Undergraduate Sociology Courses

SOCI 1301. Introductory Sociology. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

A general introduction to the concepts and elementary methods used in the study of society. Special attention is given to social organization, social stratification, social institutions, formal organizations, small groups, and social change.

SOCI 1306. Social Problems. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Application of sociological principles and theoretical perspectives to major social problems in contemporary society such as inequality, crime and violence, substance abuse, environmental issues, deviance, or family problems.

SOCI 2300. Hispanics in the United States. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The goal of the course is to introduce students to sociology while exploring Latin American societies. The course will start with a general presentation of both sociology and Latin America, followed by a discussion of what sociology is and the different ways of studying societies. The course will focus on Latin American studies and their particularities. The course will approach Latin America through the lens of politics, often from a comparative and historical perspective. Drawing on examples from various countries in Latin America, the course will examine the development of political structures, cultures, and practices in Latin America. Students will therefore be introduced to a range of important sociological issues. Relying on the historical background of different Latin American societies, students will explore sociological concepts such as race, gender, class, social violence, religion, sports, and culture. The course will examine the sociology of Latino people living in Texas and in the United States.

SOCI 2303. Race and Ethnic Relations. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course includes an analysis of relations between dominant groups and minority groups within the United States. Theories of prejudice and discrimination, the origins of the idea of race and ethnicity, the social historical foundations of the system of race and ethnic relations within the United States, systems of social stratification, and process of social change are emphasized.

SOCI 3301. Sociology of the Family. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

A comparative study of the family as a social institution with emphasis on formation, functions, maintenance, child rearing, and family disorganization. Prerequisites: Junior classification and SOCI 1301 or approval of the department head.

SOCI 3304. Medical Sociology. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course explores how the sociology of health and illness are affected by social structure and cultural factors, including how these influence health and illness and people's perceptions of the same. Additionally, this course explores the concrete organizations that make up medical systems and how that system reflects the interests of doctors, insurance companies, pharmaceutical industries, hospitals, researchers, the government, and the consumer. Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or approval of department head.

SOCI 3305. Criminology. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Theories of criminology and significant research on causes, extent, cost and ecology of crime; police, criminal, and juvenile courts; and prisons and reformatories. Course also focuses on prevention and rehabilitation. Credit for both CRIJ 3305 and SOCI 3305 will not be awarded. Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or approval of instructor.

SOCI 3306. Urban Sociology. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Urban Sociology presents a detailed analysis of “the city.” In this course, students will learn about varying factors associated with urbanization, while examining local neighborhood issues. Topics include the history of urbanization; ethnography and other methods for studying urban social phenomena; theories about how cities are socially and spatially organized, how social and spatial organization are related; how urban living affects social interaction, race, class stratification, crime, and violence. Special emphasis will be placed on New Urbanism, Food Deserts, the Urban Health Penalty, and Environment (In)Justice issues. The effects of suburbanization will also be investigated.

SOCI 3307. Rural Sociology. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Adaptations of families to rural environments, farming, and other occupations; organizations, agencies, and institutions serving rural people; problems in delivering services to the country; and rural development and change.

SOCI 3308. Deviant Behavior. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

An examination of the factors and conditions leading to behaviors that violate and deviate from fundamental social values. The relationship of personal and social maladjustment is addressed in relation to the various theories of deviant behavior.

SOCI 3310. Sociology of Aging. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The study of the reciprocal relationship between society and those considered aged by society, utilizing concepts and theoretical frameworks applicable to that population group. The course also examines the social forces that impinge on the aging process, including socially constructed images of the aged, and patterns of inequality of gender, race, and economics. Credit for both SOCW 3310 and SOCI 3310 will not be awarded. Prerequisite: SOCI 1301.

SOCI 3312. Environmental Sociology. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Examines relationships and interactions between society and the environment. Also examines how the natural world and its degradation influence the way societies are organized by studying human communities as part of natural ecosystems.

