Introduction to Sociology
Community College of Philadelphia
Professor: Nicole Vadino
Phone Number: 610-306-3143 (this is my personal cell phone so please only use in a case of an emergency—Always email me in Canvas first!)
Skype: nicole.vadino (I am usually on my computer a lot so feel free to contact me)
Textbook: Sociology: The Essentials , 9th Edition by Margaret L. Andersen; Howard F. Taylor
Sociology The Essentials, 9th Edition
You DO NOT need the access code and can purchase or rent the text but you MUST get the 9th edition
"Once knowledge is achieved, the sky is the limit." (Greek Proverb)
This course will provide an opportunity for students to understand different sociological approaches to various social issues and give students the foundation required for a more comprehensive understanding of this social science. A variety of topics will be discussed that will allow the students to delve into important social issues and become familiar with techniques and perspectives that are integral aspects of the field. Since this course is an on-line course, you will be required to participate in the forums as well as complete the assignments on time. Where you may send your assignments earlier, no late papers will be considered.
Since this course is an introductory course in Sociology, there are no pre-requisites for the class. Since the class will be very interactive, it is important that the students feel that they have an open forum for their thoughts, ideas and perspectives. Consideration and respect is the key for this interaction to be successful. This class is a journey into understanding of the world around you and the trail will not always be an easy hike. As with every journey, preparation and forethought as well as open mindedness and hard work will be expected throughout. I look forward to guiding you into some bright horizons. Since much of your interaction will be in the form of a forum, you are requested to be mindful of your statements. The forum is based on our group discussions and therefore students need to feel that it is a safe environment to discuss openly and honestly.
A bit of background material... I graduated with my M.A. and B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1995 in Sociology with a concentration in deviance and social control. My main research interests at Penn were the death penalty, the Italian Mafia, crime control and due process as well as death and mourning. After graduation, I spent three years in Greece and I speak both Greek and Italian. At the University of Delaware, I did my PhD course work and my research interests were in Law & Society and Criminology. I taught a variety of Sociology and Criminology courses at University of Delaware, Penn State Delco and CCP. Currently, I am a full-time faculty member in Sociology at the Community College of Philadelphia. Since this course will be providing many areas of interest, I would like to hear from as many of you as possible so I can focus the class discussions and readings to best suit the overall interest of the class.
During the semester, there will be three sections that will break topics into areas of interest. Each section will involve class readings from the main text as well as supplementary readings and lecture materials. After each new section, there will be a comprehensive mid-term exam. There will be a total of two exams during the semester and a final during the exam week. Each week there will be discussion questions for the forum as well as mini-quizzes on the chapter readings. All materials need to be completed when stated in the reading list.
Understanding the social nature of humans and the social world in which they live. Analysis of such topics as culture, socialization, social groups and social institutions, stratification, the family, gender relations, race and ethnicity, minorities, social deviance, social change and technology, the urban community, population and the environment. Both Western and non-Western cross-cultural comparisons are provided throughout the course. Fulfills Interpretive Studies, American/Global Diversity and Writing Intensive requirements.
Upon completion of this course students will be able to:
- Describe how sociologists seek to understand the social world and human social behavior as contrasted with other disciplinary attempts to understand it.
- Describe the varieties of methodological approaches to sociological explanation.
- Explain what variables account for the maintenance of and change within social systems.
- Discuss how the individual becomes a functioning member of society.
- Discuss the explanatory models used by sociologists to understand and explain the nature of social deviance.
- Describe how sociologists understand and explain the nature and consequences of stratification systems in human societies in the context of social class, race, ethnicity, gender, age, and global inequality.
The main course objective is to provide the students with the tools and information needed to look at the world through a different set of eyes. As we journey through different sections, we will debunk many of the myths that are prevalent in society and continue to misinform the general population. The students will be provided the opportunity to use the techniques of social science research and put theory into action. This will not be a course of passive learning or memorization but rather an active learning environment that requires the students to gather the information from the readings and apply this information to other aspects of social interactions. During some weeks students may be required to read a newspaper (from the internet, or newsstand) and write short reaction papers. The objective of the course is to provide the building blocks throughout the course to make connections in each of the course sections.
Since the course is an introductory course, the main objective will be to introduce the class to a variety of topics that are important in the field of study. You will be able to access standard lectures that will be on power point, which will be available on line. Make sure you review the lecture notes while you complete your readings. The lectures are a guide to your learning and there will be many questions posed throughout. The forum will be a major portion of your grade. Participation and discussion will account for a portion of the overall final grade.
Sociology 101 is a writing intensive course and you will be required to complete many writing assignments. You will be graded on content as well as your writing ability. I suggest that you review prior to submission and even go to the college writing labs for help. Your content will be 75% of the grade and your writing will be 25%.
As students in this Introduction to Sociology class, you will be required to interact with your fellow students in groups to discuss a number of issues that will be debated in the forum. These discussions will require students to do some outside research at the library or on the web. Some weeks students will be required to post their reaction papers to the forum and comment on other postings. Course Policies
Where this is an online class, it does not mean that you can skip a week or two. If you will be unable to access internet, this is not a class for you. You will be responsible for doing a group project as well as being involved in the weekly forums. Where this class allows you the flexibility to access the class materials and do work at all hours, there are strict deadlines for assignments. The assignments will be closed after the deadline so you will get NO credit and will not be able to post your work if it is after the dedicated deadline. Every class is different so make sure you are aware of the deadlines and requirements of the class.
You need to participate actively in the forum discussion and post your responses in a timely manner. Failure to do so will result in a lowering of your grade. If you miss 2 weeks of forums (at any point in the semester), you may be dropped from class for lack of participation. The forums are the way I take attendance and account for your participation. Where you may be able to do some of your assignments ahead of time, it is important that you follow the forum discussion on a weekly basis or you will not be able to complete some of the required work.
Issues regarding Cheating and Plagiarism
Lately there has been an increase in plagiarism and I will not tolerate any forms of plagiarism. You need to cite all of your work and make sure that read the definitions below.
Plagiarism is defined as the presentation of words or ideas from an existing source as if they were your own work. In academic circumstances, plagiarism may be divided into three categories: (taken from: University of Delaware Academic Integrity)
• Copying directly from another source without using quotation marks or a footnote;
• Changing a few words in a passage from another source without using quotation marks or a footnote;
• Putting ideas (judgments, opinions, inferences experiments, etc.) from another source in your own words without using a footnote.
If any student is caught cheating on an exam or in any act of plagiarism, the instructor has the right to fail the student for the course and the assignment. Please refer to the attached sheets from CCP's student code of conduct on plagiarism and cheating. If a student is caught cheating or plagiarizing one time during the semester, it will result in the student failing the assignment as well as the class for the semester.
Missed Assignments and Late Work
As with the missed quizzes, missed assignments cannot be made up. No late work will be accepted after the due date unless there are extenuating circumstances. There will be no make-up exams.
Grading, Evaluation Policies and Procedures
Every assignment and exam will have a certain amount of points allotted.
The syllabus page shows a table-oriented view of the course schedule, and the basics of course grading. You can add any other comments, notes, or thoughts you have about the course structure, course policies or anything else.
To add some comments, click the "Edit" link at the top.