SO 302 The Study of the Family
F2B 2011 BL
B.A. SociologyM.A. Sociology
By appointment or before/after class
17 October 2011 - 11 December 2011
Tuesdays & Thursdays
9:00 - 11:30 AM
Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore
Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore
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Educational Philosophy: It is my belief that each student is responsible for his/her own success in this course. All reading requirements and assignments will be discussed at the beginning of the course, and I will do my best to be available to students throughout the semester to answer any questions or discuss any concerns. Student success in this course will be directly proportional to the time in class, effort outside of class, and adherence to the requirements that have been outlined here. A lack of preparation on the part of the student does not constitute an emergency on the part of the instructor.
Learning Outcomes: Core Learning Outcomes
SO302: THE STUDY OF THE FAMILY\
Core Assessment (New for July, 2006)
The Core Assessment assignment for this class will be a major essay that integrates, analyzes, applies, and critiques several sociological concepts and research findings from this course individually, together, and with additional sources from your own literature review and archival study.
You must incorporate the findings from at least five outside sources of original academic research in this essay. You may also include additional sources for examples or background information, but only reputable, peer-reviewed academic sources will count toward the reference requirements of your essays. This means that magazines, newspapers, professional periodicals, or internet sources are only appropriate for examples and illustrations in this project — if you have any questions as to whether a specific source is acceptable for your essay, you should ask your instructor rather than guess. Also, focus on articles or books presenting original research or theories, not on those reviewing others’ works or editorializing about opposing approaches. Reference works, textbooks, and literature reviews are all excellent places to begin your search, but you must find and read the original in order to develop your own reaction. Ask your instructor for source approval if in doubt.
You should also consider incorporating relevant and reputable statistical and other social scientific data collected by researchers, governments, and other agencies and organizations. A wealth of such archived data is publicly accessible through the Internet, and their use can help you better understand your issue and develop a stronger analysis and critique. Again, if in doubt, ask your instructor for approval of your data source.
If you do not properly cite those external sources that contributed to your work, then you are guilty of plagiarism. This will not be tolerated and may result in immediate and serious academic penalties. If you have any questions as to when and how to use citations and references in you essays, please contact your instructor. Your final essay will also be formatted according to the relevant portions of the American Psychological Association Style Guide. The main text of your essay will consist of no more than 3,500 words (or about fifteen pages). While it possible to construct a successful essay in fewer words, this assignment is comprehensive and detailed enough that most students will find it a challenge to successfully address all of its points in the allotted space. Begin work on your essay early and leave plenty of time for revision to assure the best possible grade.
SO302 CORE ASSESSMENT
Pick one aspect of the modern family, its structure, function, or place in the larger society and culture. Some possible topics include: the importance of marriage, gender roles, the place of children in the family, sexuality and the bearing of children, single parent families, the employment of parents with children, differences between families of an ethnic minority and white families, the acceptance of gay and lesbian families or other alternative forms, or media representations of the family. You should feel free to choose another relevant focus for your essay, but no matter what your choice, you should have it approved by your instructor before you begin in earnest.
Find scholarly or official domestic data that identify the prevalence, variation, and trends in your focus issue over the past few decades. Is there a “cultural inconsistency” between what is actually happening and what we perceive? You should also find at least one contemporary international point of comparison. Again, is the actual similarity or difference accurately represented in our common perceptions? One good place to start is the US Federal statistics gateway site: www.fedstats.gov; the UN, www.un.org, and the World Bank, www.worldbank.org, are two additional good sources for international data; the largest clearinghouse for publicly available academic and organizational data is the ICPSR at the University of Michigan, www.icpsr.umich.edu; and the University of Chicago’s NORC is one of the largest academic opinion research centers in the country, norc.uchicago.edu. Consider multiple sources of data, when possible, and compare and contrast the actual data with public perception of the issue. Pay particular attention to the trends in the data and use sociological concepts and findings from the course and your additional literature review to analyze your issue. Over time, what about these families has changed or remained the same? Why?
Evaluate the individual and social dynamics and consequences of your topic at the family and the social levels. Explain and analyze how larger social trends affect individual family lives. Try to understand and explain why some families, who share many characteristics with those of your focus, do not exhibit the same properties. Is this phenomenon having positive or negative (or both) effects on families and the society? Why? How? According to what standard? Analyze and critique examples of partisan positions on either side of the public debate over this issue, and identify and evaluate your own biases in the matter. How can the relevant facts, theories, and research help you determine who is more likely to be right?
Finally, what trend do you think we are likely to see in this issue over the next two decades, both domestically and in your international comparison location? Defend and justify your conclusions. What public policies and individual decisions would help guide this future trend in the most generally useful and beneficial direction? Defend and justify your conclusions.
Link to Class RubricClass Assessment:
Late Submission of Course Materials: Your syllabus provides due dates for each assignment and required readings. Any diversion from this will be considered LATE, and late assignments will NOT be accepted. Absence from class does not excuse students from turning in assignments, as they will submit assignments through eCompanion. Threaded Discussions will be open Monday through Friday, then closed at the end of the week for which they are assigned. If you know you will have a scheduling issue, please plan for that and make arrangements to submit your assignments EARLY.
Students MUST be eCompanion-literate and know how to attach writing assignments and submit them in the correct Dropboxes. Incorrect submission of assignments or materials is not an excuse for late or incomplete work, and thus, will not be accepted. The attachment and submission process will be reviewed in the first week of class to avoid any subsequent mishaps. After the first week, it is the student's responsiblity to learn eCompanion proficiency.
Classroom Rules of Conduct: I fully expect each student to conduct themselves in a polite and professional manner. This means that proper language, behavior, and respect will be exhibited to the Instructor and classmates at all times. Students are encouraged to offer opinions and personal views, but they may not criticize, belittle, or diminish others' views, as this will be grounds for termination of the subject being discussed. Likewise, while students are entitled to their own opinions, they are not entitled to their own facts; unsubstantiated "knowledge" will not be allowed in the classroom, nor will religious or racial intolerance be entertained under any circumstances. Any student who cannot conduct themselves as described here will be asked to leave the class or escorted from the premises, unable to return until a meeting can be arranged with an administrative authority.
Academic Honesty:Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life. Park University students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty (www.park.edu/current or http://www.park.edu/faculty/).from Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 93
Plagiarism:Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. from Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 93
Attendance Policy:Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.
Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 96
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 of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case 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: http://www.park.edu/disability .
Last Updated:9/26/2011 2:30:49 PM