational behavior and market transactions provide an efficient allocation of goods and services. From a sociological perspective, markets are social institutions that are shaped by the cultural, political, and historical environments in which they operate.   This course will examine how the multidimensional nature and distribution of health and health care are shaped by a variety of social and economic factors. Throughout the course, students will gain an understanding of the power of incentives, markets, and cost-benefit analysis, as well as the limits of these tools, in creating effective health care policy.     The first part of the course will examine how social environment shapes health and health behaviors and how health disparities are viewed from sociological and economic standpoints. The second part of the course will focus on the institutions that regulate access to health care and the historical developments that led to these arrangements.   Topics include:   - Gender, race, and class differences in health - The creation and reproduction of health disparities - Health behavior and externalities - The demand and supply of health care - Moral hazard, adverse selection, and health care insurance - Health insurance and the labor market - Problems of uninsurance - History of health care reform - Comparative health policies.


SOC 322U • United States Immigration

44840 • Rodriguez, Nestor
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM RLP 0.112
CD (also listed as MAS 374)
show description

Immigration patterns have significantly affected the development of U.S. society. No country accepts more immigrants than the United States; yet, the history of US immigration is dotted with policies to restrict immigration. In the 1990s, the United States experienced a record number of new legal immigrants, primarily from Asia and Latin America (Mexico), breaking the 1900 – 1909 record, and in 2000 – 2009 the number of immigrants admitted again set a new record. But at the same time, the United States deported record numbers of migrants. This course uses a sociological perspective to gain an understanding the social forces that drive migration to the United States, how migrants organize their migration, how immigration affects US society, and US policies towards immigration patterns. II.

Course Aims and Objectives
Aims

This course is designed to provide a sociological understanding concerning the nature of immigration in U.S. society, including an understanding of how immigration affects large (macro) and small (micro) social units in the society, and contributes to social diversity in our country. The course also provides an understanding of the social – structural nature of international migration (migration in the world system). 

Specific Learning Objectives

  • Gain background information on the development of immigration patterns in U.S. society and discuss the social forces that affect these patterns from the perspective of historical and recent immigration trends. 
  • Review and discuss different perceptions about immigration patterns, and how these perceptions vary as the immigrant groups come from different cultural backgrounds. 
  • Review and use government online sources concerning annual immigration numbers and characteristics. 
  • Develop an awareness of the significance of immigration for the development of U.S. society, including impacts on social and cultural diversity. 
  • Review major laws affecting migration patterns to U.S. society 

Cultural Diversity Objective Flag:
“This course carries the flag for Cultural Diversity in the United States. Cultural Diversity courses are designed to increase your familiarity with the variety and richness of the American cultural experience. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one U.S. cultural group that has experienced persistent marginalization.” 


Format and Procedures
The course is designed with the expectation that it will follow an intertwined format of lectures and class discussions. A key expectation is that students will come to class prepared to discuss issues covered in the class, or at least come to class with a curious and critical predisposition to become intellectually engaged in the class. All students are expected to contribute to class discussion, with a high regard for an open academic dialogue, which values respect for the ideas, opinions, and views of others. Class attendance is required (but not graded) and highly encouraged.


SOC 323F • Food And Society

44850 • Fulton, Kelly
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM RLP 0.104
Wr
show description

Description:

In this course we will explore the social context of food. Topics will include food and identity, social class and culture.  We will also investigate who plans, purchases, and prepares food for our families, including discussion of the recent debates about the value of a home-cooked meal.  We will take a tour through the alphabet soup of government assistance for the hungry, including SNAP, WIC and NSLP.  Finally, we examine food production and policies in the US. 

This course carries the Writing Flag. Writing Flag courses are designed to give students experience with writing in an academic discipline. In this class, you can expect to write regularly during the semester, complete substantial writing projects, and receive feedback from your instructor to help you improve your writing. You will also have the opportunity to revise one or more assignments, and you may be asked to read and discuss your peers’ work. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from your written work. Writing Flag classes meet the Core Communications objectives of Critical Thinking, Communication, Teamwork, and Personal Responsibility, established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Readings will include:

Nestle, Marion. 201313.  Food Politics: How the Food Industry Influences Nutrition and Health

Pilcher, Jeffrey.  2012.  Planet Taco: A Global History of Mexican Food

 Pollan,  Michael.  2006.  The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals.

Grading:

Portfolio 25%

     A series of short assignments including research article analyses, video analyses, discussion synthesis

Papers 30%

     Food diary analysis

    Literature review

Peer review 10%

Group Presentation  15%

   Groups will research, present findings and lead discussion

Participation 10%

Class synthesis assignment 10%

     Drawing on the themes from the class and current research, explore possibilities for improving food policy


SOC 325K • Criminology

44855 • Hailey, Chantal
Meets MW 1:00PM-2:30PM RLP 1.106
show description

This course is designed as an introduction to the sociology of crime. Drawing on a variety of theories and methodologies, the goal of the course is to learn how to think and write critically about crime, criminal justice, and social inequality. We will explore theories of crime and ask: What is crime? Who defines crime? How is it defined? Who benefits from these definitions? Our core work will focus on how society defines and responds to crime in varied social contexts and across individuals’ identities. First, we will focus on crime, policing, and security apparatuses in neighborhoods and schools, exploring policies and theories such as Stop, Question, and Frisk; the school-to-prison pipeline; and the carceral continuum in schools. The second portion of the course focuses on the intersection of crime and race, ethnicity, immigration, and gender by exploring mass-incarceration, criminalization of immigrants, and sexual violence. The course is empirically grounded in American history and politics and incorporates works from theoretical, quantitative, and ethnographic sociology; news media; documentaries; and blogs.


SOC 325K • Criminology

44859 • Bosky, Amanda
Meets MW 2:30PM-4:00PM MEZ B0.306
show description

This course is designed as an introduction to the sociology of crime. Drawing on a variety of theories and methodologies, the goal of the course is to learn how to think and write critically about crime, criminal justice, and social inequality. We will explore theories of crime and ask: What is crime? Who defines crime? How is it defined? Who benefits from these definitions? Our core work will focus on how society defines and responds to crime in varied social contexts and across individuals’ identities. First, we will focus on crime, policing, and security apparatuses in neighborhoods and schools, exploring policies and theories such as Stop, Question, and Frisk; the school-to-prison pipeline; and the carceral continuum in schools. The second portion of the course focuses on the intersection of crime and race, ethnicity, immigration, and gender by exploring mass-incarceration, criminalization of immigrants, and sexual violence. The course is empirically grounded in American history and politics and incorporates works from theoretical, quantitative, and ethnographic sociology; news media; documentaries; and blogs.


SOC 325L • Soc Of Criminal Justice

44860 • Kelly, William
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM RLP 0.102
(also listed as URB 325L)
show description

Description

This course is in two parts.  The first will provide an introduction to the American criminal justice system, its policies and procedures.  The primary focus will be on how criminal justice operates.  This will include some discussion of crime and its correlates, crime prevention, courts and corrections. The second part of the course traces where criminal justice policy has been, what it has accomplished, and where it should go in order to effectively reduce crime, recidivism, victimization and cost. 

Required Texts (the Dean’s Office will not accept “Course Packet” or “TBA”)

Experiencing Criminal Justice by Nicole Hendrix and The Future of Crime and Punishment: Smart Policies for Reducing Crime and Saving Money (2019 updated edition) by William Kelly. 

Grading Policy

There will be four exams.  The format will be a combination of multiple choice and short answer.  Each exam constitutes 25% of the course grade.  The exams will cover assigned readings and lectures. There is no final exam


SOC 325L • Soc Of Criminal Justice

44865 • Kelly, William
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM RLP 0.102
(also listed as URB 325L)
show description

Description

This course is in two parts.  The first will provide an introduction to the American criminal justice system, its policies and procedures.  The primary focus will be on how criminal justice operates.  This will include some discussion of crime and its correlates, crime prevention, courts and corrections. The second part of the course traces where criminal justice policy has been, what it has accomplished, and where it should go in order to effectively reduce crime, recidivism, victimization and cost. 

Required Texts (the Dean’s Office will not accept “Course Packet” or “TBA”)

Experiencing Criminal Justice by Nicole Hendrix and The Future of Crime and Punishment: Smart Policies for Reducing Crime and Saving Money (2019 updated edition) by William Kelly. 

