(SOC 101, Section 04)

Spring Semester 2003

133 Bey Hall

Monday Thursday 1:00-2:15



Instructor:  Dr. Nancy Mezey

Office Telephone:  732-263-5631

Email Address:

Office:  Rm. 234 Bey Hall

Office Hours:  Tuesday 10:00-12:30, Wednesday 1:00-2:15, and by appointment




This course examines the basics of sociology.  Broadly speaking, sociology is the study of society.  More specifically, sociology examines the interactions among social institutions, cultures, groups, and individuals.  It focuses on how unequal power relations organize the social world and shape individual lives.  It also looks at how individuals negotiate their lives in different social and economic contexts.  Sociologists rely on different theories and methods to study social worlds.  In this course, we will study different theories and methods used within sociology and cover a broad spectrum of topics using critical sociological perspectives.  The course is divided into four main areas:  the sociological approach, the individual in society, the study of society, social institutions, and human agency.  We will pay particular attention to how people's lived experiences are both shaped by social forces and reshaped through human action.




Eitzen, D. Stanley and Maxine Baca Zinn.  2001. In Conflict and Order: Understanding Society. ninth edition.  Boston: Allyn and Bacon.


Hollis, Shirley A. (ed.) 2001. Intersections: Readings in Sociology A Customized Sociology Reader to Accompany In Conflict and Order. Boston: Pearson Custom Publishing.




Attendance = 30 points

Class Participation = 10 points

Discussion Facilitator = 15 points

Discussion Panelist = 20 points

Term Paper = 40 points

Midterm Exam = 40 points

Final Exam = 45 points


Total number of possible points = 200 points


Final grades will be determined using the following scale:

A = 184-200

A- = 176-183

B+ = 170-175

B = 162-169

B- = 156-161

C+ = 152-155

C = 148-151

C- = 142-147

D+ = 138-141

D = 134-137

D- = 129-133

F = 128 and below


Attendance:  Students are required to attend class so that they can learn from lectures and participate in class discussions/activities.  If you cannot attend a class, you should email or call the instructor.  However, emailing or calling does not ensure an excused absence.  You are allowed to miss two classes without any penalty.  After that, one point will be deducted for each class you miss.  Barring ABSOLUTE EMERGENCIES (which do not include minor illnesses, vacations, cars breaking down, or other ordinary excuses), no excuses will be accepted, so plan your absences carefully.  Missing half a class counts the same as missing a whole class.  (30 points)


Class Participation:  Students are expected to be active participants in class discussions.  When not a discussion leader or panelist, students will still answer discussion questions and generate new questions pertaining to the discussion and the readings.  (10 points)


Discussion Facilitator:  Each student will lead ONE class discussion on a selected assigned reading.  You should come to class prepared with a brief summary (1-2 paragraphs) of the article and five to six questions.  Questions should be designed to generate interesting discussions and critical thinking about the reading.  Students will turn in their typed discussion questions and summary at the end of the class for which they were discussion facilitator.  (15 points)


Discussion Panelist:  Each student will sign up to be a panelist for TWO different class periods.  As panelists, students will come to class prepared to answer the questions asked by the discussion facilitators.  Students in the class who are not panelists will also come prepared to answer questions about each reading assigned for that class period (i.e., you all must do the readings for the assigned class period).  Panelists will be graded on their ability to answer the questions asked. (30 points)


Midterm Exam:  There will be an in-class midterm exam.  The exam will consist of multiple choice and/or short answer questions.  Details about format and content will be discussed prior to the exam date. (40 points)


Term Paper:  You are required to write a paper on a specific topic.  You will receive details on paper topics and structure during the first three weeks of class.  For this paper, you will be given the opportunity to hand in your paper early.  If you submit an early paper and are not satisfied with your grade, you can re-write and re-submit the paper.  (40 points)


Final Exam:  There will be an in-class midterm exam.  The exam will consist of multiple choice and/or short answer questions.  Details about format and content will be discussed prior to the exam date. (45 points)





All written assignments must be typed.  The grade for these assignments will depend on your knowledge and incorporation of the course material and on your ability to write a coherent, well organized, and grammatically sound written product.  For the final paper, you are expected to provide citations for all the sources you use.  A grammar guide and formats for source citation will be provided during class. 


Policy about Make-Ups for Assignments and Exams - Make-ups will only be granted in extremely extenuating circumstances.  The granting of any make-ups is at the instructor's discretion.  There will be no make-up for the final exam.


Special Learning Needs

Monmouth has a policy of non-discrimination.  Students with disabilities who need special accommodations for this class are encouraged to meet with the instructor or the appropriate disability service provider on campus as soon as possible.  In order to receive accommodations, students must register with the appropriate disability service provider on campus set forth in the student handbook.  They must also follow the University procedure for self-disclosure, which is stated in the University Guide to Services and Accommodations for Studies with Disabilities.  Students will not be afforded any special accommodations for academic work completed prior to disclosure of the disability or prior to the completion of the documentation process with the appropriate disability service officer.


Academic Honesty

All work in this course must be the sole work of the student whose name appears on that work.  Students must clearly identify any group work with the names of all participants.  Students must observe the University standards of academic honesty and comply with any additional regulations announced by the instructor.


