SO332 Dying, Death, & Bereavement

for F1EE 2011

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Mission Statement: 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 a global community.

Vision Statement: Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.


SO 332 Dying, Death, & Bereavement


F1EE 2011 MO


Patterson, Howard A.


Sr. Adjunct Instructor


MSW-Master of Social Work/GA. Licensed Clinical Social Worke

Office Location


Office Hours

Prior to and immediately after class

Daytime Phone



Semester Dates

Aug. 15---Oct 9, 2011

Class Days


Class Time

5:00 - 7:30 PM

Credit Hours



Author: Lynne Ann DeSpelder & Albert Lee Strickland
Edition: 8th, 2008
Publisher: McGraw-Hill
ISBN# 0073405469

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Course Description:
SO 332 Dying, Death, and Bereavement: Examines the demographic, cultural, and social psychological aspects of dying, death, and the grieving process. Topics include cultural and individual attitudes toward death, the medicalization of death, associated institutions, end of life care, the social role of funerals, and various forms of death, such as old age, and dying young, euthanasia, suicide, and genocide. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:
  My educational philosophy is that we will learn from each other. My teaching style is a positive, hand-on experience that is geared towards the understanding of death, dying and bereavement process. We will have lectures by the instructor, films, and class participation. Each student will give a dialog on a given chapter that will be assigned to you by your instructor.  You have the option to go beyond what is not covered in the text book that is related to Sociology/Death and Dying.  You may also bring in a video, articles, news clippings as part of your presentation that must have the instructors approval.  Each student's presentation will not be less than 15 minutes for their dialog.

Class Assessment:
We will have two major exams, the mid-term and the final. Each week you will have a home assignment  that you will bring to class and share with your classmates. We will also have a term paper.   In this term paper you will pick your topic that relates to death and dying. It should be carefully proofread and edited, contain an introductory and concluding paragraph, be clearly organized, and conform to the APA guidelines.  This is the format used for all your papers. Paper will be 5-7 pages long using 12 font and one and a half spacing.  Park has a Writing Center available to all students that provides assistance with your writing.  I highly recommend each student look into using this available tool.  I will have available instructions on how to gain access to this tool on the first day of class. 

All times and dates for turn in will be discussed on the first day of class.


Attendance: 3.75x8=30 pts
Mid-Term: 100 pts
Final:100 pts
Paper: 100
Student(s) contribution to class (dialog): 50 pts
Students take home questions: 10x7=70 pts
Total possible achievement points: 450 pts
A=450-440 pts.
F=below 409

Late Submission of Course Materials:
This instructor will not accept late material(s) that have a time limit for turn in. Early turn in is accepted for person(s) who are on military/civilian orders also for person(s) that have emergency situation(s).   I as the instructor will determine this on a case by case basis. 

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

When you have something to say, raise your hand and you will have the opportunity to speak, everyone speaking at one time is confusing/impolite and no one can understand what is being said, learning is"listing." Speak loud and clear, what ever you have to say is important for each and every one of us in class; we will learn from each other. We were all given two ears and one mouth; so I would think this message is that it's better to listen than to speak, so let us remember when someone is speaking to give our classmates the courtesy that you expect when it's your turn to speak. Remember, "courtesy is contagious".
COMING TO CLASS ON TIME IS A MUST, coming to class late is a learned behavior and as adults will not be tolerated.  This will cause yourself a deduction of 2 pts for each tardy. Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the attendance reporting system at Park. Park University 2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog 

Instructor may take points for poor dialog, wrong paper format, misconduct in class etc.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Week 1:  General discussion, assignments, media articles
Week 2:  [Chapter: 1] Attitudes Toward Death: A Climate of Change
Week 3:  [Chapter: 12 review chapters 1,4,12] Suicide
Week 4:  [Mid-Term  & Field trip]
Week 5:  [Chapter: 11] Death in the Lives of Adults
Week 6:  [ Chapter: 8] Last Rites: Funerals and Body Disposition
Week 7:  [ Chapter: 15 and review] The Path Ahead: Personal and Social Choices
Week 8:  [ Final chapters 8,11,15] The best to all of you

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 ( or Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 93

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.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

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: .

Additional Information:
Military students who are required by duty to miss class, assignment deadline or exam must notify the instructor prior to the anticipated date.  Makeup will be allowed.


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Last Updated:7/19/2011 8:20:07 PM