Grading Policy

There will be four exams.  The format will be a combination of multiple choice and short answer.  Each exam constitutes 25% of the course grade.  The exams will cover assigned readings and lectures. There is no final exam


SOC 327M • Social Research Methods

44880 • Raley, Kelly
Meets MW 10:00AM-11:00AM RLP 0.118
IIQRWr
show description

The purpose of this course is to teach basic research skills. You can use these skills in a wide variety of settings, not just the ivory towers of academia. Specifically, students will learn 1) basic research approaches, 2) how to recognize the strengths and weaknesses of these approaches and 3) how to apply social science methods to a research problem.

To achieve these goals this course takes a "hands on" approach. This means that often class time will involve your active participation. It is essential that you come to class (and labs) having read the assigned material.

Required Texts

Text – The Art and Science of Social Research. Published by W.W. Norton, second edition

Course Requirements and Grades are calculated as a weighted average of grades on assignments, papers, and exams.

3 Exams  (~40%) No make-up exams except in extreme circumstances. Make ups may be 100% essay.

Analysis paper (20%)

Review Paper (20%)

Assignments (20%)-- There will be ~7 assignments.

All assignments should be word processed unless instructed otherwise.

Note: All late assignments will receive a grade of 0. If you need to miss lab, you may turn in assignments to the TA early. Papers are due at the beginning of the class meeting on the day they are due. Papers that are not turned in on time will be penalized 10 points per partial day late, beginning at noon the day the paper is due.

Note also: Class attendance is required. Excessive absences (> 15% or 4 class meetings) will result in a lower grade.

A=930-1000; A-900-929; B+=870-899; B=830-869; B-=800-829; C+=770-799; C=730-769; C-700-729; D+=670-699; D=630-669; D-=600-629; F < 60.


SOC 327M • Social Research Methods

44885 • Regnerus, Mark
Meets MW 11:00AM-12:00PM RLP 0.118
IIQRWr
show description

Spanning what are known as “qualitative” and “quantitative” approaches, the course covers basic principles in a few main areas: the meaning of variables, understanding causation, study design, basic sampling, and modes and methods in data collection. Throughout, we draw on examples from published studies in sociology and other social sciences, looking at how other researchers have navigated commonplace methodological pitfalls.

 

By the end of the course, students should be able to both critically evaluate the methodological underpinnings of much social research. They should also be able to construct their own study, on paper at least, without falling into the most common and destructive traps. We also hope that this course will make students more skilled consumers of information in the real world. People are enveloped in data and arguments based in data. It is important to know how to evaluate the quality of those data. Engaged citizenship demands it.

 

Requirements:

1 exam, 7 assignments 


SOC 327M • Social Research Methods

44875 • Osborne, Lynette
Meets T 9:30AM-10:30AM • Hybrid/Blended
IIQRWr
show description

This course will center on the topic of research methods and data analysis associated with gender and human sexual behavior for the purposes of prediction, explanation and decision-making. Students will be exposed to the process of quantitative and qualitative research including development of research questions, variables for investigation, conducting a content analysis, development of a database, and using basic statistics to answer hypotheses. We will be engaging in a project so students get experience developing gathering data tools. 

Grading and Requirements:

How to Earn Points:

  1. Quizzes – 50 (5 points each)

Quizzes over the readings/assignments will be administered during the first 5 minutes of each class meeting that a chapter begins (as designated by an * on the schedule). There will be 11 quizzes, 10 count for credit so no late or early quizzes are offered for any reason. If you miss class or arrive late on a quiz day, please to use that as your dropped score. No early or late quizzes will be offered for any reason.

  1. Homework/Activities – 100 (weighted)

Homework assignments and/or in-class activities are geared to help students master concepts. HW must be turned in at the beginning of class to earn credit. Arriving to class after HW collection or not uploading HW to Canvas (when appropriate) will result in a zero for the assignment. Note that late assignments are not accepted for credit, but all assignments in this course are required. Assignments are not accepted via email. Attendance and participation in the in-class activities is required to earn credit. If you miss a HW or in-class activity, take the first one as your drop option; any others missed will result in a reduced course score.

  1. Exams - 150 (50 points each)

Each exam is worth 10% of the total points for the course. Exams will take place during the normally scheduled class time. Late exams will be scheduled ONLY in the case of an emergency and under the following circumstances: 1) you email must me at least 24 hours prior to the exam AND 2) valid documentation must be provided to support your emergency request. Note that weddings, family vacations, work, and the like are not valid excuses for missing an exam.

  1. Methods Section - 100 (50 points each)

We will be engaging in a project so students get experience developing gathering data tools. The specific instructions for this semester-long project will be provided and discussed in class.


SOC 327M • Social Research Methods

44870 • Osborne, Lynette
Meets T 11:00AM-12:00PM • Hybrid/Blended
IIQRWr
show description

This course will center on the topic of research methods and data analysis associated with gender and human sexual behavior for the purposes of prediction, explanation and decision-making. Students will be exposed to the process of quantitative and qualitative research including development of research questions, variables for investigation, conducting a content analysis, development of a database, and using basic statistics to answer hypotheses. We will be engaging in a project so students get experience developing gathering data tools. 

Grading and Requirements:

How to Earn Points:

  1. Quizzes – 50 (5 points each)

Quizzes over the readings/assignments will be administered during the first 5 minutes of each class meeting that a chapter begins (as designated by an * on the schedule). There will be 11 quizzes, 10 count for credit so no late or early quizzes are offered for any reason. If you miss class or arrive late on a quiz day, please to use that as your dropped score. No early or late quizzes will be offered for any reason.

  1. Homework/Activities – 100 (weighted)

Homework assignments and/or in-class activities are geared to help students master concepts. HW must be turned in at the beginning of class to earn credit. Arriving to class after HW collection or not uploading HW to Canvas (when appropriate) will result in a zero for the assignment. Note that late assignments are not accepted for credit, but all assignments in this course are required. Assignments are not accepted via email. Attendance and participation in the in-class activities is required to earn credit. If you miss a HW or in-class activity, take the first one as your drop option; any others missed will result in a reduced course score.

  1. Exams - 150 (50 points each)

Each exam is worth 10% of the total points for the course. Exams will take place during the normally scheduled class time. Late exams will be scheduled ONLY in the case of an emergency and under the following circumstances: 1) you email must me at least 24 hours prior to the exam AND 2) valid documentation must be provided to support your emergency request. Note that weddings, family vacations, work, and the like are not valid excuses for missing an exam.

  1. Methods Section - 100 (50 points each)

We will be engaging in a project so students get experience developing gathering data tools. The specific instructions for this semester-long project will be provided and discussed in class.


SOC 330P • Sociology & Social Psychology

44890 • Rose, Mary
Meets MW 11:30AM-1:00PM RLP 0.130
show description

This course is designed to give you a broad introduction to the field of social psychology, a topic that is investigated in both psychology and sociology departments. I have three aims for the course: (1) I want to provide you with an overview of the field of social psychology; (2) by discussing research, I want to introduce you to the various research methodologies that social psychologists use to investigate a phenomenon empirically; and (3) I want you to be able to spot applications to the “real world” of the material we discuss. Students enrolled in this course should have upper division standing, and, ideally, they should have taken courses in either sociology or psychology. This course is not cross-listed with psychology, which means that it does not count towards the requirements for a degree in psychology (but of course you still get credit for it as an upper-division sociology course). This course is part of the curriculum in the Human Dimensions of Organizations major.

Even in a class of this size, please speak up with commentary or questions (I’ll let you know if it’s too often or too disruptive; otherwise, let me know your thoughts). I also reserve the right to, on occasion, call on people and ask them questions or have them give their input into a topic we are discussing. Although I do not restrict lecture topics to what appears in the text, the most effective discussions – and the way for you to get the most out of this class in general – is to do your readings prior to the class for which they are assigned. This will help you immensely with lectures and ultimately with the tests.

