Department of Sociology

About

Chair
Jason Konefal

Mission

The Department of Sociology’s mission is to acquire and disseminate knowledge on social life, social change and the social causes and consequences of human behavior. SHSU Sociologists investigate the structure of groups, organizations, and societies and how people interact within these contexts. The primary objective of the curriculum is to provide students with the scientific tools to understand the functioning of society, and study and understand social phenomena.  The Sociology Department at Sam Houston State University is committed to fairness, equality, and justice.  This includes building a program that reflects the diversity of the world today, and fostering an inclusive department, learning environment, and community that is supportive of all peoples. 

Graduate Director  

Dr. James Stykes

Email: jbs048@shsu.edu

Phone: 936-294-4122

CHSS 270

Website

Department of Sociology

SOCI 5099. Graduate Readings in Sociology. 1-3 Hours.

Students pursue an independent study of subjects not covered in the regular graduate curricula. Topics may cover special subject matter related to a thesis. Variable Credit (1-3).
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5100. Proseminar in Sociology. 1 Hour.

Students prepare for graduate studies in sociology and are provided with the tools and resources to be successful graduate students.
Prerequisite: Graduate Standing.

SOCI 5310. Seminar In Sociological Theory. 3 Hours.

Students study the most significant 19th and 20th century developments in sociology with emphasis placed on the relevance of classic sociological theory in the formation and development of contemporary sociological theory. Students explore the characteristics and origins of many major sociological schools of thought (e.g., Neo-Marxism, Critical Theory, Interactionism, Functionalism and Postmodernism) and accounts of these paradigms are presented together with their theoretical ramifications.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5312. Smnr Sociological Research. 3 Hours.

Students examine the advanced study of logic, principles, and procedures involving techniques of design data collection and organization, analyses and interpretation for qualitative and quantitative sociological research.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5313. Qualitative Methods. 3 Hours.

Students study a wide range of qualitative sociological methods (e.g., in-depth interviews, participant observation, and content analyses) and gain many practical skills such as collecting and analyzing data and writing qualitative research.

SOCI 5314. Social Statistics. 3 Hours.

Students develop mastery of various statistical techniques used to analyze survey data (e.g. descriptive and inferential statistics, cross tabulation, ANOVA, correlation and regression). Students learn the logic, interpretation, and assumptions of each statistical model with an additional emphasis on the application of these techniques.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5319. Sociolgy of Entrepreneurship. 3 Hours.

Students examine the role of the entrepreneur in modern society and ways modern society influences entrepreneurship in communities, regions, and nations. Topics may include entrepreneurial risk, opportunity, innovation, and social entrepreneurship, and students will critically examine how entrepreneurial behavior changes across social boundaries like race, gender, and culture.
Prerequisite: Graduate Standing.

SOCI 5320. Sociology of Community. 3 Hours.

Students study the organization, structures, groups and interaction pertaining to communities. Students examine social forces within communities, patterns of change and the relationship with society and are introduced to alternative theoretical perspectives for analyzing community as well as views on the current conditions and future perspectives of communities in the United States and in other regions of the world.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5321. Cultural Sociology. 3 Hours.

Students examine culture from the sociological perspective and consider both classic and modern theories of culture. Students also review major sociological methods of cultural analysis, the application of theories, and the analysis of socio-cultural phenomena.

SOCI 5322. Seminar In Medical Sociology. 3 Hours.

This course provides graduate students with the conceptual and substantive knowledge of the field of medical sociology. The course focuses on salient sociological issues in health and medicine, such as the social construction of health and illness, social inequalities in health and health care, medicalization, the health profession, the health care system, and bioethics. Special attention is paid to the roles of social, cultural, and institutional factors in understanding health and health care issues in the United States and in other countries.
Prerequisite: Graduate Standing.

SOCI 5324. Seminar in Social Change & Dev. 3 Hours.

Students examine a variety of theories of development that explain how and why inequality between and within nations is produced and reproduced. Students learn to think critically about the impacts of the development and globalization process, as well as neoliberalization and free trade, on people and environments throughout the world. Students explore strategies that may contribute to the construction of a world that is more equitable, socially just, and environmentally sustainable than the current one.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5325. Seminar in Food and Society. 3 Hours.

Students examine the production, distribution, and consumption of food from a sociological perspective with a particular focus on the analysis of the contemporary food systems. Students learn to critically analyze issues surrounding food and society through a sociological lens.

SOCI 5331. Sociology of The Family. 3 Hours.

Students explore the family as a social institution and examine functional, critical, and interactionist approaches to the family. Topics may include historical shifts in the institution and interpersonal dynamics within families.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5333. Sociology of Religion. 3 Hours.

Students examine how religion operates in non-industrial and industrial societies using a cross-cultural perspective. Topics may include religious beliefs, religious rituals, group religious experience, and the religious community.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5337. Gender and Society. 3 Hours.

Students consider the social construction of gender and obtain a framework to critically examine how it operates in society Students examine how gender is linked with inequality in the United States.

SOCI 5338. Sociology of Disasters. 3 Hours.

Students apply sociological analyses to the investigation of disasters and examine disasters in terms of their origins and social impacts. The course may also explore the social dynamics that create risk of, and vulnerability to, disasters.

SOCI 5350. The Community Practitioner. 3 Hours.

Students examine the role of a community development practitioner and investigate theories and techniques used in the field to build community and create long-lasting social and institutional change. Students evaluate "best practices" and their impact on community policy.
Prerequisite: SOCI 5320.

SOCI 5351. Seminar-Environmentl Sociology. 3 Hours.

