Courses in Sociology (Division 482)

Primarily for Underclass Students

100. Principles of Sociology. Open to freshmen and sophomores. Juniors and seniors must elect Soc. 400. No credit granted to those who have completed 400. (4). (SS).
Section 00l.
In this section students are introduced to theories and methods in the field of sociology. This introduction is through an analysis of family systems and family life. The course examines family structure and function in contemporary society. Emphasis will be placed on comparative analysis (i.e., cross-cultural differences). Students will be expected to write four short papers (3-5 pages) and a take-home final, essay exam (5-7 pages). Course readings will consist of selected articles/book chapters available on library reserve and as a course pack. (Allen)

Sections 009 and 020. This course tries to give students a feel for sociology by taking a small number of concrete problems and analyzing them from different perspectives. Historical, sociological and popular readings will be employed to explore the following topics: revolutionary change and its consequences for rural life in the People's Republic of China; the automobile industry and its discontents in the United States and Japan; and the future of American cities (Gypsy Moth and Boll Weevil). In the course of the term, students will have an opportunity to learn what it means to "think sociologically" and will be introduced to the ideas of such theorists as Émile Durkheim, Karl Marx and Max Weber. There will be three bases on which students will be evaluated: a midterm, a set of exercises and a final exam. The midterm will cover approximately the first third of the course. The exercises will center on clarification of sociological concepts. The final exam will cover the final two-thirds of the term. Readings include: Myrdal, Report From A Chinese Village; DeLorean/Wright, On a Clear Day You Can See General Motors; Rius, Marx for Beginners; Rubin, Worlds of Pain; and Kidder, Soul of a New Machine. (R. Thomas)

101. Person and Society: An Introduction to Sociology Through Social Psychology. (4). (SS).

This course introduces students to sociology by drawing on the concepts and perspectives of Social Psychology. It seeks to develop more systematic ways of viewing and understanding social life. Readings, discussions, films, and lectures will be used to present and illustrate a variety of useful conceptual frameworks. Three broad content areas will be examined: How people organize their experience of the social world, how they become socialized, and how they interrelate and influence each other. Specific topics include: Social perception and cognition, the development of personal identity and especially gender identity, processes of inter-personal influence and attitude change, conformity and social control. The course will meet for one hour of lecture and three hours of discussion each week. Grades will be based on small projects plus a midterm and final. (Modigliani)

102. Contemporary Social Issues: An Introduction to Sociology. (4). (SS). May be repeated for a total of 8 credits.
Sections 001-009.
This course will introduce students to sociology emphasizing the perspectives derived from population and human ecology. Particular attention will be given to the relationship between population, organization, and environment at the aggregate level and to the individual behavioral implications of the spatial aspects of ecological organization. The primary orientation of the course will be contrasted with alternative perspectives such as social anthropology and social psychology. (D. Goldberg)

Sections 010-015: Social Inequality. Some people have great wealth, health, and opportunities, while others are much less fortunate. To a great extent, inequalities in life chances are not simply a matter of fortune, but are a product of the ways in which societies are organized. How great are the differences between countries in the amount of social inequality people experience? What explains the existence of such inequalities? How much can they be changed? Are there tradeoffs between equality and freedom? How are social classes formed and reinforced? This course provides an introduction to sociology and methods of social research, stressing concepts and methods helpful in studying social stratification and inequality. In the second part of the course, we will study cross-national differences in social organization and inequality in capitalist, social democratic, and Marxist-Leninist societies such as the U.S., Sweden, Yugoslavia, Hungary, the USSR, and China. In the final portion of the course, we will concentrate on social classes and inequalities in the United States. This course will concentrate primarily on comparative class-based inequalities within countries, rather than on inequalities based on sex or race. Course requirements: two hours of lecture and one hour of discussion per week; two exams, an in-class essay, a couple of outside movies, and a couple of brief reports. (Simkus)

220/RC Soc. Sci. 220. Political Economy. (4). (SS).

See RC Social Science 220. (Weiskopf)

For Undergraduates Only

210. Elementary Statistics. (3). (SS).

The purpose of the course is to provide literacy in the evaluation of quantitative evidence as it relates to the world of alternative, testable ideas. Students are familiarized with a variety of descriptive statistics (interpretation of tables, measures of association, regression, etc.), inductive statistics (theory of sampling, significance tests) and the empirical origin of statistical data (surveys, censuses, observational studies). Several forms of decision-making based on quantitative and non-quantitative evidence are compared and contrasted. No special background or preparation is needed. Students capable of handling arithmetic have all the mathematical skills required for the course. There are two lectures and one lab scheduled each week. Problem sets are routinely assigned to illustrate the concepts of the course. Student grades are determined by performance on three examinations, two given during the term and the final exam.

