Catalog 2013-2014

Sociology

253.535.7595
www.plu.edu/sociology
soci@plu.edu
(Sociology) 

Sociology is a social science that examines the processes and structures which shape social groups of all sizes, including families, workplaces, and nations. The study of sociology provides students with unique analytical tools for understanding themselves and others in a changing world. Sociology has broad appeal to those who are interested in developing skills in research, critical thinking, and writing. Some of the practical pursuits enabled by sociological training are in the areas of program development, counseling, research, criminal justice, management, and marketing. The academic preparation is especially valuable to those interested in pursuing degrees in law, public administration, social work, or any of the social sciences.

The Sociology curriculum is especially suited to accommodate special interests. Students may pick from among a variety of electives to complete their degree or concentrate their electives in topics of particular interest to them, Family/Gender, Crime/Deviance, or Inequality. Students may opt to complete academic internships as part of their elective coursework within the major. Students majoring in social work, business, nursing, education, and psychology find the sociology minor particularly useful for broadening their understanding of social rules and relationships, programs and solutions, and continuity and change.

BACHELOR OF ARTS DEGREE
Major in Sociology

40 semester hours, including:
  • SOCI 101, 232, 240 or 296, 330 or 336, 413 or 440, 496, 499
  • STAT 233
  • Plus: 8 semester hours of SOCI electives
MINOR
20 semester hours, including:
  • SOCI 101
  • 16 semester hours of sociology chosen in consultation with the department
  • STAT 233 may be included in the minor
  • Sociology minors are required to attain a minimum grade of C- in sociology classes
HONORS IN SOCIOLOGY

Departmental honors are awarded by vote of the sociology faculty to outstanding majors. Criteria for selection include a high grade point average, election to Alpha Kappa Delta International Sociology Honor Society, and exceptional performance in senior seminar. The departmental honors designation will appear on the transcript of a student graduating with a sociology major.

Continuation Policy

To remain in the major, students must: maintain a minimum 2.50 overall grade point average, and maintain a minimum 2.50 grade point average in sociology courses.

Prerequisites

SOCI 101 or consent of instructor is prerequisite to all 300- and 400-level courses.

Transfer Student Policy

The department accepts, for transfer credit from another college or university, only those courses equivalent to SOCI 101 (Introduction to Sociology) and SOCI 240 (Social Problems). If students wish to have additional courses considered for transfer to either their major or minor requirements, they must first meet with the department chair. The student should bring to this initial meeting the following:

  • College/university transcripts
  • College catalogs
  • Course syllabi and other supporting materials (from the term when the course was completed)
  • Completed coursework (exams, papers)

Declared majors/minors will be required to fill out one petition per transfer course.

Sociology (SOCI) Undergraduate-Level Courses

SOCI 101: Introduction to Sociology - A, SO

An introduction to the discipline of sociology. Features an analysis of contemporary American society with emphasis on the interconnections of race, class, and gender. Sociological concepts include socialization, social roles, stereotypes, power, and stratification. (4)

SOCI 190: FYEP190: Inquiry Seminar

A four-credit seminar to introduce students to the methods and topics of study within a particular academic discipline or field. Students practice the academic skills that are at the center of the General Education Program. (4)

SOCI 226: Delinquency and Juvenile Justice

An examination of juvenile delinquency in relation to the family, peer groups, community and institutional structure. Includes consideration of processing the juvenile delinquent by formal agencies of control. (4)

SOCI 232: Research Methods - SO

An overview of the methods to explore, describe, and analyze the social world. General issues in the design and implementation of research projects, as well as specific issues that arise in conducting interviews and field observations, constructing and administering surveys, analyzing existing data, and planning program evaluations. Required for sociology and social work majors. Prerequisite: SOCI 101. Instructor consent is required. (4)

SOCI 240: Social Problems - A, SO

Critical examination of poverty, discrimination, drugs, crime, homelessness, violence, and family breakdown. Course addresses contemporary social problems, an analysis of their social roots, and an evaluation of the policies designed to eradicate them. (4)

SOCI 287: Special Topics in Sociology

To provide undergraduate students with new, one-time, and developing courses not yet available in the regular curriculum. The title will be listed on the student term-based record as ST: followed by the specific title designated by the academic unit. (1 to 4)

SOCI 288: Special Topics in Sociology

To provide undergraduate students with new, one-time, and developing courses not yet available in the regular curriculum. The title will be listed on the student term-based record as ST: followed by the specific title designated by the academic unit. (1 to 4)

SOCI 289: Special Topics in Sociology

To provide undergraduate students with new, one-time, and developing courses not yet available in the regular curriculum. The title will be listed on the student term-based record as ST: followed by the specific title designated by the academic unit. (1 to 4)

SOCI 291: Directed Study

To provide individual undergraduate students with introductory study not available in the regular curriculum. The title will be listed on the student term-based record as DS: followed by the specific title designated by the student. (1 to 4)

SOCI 296: Social Stratification - A, SO

An examination of the cultural and structural causes of social stratification and its consequence, social inequality. The course focuses on stratification and inequality on the basis of race, class, and gender, exploring what social forces shape individuals' differentiated access to society's valued resources. (4)

