An introduction to the sociological study of society. Focus is on basic sociological concepts, methods, and perspectives in understanding social processes, social structure, social institutions, and social change.
Examines major social problems such as poverty, inequality, drug abuse, and crime in contemporary society. Sociological perspectives and Christian insights are brought to bear in the analysis of the problems and how to address them.
An introduction to descriptive and inferential statistics employed in the social sciences. This course emphasizes the organizing, calculating, and interpreting of data. Counts as a math option in the general core.
In this course, you will learn abut Malawi's (a) history, ethnic groups, social dynamics, and culture; (b) governance, politics, and civic processes; (c) socio-economic resources, activities, opportunities, and challenges; and (d) the poverty-affluence divide in the country. A main objective is to expose you to social and cultural processes, challenges, and life-improving opportunities for people in the poorest countries using Malawi as a case for such an analysis.
The course will expose you to food production, nutrient content, storage, processing and consumption in the communities served by Pamoza International. You will analyze how food production, storage, processing and consumption influence villagers' nutritional status emphasizing that good nutrition is about taking care of the body, God's temple. You will assess the nutrient contents of the foods commonly consumed in the communities as well as the nutritional status of members of a sample of households seeking to relate food consumption to nutritional status. Since nutritional status is also heavily influenced by the work people are involved in, you will analyze the work rural Malawians engage in with the objective of understanding how this work may be influencing their nutritional status. You will participate in some of this work to experience how demanding the work is.
The course explores rural livelihoods' assets/resources, mediating processes, and vulnerability contexts zeroing in on how government policy and the pervasive globalization are changing these livelihoods and with what consequences on the well-being of rural people. Apart from analyzing key readings, you will observe and document how people in rural settings make a living and what changes the people have experienced in their making of a living. This will be done through interviews of key informants. Through these interviews, you will learn about challenges rural people confront in pursuing their livelihoods, the changes in the making of livelihoods that rural people are experiencing, and the ramifications of these changes on rural people's well-being.
Explores how people socially construct their reality, values, and worldviews through socialization. It also examines group processes to understand how socialization influences peopleprocesses.
Draws upon theories of social justice and Christian thought to explore social justice shortfalls and opportunities in social institutions such as religion, economy, politics, education, and family. Of particular interest is how social justice has been compromised and how it could be upheld in these institutions.
Examines the rise, impact, and fate of collective behaviors. Included are collective behaviors such as protest demonstrations, riots, panics, and mass suicides, as well as social movements such as civil rights, welfare rights, liberation, and workers movements.
Covers historical background and cultural comparisons of families, premarital and marital behavior, and family disorganization and reorganization.
Addresses the nature of relationships between the privileged and underprivileged in American society. A variety of groupsreligious, gender, and age groupsin terms of their socio-political heritage, lifestyles, social identities, and social circumstances.
Examines the unequal and stratified distribution of wealth, income, social power and life chances in society, focusing on how class, race/ethnicity, and gender frame these uniquely and in interlocking ways.
A survey of research methods employed in the social sciences. Emphases include theory construction, measurement and data gathering techniques, sampling, data analysis, and research ethics.
This course deals with development policy making and its implementation in sub-Saharan Africa using Malawi as a case study. We first define development then have a snapshot assessment of and contrast of development between sub-Saharan African Malawi and the United States in the last 25 years. We thereafter zero in on Malawi, evaluating its development since independence in 1964, and examine (a) how development policy is made; (b) how development policy is implemented, that is, how the government plans, budgets and implements development programs loooking at successes and failures; and (c) what international help the country has received, how it gets the help, how the help is used, and the impact of this help on Malawi's development. Apart from classroom work which will include lectures by Malawian development thinkers and practitioners, you will visit government agencies, especially the agencies involved in policy formulation, development planning and budgeting, and development implementation to learn about development challenges Malawi faces and how the government wrestles with these challenges. Students will also visit some offices of non-governmental (local and international), bilateral, and multilateral organizations to learn about how these organizations help Malawi in dealing with its development challenges.
This course examines the historical and current situation of Christianity, Islam and Traditional Religions in Malawi. The course specifically analyzes the introduction of and current situation (in the case of Christianity and Islam), their rise and perpetuation (in the case of Traditional Religions), and how people perceive, react to, and wrestle with the fundamentals of these religions. The course has two main objectives. The first is to show and explain the changes these religions have and are undergoing using Malawi for the analysis. The second is to wrestle with the difficulties of spreading the Gospel in a setting where Islam and Traditional Religious practices are pervasive.
Addresses some of the basic concepts and questions of urban sociology. Major topics include the origins and growth patterns of cities; the social composition of the city; urban community and neighborhood; comparative analysis of cities; kinship, friendship, and acquaintance networks; and urban issues/problems. Special emphasis on the cities of Philadelphia, New York, and Boston.
Explores why Africa is mired in poverty, oppression, and underdevelopment, then examines alternative development approaches and strategies Africa could follow.
A critical examination of immigration as a social phenomenon. Analyzes causes, contours and repercussions of migration flows worldwide, while focusing more specifically on contemporary immigration in the United States. Modes of incorporation, patterns of assimilation and mobility, second generation trends, and transnational processes are some of the issues addressed.
A survey of major sociological trends, developments, and theories of religion. Topics include religious organization and leadership; conversion and disaffiliation; secularization; religious growth; and new religious movements. Also emphasized is the intersection of religion and social processes/institutions such as politics, gender, social conflict, and social change. Open to juniors and seniors or by permission of the instructor.
Explores major transformations and processes that shape human experience at the local, national and global levels, and examines some of the essential dimensions of these changes. Included are changes related to the economy, population growth, colonialism and post-colonialism, environment, development and underdevelopment, globalization, and technology.
This course engages the classical theories rooted in the works of Marx, Weber, and Durkheim, along with contemporary theoretical developments including Functionalism, Conflict Theory, Symbolic Interactionism, Feminism, and Neo-Marxian theories. One aim of the course is to expose students to the original writings of the various thinkers to be considered, with particular attention given to the pertienance of theory in examinimation of social life and the persuit of social change. Prerequisite: Nine credit hours with minimum grade of C and junior standing.
An introduction to sociological theory with an emphasis on its early major figures. While a number of classical thinkers are considered, major attention is given to Marx, Durkheim, and Weber. One important aim of this course is to expose students to the original writings of these thinkers. Emphasis is given to the relevance of theory in the organization and understanding of social life and the pursuit of social change.
Examines contemporary sociological theories while linking them to classical sociological thinking emphasizing the major questions the theories address. Examples include functionalist, conflict, interactionist, exchange, critical, feminist, and structuralist theories. As the second course in the theory sequence, this course can only be taken after completion of classical theory.
Defines community development and explains how it should be practiced. A major proposition in this course is that just and lasting change in communities demands engaging community members in dialogic critical pedagogy and praxis.
An introduction to how data is analyzed in the social sciences with the computer. The student will learn how to enter, analyze, and interpret data. Several data analyses (from univariate to multivate) are explored with the computer package of SPSS. Prerequisite: Minimum grade of C in SOC 220 Social Statistics or an equivalent statistics course in psychology, business, or math.
The development of an empirical research project under the guidance of the instructor. Completed projects will be presented and critiqued by other students and the instructor.
This culminating senior experience is a topical seminar that assesses studentsof sociology and challenges them to integrate their sociological knowledge and Christianfaith when thinking about contemporary social issues.
Internship provides a supervised work experience in a field related to sociology. All students must take this course in their junior or senior year. Those with clear plans for graduate school can choose SOCI 417 Senior Thesis instead.