Students gain a thorough background in the major theoretical perspectives regarding environmental sociology, which enables them to view environmental issues from alternative positions and to formulate possible solutions to contemporary environmental problems. Additional topics may include the social construction of the environment and on environmental problems and solutions.

SOCI 5353. Seminar In Race And Ethnic Stu. 3 Hours.

Students obtain an in-depth examination and critique of important monographs and journal literature dealing with the social life of American minorities. Topics may consider, ideologies, inequality, structural forces and changes characteristic of the social life of comparative minority groups. Students identify sociological propositions reflected in the discerned patterns of interaction in selected institutions in contemporary American society.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5355. Seminar in Social Inequality. 3 Hours.

Students examine contemporary class, status and power hierarchies using both contemporary and classical social theory of inequality. Students engage with empirical research pertaining to placement in these hierarchies on the basis of birth-achieved statuses such as sex, race, and class origin.

SOCI 5376. Applied Research Methods. 3 Hours.

Students apply the methodological concepts that were learned in SOCI 5312 to propose empirical analyses of social problems. Specific topics may consider sample selection and unit of analysis, types of data collection, and analytical techniques.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

SOCI 5378. Tchnq-Rsrch Propsl Wrt/Soc Sci. 3 Hours.

Students obtain a critical understanding of the principal technical and theoretical skills necessary for the development of research projects in the social sciences and research grant writing. Students investigate the primary assumptions of qualitative and quantitative research and consider their scopes and limits. Topics may include epistemological characteristics of major paradigms in the social sciences, analytical techniques necessary for the preparation of research proposals, identification of research questions, development of justifications, and the development of analytic designs.

SOCI 5380. Social Impct Assmt & Prog Eval. 3 Hours.

Students gain an overview of the field of social impact assessment and program evaluation and are exposed to hands-on experience through a practical case study. Specific topics may include basic knowledge, as well as technical skills, related to conducting a social impact assessment and program evaluation.

SOCI 5384. Seminar in Economy and Society. 3 Hours.

Students examine the effects of economic change on the organization of society and social relations. Topics may include the consequences of globalization and neoliberalization.
Prerequisite: SOCI 5310.

SOCI 5386. The Sociology of Aging. 3 Hours.

Students explore sociological theories of aging from historical, demographic, comparative, social psychological and structural perspectives. Students also examine contemporary social problems facing older adults. Additional topics may consider similarities and differences across, gender, race/ethnicity, and social class using the life course perspective.

SOCI 6098. Thesis Practicum. 1-3 Hours.

Students successfully develop a Thesis Prospectus and select a thesis committee. Variable Credit (1-3).

SOCI 6099. Thesis. 1-3 Hours.

Students complete and successfully defend their Thesis. The student must be enrolled in SOCI 6099 during the semester in which the master's degree is to be completed. Variable Credit (1-3).

SOCI 6360. Seminar In Sociology. 3 Hours.

Students examine a substantive area and/or sociologically significant issue not covered in other departmental offerings. Topics may be influenced by current innovations in the field or significant world events. May be repeated.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor.

Faculty

Director/Chair: Jason Thomas Konefal

Alessandro A Bonanno, PHD, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Univ of Kentucky; MA, Univ of Kentucky; BA, University of Messina

Emily R Cabaniss, PHD, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, North Carolina State Univ; MA, North Carolina State Univ; BA, North Carolina State Univ

Jin Young Choi, PHD, Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Univ of Hawaii At Manoa; MA, Univ of Hawaii At Manoa; MPH, Univ of Hawaii At Manoa; MS, Ewha Women's University; BS, Ewha Women's University

Douglas H Constance, PHD, Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Univ of Missouri-Columbia; MS, Univ of Missouri-Columbia; BS, Univ of Missouri-Columbia

Furjen Deng, PHD, Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Purdue University; MS, Purdue University; BA, National Taiwan University

Karen M Douglas, PHD, Associate Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Univ of Texas At Austin; MA, Univ of Texas At Austin; BBA, Univ of Texas At Austin

Jeffrey A Gardner, PHD, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Univ of Georgia; MA, Univ of Georgia; BA, Brigham Young University-Idaho

Maki Hatanaka, PHD, Associate Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Michigan State University; MA, Ohio University; BA, Kobe University

TzeLi Hsu, PHD, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Florida State University; MS, Mississippi State University; BA, National Taiwan University

Jason Thomas Konefal, PHD, Associate Professor and Chair of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Michigan State University; BA, St. Lawrence University

Lee Mary Miller, PHD, Associate Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Yale University; MPHIL, Yale University; MA, Yale University; AB, Smith College

Mary Larue Scherer, PHD, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Univ of Massachusetts-Amherst; MA, Univ of Massachusetts-Amherst; BA, Warren Wilson College

James Bartlett Stykes, PHD, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Bowling Green State University; MA, Bowling Green State University; BS, Austin Peay State University

Gene Louis Theodori, PHD, Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Penn State Un-Univ Park; MS, Texas A&M University; BA, California Un of Pa

Graduate Instructors 

Joseph Ralph Gallo, PHD, Lecturer of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Texas Southern University; MA, Texas Southern University; MS, Texas Southern University; BS, Texas Southern University

Amy Manning Kirk, PHD, Lecturer of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, LSU & A&M College; MA, LSU & A&M College; BS, Texas A&M University

Olena Viacheslavivna Leipnik, PHD, Lecturer of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Kharkiv VN Karazin Nat'l Univ; MA, Luhansk T. S. Pedagogical Univ; MA, Kyiv Taras Shevchenko Nat'l Un; BA, Kyiv Taras Shevchenko Nat'l Un

Brooklynn Joy Wynveen, PHD, Lecturer of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Clemson University; MNRD, Texas A&M University; BA, Univ of Maryland-Univ Coll