SOCI 330: The Family

An examination of the institution of the family from historical, multi-cultural, and contemporary perspectives, with emphasis on how families and family life are affected by social forces such as the economy, race and ethnicity, religion, and law. Topics include: relationships, love, authority, conflict, sexuality, gender issues, child rearing, communication patterns, and violence in the context of family life. Prerequisite: SOCI 101 or consent of instructor. (4)

SOCI 332: Race and Ethnicity - A, SO

A critical examination of racial/ethnic structures and inequalities in the United States. The course will explore the social construction of race and ethnicity, the development of racial and ethnic identities, and how race and ethnic inequalities shape social institutions, such as the economy, families, education, and politics. Prerequisites: SOCI 101 or consent of instructor. (4)

SOCI 336: Deviance

A general introduction to a variety of nonconforming, usually secretive, and illegal behavior, such as corporate crime, drug dealing, prostitution, industrial spying, child abuse, and suicide, with emphasis on the conflict of values and life-experiences within a society. Prerequisite: SOCI 101 or consent of instructor. (4)

SOCI 378: Consumption

An examination of the relationship between goods, individuals, and society. The course deconstructs the social bases of consumption to better understand the role consumption plays in shaping our identities and maintaining social distinctions. The course also addresses the relationship between consumption and social problems like consumer debt, inequality, and sustainability. Prerequisite: SOCI 101 or consent of instructor. (4)

SOCI 384: Sociology of Corrections

An examination of the American Correctional System. This course will address historical and contemporary issues in corrections, along with attention to race, class and gender inequalities. Prerequisite: SOCI 101 or consent of instructor. (4)

SOCI 387: Special Topics in Sociology - SO

Selected topics as announced by the department. Prerequisite: departmental consent. (1 to 4)

SOCI 388: Special Topics in Sociology

To provide undergraduate students with new, one-time, and developing courses not yet available in the regular curriculum. The title will be listed on the student term-based record as ST: followed by the specific title designated by the academic unit. (1 to 4)

SOCI 389: Special Topics in Sociology

To provide undergraduate students with new, one-time, and developing courses not yet available in the regular curriculum. The title will be listed on the student term-based record as ST: followed by the specific title designated by the academic unit. (1 to 4)

SOCI 391: Sociology of Religion - SO

An investigation of the American religious scene with particular emphasis on the new religious movements, along with attention to social settings and processes which these new religions reflect and produce. Prerequisite: SOCI 101, one religion course, or consent of instructor. Cross-listed with RELI 391. (4)

SOCI 394: Gender and Violence

An examination of gendered violence in American society. Focal topics will vary by semester and may include sexual violence, intimate partner violence, stalking, or masculinity and violence. The course will address how violence is gendered, theoretical explanations of gendered violence, and the response of the criminal justice system. Prerequisites: SOCI 101 or consent of instructor. (4)

SOCI 413: Crime and Society

An examination of criminal behavior in contemporary society in relation to social structure and the criminalization process with particular attention to the issues of race, gender, and class. Prerequisite: SOCI 101, one additional sociology course, and junior or senior standing; or consent of instructor. (4)

SOCI 440: Gender and Society - A, SO

An examination of gender as a social construction and a system of stratification. Focus is on the structural aspects of gender and upon the intersection of gender with other social categories, such as race, class, and sexuality. Prerequisites: SOCI 101 or WMGS 201, one additional SOCI course, and junior or senior standing; or instructor consent. (4)

SOCI 487: Special Topics in Sociology

To provide undergraduate students with new, one-time, and developing courses not yet available in the regular curriculum. The title will be listed on the student term-based record as ST: followed by the specific title designated by the academic unit. (1 to 4)

SOCI 488: Special Topics in Sociology

To provide undergraduate students with new, one-time, and developing courses not yet available in the regular curriculum. The title will be listed on the student term-based record as ST: followed by the specific title designated by the academic unit. (1 to 4)

SOCI 489: Special Topics in Sociology

To provide undergraduate students with new, one-time, and developing courses not yet available in the regular curriculum. The title will be listed on the student term-based record as ST: followed by the specific title designated by the academic unit. (1 to 4)

SOCI 491: Independent Study

Readings or fieldwork in specific areas or issues of sociology under supervision of a faculty member. Prerequisite: departmental consent. (1 to 4)

SOCI 495: Internship

Students receive course credit for working in community organizations and integrating their experiences into an academic project. Placements are usually arranged by the student and may include the public school system, private and public social service organizations, criminal justice system agencies, local and state governmental agencies, and businesses. departmental consent is required. (1 to 4)

SOCI 496: Major Theories

An analysis of influential sociological theories of the 19th and 20th centuries with attention to the classic theories of Marx, Durkheim, and Weber, to the recent contemporary schools, and to the underlying patterns of thought which both unite and divide the sociological tradition. Required for senior majors. Prerequisites: 16 hours of sociology including SOCI 101 and 232, senior status, declared major or minor. Instructor consent is required. (4)

SOCI 499: Capstone: Senior Seminar - SR

Students design and carry through an independent research project involving the collection of data and the analysis of findings. Students demonstrate their mastery of the field by relating their research to the existing body of sociological literature and knowledge. Required for senior majors. Prerequisites: SOCI 232, 496; STAT 233; senior status; declared major or minor. (4)