REQUIRED TEXT

John D. DeLamater, & Jessica Collett, Social Psychology (9th edition). Routledge (2018). [PLEASE NOTE: This version of the book is a restructured one; do not rely solely on older editions without a close comparison to the 9th] 


SOC 333K • Sociology Of Gender

44895 • Williams, Christine
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM UTC 3.104
CD (also listed as WGS 322C)
show description

Course Description

This course is an introduction to the sociological study of gender in U.S. society. Gender structures the experiences of people in all major social institutions, including the family, the workplace, and schools. We will explore how gender impacts our lives and life chances. The central themes of the course are historical changes in gender beliefs and practices; socialization practices that reproduce gendered identities; how race/ethnicity, class, and sexuality shape the experience of gender; and the relationship between gender, power, and social inequality. 

The goals of the course are:

  • To understand the sociological perspective as it relates to gender. What are gender stereotypes? How do social institutions, including schools, the mass media, families, and work organizations, treat men and women? You should be able to discuss how the social environment influences the behavior and experiences of men and women.
  • To understand how gender is related to other forms of social inequality. How do men and women from different racial/ethnic groups, social class positions, and sexual orientations, experience gender inequality? You should be able to discuss hegemonic, marginalized, and alternative definitions of masculinity and femininity.
  • To understand how and why gender norms change over time. Why are behaviors that were considered “masculine” at one time now considered “feminine”?  What role do social movements (including feminism) play in changing society’s expectations of appropriate behavior for men and women? How has globalization altered relationships between men and women?
  • To develop a deeper appreciation of how your own experiences, views, choices, and opportunities have been shaped by gender.

 

This course carries the UGS flag for Cultural Diversity in the United States, which means that it is “designed to increase your familiarity with the variety and richness of the American cultural experience. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one U.S. cultural group that has experienced persistent marginalization.”

This course does NOT carry a writing flag. However, you are required to write several essays. 


SOC 336D • Race, Class, And Health

44900 • Jeon, Jiwon
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM RLP 1.106
CD
show description

This course examines health status and health care disparities among racial/ethnic minority groups in the United States. We will review the complex relationship between social class (socioeconomic status) and health, social class and race, the effect of race/ethnicity on health outcomes and access to healthcare, and specific health issues for major racial/ethnic minority groups in the U.S. Course topics include: conceptual issues central to understanding how low socioeconomic status leads to poor health, understanding how conscious, unconscious, and institutionalized racial bias affects medical care and health outcomes, and addressing ideas for reducing health disparities among racial/ethnic minorities. Health and health disparities are analyzed from biosocial and life-course perspectives. Social determinants of health and health equity provide the underlying conceptual frameworks for this class.

This course carries the flag for Cultural Diversity in the United States. Cultural Diversity courses are designed to increase your familiarity with the variety and richness of the American cultural experience. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one U.S. cultural group that has experienced persistent marginalization.

Course Objectives

At the completion of this course, the student will learn and understand: •

  • patterns of racial/ethnic differences in health status, access to health care, and quality of health care 
  • hypotheses and theories that seek to explain health disparities among different racial/ethnic minorities •
  • social and environmental factors that are prominent in the perpetuation of health disparities across the life span •
  • cultural factors that may contribute to health disparities among different racial/ethnic minority groups •
  • policies and programs that may reduce health disparities 2

How to succeed in this course

Active class participation is key to learning as well as obtaining a good semester grades. In order to be able to participate, reading the material each week and being prepared is critical.

Required Readings

  • Barr, Donald A. 2014. Health Disparities in the United States: Social Class, Race, Ethnicity, and Health. 2nd Ed. The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.
  • Journal Articles: In addition to the above textbook, other course materials including additional readings will be posted to Canvas each week. Readings should be completed for the week they are assigned.

Recommended Readings

  • Hummer, Robert A. & Erin R. Hamilton 2019, Population Health in America, University of California Press.
  • LaVeist, Thomas A. & L. Issac. 2013. Race, Ethnicity, and Health: A Public Health Reader. JosseyBass, A Wiley Imprint.
  • Fadiman, Anne. 1997. The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of Two Cultures. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Course Requirements

Your grade will be determined by three criteria: exams, assignment and class participation. •

  • Exams (225 points) There will be three in-class exams worth 75 points each. The in-class exams will cover the readings and lecture materials covered prior to that exam. The format of the in-class exams will be multiple-choice, true and false, and short/medium-answer questions. Missed exams will be counted as zero unless arrangements are made two-weeks in advance. Make-up exams will be given only if a physician’s note or other verifiable document is provided.
  • Assignment (45 points) Each student is required to write a paper designed to assess understanding of current health status and causes of health disparities among racial/ethnic minorities in the U.S. and the complex relationship between socioeconomic status and race in U.S. health care systems. The paper assignment is due by the beginning of class on the due date and students should submit a hard copy in class. Late papers will not be accepted. Information and guidelines for the assignment will be posted on Canvas.
  • Class Participation: In-class discussions and participation (30 points) Students are expected to attend class, read assignments before each class, and actively participate in classroom discussions during each week. The in-class component will be measured by in-class discussion and class participation. During the semester, students will engage in short discussions or working sessions as a group during class and will submit a written report. This report will include the discussion results and the names of students who participated in the discussion sessions and ten of these activities will count towards your participation grade. (3 points each). There will be NO make-up opportunity for in-class discussion reports regardless of the reasons for absence. Each student is strongly encouraged to participate in class discussions, raising well informed and interesting questions to enhance our learning experiences.
  • Extra credit: In-class quizzes There will be several pop quizzes given periodically at the instructor’s discretion based on weekly readings, class discussions, and short films shown during class. You will earn 2 points for each complete/correct answer and the accumulated points will be added to your semester total. The pop quizzes will be given at the beginning of the class and there is NO make-up opportunity for in-class quizzes regardless of reasons.

Grading Scale

  • A: 280-300
  • A-: 270-279.9
  • B+: 260-269.9
  • B: 250-259.9
  • B-: 240-249.9
  • C+: 230-239.9
  • C: 220-229.9
  • C-: 210-219.9
  • D+: 200-209.9
  • D: 190-199.9
  • D-: 180-189.9

Attendance and Participation Policy

  • Attendance: While I will not take daily attendance in class, consider that attendance is mandatory. Please be warned that chronic absence will affect your grade since class meetings will always include content not included in the reading or contents in PowerPoint slides posted on Canvas. In addition, you will miss the in-class activity (including pop quizzes), which do not have make-up opportunities. If you are unable to attend class, it is your responsibility to approach other classmates to find out what you might have missed.
  • Tardiness: Show up to class on time. Being tardy is not only disruptive, but may also affect your class participation grade since students who arrive late risk missing the class discussions or in class quiz activities.
  • Student Conduct and Participation: Students will complete each week’s reading before class and prepare to learn and contribute to the class discussion. Every student will be actively involved in classroom discussions. In order for everyone to feel comfortable voicing opinions or asking questions, a climate of tolerance and respect is essential.
  • Use of laptops in class for taking notes: To maintain an engaged and focused classroom without distractions, use of laptops and cell phones in class is not permitted. The use of laptop (or tablet) during class is restricted to those students who receive permission from the instructor. The instructor reserves the right to revoke this permission at any point if a student is using an electronic device during class for any activity besides note-taking.
  • Students with documented disability: It is your responsibility to inform me during the first two weeks of class of any disability that would interfere with your ability to complete course work in a timely and scholarly manner. A meeting in person during office hours is required.
  • Plagiarism: The Oxford dictionary defines ‘to plagiarize’ as to ‘take and use (the thoughts, writings, inventions, etc., of another person) as one’s own. In student writing, plagiarism can be quite subtle (e.g., not citing sources that one has carefully summarized and synthesized) or quite blatant (copying sentences of paragraphs directly from a source without using quotation marks or an appropriate citation, or even submitting others’ entire papers as one’s own). It is against UT policy to submit the same paper for two courses without the prior permission of both instructors. For more information on UT policies, see http://deanofstudents.utexas.edu/sjs.

SOC 340L • Aging And The Life Course

44905 • Pudrovska, Tetyana
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM RLP 0.102
show description

This course is an introduction to social gerontology. We will focus on the sociological, demographic, epidemiological, and psychological perspectives on aging in the United States. We’ll adopt a lifelong view of human development and place a particular emphasis on life-course processes affecting health and well-being in later life. We’ll also emphasize the diversity of aging experiences by gender, race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and marital status. Throughout the course, we’ll focus on the distinction between within-individual life-course developmental processes (“age effects”) and historical differences among birth cohorts (“cohort effects”).

