SYLLABUS FOR SOCIAL PROBLEMS , '
Thomas Steiger, Professor TTh 9:30-10:45 016HH
Office: 270 Holmstedt Course Number 51193
Hours: MW 10:30-11 :30AM or by appointment (or if my door is open don't hesitate to stop in) Phone: Office 237-3426, please leave a voice-mail message Home 466-5912, 8AM-8PM email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Other Students in SOC 220
NAME PHONE EMAIL 1. 2. 3.
ISU Catalog Description: Problems of social and individual maladjustment, the causes of maladjustment, and the attempted and planned efforts for the solution of these problems [GE89:AlB2; GE2000 SBS-elective; may count toward sociology major/minor credit]
Professor Steiger's Description: For those of you taking SOC220 in hopes ofbetter
understanding your little brother or sister, this isn't the course for you. Think of social problems as failures of our society. We will examine social problems from several different perspectives, as they are presented in the press, how politicians use them, and how social scientists examine them. We will also focus on proposing solutions to selected social problems.
FAQs: Other thanfoundational course credit, why should I take SOC220? If we all do our jobs, students should develop four vital skills which are the goals of the general education program, namely critical thinking, communication skills, distinguishing values, beliefs, and their effect on knowledge, and the capacity for lifelong learning.
What is "critical thinking? " Ultimately critical thinking is learning to learn. In the context ofSOC220 we are going to challenge your common sense and taken-for-granted understandings of your society and its problems. But, rather than merely presenting an alternative viewpoint on, for instance, "poverty," this course should help you become more critical (think active) in evaluating explanations for poverty and more demanding for evidence to back up an explanation.
What do you mean, " communication skills ? " Reading, writing, speaking, and listening. In this course you will be reading about 35 pages of sociology a week...not too bad really. The readings mostly will serve as a basis for small group discussion (speaking) in class. Everyone will be involved in a group presentation in class. Also, some of you will do impromptu large group
presentations (asking or answering questions during the full class presentations lead by Prof. Steiger) Lastly, you'll write several essays for credit in class.
What's the stuff with values and beliefs,' you're not going to tell me what to believe and what to value are you? No, sociologists aren't supposed to tell people what they should value or should believe, that would violate an important tradition in sociology...value neutrality. But, I will model particular values as they relate to knowledge and I will invite you to integrate social science into your beliefs about society. You will learn how values and beliefs affect what we hold as knowledge and better be able to begin to separate values, beliefs from scientific knowledge.
Lifelong learning, , ., does that mean I'm going to be learning a bunch of stuff that really won't make sense until I'm married or have kids ? Maybe, but in this course, I hope it is the "sociological imagination" which begins to emerge, that is the connection between personal biographyand social change. Indeed, it is at this point that we come full circle..,ifyou are developing critical thinking skills, becoming a lifelong learner (and developing your sociological imagination) is pretty easy.
Is there anything else? Yes, the course is also supposed ...to develop students' understanding of the nature, development, structure, and processes ofhuman behaviors and social systems. The coursework should also lead students to be knowledgeable and reflective participants in the operation and evolution of social institutions and systems.
What does that mean? See, that is why you need such a course. Let's get started...
REQUIRED MATERIALS and RESOURCES:
TEXTS: ContempQrarv Social Problems, (CSP) Sth edition by Vincent Parrillo
You will need to activate your student computer account at ISU or have
.(~ internet access available to you. All of these are supplied to you with your , ~ ISU computer account.
Students should learn the sociological answers to the following questions:
.What makes a 'social problem' a "social problem?
.How do values and beliefs affect "social problems?" ! .Why are social problems so hard to solve?
COURSE REQUIREMENTS: Attendance is required.
I may, occasionally, take attendance. Should you be absent, the first time will be ignored, but should you be absent again, I will subtract one (1) point from your final grade for each additional absence.
Four short answer and essays tests and final.
Participation in one group presentation on a social problem.
The Group Presentation is worth 35 points. I will assign 20 of the 35 points to the group while the group will allocate the remaining points to its individual members under a formula I provide.