SOCI 3315. Sociology of Sport and Leisure. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course examines the mechanisms through which sport and leisure institutions and practices are created, maintained, and transformed. Particular attention is paid to the relationship between sport and leisure institutions and other social systems such as the family, religion, politics, and economics. Topics considered include violence, discrimination, power, globalization, and the role of the media. This course places a strong emphasis on exploring the ways in gender, race, and class intersect with sport and leisure institutions.

SOCI 3320. Social Stratification and Inequality. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The study of social inequality in human society, with emphasis on the social class structure of the United States, its origins, development, and consequences for the society and the individual.

SOCI 3330. Social Science Statistics. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Surveys the application of elementary forms of statistical processes, including central tendency, variation, the normal curve and Z scores, analysis of variance, regression analysis, and correlations, to social science data. The application of statistics will be made to the following areas: social work, sociology, criminal justice, political science, and gerontology. SPSS will be utilized for data analysis.

SOCI 3338. Sociology of Superheroes. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course examines the ways that the idea of the superhero functions as a cultural force within society. It examines the reciprocal influence between the the idea of the superhero and ideas of morality, authority, power, gender, race, nationalism, community and other social-cultural forces.

SOCI 3368. Social Movements. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course examines the major theoretical ideas about how social movements are created, organized, and maintained. Particular attention will be paid towards analyzing the strategies, techniques, and tactics that have been employed by social movements and the ways in which opponents have attempted to nullify these practices.

SOCI 4085. Sociology Seminar. 1-3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 1-3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Independent reading, research, discussion, and paper writing under personal direction of instructor. May be taken more than once for credit if topics vary. Prerequisite: May be taken more than once for credit if topics vary.

SOCI 4086. Problems in Sociology. 1-6 Credit Hours (Lecture: 0 Hours, Lab: 1-6 Hours).

Independent reading, research and discussion. Entry into this course will be arranged with the sociology counselor.

SOCI 4301. Sociology of Conspiracy Theories. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course examines the ways that groups form conspiratorial meaning systems. The course discusses how social, cultural, and economic forces have served to shape conspiratorial thinking in the past and how these forces are working to shape these relations today and the larger social-cultural impact of such conspiratorial thinking.

SOCI 4302. Methods of Social Research. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

Principles and methods of social research, including research design, methods of observation, questionnaires, interviews, and other sources of social data; qualitative and quantitative techniques of inference; analysis and research report writing. Limited research studies and projects will be undertaken by the students. Prerequisite: Junior classification, SOCI 1301, or approval of department head.

SOCI 4303. Sociological Theory. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours). [WI]

This course examines the major schools of sociological thought, including perspectives from both classic and contemporary sociological theory. Prerequisite: Junior classification, SOCI 1301 or approval of department head.

SOCI 4304. Sociology of Religion. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

An examination of the basic principles of religion, religious belief, and practice as a sociological concept. Attention will be given to the relationship of religion to the progress and stability of the social order. Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or approval of department head.

SOCI 4305. Social Psychology. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The scientific study of the influence of society, groups, culture, and other persons on the attitudes, behavior, and experiences of the individual. An examination of the total person as he or she functions in relation to the social environment.

SOCI 4306. Water Policy. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course offers an interdisciplinary exploration on “water policies" -- that is, the political dimensions of human manipulation of water, wetlands and watersheds. While the substantive focus is water, the course is design to provide a broader introduction to social-scientific theorizing about human-environment relations. A central objective of the course will be examining Texas environmental laws regarding water policy; while employing a range of geographically diverse case studies that examine major topics on water politics, including: large-scale hydro-development and grassroots resistance thereto as a subset of the contentious history of international development policy more broadly the governance of common-pool resources; the emergence of participatory and community-based water management policies; the "neoliberalization" of water resources through privatization, marketization and commodification; and conflict and cooperation in the governance of trans-boundary waters. Our examination is guided analytically themes central to the environmental social sciences, including: power, institutions, political economy, and the social embeddedness of science. Credit for SOCI 4306, WSES 4306, and SOCI 5306 will not be awarded.

