Department of Sociology

Chair: Furjen Deng  (936) 294-1515

Information:  Tamara Draper (936) 294-1512; CHSS 270X

Website: Department of Sociology

Sociology is the study of social life, social change, and the social causes and consequences of human behavior. Sociologists investigate the structure of groups, organizations, and societies, and how people interact within these contexts. The subject matter of sociology ranges from the intimate family to the hostile mob, from organized crime to religious cults, from the divisions of race, gender and social class to the shared beliefs of a common culture, and from the sociology of the environment to the sociology of sports. Because sociology addresses the most challenging issues of our time, it is a rapidly expanding field whose potential is tapped by those who craft policies and create programs.

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 Department focuses on the study of the globalization, community, and health.

Highlights

  • The Sociology Department is considered one of the prominent departments for the study of Globalization in the nation.
  • Members of the Sociology Department regularly publish in important scientific journals.
  • Members of the Sociology Department occupy leadership positions in professional organizations domestically and internationally.

Suggested Minors

  • Communication Studies
  • Criminal Justice
  • English
  • Health Education
  • History
  • Middle Eastern Studies
  • Political Science
  • Psychology

Career Opportunities

Sociology graduates find successful employment in the private sector (management, human resources, public relations), public sectors (Federal, State and Local Government agencies) and in non-profit organizations (NGOs) particularly in the areas of social services and analysis of social trends.

Research Centers

The Center for Rural Studies: Research and Outreach assists in the building, strengthening, and maintaining of Texas rural communities. The Center’s purpose is to address timely and salient issues relating to community and socioeconomic development in rural Texas.

Program Specific Requirements

Students must successfully complete SOCI 1301 before taking additional sociology courses with the exception of SOCI 2319, SOCI 1306, SOCI 2366, SOCI 3381, and SOCI 3341. In order to graduate with a major or minor in Sociology, students must successfully complete all the Sociology requirements with a 2.5 GPA.

Required Courses
SOCI 1301Principles Of Sociology3
SOCI 2399Writing in Sociology3
SOCI 3443Social Statistics4
SOCI 4340Rsch Methods In Sociology3
SOCI 4344Sociological Theory3
SOCI 4399Senior Seminar In Sociology3
Total Hours19

In order to graduate with a Sociology major or minor, students must maintain a 2.5 GPA in Sociology. The only substitution permitted is Psychology Statistics (PSYC 3402) for Social Statistics (SOCI 3443). Only Principles of Sociology (SOCI 1301) may be taken by correspondence to satisfy the degree requirements for a Sociology major or minor. After the degree requirements are satisfied, Sociology correspondence courses may be taken to satisfy advanced hours requirements.

Curriculum

Students receive instruction in classical and contemporary sociological theory, qualitative and quantitative techniques of sociological investigation, and major substantive areas in the field. The primary objective of the curriculum is to provide students with the scientific tools to understand the functioning of society, study social phenomena, and acquire the necessary skills to enter the global labor market. The department focuses on the study of Globalization, Community and Health. Students are encouraged to participate in research projects and extra-curricular activities designed to foster critical sociological thinking and knowledge of today’s world.

Instruction in general sociology is complemented by specialization in three substantive areas. Students can select to concentrate their undergraduate curriculum in Change, Economy and Society; Culture and Social Institutions; or Inequality and Society. Change, Economy and Society explores the relationships between society and the economy, patterns of change in the global society, the environment, social movements, and the organization of urban and rural societies. Culture and Social Institutions focuses on culture, social institutions such as the family and religion, and courses which analyze the most relevant social problems in today’s society. Inequality and Society examines social inequality, gender and inequality, age and inequality, race and ethnic inequality, and complex organizations.

SOCI Core Courses
SOCI 1301Principles Of Sociology3
SOCI 2399Writing in Sociology3
SOCI 3443Social Statistics4
SOCI 4340Rsch Methods In Sociology3
SOCI 4344Sociological Theory3
SOCI 4399Senior Seminar In Sociology3
Total Hours19

Areas of Specialization

Change, Economy and Society

Course Requirements
SOCI 2350Intro to Community Leadership3
SOCI 3336Social Change And Development3
SOCI 3376Rural And Urban Sociology3
SOCI 3384Economy And Society3
SOCI 3392Social Movements3
SOCI 4320Sociology of Science and Technology3
SOCI 4332Soc Of Demography & Migration3
SOCI 4334Sociology Of Disaster3
SOCI 4337Environment And Society3
Total Hours27

