SO141 Introduction to Sociology

for S2HH 2005

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S2HH, 2005
Dr. David A. Rusk, Senior Professor of Religion and Sociology
VOICE MAIL: (937) 278-2612, EXT. 2161 (PREFERRED)
HOME PHONE: (937) 264-3235
March 21-May 22, 2005
Saturday mornings 0800-1300 Hours
Credit Hours: 3


The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving the global community.


Park university will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: An examination of the social processes and structures of society with particular attention to American society. Reviews such topics as interpersonal interaction, culture, major social institutions, inequality, deviance and social change.

RUSK EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY: The professor’s educational philosophy is making sociology classes relevant and interesting to the student rather than just giving out facts and belief systems. The professor will strive to have students interact through classroom lectures, discussions, videos, guest speakers, field trips and student class presentations. Students are encouraged to participate in all aspects of the course including sharing their own personal experiences.

COURSE OBJECTIVES: On completion of this course, students should be able to define and articulate various aspects of sociology in current American culture. Students will better be able to understand and relate his or her own present life circumstances in light of a plethora of various belief systems and values.


Tischler, Henry L. Introduction to Sociology. Fort Worth: Harcourt, 2002.

ACADEMIC HONESTY: Academic Honesty is required of all members of a learning community. Hence, Park will not tolerate cheating or plagiarism on tests, examinations, papers, or other course assignments. Students who engage in such dishonesty may be given failing grades or expelled from Park.

PLAGIARISM: Plagiarism—the appropriation or imitation of the language or ideas of another person and presenting them as one’s original work—sometimes occurs through carelessness or ignorance. Students who are uncertain about proper documentation of sources should consult their instructors.

ATTENDANCE POLICY: Instructors are required to keep attendance records and report absences. The instructor may excuse absences for cogent reasons, but missed work must be made up within the term of enrollment. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of “F”. An Incomplete will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance (TA) or Veterans Administration (VA) educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student. Reports of “F” grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for students receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

LATE SUBMISSION OF COURSE MATERIALS: Class assignments are due at the beginning of the class period. Assignments turned in late will be penalized 10% of the grade earned for each day the assignment is late. Missing assignments will receive a zero. All assignments must be completed to receive a passing grade for the class.

EVALUATION: Students are expected to attend and participate in classroom lectures and discussions and complete required reading materials. The student’s grade for the course will be determined on the basis of the scores received from one larger or two smaller research papers, a weekly response notebook and one final examination.

1. Assigned weekly reading assignments from the course textbook.
2. Weekly Notebook: Each student will type or write short critiques responding to information given in class as well as readings outside of class, marking each entry with the weekly date. The length of an entry should be one double-spaced full page, and show evidence of analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. Students will turn in 9 complete pages. The notebooks are due the last date of the course.
3. Research Paper: Students are required to research and write one 7-8 page, typed paper on a subject related to some aspect of sociology. Papers must contain a bibliography of at least four entries unless prior approval has been received from the professor regarding your subject.
4. Oral Reports: Students are required to give at least an 8-10 minute oral presentation of the information detailed in their research papers. This is not to be a reading of the paper, but rather a summary of the facts and ideas presented in the paper.

CLASSROOM RULES OF CONDUCT: Students are encouraged to ask questions, contribute their knowledge and experiences as well as share ideas and information during class time. However, it is necessary to maintain an atmosphere of respect at all times for the professor as well as other students. Professor and students should be allowed to speak without interruption. Unnecessary noise and personal conversations prevent others from thinking, concentrating or hearing. The classroom is not the place for rudeness to one another or to someone’s ideas or opinions.

Faculty members are expected to dismiss from their classrooms students whose behavior is detrimental to good order in the classroom. Such behavior includes, but is not limited to, the use of abusive or obscene language, attending the class under the influence of drugs or alcohol, etc. Students who are dismissed from class may be given failing grades, suspension, or expulsion from Park University. Students whose behavior, either verbal or written, is detrimental to the good order of Park University may be subject to disciplinary action ranging from suspension to expulsion from Park University. Students who exhibit abusive or obscene language or behavior toward administrative personnel or support staff are also subject to suspension or expulsion from Park University.

DISABILITY GUIDELINES: Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University’s policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the American with Disabilities Act of 1990. regarding students with disabilities and, to the extent of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University’s policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page:


March 26 Course Introduction

April 2 Read Tischler, 1-175 “CULTURE”


April 16 Tischler, 264-377 “DEVIANT BEHAVIOR”/ GUEST SPEAKER

April 23 Tischler, 378-478 “MARRIAGE”

April 30 Tischler, 479-636 “EDUCATION AND AGING”




GRADING PLAN: Grades will be awarded for course work as follows: Weekly Notebook, 35%; Research Paper, 35%; Final Exam, 20%; Class Participation and Attendance, 10% Percentages required for grade of A= 90-100%, B= 80-89%, C=70-79%, D=60-69%. A grade of F will be assigned to students receiving less than 60 percentage points.