Required Texts (the Dean’s Office will not accept “Course Packet” or “TBA”)

Textbook: “Aging and the Life Course: An Introduction to Social Gerontology” (5th edition) by Jill Quadagno (available from the campus bookstore)

Additional required readings to be posted on Canvas:

  • “Facts and Fiction about an Aging America”
  • “The Influence of a Sense of Time on Human Development”
  • “Beyond the Hedonic Treadmill”
  • “Economic and Social Implications of the Demographic Transition”
  • “Emotions, Morbidity, and Mortality”
  • “A Life Course Approach to Chronic Disease Epidemiology”
  • “Black Death, White Death”
  • “Good Grief”
  • “Parents, Adult Children, and Immortality”
  • “Aging and Family Life: A Decade Review”
  • “Ageism in the American Workplace”
  • “Redefining Retirement”
  • “Policies and Politics for an Aging America”
  • “Sick Out of Luck: The Uninsured in America”
  • “Golden Years? Poverty among Older Americans”

Grading Policy

Assignment 1  0-20 points      20% of the final grade

Assignment 2  0-15 points      15% of the final grade

Assignment 3  0-15 points      15% of the final grade

Exam 1            0-25 points      25% of the final grade

Exam 2            0-20 points      20% of the final grade

Quiz                0-5 points        5% of the final grade

TOTAL            0-100 points   


SOC 343 • Religion And Society

44910 • Young, Michael
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM RLP 0.128
(also listed as R S 337)
show description

This course is an introduction into the sociology of religion. The first half of the course takes a broad, theoretical approach to religion and society. We begin with an exploration of the role the study of religion played in the emergence of sociology as a discipline. We discuss the axial importance of religion to the “classical” social theories of Karl Marx, Emile Durkheim, and Max Weber, and the philosophy and psychology of Friedrich Nietzsche and Sigmund Freud. We conclude this survey of classical approaches by asking if these modern social theories sell religion short? We round out the first half of the course looking at more recent sociological and anthropological theories of religion.

The second half of the course looks at more substantive issues in the sociological study of religion. We discuss the intersection of religion with race, gender, migration, politics, and social movements. We also look at the historical trend of religious participation in the United States. We will discuss if something new is underfoot in the current US religious landscape. We end the course with speculations about future trends in religion and society.

Required Texts (the Dean’s Office will not accept “Course Packet” or “TBA”)

Ludwig Feuerbach, selections from The Essence of Christianity.

Karl Marx, selections on the opiate of the masses and the emancipation of the Jews

Emile Durkheim, selections from The Elementary Forms of Religious Life.

Max Weber, “Social Psychology of Religion”

Friedrich Nietzsche, selections from The Genealogy of Morals

Sigmund Freud, Future of an Illusion.

Rudolph Otto, selections from The Idea of the Holy

Mircea Eliade, selection from The Sacred and the Profane.

Clifford Geertz, “Religion as a cultural system”

William James on conversion, selections from The Varieties of Religious Experience

WEB Du Bois, Souls of Black Folks

Lynn Davidman, Tradition in a Rootless World

Robert Orsi, The Madonna of 115th Street: Faith and Community in Italian Harlem

Jose Casanova, selections from Public Religions in the Modern World

Michael Walzer, selections from Revolution of the Saints

Michael Young, selections from Bearing Witness Against Sin

Roger Finke and Rodney Stark, selections from The Churching of America, 1776-2005.

Elizabeth Drescher, Choosing Our Religion: The Spiritual Lives of America’s Nones.

Grading Policy

There will be two examinations of equal weight (each 40% of grade). You will also be required to conduct an interview with a person exploring religious experiences. The interview should be at least thirty minutes long. You will be asked to turn in a transcription of the interview along with an analysis. I will discuss expectations for this requirement in the first few classes of the semester (20% of grade). The two exams will cover material from lectures and the readings.  Although there is some overlap between the lectures and readings, a familiarity with both will be key to the doing well on the two examinations.

I do not use the +/- grading system. Grades are A, B, C, D, or F.


SOC 344 • Racial And Ethnic Relations

44915 • Reece, Robert
Meets MW 1:00PM-2:30PM RLP 0.102
CD
show description

This course will introduce students to the sociological study of race and ethnicity. It is designed to help students understand and learn to interrogate the origins and social production of race and racial inequality and how both continue to shape the world that we all live in. Topics will range from the multiplicative origins of the idea of race and racial classification to the breadth and depth of racial inequality and how even racial inequality is stratified further by skin shade to theories and speculations about the future of racial demographic change. This is an upper division course that has been designed to be collaborative and student led. Although I offer a scaffolding for the course and will serve as a guide and moderator, the specific directions of the learning will rely heavily on student input.

This course carries the flag for Cultural Diversity in the United States. The purpose of the Cultural Diversity in the United States Flag is for students to explore in depth the shared practices and beliefs of one or more underrepresented cultural groups subject to persistent marginalization. In addition to learning about these diverse groups in relation to their specific contexts, students should engage in an active process of critical reflection. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one underrepresented cultural group in the U.S.

You must have completed 60 hours of coursework to enroll in this course.


SOC 345D • Inequality In US Educ Sys

44920 • Pikus, Monique
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM RLP 2.606
CDWr (also listed as LAH 350)
show description

For centuries many have seen the United States as the land of opportunity. Free public education is often viewed as one of the key pillars of opportunity in the U.S. Yet, the quality of public education varies greatly depending on the neighborhood and characteristics of the student. In this class, we will examine how inequality has developed and is maintained within the American public education system. We will learn and critique existing theories of educational inequality such as meritocracy, stereotype threat, and oppositional culture. Next, we will explore the effect of students’ traits on how they interact with and experience school in the U.S. Race/ ethnicity, gender, social class, and special educational needs are just a sample of the attributes that we will investigate. In addition, we will pay particular attention to the role of school funding and residential segregation in maintaining disparities in educational quality. We will conclude by exploring current efforts to combat inequality within the public education system through school choice, accountability campaigns, community-based school reform, and other efforts.


SOC 379M • Sociological Theory

44950 • Adut, Ari
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM RLP 1.106
show description

This course focuses on some of the major theoretical paradigms and concepts in sociological inquiry. It is designed to help you acquire literacy in social theory and develop a sociological imagination. Its format will combine lectures with class discussions; everybody should come having done the daily readings and prepared to talk about them. The following books will be placed on reserve at the PCL library, but they can also be purchased at the University Co-Op bookstore on Guadalupe Street.

Readings

Craig Calhoun et al. (editors), Classical Sociological Theory, London: Blackwell.

Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism. London: Routledge, 1992.

The rest of the material (the articles and book chapters that are preceded by the * sign in the syllabus) is available in the form of a course pack that you can obtain online at Paradigm copy store. There will be three examinations for this course. Grades will be based according to the following distribution: First Exam: 30%; Second Exam: 40 %; Final Exam: 30%. 

 Grading

You will need to come to class and participate in discussions. Plus and minus grades will be used for final course grades. Smartphones, Texting, Internet, Facebook, etc. are very distracting not only for you, but also for me and your friends; they are thus not permitted in class. Students with disabilities may request appropriate academic accommodations. You can take a make-up only if you present a doctor’s report.


SOC 379M • Sociological Theory

44945 • Adut, Ari
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM RLP 1.106
show description

This course focuses on some of the major theoretical paradigms and concepts in sociological inquiry. It is designed to help you acquire literacy in social theory and develop a sociological imagination. Its format will combine lectures with class discussions; everybody should come having done the daily readings and prepared to talk about them. The following books will be placed on reserve at the PCL library, but they can also be purchased at the University Co-Op bookstore on Guadalupe Street.

Readings

Craig Calhoun et al. (editors), Classical Sociological Theory, London: Blackwell.

Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism. London: Routledge, 1992.

The rest of the material (the articles and book chapters that are preceded by the * sign in the syllabus) is available in the form of a course pack that you can obtain online at Paradigm copy store. There will be three examinations for this course. Grades will be based according to the following distribution: First Exam: 30%; Second Exam: 40 %; Final Exam: 30%. 

