University College | American Society

Questions?

  • University College
    202-885-6737
    universitycollege@american.edu
    Anderson, Room 1014

    Wyatt, Jamie J
    Associate Director, University College and Learning Communities

Mailing Address

SOCY-100

Fall Semester Seminar with Spring Research Project and Symposium, GenEd area 4

American pluralism and the variety of social arrangements and relationships found in American society. The emphasis is on how society is stratified; how organizations and institutions influence the way Americans think, talk, feel, and act; and how different groups (racial and ethnic) and divisions (gender and class) within society have differential access to power and privilege.

This course is designed to introduce students to the field of sociology, the exploration of society and how it operates. Sociology broadens social insights, fosters critical thinking, trains students in methods of gathering and analyzing data, and helps students develop their writing skills. By thinking actively about the issues facing contemporary American society, students will learn to examine life situations and the influence of society and groups on people's lives, careers, hopes, fears, and personalities.

This class will emphasize how society is stratified: how organizations and institutions influence the way Americans think, talk, feel, and act and how different groups (such as racial and ethnic) and divisions (such as gender and class) within society have differential access to power and privilege. We live out our lives in relation to social and physical environments; sociology studies these environments and their effects on our experiences and behaviors.

This is a Foundation course in the General Education Program's Curricular Area 4: Social Institutions and Behavior. This course supports Area 4, as it critically analyzes concepts, patterns, and issues that affect the organization of groups and the relationship between the individual and the society in which he/she lives. It discusses the values and ethical issues that underlie social, political, and economic organizations. In addition, this course analyzes distinctive methods of inquiry appropriate to the study of social institutions using quantitative and qualitative techniques.

From the Professor- Michelle Newton-Francis

How does your University College section of this course differ from a non-University College section?

The substantive focus and major projects are the same. Students in university college have more opportunities to meet with practitioners and to visit numerous organizations that help crystallize course concepts.

How do your Wednesday labs tie into the academic content of your course?

The beauty of sociology is that the social world is a laboratory in our everyday lives. The lab component of the course engages students in activities that promote understanding of course content such as doing social breaching experiments (deviance), eating at Hooters (gender), and partnering with the National Coalition for the Homeless (poverty).

Meet the Professor!

Professor Michelle Newton-Francis

Get to know Professor Newton-Francis' teaching style and learn more about her goals for this course

Learn more