The last day to withdraw with a “W” grade is Monday, March 31, 2003





(NOTE: You should complete the assigned readings prior to the day they will be discussed in class).


Week 1


Thursday, January 23 – Introduction to the Class


Week 2




Monday, January 27 – The Sociological Perspective

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 1 – The Sociological Perspective (pgs. 3-12)


Hollis:  Chapter 1 – Peter Berger, “Invitation to Sociology” (pgs. 7-13)


Thursday, January 30 – Research Methods

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 1 – The Sociological Perspective (pgs. 12-25)



Week 3


Monday, February 3 – The Structure of Social Groups

Eitzen and Baca Zinn: Chapter 2 – The Structure of Social Groups (pgs. 27-51)


Hollis:  Chapter 2 – Solomon Asch, “Opinions and Social Pressures” (pgs. 14-23)


Thursday, February 6 – The Duality of Social Life: Order and Conflict

Eitzen and Baca Zinn: Chapter 3 – The Duality of Social Life: Order and Conflict (pgs. 53-79)


Hollis:  Chapter 3 – Chip Berlet and Matthew N. Lyons, “Militia Nation” (pgs. 7-13)



Week 4




Monday, February 10 – Culture

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 4 – Culture (pgs. 81-113)


Hollis:   Chapter 4 – Robert Levine, “A Geography of Time” (pgs. 33-52)


Thursday, February 13 – slide presentation



Week 5


Monday, February 17 – Socialization

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 5 – Socialization (pgs. 115-133)


Hollis:  Chapter 5 – Eva Weisz and Barry Kanpol, “Classrooms as Social Agents: The Three Rs and Beyond (pgs. 53-61)


Thursday, February 20 – Social Control

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 6 – Social Control (pgs. 135-161)


Hollis:   Chapter 6 – William G. Staples, “The Culture of Surveillance” (pgs. 62-77)



Week 6


Monday, February 24 – film


Thursday, February 27 – Deviance

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 7 – Deviance (pgs. 163-193)


Hollis:   Chapter 7 – Toni Nelson, “Violence Against Women” (pgs. 78-88)



Week 7


Monday, March 3 – class activity


Thursday, March 6 – MIDTERM EXAM





Week 8




Monday, March 17  – Structural Sources of Societal Change: Economic and Demographic

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 8 – Structural Sources of Societal Change: Economic and Demographic (pgs. 195-231)


Hollis:  Chapter 8 – Katherine Newman and Chauncy Lennon, “The Job Ghetto” (pgs. 89-94)


Thursday, March 20 – Social Stratification

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 9 – Social Stratification (pgs. 233-253)


Hollis:   Chapter 9 – Oscar Lewis, “The Culture of Poverty” (pgs. 95-101)



Week 9


Monday, March 24 – Social Class

Eitzen and Baca Zinn: Chapter 10 – Class (pgs. 255-293)


Hollis:   Chapter 10 – Robert Reich, “Why the Rich Are Getting Richer and the Poor Poorer” (pgs. 102-111)


Thursday, March 27 – class activity (DEADLINE FOR EARLY PAPER SUBMISSIONS)



Week 10


Monday, March 31 – Racial Inequality

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 11 – Racial Inequality (pgs. 295-325)


Hollis:  Chapter 11 – William Julius Wilson, “When Work Disappears” (pgs. 112-130)


Thursday, April 3 – Gender Inequality

Eitzen and Baca Zinn: Chapter 12 – Gender Inequality (pgs. 327-367)


Hollis:  Chapter 12 – Deborah Blum, “The Gender Blur” (pgs. 131-139)



Week 11


Monday, April 7 – Sexual Inequality

            Reading to be handed out prior to class




Thursday, April 10 – The Economy

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 13 – The Economy  (pgs. 369-397)


Hollis:  Chapter 13 – George Ritzer, “The McDonaldization of Society” (pgs. 140-156)



Week 12


Monday, April 14 – Power and Politics

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 14 – Power and Politics (pgs. 399-431)


Hollis:  Chapter 14 – Sidney Verba, Kay Lehman, and Henry E. Brady, “The Big Tilt: Participatory Inequality in America” (pgs. 157-169)


Thursday, April 17 – film



Week 13


Monday, April 21 – Families (ALL PAPERS DUE)

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 15 – Families (pgs. 433-463)


Hollis:  Chapter 15 – Stephanie Coontz, “The Way We Never Were” (pgs. 170-178)


Thursday, April 24 – Education

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 16 – Education (pgs. 465-491)


Hollis:  Chapter 16 – D. Stanley Eitzen, “Problem Students: The Sociocultural Roots” (pgs. 179-190)



Week 14


Monday, April 28 – Religion

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 17 – Religion (pgs. 493-523)


Hollis:  Chapter 17 – Barbara Kantrowitz, “In Search of the Sacred” (pgs. 191-197)





Thursday, May 1 – Human Agency: Individuals and Groups in Society

Eitzen and Baca Zinn:  Chapter 18 – Human Agency: Individuals and Groups in Society (pgs. 525-542)


Hollis:  Chapter 18 – Jay Walljasper, “When Activists Win: The Renaissance of Dudley Street” (pgs. 198-209)



Week 15


Monday, May 5 – Class Wrap-Up and Review for Final Exam



Final Exam:  Date/time/classroom to be announced