 Grading

You will need to come to class and participate in discussions. Plus and minus grades will be used for final course grades. Smartphones, Texting, Internet, Facebook, etc. are very distracting not only for you, but also for me and your friends; they are thus not permitted in class. Students with disabilities may request appropriate academic accommodations. You can take a make-up only if you present a doctor’s report.




SOC 384L • Socl Stat: Basic Conc And Meth

44975 • Weinreb, Alexander
Meets MW 3:30PM-5:00PM RLP 0.118
show description

Description:

This course covers basic statistical methods in the social sciences to give graduate students a foundation in quantitative sociological methods in preparation for more advanced quantitative methods courses in sociology and other fields. Topics include: frequency and probability distributions, sampling distributions, estimation, and hypothesis testing. The first section of the course deals primarily with the concepts and theoretical foundations of inference. The rest of the course focuses on statistical techniques and various applications including the use of t-tests for comparing means and proportions, Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) for understanding the relationship between categorical factors and a continuous dependent variable, contingency tables and measures of association for categorical and ordinal data, and simple and multiple regression techniques for the analysis of the relationship between continuous independent variables on a continuous dependent variable. Emphasis will be placed on understanding which method to use for a given problem and how to interpret the results of statistical tests. Students will be required to learn how to manipulate statistical formulas and to work with STATA.


SOC 385K • Socl Stat: Dis Multivar Models

44980 • Powers, Daniel
Meets MW 3:00PM-4:30PM JGB 2.202
(also listed as SDS 385)
show description

This course deals with statistical methods and models for categorical and discrete dependent variables. Categorical data analysis is appropriate when dependent variables are measured as counts, events, binary, ordered, or unordered categories, and in situations where the usual regression assumptions are not met such as when data are in the form of proportions. Regression-like models for categorical, discrete, binary, ordered and unordered outcomes are widely used in applied research in sociology, demography, epidemiology and other disciplines.

This class aims to be useful for graduate students in a wide range of disciplines. Students planning to take this course should have taken graduate level statistics covering linear models and should be familiar with a statistical package. Stata and R will be the primary packages used for course examples.  Most material in the assignments, course handouts, and in-class examples is based on applied problems, which can be approached from many levels. More challenging material is also presented on advanced topics. In keeping with the applied nature of this course, we provide examples drawn mainly from sociological and demographic research.

Requirements

Grades will be based on five assignments or problem sets. Students are expected to participate in class and inform the instructor in advance of any absences.

Topics

Topics covered in this course will include:  statistical foundations and introduction to categorical data; the classical linear regression model and extensions; models for binomial and binary data
and the latent variable formulations of these models; multilevel/hierarchical models for binary data; models for count data, frequency tables, and rates; models for ordered and unordered categorical dependent variables; models for truncation, selection, and treatment effects

All data analysis and modeling examples will be reproduced in Stata and R using data and programming scripts that will be provided (and updated as needed) on Canvas.

Recommended Texts

Powers, Daniel A., and Yu Xie (2008) Statistical Methods for Categorical Data Analysis, 2nd Edition, London: Emerald.

Long, J. Scott, and Jeremy Freese (2001/2005) Regression Models for Categorical Dependent Variables Using Stata, College Station: Stata Press.


SOC 387C • Social Network Analysis

44985 • Cheadle, Jacob
Meets T 3:30PM-6:30PM RLP 3.106
show description

This course provides a survey of social network analysis (SNA) methods and applications using the freely available R language and environment. The tools and techniques of SNA are widely applied throughout the sciences to operationalize and test a diverse array of theoretical propositions. The theoretical heart of SNA in social science is that actors are interdependent, and that social structure emerges from regularities in this interdependence. This course seeks to help you understand and apply network methods to your own research. Students interested in developing theses, qualifying papers, or otherwise publishing in the social sciences may find this course especially helpful.


SOC 387J • Fundamentals Of Research Meths

44990 • Muller, Chandra
Meets TH 12:30PM-3:30PM RLP 3.106
show description

This course is designed to provide an introductory overview of sociological research methods. The course objectives are to develop your understanding of

(1) the basic elements of an empirical sociological study,

(2) how to produce an empirical sociological study,

(3) the major methodological approaches used by contemporary sociologists; and

(4) think critically about research.

 We will cover research design and the structure of inquiry, the role of theory in empirical research, argument construction, causal inference, ethics, political and policy implications of research, approaches to inquiry (quantitative, qualitative and  ethnographic, experimental, historical comparative), and reporting and reviewing research.


SOC 389K • Human Mortality

45005 • Hayward, Mark
Meets T 12:30PM-3:30PM RLP 3.214F
show description

Demographers’ interest in mortality has mushroomed over the past several decades. The advent of long
time series of mortality data has facilitated research on trends, while major longitudinal surveys have
fueled research examining the life course origins of mortality. Population health surveys increasingly
include biomarkers of biological risk and physiological dysregulation, facilitating bio-social studies of
mortality. The inclusion of genetic data and twin-designs similarly has allowed demographers to probe the causes of mortality by adding a genetic lens. This course will touch on most of these developments,
introducing you to major debates and issues that characterize much of mortality research. Necessarily,
not all topics will be covered given the time constraints of the semester. The primary focus of the course is on US mortality, often introducing international comparisons and also examining disparities within the US.

There are three major tasks to be accomplished in this graduate seminar:

1) The first task involves preparation of the reading for class presentation and discussion (20% of grade).  All students are responsible for all of the assigned readings. Class discussions will be oriented around informal student presentations based on the assigned readings. For each class meeting, a student will be assigned an article, and the student will informally present the scientific factors motivating a study, the key gaps in knowledge being addressed, the major findings, and the conceptual/methodological strengths and weaknesses of the study. You may use powerpoint if you want. An outline of the presentation’s key points (1 page) should be distributed to the class on the date prior to class. The informal presentations should not be longer than 15 minutes – and 10 minutes is desirable!

2) The second task is an empirical study or a thesis/dissertation proposal on a topic that is relevant to the course’s overall aim (50% of grade).
• The empirical study may overlap with research being done either as part of a student’s
thesis/dissertation research, in conjunction with work being done in another course (with the
professor’s permission), or as part of a student’s RA assignment (with the professor’s
permission). The study should be original research, with the aims of making a scientific
contribution to the literature and publication in a scientific outlet. Please do not feel constrained by
the topics covered in the course. As I mentioned, it is impossible to completely cover the body of
mortality research. Given the time constraints imposed by the semester, I recommend that
students rely on publicly accessible datasets (e.g., the Health and Retirement Survey, the
National Health Interview Surveys, MIDAS, the National Longitudinal Surveys, and Americans’Changing Lives, and Aging. Other rich datasets are available from NACDA and ICPSR, two major
electronic data archives.
• For those pursuing an MA thesis or considering a PhD thesis on mortality, this course offers an
opportunity to draft a proposal. This option is not simply a literature review. The proposal should
layout specific aims (testable questions/hypotheses), discuss the importance of the work and its
contribution to the literature, and provide a discussion of the data to be collected/analyzed and
the methods to be used. This should follow the general format of an NIH R03 submission. I will
provide the guidelines for the format.

3) Powerpoint presentation: I have scheduled presentations for the last class session (30% of grade). This session will give students a chance to present their work to their colleagues, to field
comments, and to refine their ideas and analysis prior to submitting the term paper. Presentations should follow the format that one would use if presenting results at a major scientific meeting such as the Population Association of America.

 


SOC 389K • Training Smnr In Demography

45010 • Sierra-Arevalo, Michael
Meets F 10:00AM-12:00PM RLP 3.106
show description

The focus of this training seminar is professional socialization—how to succeed in graduate school and construct a rewarding career path. This seminar includes a range of related readings and in-class discussion.


SOC 394K • Classical Social Theory

45045 • Rudrappa, Sharmila
Meets T 12:30PM-3:30PM RLP 3.106
show description

Like the emergence of history, anthropology, and psychology, the field of sociology is firmly rooted in European modernity, emerging as a discipline in the mid-1800s. Given the great transformations of European societies in the 18th and 19th centuries, the foundations of sociology are fundamentally shaped by concerns regarding industrialization, the emergence of capitalist markets in commodities, wage labor, rural-urban migrations, rapid urbanization, and unprecedented social change. This course focuses on nineteenth-century and early-twentieth-century theorists who are caught up in the changes around them even as they attempt to describe and theorize their observations. We will read the so-called classical sociological theorists, Emile Durkheim, Karl Marx, Max Weber, a couple of essays by Simmel), and Foucault, and contemporary interpretations of their work. Much of these writings are silent on race; my hope is that through focusing on the U.S., profoundly shaped by slavery and Black anti-subordination struggles, we examine through the lens of the color lines the rise of capitalism, division of labor, modernization, bureaucracies, and the state.

