INTRODUCTION TO SOCIOLOGY
Professor: Carol Rambo, Ph.D.
Office: Clement 225
Phone: 678-2610, 678-2611 for messages
Society: The Basics, by John J. Macionis. Prentice Hall. 2002.
Intro Sociology Course CD. Behind the Customer Service Desk at the bookstore.
This course is designed to give the beginning student an overview of the discipline of Sociology. In this semester, you will be introduced to some of the basic concepts used by sociologists, the theories which guide their thinking and practice, some of the methods they use to investigate their ideas, and some of the substantive areas in which sociologists specialize. By the end of the semester, it is my hope that you will have a set of ideas in mind that are not merely memorized, but integrated with each other and perhaps even into your daily life. Sociology is about the study of society. Society is in us, and we are in society.
The readings will be our spring board for class lectures and discussion. You are required to keep up with the readings and will be responsible for these as well as class lectures.
A liberal arts education means literally to "liberate" your mind. Discussion is of the utmost importance. You have paid money to be sitting here. DO NOT ALLOW ME TO LECTURE WITHOUT ASKING QUESTIONS IF YOU ARE CONFUSED OR UNCLEAR ON THE MATERIALS. Unfortunately, this happens frequently in theory courses. Let me emphasize, only VICTIMS allow this to happen to them. If you are having problems, chances are someone else is too! It is through discussion that understanding is achieved
COURSE REQUIREMENTS AND GRADING
Primary Evaluations for grades are based on three unit quizzes and four computer lab explorations. Please take note of the grading scale:
A = 100 - 90% B = 89 - 80% C = 79 - 65%
D = 64 - 58% F = below 58%
Each of the three quizzes is multiple choice in character worth 27, 27, and 26 points, for a total of 80 points of your grade. These quizzes will be based upon the unit material most recently covered, not comprehensive in nature. Make up quizzes are permitted with proper documentation and are to be scheduled with the instructor. You must contact the instructor ONE WEEK after missing a quiz or forfeit the opportunity to make it up.
On four occasions we will go into the computer lab to explore three different data sets that are included with the CD you purchased for this course. The CD will not work on a computer which foes not have SPSS loaded on it, so as they say, "Don't try this at home, folks." Each lab session, done well, has a maximum of 5 points, for a total of 20 possible points.
Quiz 1 27 points
Quiz 2 27 points
Quiz 3 26 points
Lab 1 5 points
Lab 2 5 points
Lab 3 5 points
Lab 4 5 points
TOTAL 100 Points
There will be no curving, but as you can see below, the grading system is very flexible with 3 opportunities for extra points.
EXTRA-CREDIT JOURNAL (optional)
The Journal will consist to five type written entries about two pages long. I will not be neurotic picky on this, quality counts more than quantity. Using a one inch margin, a type written double spaced page will consist of about 250 words. Each entry will be worth 2 points for a maximum value of 10 points for the whole journal. Your entries will take things you encounter in your daily life and analyze them in terms of the meta-theories you will pick up in class. Each entry will contain one meta-theory thoroughly explored and all three meta-theories must be used once in the journal. I will elaborate more on this in class. You may use your experience, newspaper articles, books, CNN, movies, MTV, songs, a rad story your friend told you happened to her, ANY kind of experience. Have fun with this. Use the concepts correctly; do not just identify the idea, but demonstrate how it is functioning in the example.
Do not repeat specific class examples, you will get no credit. If, however, you notice one of the concepts we learn about at work in class, this is fair game. Neatness will count one point per entry. If you are a slob genius, you could still lose a total of 5 points on the assignment. If you want to run a sample journal entry by me before the date of your first exam, I will be willing to critique it (no hard and fast grade).
Upon handing in your last exam, I will look at your face. If it is a face that constantly adds to class discussion, I will add two points to your grade. If it is a face that occasionally contributes, I will add one point.
You are an adult. You pay your money, you decide if you want to attend. I will, however, take attendance for two purposes. If you have perfect attendance after the first week of class, three points will be assigned to your grade, equivalent to the weight of answering three exam questions correctly. If you only miss one or two periods during this time, I will assign two extra credit points. Miss three periods and I will assign one point of extra credit. Students who miss more than this number of classes (my second purpose) will have a great deal of trouble gaining sympathy if they are not doing well in the class. We can talk about your absences if you are in a dire situation. I must assume, however, if you choose not to attend and you do poorly, that you are choosing to do poorly and I need not put forth any effort on your behalf.
Again, you are an adult. You pay your money, this experience is yours. However, we all have our lives to lead and sometimes things are more complicated than we would like to admit. Because of the sheer size of the two classes I teach this semester, I need to enforce some kind of order. Folks wandering in and out of class all period long is not acceptable. Students who arrive within 10 minutes of the beginning of class are responsible to see the instructor and have their absence marks changed to lates. Changes cannot be made at later class periods. Three lates will count against your extra credit points as one absence. Students who are more than 10 minutes later will be counted as absent, but are welcome (warmly welcome) to join the class in progress.
VERY TENTATIVE CLASS OUTLINE
(can and often is changed at Professor's Discretion)