Sociology (SOCI)

Course descriptions

1210 Introductory Sociology

3 credit hours

This course is intended to give a basic introduction to the discipline. It will examine the sociological imagination which understands human life as fundamentally explained by our membership in social groups. Particular attention will be given to the basic theories, concepts and methods through which this view is explored.

2100 Social Research Methods

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C) 

Students are introduced to basic social research methods by examining various sociological research strategies, different forms of research design, and a range of methods of evidence collection.  While the course is intended as a general introduction to social research methods, it will emphasize that choice of methods is closely related to theory and the nature of particular research questions.

3000 Social Inequality

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine major structures of social inequality and how these structures intersect in the lives of individuals and groups. Patterns in opportunity, disadvantage, regulations, and access to justice emerge from those structures.

3012 Sociological Theory

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

A critical examination of the major themes of social analysis in the 20th and 21st century, with particular emphasis on current theoretical issues and differences in theoretical approaches to problems in sociological analysis.

Note: Students who have completed SOCI 2363 will not receive credit for this course.

3020 Introduction to Science and Technology Studies

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students are introduced to some of the central ideas in Science and Technology Studies (STS). STS is the interdisciplinary study of the ways in which science, technology, and society shape each other for better or worse. Topics covered may include definitions and critiques of science and technology; gendered, race, and classed-based stratification and discrimination in science, the role of interest and bias in science, and the socially constructed nature of science and technology. 

3100 Qualitative Research Methods 

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 2100 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students are introduced to sociological and criminological research that uses qualitative methods. Students examine qualitative methodology, research strategies, designs and methods of qualitative data collection and analysis, including the contributions of feminist scholarship. Students explore different ways of interpreting qualitative data. Approaches covered may include grounded theory, participatory action research, historical and textual methods, and participant-observation/ethnography, among others.

Note: Students may not receive credit for CRIM 3100 if they have already received credit for CRIM 2302 or SOCI 2365.

3102 Quantitative Research Methods 

3 credit hours
Prerequisite:  SOCI 2100 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students are introduced to quantitative methodology, research strategies, designs, methods of quantitative data collection and statistical analysis. Key features are interpreting and critiquing statistical data, which is a major source of information for sociologists.

Class 3 hrs. and Lab 75 min/week

3306 Sociology of Education [EDUC 3307]

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students study major sociological approaches (both conceptual and methodological) to education in different societies, with special emphasis on Canadian society. Students focus on topics such as relationship between family, education and society; education and inequality; the social organization of knowledge; education and social change; the politics of education.

3310 Society and the Environment

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students engage in a sociological examination of selected environmental issues; acid rain, forestry/wildlife, toxic waste, human-caused climate change, etc.

3316 Sociology of Health and Illness

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students investigate the social aspects of health and illness and the consequence of these notions to medical practice. Topics covered might include the development of biomedicine, the “medicalization of behaviour”, crosscultural and historical perspectives on the experience of pain and dying, gender and health and the social meaning of illness.

3333 Social Movements

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine some of North America’s most socially transformative social movements. Drawing on social movement theories, students explore not only how and why people organize and mobilize to address perceived grievances, but also when such mobilizations are likely to occur, succeed, or fail.

3336 Sociology of Work

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students cultivate a sociological imagination for one of the most important parts of our lives: work. Following an introduction to the concepts and issues that relate to work, labour and employment, students explore the nature of work in other cultures comparatively and historically. Students focus on the nature of work in modern society. This is followed with a detailed examination of three factors that shape the experience of work in people’s lives: class, gender and race.

3343 Society as Drama

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum of grade of C)

Students explore the features of social life that depend on the human ability to imagine ourselves as others see us. Drawing specifically from the theoretical perspectives of George Herbert Mead and Erving Goffman, students investigates symbolic interactionist approaches to the (re)construction of the self and the self-society relationship as a process of symbolic communications between social actors. Central to this course is the notion that as social actors we attempt to shape the impressions that others have of us by projecting images of ourselves that best serve our own objectives. In so doing, students define the social situation and create appropriate expectations of ourselves and others.

3347 Sociology of Race and Ethnicity

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum of grade of C) 

Students analyze racial, ethnic, and minority group structure and inter-group processes in different societies, with special emphasis given to Canadian society.

3371 Evaluating Social Programs

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 3102 (with a minimum grade of C) 

Students are introduced to program evaluation for the social scientist.  Students examine the evaluation process, data collection design and implementation, analytical techniques and report preparation.  Students are exposed to the practical application of research methodologies.

3386 Sociology of Developing Societies [IDST 3386]

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine the conditions of economic and social development in the Third World. The role of colonial empires in the creation of these conditions and of the world system in maintaining them will be scrutinized. Problems discussed will include trade relations, foreign aid, land distribution, industrialization, class structures, the role of the estate, and the position of women. Illustrative case studies on these problems will range across different countries in the Third World (Africa, Latin America and Asia).

3387 Women and Development [WMST 3387]

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minim grade of C)

Students examine the role of women in development including the changing structure of the division of labour by gender in different international, regional and community contexts, and the interaction between the economics and politics of class and gender in different societies at different levels of development. Students address issues such as: the incorporation of subsistence economies into modern market economies; the establishment of labour-intensive multinational industries, particularly those drawing on female labour; the relationship between the household and the formal and informal economies and patterns of female migration; and the role of women in the transition from rural to urban/industrial worlds.