Course expectations

Be prepared to contribute to discussions by raising questions, answer each other’s queries, and working through course materials together in class. Such engagement is possible only if you have completed your readings. So finish readings before coming to class.

Grading

Grades are based on your productive participation in class discussions, and one seminar paper, 12-15 pages (double spaced)

Readings

All readings will be on Canvas, or sent to you over email.

Please purchase the following books

Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism. Translated by Talcott Parsons and introduction by Anthony Giddens. Routledge Classics, 2001.


SOC 395L • Race/Class/Gndr Theory/Methods

45049 • Conwell, Jordan
Meets M 12:00PM-3:00PM RLP 3.106
show description

This course provides a graduate-level overview of contemporary sociological research on how race, social class, gender, and other statuses structure social life. The first part of the course will cover theories about these statuses’ individual and joint effects on social experiences and outcomes, as well as epistemological debates about which sociological research methods (qualitative, quantitative, experimental, etc.) are most appropriate for studying these processes. Succeeding weeks will each focus on race, social class, and gender research in a disciplinary subfield, including, but not limited to, education, health, law, work and occupations, and the family. The course will also engage special topics such as the public sociology of race, social class, and gender. Students will be encouraged to develop a proposal for an empirical research project that relates course material to a topic of interest. 


SOC 395L • Theories Of Race/Ethnicity

45050 • Irizarry, Yasmiyn
Meets TH 3:30PM-6:30PM RLP 0.124
(also listed as AFR 386C)
show description

Description

Race and racism are central elements of social stratification—shaping life changes from the womb to the grave. In this course, we will discuss prominent theories/theorists of race and racism in ways that center Blackness and Black experiences in the United States. We will explore the foundations of racial classification and thinking, the nature and persistence of racial categories as meaningful social groupings in society, and the ongoing social significance of these group identities. We will also cover structural theories of race, the history of whiteness as a racial category and social force, Black feminist thought, and race and racism from eugenics through the genomic revolution.

As we proceed in our investigation, we will continuously ask: (1) What are the key assumptions, propositions and concepts of this theory? (2) How is this theory located within the larger theoretical tradition? (3) Does this theory agree or disagree with other views in the field? (4) What is the level of empirical support for this theory? (5) To what extent does this theory help to explain contemporary patterns of race and racism across time and space in the United States? A survey of the development of race and racism in scientific and social thought is an ambitious undertaking. We will cover a large amount of complex material over a relatively short period. In order to be successful, we require maximum commitment and effort from all participants. Since this is a graduate seminar, the format will involve presentations/overviews/summaries of assigned readings followed by a critical discussion of the readings and related source materials. Students are required to play an active role in this process sharing the responsibility of presenting, leading discussions, and critiquing with the instructor.

 

Required Texts (the Dean’s Office will not accept “Course Packet” or “TBA”)

(C = Text available on Canvas; O = Text is available online through UT libraries)

Allen, Theodore W. 1994. The Invention of the White Race, Volume 2. London: Verso. O

Bonilla-Silva, Eduardo. 2003. Racism without Racists: Color-Blind Racism and the Persistence of Racial Inequality in the United States. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield. O

Collins, Patricia Hill. 2002. Black Feminist Thought: Knowledge, Consciousness, and the Politics of Empowerment. New York: Routledge. O

Mills, Charles W. 1997. The Racial Contract. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

Morris, Aldon. 2015. The Scholar Denied: W.E.B. Du Bois and the Birth of Modern Sociology. Oakland, CA: University of California Press. O

Omi, Michael and Howard Winant. 1994. Racial Formation in the United States: From the 1960s to the 1990s. 2nd edition. New York: Routledge. O

Roberts, Dorothy. 2012. Fatal Invention: How Science, Politics, and Big Business Re-Create Race in the Twenty-First Century. New York: The New Press. O

Schor, Paul. 2017. Counting Americans: How the US Census Classified the Nation. New York: Oxford University Press. O

Treitler, Vilna Bashi. 2013. The Ethnic Project: Transforming Racial Fiction into Ethnic Factions. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.

Yudell, Michael. 2014. Race Unmasked: Biology and Race in the 20th Century. New York: Columbia University Press. O

Some of the readings posted on Canvas are required for the course. Other readings are posted to assist you in this course and enhance your class experience. When pertinent, I will adjust the reading, and/or suggest additional readings and other types of resources. So be prepared to be flexible with regard to the required readings and course materials.

 

Grading Policy

Leading Class Discussion (25%)

Each student will sign up to lead one seminar discussion. Discussion leaders have two distinct duties:

1.      Provide a Clear and Concise Summary of the Reading(s)

The first and most important obligation of each discussion leader is to put before the rest of the class for discussion the core ideas and evidence contained in the readings for the week. Fulfilling this duty involves: 1) motivating an interest in the specific issue or problems, and 2) reviewing in reasonable detail the core questions and objectives of the research, the central argument and evidence developed, and any major conclusions drawn in the work. Presentations should be no longer than 45 minutes (30 minutes each if more than one person is presenting).

Presentations must provide, as thoroughly as possible, a balance of the following:

Main Questions: An overview of the author’s central concerns in each text. What are the foremost problems? How does the author justify the focus on such questions and concerns?

Methodology: This portion of your presentation must be detailed and precise, and may require a small amount of extra reading in order to provide a well-informed methodological description. Here you must reflect on the author’s database, and how she defines it, gathers it, and makes sense of it. You also need to provide details about how the author actually practices this approach in the text itself: highlight and explain specific passages where the author’s methodology is employed. You should ask yourself: how does the reading’s organization reflect the author’s methodological strategy?

Findings and/or Theoretical Argument: This portion of the presentation is meant to identify and elaborate key findings and theoretical arguments, as well as the main conclusions of each text.

Positives and Negatives: Address what you see as the strengths and weaknesses of the reading(s). Be explicit about the strong points, interesting observations, useful contributions, or provocative insights offered in the work. What are the important contributions of the work and why do you feel that way? Also, be explicit about the shortcomings or failings of the work. The materials included in this section should proceed at two levels of analysis. First, take the material on its own terms. That is, within the confines of the research problem as defined in the work, what does it deliver on well and what does it fail to deliver on? Second, consider how the work bears on the larger questions and themes of the course. Does it make a clear and meaningful contribution to our understanding of race and/or racism?

 

These four points must also be laid out in writing and uploaded to Canvas for distribution by noon on the day of your assigned presentation. Your written summary should not exceed five (5) single-spaced pages.

 

2.      Guide Discussion through Questions

The second obligation is to facilitate class discussion about important aspects of the readings. You may draw upon the cache of discussion questions submitted to Canvas to realize this duty but should also develop additional questions on your own (or with your co-presenter). The challenge is to hit on the main points of the reading(s) and, when relevant, connect the respective articles/books.

While it is tempting to make the “summary” section of the presentation the longest portion of the discussion, we are particularly interested in talking about the main points of the work. Thus, discussion leaders should leave considerable time to talk with the class about various issues brought up in the readings. You may use handouts, tables, figures, illustrations, videos/film clips, and discussion questions (mentioned above) to help facilitate your discussion.

 

Weekly Discussion Questions (9%)

Beginning in Week 2, seminar participants who are NOT facilitating class discussion are required to post at least two (2) discussion questions to Canvas by 5 pm on the day prior to class. Though a single sentence may be sufficient, longer questions are welcome and encouraged. To receive credit, your questions must: 1) demonstrate both effort and thoughtfulness, and 2) be related in some way to the assigned reading(s). Students may skip up to two (2) weeks with no loss of points.