Culture and Social Institutions

Course Requirements
SOCI 1306Social Problems3
SOCI 2366Sociology Of Sport3
SOCI 3327Sociology of Popular Culture3
SOCI 3335Sociology of Food and Society3
SOCI 3338Soclztn,Soc Cntr,Devnt So Bhvr3
SOCI 3341Marriage And The Family3
SOCI 3342Sociology Of Religion3
SOCI 3365Sociology Of Health & Illness3
SOCI 3381Cultural Anthropology3
Total Hours27

Inequality and Society

Course Requirements
SOCI 2319Introduction To Ethnic Studies3
SOCI 3324Social Inequality3
SOCI 3325Gender And Inequality3
SOCI 3354Age And Inequality3
SOCI 3355Race/Ethnic Inequality3
SOCI 4336Bureaucracy And Work3
Total Hours18

Arranged Courses

Arranged Courses
SOCI 4075Rdgs in Sociology1-3
SOCI 4379Internship In Applied Sociolgy3
Total Hours4-6

Student Organizations and Activities

Students in the Sociology Club and Alpha Kappa Delta, the Sociology professional honor society, are introduced to the profession of Sociology through activities including: research opportunities, volunteer work, organization of special events, participation in professional meetings, and programs highlighting speakers of note in the many interest areas of Sociology.

Internships

Internship possibilities include work with the City of Huntsville and social services organizations throughout the area and summer placements in rural Texas through a partnership with Texas Department of Agriculture. Further information is available at the website: http://www.shsu.edu/centers/rural-studies/TRIP.html.

Scholarships

The department offers several scholarships. For information contact the department or visit Sociology Department.

SOCI 1301. Principles Of Sociology. 3 Hours.

Introduction to the discipline with a focus on concepts and principles used in the study of group life, social institutions and social processes. This course is a prerequisite to many other courses taught in the department. It is required of all Sociology majors and minors.

SOCI 1306. Social Problems. 3 Hours.

Application of sociological principles to the major problems of contemporary society. Special attention is given to mental disorders, use and abuse of drugs and alcohol, sexual deviance and crime and delinquency; problems of youth and the family in contemporary society; institutionalized aspects of inequality, prejudice and discrimination; and population and environmental concerns.

SOCI 2319. Introduction To Ethnic Studies. 3 Hours.

A survey of the field and problems of Ethnic Studies as an area of knowledge and investigation. The instruction is to be interdisciplinary in nature. Major considerations of the entire Ethnic Studies field will be defined and analyzed. Although the course is not prerequisite to any of the others, students are strongly urged to take it before attempting other Ethnic Studies courses.

SOCI 2320. Intro To Ethnic Studies-Honors. 3 Hours.

HONORS COURSE A survey of the field and problems of Ethnic Studies as an area of knowledge and investigation. The instruction is to be interdisciplinary in nature. Major considerations of the entire Ethnic Studies field will be defined and analyzed. Although the course is not prerequisite to any of the others, students are strongly urged to take it before attempting other Ethnic Studies courses.

SOCI 2350. Intro to Community Leadership. 3 Hours.

Students in this course are introduced to definitions, types, and theories of community. Students learn basic community needs assessment, strengthen communication skills, and explore resource mobilization strategies through applied community experiences. Community leaders facilitate conversations about leadership techniques and challenges.

SOCI 2366. Sociology Of Sport. 3 Hours.

This course utilizes the application of the social science mode of inquiry to the study of the sociocultural characteristics of sport. These include examinations of the cultural, economic, political and structural factors (i.e., gender, race, etc.) which form salient aspects of today’s sport activities at various levels. Focus is placed on the characteristics of sports and how these characteristics both reflect and have impact upon the social climate of a given society.

SOCI 2399. Writing in Sociology. 3 Hours.

This course is designed to teach students the writing skills needed for advanced courses in Sociology. Topics include: structure and style in writing; citations and American Sociological Association stylebook; how to conduct library and internet research as a basis for research writing; and specialized techniques for quantitative research papers, qualitative research papers, book reviews, compare and contrast papers and essay exams.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301.

SOCI 3324. Social Inequality. 3 Hours.

This survey course studies the distribution of three primary resources: class, status and power. Special attention is given to the way birth-ascribed statuses such as age, sex and race interact with class, status and power stratification systems. Special attention is also given to the popular and scientific explanations of inequality, especially with respect to the high and low ends of the distribution of income and wealth.

SOCI 3325. Gender And Inequality. 3 Hours.

This course studies the influence of gender on socialization and placement in class, status and power stratification systems. It includes an analysis of institutional discrimination against women in major social institutions such as religion, education, family, heath care and work, and an examination of the feminization of poverty.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319 .