303. Racial and Cultural Contacts. No credit granted to those who have completed 503. (3). (SS).

In the United States as in many other countries, there are major social divisions between racial, ethnic, language and religious groups. This course will focus upon racial issues in the United States although some attention will be devoted to ethnic, linguistic and religious divisions in this country and abroad. The lectures and readings will cover the origins and persistence of prejudice and discrimination. They will also treat legal, social and economic differences between Blacks and whites, how these differences have changed since the founding of the country and why. Attention will be given to the social movements and forces which seem likely to lead to future racial change in this country. This class will meet on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings. Lectures will be presented on Mondays and Wednesdays. Friday's meetings will be used for discussions, for films, and for tests. Grades will be based on three in-class tests and a final examination. These will include both multiple choice questions and brief essay questions. A paper will not be required. The readings will include sociological and psychological descriptions of racial issues and prejudice, decisions of the Supreme Court, and various accounts of racial strife written by novelists or journalists. (Farley)

310. Introduction to Research Methods. Soc. 210. (4). (SS).

This course teaches the essentials of reasoning with quantitative data. You learn how to translate arguments about social life into arguments with consequences for counted data. You do exercises on all of the phases of quantitative analysis: How to make an argument, how to translate the argument into a set of assertions about relationships among variables, how to assess the match between data and argument, and how to present the results in coherent fashion. You read examples of research and criticize them, carry out small exercises with real data using the computer, and learn to use some of the statistics you were exposed to in Soc. 2l0. Even if you are not a sociology concentrator you are welcome to take this course; you will not be handicapped by lack of background either in sociology or statistics. (W. Mason)

330. Population Problems. (3). (SS).

This course focuses on population programs and policy, and on a variety of social, economic, and environmental problems associated with population (for example, the problem of teenage pregnancy, the relationship of population growth to economic development, problems associated with the aging of populations). Population policies and problems in both the less and more developed countries are examined. The course complements Soc 430 (Intro to Pop Studies), but can be taken without taking 430. Class meets twice weekly for 75 minutes; films and discussion will be interspersed with lectures. Grading is by examination (no term paper required); most readings will be available in a course pack. (K. Mason)

389. Practicum in Sociology. Permission of instructor. May not be included in a concentration plan in sociology. (2-4). (Excl). Offered mandatory credit/no credit. (EXPERIENTIAL). May be repeated for a total of 8 credits.

The practicum in sociology provides students with the opportunity for experiential learning through volunteer work in a variety of community organizations. Field placements for students are arranged through the programs of Project Community at the University of Michigan. Project Community includes the Inmate Project, the Innovative Tutorial Experience and the Medical Field Project, as well as several smaller programs which may vary each term. In addition to their work in the community, students keep logs of their work experience and write short papers integrating their field activities with sociological analyses. Speakers, weekly seminars and outside readings also are used to promote learning of general sociological principles and to broaden students' understanding of their field work. There is no preregistration for Soc. 389. Interested students should contact the Project Community Office (763-3548, 2204 Michigan Union) at the beginning of the term to add Sociology 389. (Chesler)

392/Hist. 332/Econ. 395/Pol. Sci. 395/Slavic 395/REES 395. Survey of the Soviet Union. (4). (SS).

See REES 395.

For Undergraduates and Graduates

400. Sociological Principles and Problems. For juniors, seniors, and graduate students with no background in sociology. No credit granted to those who have completed 100. (3). (SS).

This is a survey of sociology intended primarily for non-concentrators, usually in their third or fourth year, and for whom this may be the only course taken in sociology. There are no prerequisites; the course may be used as the introductory requirements for the concentration. We cover the basic perspective that distinguishes the discipline, some of its central theories and its methods of observation and analysis and introduce briefly a sample of the topics commonly treated in the field. A major theme running through the course is the character of modern bureaucratic organization, which we argue pervades virtually every aspect of our lives. Specific topics covered include socialization, social stratification, urban society, industrial organization, race and ethnicity, revolution and social change, population (including the population bomb and world-wide attempts to diffuse it), and gender roles. A series of small paperbacks will be used as texts, and a number of films will be used to illustrate topics and issues. There will be a midterm and final examination, and students will write a few brief review papers. (Ness)

