Sociology

McDonald Center
(435) 652-7881

https://socialscience.dixie.edu/sociology/

To find faculty & staff phone numbers and email addresses, please consult the University Directory.

Department Chair
Robert Carlson, Ph.D.

Applied Sociology Program Coordinator
Matthew Smith-Lahrman Ph.D.

Administrative Assistant for Social & Behavioral Sciences
Hope Mullins

Dean
Richard Featherstone, Ph.D.

Administrative Specialist
Jenn Stewart

Applied Sociology Program Description

Sociology is the scientific study of human interaction. Specific areas of study within sociology include culture and structure, individual and small group behavior, deviance, inequality and stratification, gender, race and ethnicity, social institutions, demography, and social change. Furthermore, sociologists use a variety of qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methodologies in gathering, analyzing, and presenting their data.

A primary goal of Applied Sociology at Dixie State University is the implementation of sociological theory and methods in private, government, and nonprofit settings. The study of Applied Sociology provides a strong intellectual and practical background in sociological thought and methodology. Applied Sociology students understand the influence of culture and structure on human behavior and are able to recognize continuing sources of social inequality and develop awareness and appreciation of cultural diversity. Because of their methodological expertise, Applied Sociology students are able to recognize, analyze, and provide informed decisions concerning difficult issues within a wide range of organizations.

Students in the Applied Sociology Program have multiple opportunities for hands-on experiences, close student-faculty relationships, and social engagement. As a student of Applied Sociology you will find faculty who are committed to the intellectual, professional, and personal development of every student, whatever their ultimate goals may be.

The Applied Sociology Program at Dixie State University is committed to the following:

  • Training students to value the search for knowledge by means of scientific methods and research.
  • Developing students whose understanding of Sociology reflects an integration of a variety of theoretical perspectives.
  • Graduating students who understand the principles of Sociology within a broad liberal arts and science perspective.
  • Providing students with the abilities to apply what they learn in the classroom to real life issues outside of academia.
  • Inspiring students to commit themselves to a lifetime pursuit of knowledge and understanding.

Course Prefix

  • SOC

Career Strategies

In addition to the required coursework for sociology, students can do the following to enhance their career opportunities:

  • Develop academic research skills and experience
  • Develop strong written and oral communication skills
  • Maintain a high grade point average and consider pursuing an advanced degree
  • Gain relevant experience through internships and related part-time employment
  • Do volunteer work in the community.
  • Learn to work well with people from diverse backgrounds
  • Learn how to prepare grant applications
  • Earn a minor in a complimentary major such as Psychology, Criminal Justice, a foreign language or Communications.

Career Opportunities

A degree in sociology provides a broad, liberal arts background, which can “open doors” for graduates seeking entry level employment in a variety of professional occupations such as social agencies, business, government services, and law enforcement. Students may wish to pursue graduate education in psychology, social work, counseling, academic advisement, or other related fields as a way of increasing earning potential.

The advanced study of sociology includes many broad and diverse specialty areas, which can lead to careers in such areas as:

  • Research
  • Education
  • Community and Social Services
  • Justice System
  • Government
  • Business and Industry

Job Outlook

The overall job growth expectations for the future are positive, but can vary by specificity and by educational level. Advanced degrees will increase job marketability and income.

Salary Range

Salaries will vary widely depending on factors such as level of education, specialty, and geographic location. On average this would be $48,000 to $68,000. For more information refer to the American Sociological Association.

Courses

SOC 1010. Introduction to Sociology (SS, GC). 3 Hours.

Fulfills Social & Behavioral Sciences General Education requirement and is an approved Global and Cultural Perspectives course. Teaches what sociology is, what a sociologist does, and how sociology is applied, including the study of cultures, socialization, stratification, religion, families, organizations and social change through lectures, guest speakers, film, writing assignments, and exams. FA, SP, SU.

SOC 1020. Social Problems (SS, GC). 3 Hours.

Fulfills Social & Behavioral Sciences General Education requirement and is an approved Global and Cultural Perspectives course. Studies contemporary social issues dealing with crime, sexuality, drug abuse, violence, and families, in addition to larger social problems such as war, poverty, race and ethnic relations, population and the environment through lectures, guest speakers, film, writing assignments, and exams. FA, SP.

SOC 1200. Sociology of the Family (SS). 3 Hours.

Fulfills General Education Social & Behavioral Sciences requirement. Teaches what sociology is and how sociology is applied to the study of families, covering many different aspects of including families through history, gender roles, love, sexuality, courtship, marriage, parenting, children, racial-ethnic families, families and work, family violence, separation and divorce, and aging in the family through lectures, guest speakers, film, writing assignments, and exams. Offered based on sufficient student need.

SOC 2630. Sociology of Racial and Ethnic Relations (SS, GC). 3 Hours.

Fulfills Social and Behavioral Sciences General Education requirement and is an approved Global and Cultural Perspectives course. Introduces students to the core sociological concepts of race and ethnic relations in contemporary society. Explores what sociologists mean by the concept of multiculturalism and how they observe and measure it. Furthermore, it gives students an understanding of the centrality of race and ethnicity to the sociologist's perspective of social life; as well as underscoring the ways minority status can be maintained and can also be organically and forcefully changed within society and the interactive effects they have on peoples' lives.

SOC 3010. Stratification and Inequality. 3 Hours.