SOCI 4311. Sociology of Sex. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Biological, psychological, social, and cultural dimensions of human sexuality will be examined. The human sexual experience as a tool for self-awareness, understanding, and acceptance will be discussed. Topics include male and female sexual anatomy, physiology, sexuality over the life span, variations in sexual behavior, sexual dysfunctions, and related therapies. Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or approval of department head.

SOCI 4312. Gender In Society. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course will examine such topics as how we are socialized to gender roles; gender inequality; gender differences in family, work, and political behavior; the effects of gender on education and religion; and how gender is constructed and how this has changed over time.

SOCI 4313. Globalization. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course focuses on social processes and social problems as they are contained in the highly interdependent world system. Social change and development stresses historical, comparative, and critical perspectives, and addresses the problem of how and why societies and cultures around the world change and whether those changes promote justice, equity, democracy, and development of human potential. Prerequisites: Junior standing and SOCI 1301, or department head approval.

SOCI 4314. Medical and Health Care Policy. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Intensive study of current trends and issues related to professional health care practice, service delivery, and populations at risk. Provides an opportunity to explore the many ways in which issues related to health, illness, and disability policies including cultural factors impact clients, families, and society. Appropriate ways for health care professionals to understand and intervene in these areas will be discussed.

SOCI 4321. Death and Dying. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The ramifications of death, including the experiences and rights of the dying and the significance to those who mourn. Using major sociology theories, focuses on the meaning to society of the reality and symbolism of death. Credit for both SOCW 4321 and SOCI 4321 will not be awarded. Prerequisite: SOCI 1301.

SOCI 4322. Age and Ethnic Stratification. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Studies aging as a process and life stage as affected by health, economic status, and stratification in this society and in other industrialized countries. Addresses culture, ethnicity, and race as key dimensions in understanding aging and health as delivered to diverse populations. Prerequisite: SOCI 3310.

SOCI 4340. Sociology of Contemporary Japan. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

This course will explore the potential of Japan's soft power, including its traditional culture, science, and technology. This course will examine the characteristics of Japanese organizations and management styles in comparison with other Asian and Western-styles on issues of welfare policy, family, and aging. This course also seeks to propose what contributions Japan should make based on Japan's experiences in environmental issues, including modernization, urbanization, and current natural and technological deserters Japan has experienced.

SOCI 4341. Migration and Society. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

The United States is a nation build on the backs of immigrants. Millions of people leave their homelands escaping from religious/ political persecution, and/or extreme poverty with the hope of finding freedom and economic prosperity. The roles that immigrants play are very significant. Often they are praised for enriching the U.S. culture and for fueling economic growth. At the same time, they are condemned for burdening taxpayers and/or they are seen to be unwilling to assimilate in the host country. This course will address some of the key issues on international immigration to the United States. The study of immigration is broadly interdisciplinary and will require perspectives not only from sociology but also from political science, anthropology, and economics. This course will discuss what happens to immigrants once they arrive in the United States such as how immigrants integrate into their local communities and how these communities respond to these newcomers. This course also covers the theories of assimilation and transnationalism to understand the dynamic nature of im/migration. Current themes such as globalization, education, gendered migration, labor markets, and the second generation of immigrants will be included.

SOCI 4399. Sociology Internship/Capstone. 3 Credit Hours (Lecture: 3 Hours, Lab: 0 Hours).

Serving as a required, capstone course, students assist the faculty supervisor with their placements in a social science related agency. The field experience, coupled with textbook materials and weekly class seminars, provides students the opportunity to integrate sociological theory with practical experience. At the agency, students will work 120 hours, acquiring professional skills while earning college credit. Students will also keep a journal of internship experiences and write a final paper that applies sociology to the field experience. Prerequisites: major in sociology, senior standing, and approval of the undergraduate advisor. Fees: $50.