This course covers the fundamentals of sociological research design. Emphasis is placed on principles that are applicable in all kinds of sociological research, including surveys, participant observation, comparative historical study, interviews, and quantitative analysis of existing data. The course also delves into current methodological controversies in several arenas.
This course is intended to enhance the teaching skills of graduate students in the Sociology Department. Through a combination of classroom discussions and teaching simulations, the seminar challenges students to discover and hone their teaching styles, to develop a personal philosophy about teaching and learning, to develop self‐confidence leading and facilitating small and large group discussions, to learn about the teaching resources that are available to them throughout the university, to experiment with designing engaging courses of study, and to discover that teaching can be a rewarding and stimulating element of an academic career.
Social movements and revolution have long been driving forces behind political, social, and cultural change. From the Civil Rights movement of the 60s to the recent and unpredicted "Arab Spring," the extraordinary mobilization of ordinary people is routinely credited with fundamentally re-shaping societal institutions--the polity, the economy, religion, gender, race, and even the environment. But can we really define and study something as ephemeral as social mobilization? Do we know how social movements begin? Why might they become revolutionary? Can they make a difference in the societies they target? This course examines these questions within the sociological literature on collective action. Theories of social movements and revolutions are then applied to a series of case studies around the globe. Case studies may include the US, Iran, China, El Salvador, Chile, India, Poland, Argentina, Egypt, and Nigeria, among others. Students will also be required to apply course readings to the collective action case of their choosing throughout the semester.
Why are some societies wealthier, healthier, and more highly educated than others? And how might we improve the lives of those individuals with the fewest opportunities? The purpose of this course is to investigate whether and how scholarly theories of development map onto the real world practices of development organizations (state development offices, intergovernmental agencies, not-for-profit organizations) and vice versa. Readings in development sociology will be interspersed with individual student analyses of specific development organizations across a range of issues including (but not limited to) gender, politics, the environment, education, health care, and the economy.