SO306 Writing for Social Sciences

for U1B 2012

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SO 306 Writing for Social Sciences


U1B 2012 BLA


Ramirez, Patricia A.


Adjunct Faculty


B.A. -- Sociology
M.A. -- Sociology

Office Hours

Available before/after class and by appointment

Daytime Phone



Semester Dates

04 June 2012 - 29 July 2012

Class Days

Monday & Wednesday

Class Time

9:00am - 11:30am

Credit Hours



Publication manual of the American psychological association (6th ed.). (2010). Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.  ISBN 13:978-1-4338-0561-5 or ISBN 10:1-4338-0561-8
Strunk, W. and White, E. B. (2000). The elements of style (4th ed.). New York: Longman.  ISBN: 0-205-30902-X 

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:
Additional resources will be provided by instructor.

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
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Course Description:
SO 306 Writing for Social Sciences: Course emphasizes translating social sciences jargon and research findings into clear and appropriate language for a variety of common consumers of social science results, including professional, practitioner, and lay audiences. Topics also include APA style, conducting a literature review and evaluating sources, balances and complete presentation, and professional authorial voice. Common forms of social science writhing, such as research proposal, data summaries, and research reports are introduced. This course will satisfy the EN 306 requirements for Sociology and Social Psychology.3:0:3 Prerequisites: SO 141 or PS101 or other introductory social science course; (SO 220 recommended), EN 105, EN 106, passing the WTC and 60 accumulated hours.

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 student preparedness does not constitute an emergency on the part of the instructor.

  Instructor Learning Outcomes

  1. Compare and contrast writing styles and research methods.
  2. Understand the specific functions and forms of social science research.
  3. Identify and utilize viable primary sources relevant to research topics.
  4. Utilize APA manual as a reference when writing social science papers.
  5. Learn correct form and formatting of manuscripts for publication.
Class Assessment:
Writing Assignments -- SEVEN writing assignments will be given throughout the semester, each weighing differently but comprising 50% of the total grade.  These are designed to test your strengths and weaknesses in specific areas of writing, so revisions may be necessary. 
Term Paper -- Each student will be responsible for writing a term paper on a topic approved by the Instructor.  A first draft, final draft, and oral presentation of the paper will constitute 20% of the course grade.  This is the culmination of most of the class, so failure to submit this assignment will result in an "F" for the course.
Midterm and Final Exam -- These will be a combination of short answer and multiple choice questions, as well as manuscript revisions and editing. 
Participation -- Class attendance and participation is required for this course since all relevant material will be presented during lectures. It is not sufficient to read the text outside of class, as supplemental information may be introduced during class discussions. Attendance will be recorded and count toward your final grade.


Writing Assignments (7)               2-10 points each            50%
Term Paper (3 parts)                      5-10 points each            20%
Midterm & Final Exam                    10 points each              20%
Participation                                     10 points                       10%      
TOTAL                                                                                    100%

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. Assignments must be sent BEFORE class or they will be considered late, and consequently, unacceptable.  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 their 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, students will be expected to be eCompanion proficient.

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. 

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Class Date Reading & Lecture Assignment Due Date
4-Jun Chapter 1: Writing for Social Science Writing Competency Essay 6-June
6-Jun Critical Thinking "One Side" Essay 11-June
11-Jun Chapter 3: Writing Clearly and Concisely Make list of APA facts 13-June
13-June Compelling Arguments "Other Side" essay  18-June
18-June Chapter 2: Manuscript Structure & Content Research Summaries 25-June
20-June Research and Data Collection
25-June Chapter 4: The Mechanics of Style Literature Review 2-July
27-June Content vs. Style Midterm
2-July Chapter 7: Reference Examples Abstract 4-July
4-July Academic Integrity First Draft 16-July
9-July Chapter 6: Crediting Sources
11-July Plagiarism & Paraphrasing Revisions  23-July
16-July Chapter 5: Displaying Results
18-July Individual sessions
23-July Chapters 8: The Publication Process Term Papers due
25-July Final Exam

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: .


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Last Updated:4/17/2012 4:52:46 PM