- Department Office: SS 103
- Phone Number: 507-537-6224
- Website: https://www.smsu.edu/academics/programs/sociology/
The Sociology curriculum is designed to develop students’ “sociological imagination,” an ability to analyze social situations in sociological terms and thereby to become capable of better understanding themselves and the behavior of others in the context of their society. Such understanding enables students to better cope with the social forces operating to stabilize and change social conditions. Graduates with a Sociology major have entered a variety of careers, including social service, business, labor, government, and criminal justice, and some elect to pursue graduate studies. In addition, students may complete a Sociology minor.
Note: Students must complete a minimum of 120 credits in order to graduate with a Bachelor's degree.
A survey of basic concepts and research areas in sociology, including sociology origins, major theoretical perspectives, research methods, culture, social structure, socialization, group processes, formal organizations, deviance and social control, stratification, racial/ethnic and gender inequality, social institutions, demography, collective behavior, and social change.
This course is designed to introduce students to the discipline of sociology and the various career options for sociology majors. This course will also provide students with practical information about the sociology program, including information about the programs curriculum and requirements of the major. Students who successfully complete this course will also understand the skills, knowledge, and experiences they need to gain entry into the job market and/or a graduate program.
The origin of marriage and family in historical and comparative perspective; family diversity in contemporary society; application of theoretical perspectives to family processes; gender roles, courtship, mate selection, married relationships, parenthood, marriage termination, alternatives to marriage, and the future family.
Covers concepts and ideas which enable students to recognize and identify oppression, discrimination, and racism, along with learning techniques for building community in a pluralistic society with its great variety of cultures, value systems, and life styles. Includes study of the cultural content, world view, and concepts that comprise Minnesota-based American Indian tribal government, history, language, and culture.
This course critically analyzes contemporary social problems from historical, structural, and theoretical perspectives. Problems analyzed vary, but all analyses are premised on the sociological understanding that humans are products of their social environments. Theory and research are used to demonstrate that social problems are interrelated and that society creates and perpetuates problems.
Consideration of various approaches to the study of deviant behavior; contemporary theories and methods of study; discussion of the ethical issues raised by the study of deviant behavior; the social processes whereby persons and patterns of behavior come to be identified as deviant. Topics of deviance analyzed vary, but theory and research are applied to all areas.
This course introduces theories, research, and current issues related to the gender roles in society. Course content includes various theoretical approaches to the sociological study of gender, historical and cross-cultural comparisons, research findings, policy issues, structural influences, and current change trends.
This course is designed to provide lower-division students with an opportunity to experience a special or experimental curriculum course.
This course will provide an overview of the sociological study of aging. To understand the experience of growing old, students will analyze common beliefs about old people, investigate the diversity of the aged, and consider how later life is shaped by institutions, such as the family, the economy, employment, retirement, social services, and health care. Emphasis will be given to the changes that are associated with aging and the resulting dynamic interactions between older people and their environment.
A sociological introduction to social psychology, including a symbolic interactionist understanding of the individual in society, the impact of social conditions and culture on personal development, freedom and control in human behavior, and the human ability to respond to and cause social change.
Early modern social thought and the development of sociological theory in the 19th and 20th centuries to the present. Prerequisites: SOCI 101 and one other Sociology course.
This introduction to social research applies social research methods to sociology, criminal justice, and social work. Includes analysis of published research along with quantitative and qualitative research methods in investigating social issues, program evaluation, practice evaluation, policy analysis, and needs assessment.
Changing technology, collective behavior, reform and revolution; causes and consequences of social change, creative and destructive consequences of changing social patterns; the relevance of history to social process.
This course will provide a sociological perspective on sexual identities, behaviors, and the negative societal response of homophobia. Course content focuses on the social construction of sexual identity, and the complex personal, social and political issues of sexuality. Topics on sexuality may vary, but theory and research is applied to all areas.
Causes and consequences of prejudice, discrimination, and segregation; relationships of ethnic, racial, and religious minorities to dominant categories in the United States and globally; remedial programs to reduce racial, ethnic, and religious tensions.
This course familiarizes students with sociological concepts and research related to work. Issues include such topics as alienation, job satisfaction, control over the workplace, changing work conditions, employment and wage inequalities, and conflict between work and family.
Explanation and critical analysis of crime and criminal behavior. This course examines measuring crime, violent crime, crimes against property, criminal careers, terrorism, and criminological and other theories of crime. Special attention is given to what works, what doesnt, significant research, meaningful theoretical insights, restorative justice, prevention, and promising programs.
Consumerism has increasingly come to dominate American society. Shopping, buying, having, showing, and wearing are central aspects of who we are, who we dream of being, how we interact with each other, and how we affect the larger environment. This course will use an interdisciplinary approach to study contemporary consumer society. We will also be exploring our personal choices, as we are very much a part of this consumer society.
This course is an introduction to the sociological study of family and intimate partner violence (IPV). In this course, students will examine the social factors contributing to family and intimate partner violence, as well as the theoretical approaches and typologies used to understand these issues. In addition to current research looking at the risk markers of abuse, this course will also examine the consequences of and responses to family and intimate partner violence.
Class stratification in pre-industrial, industrial, and post-industrial societies, institutionalized inequality, sources of strain and conflict, automation and the prospects for industrial man.
To provide individual students with an opportunity to explore areas of special interest for academic credit.
This course is designed to provide upper-division students with an opportunity to experience a special or experimental curriculum enrichment course.
This course is designed to provide students with a senior capstone and offer career direction. A thesis option allows students to integrate previous sociological study by designing, completing, and presenting a research project. The non-thesis option allows students to work under a carefully planned and approved program.
Research or internship in an organization or community, defined in individual learning agreements and consisting of combining sociological concepts and theory with one or more of the following: qualitative research, quantitative research, applied sociology. Prerequisites: Sociology major or minor, Justice Administration major, Anthropology minor, or Criminal Justice minor.