423. Social Stratification. (3). (SS).

This course will be concerned with social stratification, classes, and inequality. We will study various theories about the causes of social inequality, from those of Marx and Weber, to those of more recent writers, such as Frank Parkin, Anthony Giddens, Eric Wright, and the "human capital" school. Focusing primarily on the United States, we will examine the extent of inequalities in prestige, income, power, and life chances. We will also study class-based differences in lifestyles, attitudes, social life, fertility, and mortality, as well as the ways differences between social strata are maintained through barriers to social mobility, selective marriage, and residential segregation. The course requirements include a midterm, an essay exam, and a final exam. (Simkus)

428. Social Institutions of Communist China. (3). (SS).

The course is a general and systematic introduction to the way Chinese society is organized today, and how it has changed since 1949. The main topics covered are the historical background, political and legal institutions and values, economic institutions, village life and people's communes, the family, educational institutions and China since the Cultural Revolution. No previous background on China is assumed, and the course attempts to present as thorough an understanding of contemporary Chinese social organization as possible, given the amount of time available. Readings cover a variety of points of view, and include some options for students with particular interests. The course includes a midterm and final examination, with a term paper substitutable for the final. The course attempts to understand Chinese society by frequent comparisons with traditional China, with the Soviet Union, and with other developing societies and their problems. (Whyte)

447/Women's Studies 447. Gender Roles and Status. (3). (SS).

This course begins with the comparative study of gender organization and inequality in a wide range of societies, including simple hunting-and-gathering societies, horticultural societies, and traditional agricultural societies. Key questions addressed are the social roots of gender inequality and the conditions that enhance or undermine men's control of women. The second half of the course focuses on contemporary industrial societies, especially the U.S., and examines gender organization and inequality in the legal, family and economic systems. Emphasis is placed on the roots of economic inequality between the sexes in the United States. Most readings are contained in a course pack; a paperback text or supplementary book may also be selected. Bi-weekly class meetings will feature a combination of lectures, discussions, and films (the last used frequently in the first half of the course). Grading by examination (term paper required for graduate students). (K. Mason)

450. Political Sociology. (3). (SS).

An examination of the relationship between economy and the polity with particular emphasis on social classes and class conflict. The course will examine the historical development and political effects of the core economic institution of the contemporary world, the large and often multinational corporation, in two related contexts. (1) The rise of the capitalist world economy and its impact on third world societies through colonialism, imperialism, and dependent development. The growth of revolutionary political movements in Southeast Asia, Southern Africa and Latin America and local elite responses to these movements. (2) The development of the concentrated corporate economy, including the development of multinational corporations, in the United States in the twentieth century. An examination of the political and social consequences of corporate concentration and control including political capitalism in the oil industry, oligopoly, surplus and the rise and fall of the American automobile industry, defense contractors and the military industrial complex. Social and political movements of students, workers and others organizing in reaction to corporate power will also be considered. Readings include Edwards et al., The Capitalist System; Moore, Social Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy; Geertz, Agricultural Involution; Baran and Sweezy, Monopoly Capital; Rothschild, Paradise Lost: The Decline of the Auto-Industrial Age; Blair, The Control of Oil; and Mills, The Power Elite. (J. Paige)

455/Rel. 455. The Sociology of Ecstasy, Belief, and Religious Organization. (3). (SS).

Ultimate reality (the focus of Religion) becomes understood quite differently as people pursue religious questions within different social contexts. The course uses sociological methods of inquiry to explore the emergence of new religious movements, the ways that organizations respond to extraordinary experiences like mysticism and the ecstatic, the kinds of impact social forces have on organized religion, and the ways that religion, in turn, affects other areas of social life. (Heirich)

460. Social Change. (3). (SS).

The broad agenda of this course is to review theories and programs of change, especially as they apply to the contemporary American scene. Thus, our view will be primarily national and contemporary in character, and we will not plan to spend much time on international systems and events. Moreover, our primary focus is on change that is intended in one fashion or another. Of course, any intended effort does make assumptions about other social forces, and we will review their impact on society and social change efforts as well, and several theoretical or ideological perspectives on change, and the assumptions and implications associated with them. We will try to discriminate between individual change and social change, and to understand the relation between these two targets. Other targets or arenas, and issues faced by people actively involved in creating change will also be a focus of our inquiry. One specific issue in social change that has great import for the intellectual community is that of research...in this case tactical research relevant to change efforts...and students will do an original group research project in this area. As a summary, we will consider typical reactions to social change efforts on the part of persons/groups/institutions that oppose or resist particular changes in the social order. (M. Chesler)

465/Psych. 488. Sociological Analysis of Deviant Behavior. (3). (SS).