 

Weekly Reaction Papers (21%)

Beginning in Week 2, seminar participants who are NOT facilitating class discussion are also required to submit a brief reaction paper (between one and two pages single-spaced) on a particular topic covered in the assigned reading(s) via canvas by 5 pm on the day prior to class. Reaction papers are not summaries of the reading(s). Rather, they embody your short, scholarly response to a reading of interest. Except for when you are scheduled to lead discussion, reaction papers may be completed on the weeks of your choosing. You must submit seven (7) reaction papers in total over the course of the semester. This means you may skip five (5) weeks with no loss of points.

 

Final Paper (35%)

The final paper should help you integrate topics raised in this seminar with your own research interests. You will have discretion of the format of your final paper. Some of you may choose to write a research proposal (including, but not limited to, a literature review), while others may prefer to use this opportunity to write a dissertation chapter or provide an ongoing research project with the theoretical framework necessary to submit a paper for publication. The length of your paper will vary depending on its purpose, but you should aim for at least 10 single-spaced pages.

 

A two-page prospectus, single-spaced, must be submitted via Canvas by Thursday, October 15. This initial prospectus is worth 5% of your final grade. I will provide written comments by then end of October. Your final paper is due in December, and must be submitted via Canvas.

 

Be A Human (10%)

From the brilliant Tressie McMillan Cottom @tressiemcphd:

“Be A Human – All the standard university guidelines on collegiality and honesty apply. Be generous with each other. Be decent. Don’t plagiarize. Do not derail discussions. Do no gaslight yourself or others. Do not even try to gaslight me… Share your materials and knowledge and insights and be patient as others do the same. Engage in active listening during class. You’ll note that you can be a great scholar based on your other assignments in this course and still get the grad school ‘B’ in my course if you do not execute on being a human. That is intentional. My promise is that I will always do the same for you.”


SOC 396N • Covid And The Law

45054 • Dickerson, Mechele
Meets TTH 2:15PM-3:30PM TNH 2.124
(also listed as CRP 383, ELP 395K, LAW 396W, P A 380L)
show description

This colloquium-style course will explore the legal challenges and implications of the COVID-19 pandemic. Students will read a range of materials that will include law review articles and congressional testimony. This course is interdisciplinary and will feature guest lecturers who are professors at the University of Texas.

The pandemic affected a wide range of public and private laws. Topics we will explore include public health and science implications of COVID-19, how the pandemic exacerbated inequalities for marginalized or vulnerable populations, how privacy, criminal, election, or other public laws were re-examined (or revised) during the pandemic and how private relationships between landlords and tenants or banks and customers (particularly small businesses) were affected during the pandemic.

We will also consider how federal tax and anti-discrimination laws protected or harmed people during the pandemic, how dispute resolution and judicial systems were derailed or re-imagined during the pandemic, and how emergency declarations (including stay-at-home or business shutdown orders) were crafted, applied (or struck down) during the pandemic.

Confirmed speakers

Tom McGarity and Wendy Wagner – OSHA and the failure to protect workers

Karen Engle – Latino construction workers in Austin (COVID and immigration risks)

Jeana Lungwitz – Domestic Violence victims

Michelle Deitch – prisons/jails (COVID infection rates, refusals to release inmates)

Lee Kovarsky – prisoner rights

Elissa Steglich and Denise Gilman – immigration

Kelly Harragan – environmental justice, air pollution

Jennifer Maedgen – disability law

Michael Churgin – mental health law

Heather Way and Nelson mock – housing law (renter and mortgage moratorium)

Jennifer Holme – K-12 disparities

Bill Sage – health law

Susie Morse – tax law (PPP loans, CARES stimulus checks)

Frances Martinez – small businesses

Shavonne Henderson – race and COVID

Steve Vladek – courts

Bobby Chesney  - federal executive branch authority (stay-at-home orders)

Tracy McCormack – dispute resolution systems and online justice

Melinda Taylor – environmental laws and policies (clean air, etc.)

Mechele Dickerson (overview, Essential workers, household savings, student loan debt)

 

Representative course readings

Education

Jennifer Holme, Repair the Fractures: Addressing the Impact of COVID-19 on Schools

Leah A. Plunketta and Michael S. Lewis, Education Contracts of Adhesion in the COVID-19 Pandemic

Prisoner’s Rights

Brandon L. Garrett & Lee Kovarsky, Viral Injustice

Housing

Edward Pinto, The Paradox of Accessible Lending: When Supply Is Constrained, Credit Easing Will Make Entry Level Homes Less Affordable

Sarah Crump and Jenny Schuetz, What the Great Recession can teach us about the post-pandemic housing market

Courts and the Administration of Justice

Lindsay F. Wiley and Stephen I. Vladeck, Coronavirus, Civil Liberties and the Courts: The Case Against “Suspending” Judicial Review

Financial Services

Pamela Foohey, Dalie Jimenez, Chrisopher K. Odinet, The Folly of Credit as Pandemic Relief

Domestic Violence

Alex R. Piquero, et al, Domestic Violence during the COVID-19 Pandemic – Evidence from a Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Race and COVID

Brandi Collins-Dexter, Canaries in the Coal Mine: COVID-19 Misinformation and Black Communities

Diana S. Grigsby-Toussaint, Disparities in the Distribution of COVID-19 testing sites

Mental Health

Rebecca Tan, In an era of quarantine, crisis hotlines face growing – and urgent – demand


SOC 396P • Economic Sociology

45055 • Fridman, Daniel
Meets T 12:30PM-3:30PM RLP 1.302F
show description

This graduate seminar introduces students to selected topics in the field of economic sociology broadly considered (including economic anthropology, cultural economy, etc.). Topics will vary each semester, but include: intersections between culture and economy, embeddedness, market society, gifts and commodities, morals and markets, networks, economists and economic knowledge, valuation, financialization, neoliberalism, and others.

Required Texts (the Dean’s Office will not accept “Course Packet” or “TBA”)

Fourcade, Marion. 2007. “Theories of Markets and Theories of Society.” American Behavioral Scientist 50(8):1015–1034.

Fourcade, Marion, and Kieran Healy. 2007. “Moral Views of Market Society.” Annual Review of Sociology 33(1):285–311.

Bandelj, Nina. 2019. “Academic Familism, Spillover Prestige and Gender Segregation in Sociology Subfields: The Trajectory of Economic Sociology.” The American Sociologist 50(4):488–508.

Convert, Bernard, and Johan Heilbron. 2007. “Where did the new economic sociology come from?” Theory and Society 36(1):31–54.

Heilbron, Johan. 2001. “Economic sociology in France.” European Societies 3(1):41–67.

Polanyi, Karl. 2001 [1944]. The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic Origins of Our Time. Boston, MA: Beacon Press. Ch. 4, 5, 6.

Graeber, David. 2011. Debt: The First 5,000 Years. Brooklyn, N.Y.: Melville House. Ch. 2 (The Myth of Barter).

Bourdieu, Pierre. 1998. “The Economy of Symbolic Goods,” Practical Reason: On the Theory of Action. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Ch. 5 (Pp.. 92-123)

Godbout, Jacques T., and Alain Caillé. 2000. The World of the Gift. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press. Intro, Ch. 11. (pp. 1-11, 171-195)

Mauss, Marcel. 2000. The Gift: The Form and Reason for Exchange in Archaic Societies. London; New York: W. W. Norton & Company.

Block, Fred L. and Margaret R. Somers. 2014. The Power of Market Fundamentalism: Karl Polanyi’s Critique. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Chapter 1 (pp. 1-43).

Fraser, Nancy. 2014. “Can Society Be Commodities All the Way down? Post-Polanyian Reflections on Capitalist Crisis.” Economy and Society 43(4): 541–58.

Granovetter, Mark. 1985. “Economic Action and Social Structure: The Problem of Embeddedness.” The American Journal of Sociology 91(3):481–510.

Krippner, Greta R., and Anthony S. Alvarez. 2007. “Embeddedness and the Intellectual Projects of Economic Sociology.” Annual Review of Sociology 33:219–40.

Beckert, Jens. 2009. “The Great Transformation of Embeddedness: Karl Polanyi and the New Economic Sociology.” Pp. 38–55 in Market and society: the great transformation today, edited by C. M. Hann and K. Hart. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press.