3422 Political Sociology

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine prevalent theories and emerging approaches on political behaviour, change and institutions. Topics include voting behaviour, political parties, international relations, lobbying, political culture, political news media, etc.

3423 Ethnic Conflict

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Ethnic conflict is a social force that is shaping our lives, society, and world history. Students use sociological theories and research to tackle some of the current debates and controversies related to ethnic conflicts, such as opposition to Canadian multiculturalism, Aboriginal protests in Canada, the rise of Islamophobia, the resurgence of the Far Right in Europe, attitudes towards and prevention of Islamic terrorism, and the impact of globalization on ethnic conflict escalation.

3431 Women, Migration and Identity

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students explore how immigration was an essential part of building the Canadian nation, but women’s experiences, struggles and contributions in this process have been largely neglected in mainstream historical accounts. Students examine the issues shaping women’s identities, such as acculturation; problems with family and community; economic difficulties and job discrimination; and the role race, ethnicity, class, region and generation play in shaping women’s diverse realities. 

3491 Rural Sociology

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Using the contrasting concepts of community and locality as focal points, students examine key sociological concepts and theories related to cohesion, exclusion, identity, gender, class, and power. Next students explore the theme of rural revitalization in the global context within which rural communities struggle for survival.

3876 – 3899 Contemporary Issues in Sociology

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210

The course will provide an opportunity for students to study contemporary substantive issues in considerable depth and detail.

4210 Forced Migration and Refugees 

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students critically examine the key determinants, processes, and consequences of internal displacement and forced migration across borders through the analysis of case studies from around the world. Topics include, selectively, contemporary refugee issues, gender violence in conflict zones, resettlement, repatriation, refugees and development, asylum-seekers, and the Canadian and UN refugee protection systems and various international conventions.

4224 Inequality, and Human Suffering, and Resistance

3 credit hours
Prerequisites:SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine the social, cultural, political, and environmental, moral consequences of contemporary economic conditions in Canada and around the world. Particular attention is paid to the history of social inequality as well as to the many ways people cope with and resist inequitable conditions.

4314 Sociology of Knowledge and Science

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine the relation between knowledge and social context and conditions. Among the issues discussed will be the social origin of modern science, the roles of society and nature in the content of scientific knowledge, the relation between sociology, history, philosophy and the natural sciences; and the authority, trustworthiness and credibility of that knowledge called “scientific”.

4382 Gender and International Migration [WMST 4482/IDST 4452]

3 credit hours
Prerequisites:  SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

This is a course on the theory and practice of international migration taking an explicitly gendered perspective. Students discuss the conceptual and theoretical frameworks on migration and gender and migration; the history of selected migration movements with a focus on the role of women; women in the migratory process, employment and family issues; the impact/consequences of international migration on development; contemporary migration policies; forced migration and refugee issues; gender and transnationalism.

4422 Women, Gender and Development: Theory and Method [WMST 4422]

3 credit hours
Prerequisite:  SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine the role of women and development in the Third World. Students discuss the interrelationship of various development and feminist theories; methodological approaches to the study of women and development will also be examined. Students are provided with a conceptual overview and practical tools for understanding the problems faced by women in developing countries.

4423 Women, Gender and Development: Policy and Practice [WMST 4423]

3 credit hours
Prerequisite:  SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine case studies of the role of women in the development process in various Third World countries. Students analyze the gender dimensions of programs and policies that affect women in different international, regional and community contexts. Case studies will focus on a number of specific issues such as work, education, health and empowerment.

4427 Sociology of Tourism

3 credit hours
Prerequisites: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Tourism comprises the largest international economic activity of our time. But is it a blessing or a curse? Utilizing a range of sociological perspectives, students explore the tourist experience. Topics include, typical types of mass tourism and diverse alternative tourisms.

4461 Survey Analysis

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students explore issues that arise in the design and administration of surveys. These issues include: questionnaire design, ethics, pre-testing, sampling and developing a theoretically informed formulation of the research question. Students cover several states from data collection to preliminary analysis. On-line surveys and use of surveys with focus groups may be included.

4462 Advanced Statistics

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 3102 (with a minimum grade of C)

Advanced analysis of quantitative data in Sociology. Topics covered include: the concept of association between variables, measures of association, multivariate analyses, regression techniques, inferential statistics and the research report.

4501 Advanced Social Thought

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Presentation of various topics of interest to advanced criminology and sociology students. Attention is given to the critical theoretical accomplishments of various writers, including feminist scholars. Students consider particular theorists and such matters as constructing social theories, traditions of theoretical writing, and new directions and problems in the field.

4600 Honours Thesis Research Preparation

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: enrolment in honours program

Students prepare for their honours thesis through workshops related to proposals, research, service learning and writing.

4601 Honours Thesis Writing 

3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Completion of SOCI 4600 (with a minimum grade of B+)

Students work closely with their supervisor to complete their thesis.

4800 - 4825 Selected Topics

6 credit hours
Prerequisites: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine questions within an area of specialization and study a particular sociological issue in detail.

4826 – 4849 Selected Topics

3 credit hours
Prerequisites: SOCI 1210 (with a minimum grade of C)

Students examine questions within an area of specialization and study a particular sociological issue in detail.