SOCI 3327. Sociology of Popular Culture. 3 Hours.

This course engages students in a critical analysis of popular culture in its cross-cultural and historical perspectives with the main focus on the role and character of popular culture in American society. Different forms and aspects of popular culture are considered in their dynamic relation to the cultural "mainstream", to everyday life of Americans, and to the core values of American society.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 3335. Sociology of Food and Society. 3 Hours.

This course examines food from a sociological perspective, exploring the production, distribution, and consumption of food in today's globalized society.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 3336. Social Change And Development. 3 Hours.

An analysis of world population growth and the associated problems of social development: urbanization, unemployment, secularization, hunger, and war.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319 and Junior standing .

SOCI 3338. Soclztn,Soc Cntr,Devnt So Bhvr. 3 Hours.

Examines structures and processes through which social systems (e.g., groups, institutions, organizations, and societies) secure and maintain order and social control. Sociological concepts, principles and theories used to explain sanctioning in various social systems whereby people are socialized to want to act the way they have to act for social order to prevail.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 3341. Marriage And The Family. 3 Hours.

A sociological examination of marriage and family life. Problems of courtship, mate selection, and marriage adjustment in modern American society.

SOCI 3342. Sociology Of Religion. 3 Hours.

Identity and comparative understanding of religious beliefs and practices of peoples of the world. Attention is given to particular archaeological and ethnographic problems in the study of religion. Special emphasis is given to the functional perspective in examining the relation between religious beliefs and other institutions in selective social systems.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319 or consent of instructor.

SOCI 3354. Age And Inequality. 3 Hours.

This course underscores the influence of age on income and wealth, status and power. It includes an examination of institutional discrimination against the young and the old, as well as individual discrimination, such as child and elder abuse. It studies the relationship between life-cycle changes and changes in placement in the class, status and power stratification system.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 3355. Race/Ethnic Inequality. 3 Hours.

This course examines ethnic stratification, i.e., placement in the class, status and power stratification systems on the basis of birth ascribed and socially defined race/ethnicity, and of the ideologies which serve to rationalize these inequalities. The course includes the study of institutional discrimination and ethnic stratification in major social institutions such as education, health care, religion and work. Broadly defined, ethnic stratification includes inequality based on other birth ascribed statuses, such as age and gender.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 orSOCI 2319.

SOCI 3365. Sociology Of Health & Illness. 3 Hours.

Processes by which persons assume, act, and relinquish the sick role; interrelationships between patient and family, doctors, and hospital; quality and quantity of health services distributed by class and race. Problems posed by “mental illness”: diagnosis, treatment, and involuntary commitment.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 3376. Rural And Urban Sociology. 3 Hours.

Examines the human community in its ecological, cultural, and associational aspects. The folk, rural, and urban community considered from the standpoint of various sociological perspectives. Special attention is given to social change, including decision-making as it affects local life.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 3381. Cultural Anthropology. 3 Hours.

Cultural and social organization among primitive or preliterate societies; marriage, property, religion, magic and tribal control. Significance of the study of primitive cultures for understanding of urban industrial civilizations.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 3384. Economy And Society. 3 Hours.

Changing employment opportunities for college graduates; blue collar, white collar, and professional lifestyles; origins of industrial society and effects on social stratification, minorities, and the family. Issues such as workers’ control of industry, relationships between industry and government. Sociology of labor relations and personnel management.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 3392. Social Movements. 3 Hours.

Examines the characteristics of social movements useful to the sociological study and interpretations of major social trends involving both social and cultural change in community and society. Theoretical frameworks for understanding and the causes, types, and theories of change in contemporary society are given special attention.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 3443. Social Statistics. 4 Hours.

Examination of basic concepts, techniques and data necessary for an adequate understanding of social structure and change: observational, experimental, sample survey, and demographic. It includes an introduction to computers, computer software, and social statistics.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301.

SOCI 4075. Rdgs in Sociology. 1-3 Hours.

Designed for advanced students in the behavioral sciences who are capable of independent study. Registration upon written approval of the chair of the department and of the instructor directing the course. Variable Credit (1-3).

SOCI 4320. Sociology of Science and Technology. 3 Hours.

This course examines the role of science and technology in society. Sociological approaches to understanding science and technology; the relationship between science, technology and other social institutions; and the impact on society will be examined. This seminar course will use a case study approach to the subject matter.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319 and PHIL 3372.

SOCI 4330. Sociology of Migration. 3 Hours.