Zelizer, Viviana. 1994. The Social Meaning of Money. New York: BasicBooks. (Ch 1: pp. 1-35)

Zelizer, Viviana. 2005. The Purchase of Intimacy. Princeton: Princeton University Press. (Ch 1: pp. 7-46)

Zelizer, Viviana. 2011. Economic Lives: How Culture Shapes the Economy. Princeton: Princeton University Press. (P6: 17, 18 (pp. 363-397)). (link to library e-book)

Williams, Christine. 2011. “Culturefreak.” Contemporary Sociology 40(5):539–41.

Fourcade, Marion. 2012. “The Moral Sociology of Viviana Zelizer.” Sociological Forum 27(4):1055–61.

Kieran Healy, Dealing with Awkward Relations, https://kieranhealy.org/files/papers/awkward-relations.pdf

Bandelj, Nina. 2020. “Relational Work in the Economy.” Annual Review of Sociology 46(1).

Jim Johnson. 1988. “Mixing Humans and Nonhumans Together: The Sociology of a Door-Closer”

Social Problems, Vol. 35, No. 3, Special Issue: The Sociology of Science and Technology. (June), pp. 298-310.

Latour, Bruno. 2007. “Introduction: How to Resume the Task of Tracing Associations” and “Third Source of Uncertainty: Objects too Have Agency.” In Reassembling the Social: An Introduction to Actor-Network-Theory. New York: Oxford University Press. (Pp. 1-17, 63-86)

Callon, Michel. 1998. “The Embeddedness of Economic Markets in Economics.” Pp. 1–57 in The laws of the markets. Oxford; Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishers/Sociological Review.

Holm, Petter. 2007. “Which way is up on Callon?” Pp. 225–243 in Do economists make markets?: On the performativity of economics, edited by Donald MacKenzie, Fabian Muniesa, and Lucia Siu. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Rose, Nikolas, Pat O’Malley, and Mariana Valverde. 2006. “Governmentality.” Annual Review of Law and Social Science 2(1):83–104.

Miller, Peter. 2001. “Governing by numbers: Why calculative practices matters.” Social Research 68(2):379.

Miller, Peter. 2008. “Calculating Economic Life.” Journal of Cultural Economy 1(1):51–64.

Fridman, Daniel. 2016. Freedom from Work: Embracing Financial Self-Help in the United States and Argentina. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Introduction, Ch 2 and 3.

Fourcade, Marion. 2011. “Cents and Sensibility: Economic Valuation and the Nature of ‘Nature.’” American Journal of Sociology 116(6):1721–77.

Degenshein, Anya. 2017. “Strategies of Valuation: Repertoires of Worth at the Financial Margins.” Theory and Society 1–23.

Hood, Katherine. 2017. “The Science of Value: Economic Expertise and the Valuation of Human Life in US Federal Regulatory Agencies.” Social Studies of Science 0306312717693465.

Rudrappa, Sharmila. 2015. Discounted Life: The Price of Global Surrogacy in India. New York ; London: NYU Press. (Intro, ch. 4, 5: pp.1-19, 83-125).

Healy, Kieran. 2006. Last Best Gifts: Altruism and the Market for Human Blood and Organs. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Ch 1, 2, 5, 6: (pp. 1-42, 87-132).

Almeling, Rene. 2011. Sex Cells: The Medical Market for Eggs and Sperm. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.

Guseva, Alya. 2020. “Scandals, morality wars, and the field of reproductive surrogacy in Ukraine.” Economic Sociology: The European Electronic Newsletter 21(3): 4-10.

Roscoe, Philip. 2013. “On the Possibility of Organ Markets and the Performativity of Economics.” Journal of Cultural Economy 6(4):386–401.

Lainer-Vos, Dan. 2013. “The Practical Organization of Moral Transactions: Gift Giving, Market Exchange, Credit, and the Making of Diaspora Bonds.” Sociological Theory 31(2):145–67.

Rossman, Gabriel. 2014. “Obfuscatory Relational Work and Disreputable Exchange.” Sociological Theory 32(1):43–63.

Fridman, Daniel, and Alex Luscombe. 2017. “Gift-Giving, Disreputable Exchange, and the Management of Donations in a Police Department.” Social Forces 96(2):507–28.

Wherry, Frederick F., Kristin S. Seefeldt, and Anthony S. Alvarez. 2019. “To Lend or Not to Lend to Friends and Kin: Awkwardness, Obfuscation, and Negative Reciprocity.” Social Forces 98(2):753–93.

Lin, Ken-Hou, and Megan Tobias Neely. 2020. Divested: Inequality in the Age of Finance. New York: Oxford University Press.

O’Malley, Michael. 2012. Face Value: The Entwined Histories of Money and Race in America. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.

Wherry, Frederick F., Kristin S. Seefeldt, and Anthony S. Alvarez. 2019. Credit Where It’s Due: Rethinking Financial Citizenship. New York: Russell Sage Foundation. Introduction, ch 2, ch 4. (pp. 1-21, 39-64, 80-98)

Baradaran, Mehrsa. 2018. How the Other Half Banks: Exclusion, Exploitation, and the Threat to Democracy. Reprint edition. Harvard University Press. (Chapters TBD).

Dwyer, Rachel E. 2018. “Credit, Debt, and Inequality.” Annual Review of Sociology 44(1):237–61.

Kiviat, Barbara. 2019. “Credit Scoring in the United States.” Economic Sociology 21(1):10.

Kiviat, Barbara. 2019. “The Art of Deciding with Data: Evidence from How Employers Translate Credit Reports into Hiring Decisions.” Socio-Economic Review 17(2):283–309.

Ascher, Ivan. 2016. Portfolio Society: On the Capitalist Mode of Prediction. New York: Zone Books.

Fourcade, Marion, and Kieran Healy. 2017. “Seeing like a Market.” Socio-Economic Review 15(1):9–29.

Roscoe, Philip. 2015. A Richer Life: How Economics Can Change the Way We Think and Feel. London: Penguin Books.

Grading Policy

Class participation ~35%

Leading Class Discussion ~20%

Forum Responses ~10%

Final Paper ~35%


SOC 398T • Supv Teaching In Sociology

45070 • Rodriguez, Nestor
Meets TH 3:30PM-6:30PM RLP 3.106
show description

This seminar is a requirement for graduate students who are employed as assistant instructors in the sociology department, and is recommended for graduate students who serve as teaching assistants as well. The goals of the course are the following: 1) to discuss issues and approaches regarding teaching, especially special issues such as being a young professor/a young professor of color, special topics in lectures (LGBTQ, racism, etc.), lectures in racially mixed classrooms, and so forth; 2) to review concepts about teaching/learning to help design lecture materials and organize the classroom, 3) to learn from faculty speakers about challenges and successes at the beginning of a teaching career, 4) to provide an opportunity for practice-teaching in “mini” lectures, and 5) to provide an opportunity for students to discuss/debate, brainstorm, and compare views and techniques about teaching. The course will not take a traditional seminar approach; instead, it will strive for a “professionalization seminar” where learning about the craft of teaching is the guiding overall goal. Course grading will be pass/fail, and attendance and a paper regarding the student’s perceived teaching philosophy will be the basis for the grade. A couple of texts (still under review) will be adopted for the course.



SOC 679HA • Honors Tutorial Course

44935 • Young, Michael
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM RLP 1.302F
show description

This seminar was created after much feedback from previous Honors students and faculty supervisors. The idea is to provide structure, instruction and assistance throughout your double semester thesis project, as well as to enable you to interact and support one another.  Seminar participation should not increase your overall workload, but it will help you become more efficient in your research and writing.

Goals for the seminar:

  • Teaching research skills relevant to writing an Honors Thesis
  • Providing resources, information, and assistance to Honors students
  • Creating a venue for discussion of Honors-related topics and concerns
  • Facilitating regular communication between students, advisors, and faculty
  • Creating a sense of community among Sociology Honors students

Required Texts (the Dean’s Office will not accept “Course Packet” or “TBA”)

Peter Elbow, Vernacular Eloquence: What Speech Can Bring to Writing

Eviatar Zerubavel, The Clockwork Muse

Grading Policy

Requirements are active class participation and completion of writing projects.

I do not use the +/- grading system. Grades are A, B, C, D, or F.







  • Department of Sociology

    The University of Texas at Austin
    305 E 23rd St, A1700
    RLP 3.306
    Austin, TX 78712-1086
    512-232-6300