An advanced undergraduate or graduate level course that addresses the broad question: how do people become social deviants? Films and simulation games will be used to concretize various types of deviance and deviance-producing processes, and readings will provide theoretical frameworks as well as further case material. Discussions will be the primary vehicles for bringing these elements together, with lectures playing only a minor role. Students must be prepared to raise questions or else to resolve for themselves the inevitable loose-ends associated with such a discussion-oriented course. Substantively, the course has two major parts. The first will examine in detail the social processes by which individuals are "officially" designated deviant: specifically, how social rules are created, enforced, and adjudicated by legislatures, the police, and the courts. The second will examine some major theories about the causes of deviant behavior by focusing on a series of more specific types of criminal activity: e.g., theft, delinquency, violent crimes, corporate crimes. A portion of the course will also be devoted to student projects entailing analyses of the autobiographies of deviants of the student's own choosing. (Modigliani)

467. Juvenile Delinquency. (3). (SS).

In this course, we will examine traditional sociological conceptions of the causes of delinquent behavior. We will also consider those punitive and therapeutic approaches which have been used to respond to delinquency. Course requirements include a midterm and a final.

468. Criminology. (3). (SS).

The analysis of criminal behavior in relationship to the institutional frame-work of society. Emphasis upon the more routinized and persistent forms of criminality along with the joint roles played by victims, the criminal, the police and all the other relevant parties.

474. Social Structure and Mental Illness. One course in introductory sociology. (3). (SS).

This course will provide a thorough and critical review of current thinking about the relationship between social structure and mental illness. Currently accepted theories about the etiology of mental illness will be examined and research evidence for and against these theories will be brought to bear on our evaluation of these theories. Special emphasis will be placed on how stress might precipitate or provoke psychiatric disorders. We will also be concerned with the stress-buffering effects of social supports, intrapsychic resources/vulnerabilities and coping strategies. The course is recommended both for psychologists who seek a macro perspective on the causes of individual suffering and for sociologists who would like to see how structural dynamics influence individual behaviors. A good part of the course will be devoted to the assessment of recently published research reports, so a prior course in statistics is required for admission. (Kessler)

486/Psych. 486. Attitudes and Social Behavior. Introductory psychology; or senior standing and permission of instructor. (3). (SS).
Section 001
: See Psychology 486, Section 001. (Ezekiel)

Section 004 : See Psychology 486, Section 004. (Nisbett)

For Sociology Honors Students, Seniors, and Graduates

541. Contemporary Japanese Society: Convergence Theory. Upperclass or graduate standing. (3). (SS).

This course is intended to provide undergraduates and graduates with a broad overview of contemporary Japanese society. Particular attention is focused on the social changes occurring in major institutional areas. Wherever possible, comparative data is introduced so that comparative evaluations with other industrialized nations can be made. Convergence theory provides the theoretical framework with which we will be operating. Convergence theory presumes that Japanese institutions and values are coming to approximate those of other advanced western nations by virtue of the imperatives of modern technology and other characteristics of advanced industrial nations. We will also assess a more recent variant of convergence theory which asserts that Japan by virtue of its late development has become the prototype for other advanced nations to emulate. Finally, we shall examine the relevance of dependency theory for Japanese development. Class meets once a week for two hours in the evening. After the fourth week, one typed three page (maximum) paper will be required for each week thereafter. This paper will be based on critical evaluation of the assigned readings. There will be no term paper and no exams. There are no prerequisite courses. (Cole)

587/Psych. 516. Advanced Laboratory in Social Psychology. Stat. 402 or 300, and prior or concurrent enrollment in Soc. 486. (3). (SS).

See Psychology 516. (Burnstein)

590. Proseminar in Social Psychology. Graduate standing or permission of instructor. Some background in social psychology is desirable. (3). (SS).

A graduate-level introduction to social psychology from a sociological perspective. Open to advanced undergraduates as well, but they are advised to consult with the instructor before registering. The course considers major theoretical and empirical contributions to sociological social psychology, including early as well as contemporary classics. Topics covered include social interaction, attitude and belief systems, roles and reference groups, socialization, and social structure and personality. The class will be structured mainly around discussion of reading. Evaluation will be based on several short papers or prelim-type essay exams. (H. Schuman)

591. Special Areas of Social Psychology. Soc. 590 or permission of instructor. (3). (SS).

This course examines the effects of large social structures such as societies, organizations, communities, and social classes on individual attitudes and behavior, as well as the impact of incongruity between individual needs and social demands (i.e., social stress alienation, and anomie) on the functioning and well-being of individuals and social structures. Major topics include national character, culture of poverty, class differences in values, work alienation, social stress, health, and social influence and control in settings from utopian communities to prisons. Considerable attention to interpersonal and psychological mechanisms through which individuals relate to large social structure. (J. House)


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