Students in this course are provided with an in-depth understanding of the theoretical tools that sociologists have developed for studying international migration. The course emphasizes the sociohistorical context of modern-day migration and the institutional forces that drive it. Students analyze the social and political processes by which legality and illegality are constructed and the consequences for immigrants and communities. Consideration is also given as to how inequalities based on race, class, and gender shape immigrants' experiences and ability to integrate into their receiving communities and the implications of these processes for social change.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 OR 2319.

SOCI 4332. Soc Of Demography & Migration. 3 Hours.

This course introduces of the field of demography and explores theories and processes of population movement and migration. Special attention is given to effect of globalization on migration, migration streams, documented and undocumented migration, and assimilation of migrants. This course will focus on understanding the similarities and differences among immigrant groups who migrate with different social and human capital. The course also addresses immigration policies in the U. S.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 4334. Sociology Of Disaster. 3 Hours.

Disasters are fundamentally social events. This course will investigate how culture, inequality, social structure and processes shape how people face disasters, how they respond and the ways in which they recover or fail to do so. How disasters may lead to rapid social change will also be explored. Students will learn the foundations of sociology of disaster theory, will examine a number of case studies and will apply theory to the in-depth study of one event. Writing enhanced.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 4336. Bureaucracy And Work. 3 Hours.

Examines the structure and functioning of large-scale organizations and bureaucratic social systems in various institutional settings (e.g., business or industry, health, education, religion, military, prison and political). Attention is given to personal and social consequences of organizational involvement.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 4337. Environment And Society. 3 Hours.

The purpose of this course is to examine the “environment” as a social and cultural issue. Topics discussed include an overview of the field of environmental sociology, traditional sociological perspectives on environmental issues, paradigmatic implications of environmental sociology, the development of environmental movement, the rise of environmental deterioration, public attitudes toward environmental issues, national environmental policies, and social impact assessment.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 4338. Social Gerontology. 3 Hours.

In this course students examine current controversies in the field of Social Gerontology. Students explore the various sociological theories and methods employed in the study of social gerontology along with the biological and physiological changes related to aging. This course also explores the trends in the discipline of social gerontology, the impact of population aging on retirement patterns, income security, health care, long term care, and the politics of aging. Credit 3
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301 or SOCI 2319.

SOCI 4340. Rsch Methods In Sociology. 3 Hours.

This course is designed to introduce the student to the logic and character of scientific and alternative means of social inquiry. Examines the function of observation, concept formation, proposition arrangement and testing of theory as components of the scientific process in sociology.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301.

SOCI 4344. Sociological Theory. 3 Hours.

A historical survey of the development of sociological thought. Emphasis is placed upon the growth of Sociology as a discipline, major areas of interest and major contributors.
Prerequisite: SOCI 1301.

SOCI 4379. Internship In Applied Sociolgy. 3 Hours.

This course is designed to allow advanced students in-depth exploration of sociological issues in an applied setting. Minimum of 120 hours in approved host organization, plus completion of academic requirements. Internships are unpaid. Fall and Spring only.
Prerequisite: Junior or senior Sociology majors, minimum GPA 3.0 or through special petition.

SOCI 4399. Senior Seminar In Sociology. 3 Hours.

The content of this seminar will have alternate emphasis placed, at the discretion of the instructor, on special areas or issues of Sociology meeting the career needs of Sociology majors, minors, and/or prospective teachers of Sociology.
Prerequisite: Advanced standing in Sociology and SOCI 1301 and SOCI 2399.

Chair: Furjen Deng

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, MA, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, MA, North Carolina State Univ; BA, North Carolina State Univ

Jin Young Choi, PHD, Associate 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 and Chair 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

Michael W P Fortunato, PHD, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Penn State Un-Univ Park; MS, Penn State Un-Univ Park; BS, Penn State Un-Univ Park; BS, Penn State Un-Univ Park

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 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

Andrew Joseph Prelog, PHD, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Colorado State University; MA, Colorado State University; BS, Northern Arizona University; BS, Northern Arizona University

James Bartlett Stykes, MA, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, 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 AM University; BA, California Un of Pa

Interim Faculty

Crystal G Brown, MA, Lecturer of Sociology, Department of Sociology, MA, Sam Houston State University; BS, Sam Houston State University

Caron Charlton Cates, MS, Lecturer of Sociology, Department of Sociology, MS, Sam Houston State University; BS, Sam Houston State University

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

Shannon Marie Lane, PHD, Research Fellow, Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, South Dakota State University; MA, Univ of Houston-Clear Lake; BS, Texas State Univ-San Marcos

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

Melissa A Tackett-Gibson, PHD, Clinical Assistant Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, PHD, Northeastern University; MA, Northeastern University; BA, Marshall University

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