We will select four social problems to study in greater depth. Small groups of students will take responsibility for the research and presentation to the rest of the class on the selected social problems.
GRADES: Your grades will be determined by your performance on the tests, ill-class essay, final, and group presentation.
The composition of your grade is as follows:
In-class essay --3 poillts
Tests (4) --52 poillts (4@13 poillts each) Group Presentation --35 poillts Final --10 poillts
Bonus poillts --occasionally given for ill class performance
100- absences (1 per absence)
Grading Scale: 90+ --A 85-89.5 --B+ 80-84.5 --B
75- 79.5 --C+ 70- 74.5 --C
65-69.5 --D+ 60-64.5 --D 0-59.5 --F
If you should earn a borderline score, say 89.5, 74.5, 69.5, etc., I have a simple decision rule to determine whether you get the higher grade or not. Iffor instance you have an 89.5, I will assign an A to that if you have turned in 9 or more of the test questions. Similarly, if you have a 74.5, if you turned ill 8 or more of the test questions I will assign you the higher grade, ill this case a C+ .
FINAL EXAM DATE: 10 December 2002, 10AM
GROUND RULES FOR: 1) Class will begin on time and end on time.
CLASS 2) Class is not a social hour .Discussion is limited to sociology. 3) If you must leave class early, please let me know before class begins. People who walk out ill the middle of class are distracting. 4) No late assignments will be accepted unless arrangements are made prior to the due date.
AUG 21 Introduction and Overview of Course
23 GettingOrganized and What is a Social Problem? 26 What is a Social Problem...continued CSP Ch 1 28 Causes of Social Problems CSP Ch 2 30 Solutions to Social Problems CSP Ch 2
SEP 2 Labor Day...no classes 4 Population and the Environment CSP Ch 3 6 Population and the Environment CSP Ch 3 9 Population and the Enviro CSP Ch 3 11 Cities and Urban Dwellers CSP Ch 4 13 Cities and Urban Dwellers CSP Ch 4
DATE ADING ASSIGNMENT
16 In Depth Examination of Problems in Education CSP Ch 12 \'fi;(; ,
18 In Depth Examination of Problem& in Education CSP Ch 12 20 In Depth Examination of Problems in Education CSP Ch 12 23 Power, Work, and the Workplace CSP Ch 5
25 Test 1 27 Power, Work, and the Workplace CSP Ch 5 30 Poverty and Social Class CSP Ch 6
OCT 2 Poverty and Social Class CSP Ch 6 4 In Depth Examination of Crime and Violence CSP Ch 9
7 In Depth Examination of Crime and Violence CSP Ch 9
9 In Depth Examination of Crime and Violence CSP Ch 9 11 Get ajump on Fall Break...no class
14 Gender Inequality and Heterosexism CSP Ch 7 16 Test 2
18 Fall Break...no class
21 Gender Inequality and Heterosexism CSP Ch 7 23 Gender Inequality and Heterosexism CSP Ch 7 25 Race and Ethnic Relations CSP Ch 8
28 In Depth Examination of Alcohol & Drug Abuse CSP Ch 13 30 In Depth Examination of Alcohol & Drug Abuse CSP Ch 13 NOV 1 In Depth Examination of Alcohol & Dmg Abuse CSP Ch 13
DATE TOPIC READING ASSIGNMENT
4 Race and Ethnic Relations CSP Ch 8 6 Test 3
8 Race and Ethnic Relations CSP Ch 8
11 The Family CSP Ch 10 13 The Family CSP Ch 10 15 Sexual Behavior CSP Ch 14 18 In Depth Examination of Homeland Security TBA 20 In Depth Examination of Homeland Security TBA 22 In Depth Examination of Homeland Security TBA 25 Test 4
27-29 Thanksgiving Break...no class
DEC 2 Health Care CSP Ch 11 4 Health Care CSP Ch 11 6 Health Care CSP Ch 11 9- ] 3 Finals