Examines theories of and research concerning explanations of the causes of social, economic, and political stratification and inequality, including consequences of inequality for individuals and groups. This course will examine the roles of race, gender and class in systems of stratification and inequality. Prerequisite: SOC 1010 (Grade C or higher). FA, SP.

SOC 3020. Social Psychology. 3 Hours.

Open to all students. Course covers sociological social psychological perspectives such as phenomenology, exchange, rational choice, dramaturgy, ethnomethodology, and symbolic interactionism. Prerequisite: SOC 1010 (Grade C or higher). FA.

SOC 3041. Sociology of Rock Music. 3 Hours.

Introduces students to the cultural and structural aspects of rock music as an art world. As such, it will examine the music as the ongoing creation of people in many parts of society: artists, engineers, club owners, audience members, and critics to name just a few. The course will also look at visual, lyrical, and musical codes that define and distinguish rock music from other genres of music. Historical and cross-cultural examples of rock will include studies from various time periods and countries as well as how race, class, and gender are integral to an understanding of this art form. SP (odd).

SOC 3111. Research Methods. 3 Hours.

Introduces the research methods and designs by which Sociologists father and analyze data, including the common research methods of interviews, surveys, and observation, among others. Prerequisite: SOC 1010. SP.

SOC 3112. Social Statistics. 3 Hours.

Students will learn to use and interpret statistical analysis. Includes descriptive statistics (i.e., frequency distributions, graphs, central tendency, variability), examination of relationship between variables (bivariate regression, correlation), and a discussion of inferential statistics (t-test, ANOVA, chi-square). Prerequisites: SOC 1010 AND MATH 1040 (both Grade C or higher). SP.

SOC 3113. Survey Research and Data Analysis. 3 Hours.

Survey Research is designed to prepare students to understand, conduct, and analyze surveys and present the findings. This course will be particularly useful to assist students who are considering, planning or currently working on research projects with a survey component. Upon the completion of the course, students should be able to decide whether and when surveys are appropriate means of data collection, have a good idea of how to put together a survey, conduct basic quantitative analysis of survey data, and report the findings. Prerequisite: SOC 1010 (Grade C or higher). SP.

SOC 3114. Qualitative Research Methods. 3 Hours.

Introduces students to the many types of qualitative research methods within sociology. Students will learn about and actively administer field work and interview techniques among other types of methods. The collection, analysis, and interpretation of gathered data will be emphasized. Course offered in rotation. Consult class schedule. Prerequisite: SOC 1010 (Grade C or higher).

SOC 3140. Sociological Theory. 3 Hours.

Examines the variety of perspectives and theories unique to Sociology as a discipline which provide differing perspectives of social structure, culture, and interaction. Prerequisite: SOC 1010. FA.

SOC 3370. Gender in Contemporary Society. 3 Hours.

Fulfills Social & Behavioral Sciences General Education requirement and is an approved Global and Cultural Perspectives course. Introduction to the core sociological concepts of gender in contemporary society. It explores what sociologists mean by the concept of gender and how they observe and measure it. Furthermore, it gives students an understanding of the centrality of gender to the sociologist's perspective of social life; as well as underscoring the ways gender can be maintained and can also be organically and forcefully changed within society and the interactive effects they have on peoples' lives. Prerequisite: SOC 1010 (Grade C or higher).

SOC 3435. Globalization. 3 Hours.

Examines and critiques the historical origins, economic and technological foundations, institutional arrangements, ideological underpinnings, collective movements, and controversial outcomes of 'transnationalism', and 'globalization.' Sociological analysis emphasizes macro-level institutions that shape globalization and social conflicts arising from its effects. Prerequisite: SOC 1010 (Grade C or higher). FA (odd).

SOC 3440. Sociology of Religion. 3 Hours.

This course is designed to familiarize students with important sociological theories and empirical research on religion. Students will learn how religion intersects with other major social institutions such as family, politics, and education. Prerequisites: SOC 1010 (Grade C or higher). FA.

SOC 3550. Organizations in Society. 3 Hours.

Examines the culture and structure of formal organizations: organizational forms; bureaucracies; coordination of work; organizational control, autonomy and control, culture, conflict, diversity, and change. Sociological theories about modern organizations and the impact of new technologies will be examined. Prerequisite: SOC 1010. FA.

SOC 3560. Deviance and Social Control. 3 Hours.

Introduces the various perspectives and theories dealing with deviance and social control, including an examination of the ways in which people perceive and deal with what are seen as cultural norms. Prerequisite: SOC 1010. SP.

SOC 4800R. Independent Study. 1-3 Hours.

Students work one-on-one with a sociology faculty member on a project agreeable to both. The project depends on the interests of the student and faculty member. Completion of the course requires a paper related to the project. Prerequisites: SOC 1010 (Grade C or higher).

SOC 4890. Applied Sociology Internship. 3 Hours.

Students will apply knowledge they've learned in Applied Sociology courses to an organizational setting in which they actively participate. Prerequisites: Applied Sociology major, Senior standing; SOC 1010, SOC 3111, SOC 3112, SOC 3140 (all Grade C or higher), and instructor permission.

SOC 4910. Senior Capstone. 3 Hours.

Fulfills the Sociology capstone requirement to earn a BA/BS degree. In this course, students will undertake a well-defined research project involving primary and/or secondary data analysis. The final product for the capstone will be a paper of "publishable quality" combined with an end-of-semester presentation. Prerequisites: SOC 1010 and SOC 3111 and SOC 3112 and SOC 3140 and SOC 4890 (all Grade C or higher), and Senior standing. SP.

Faculty

Department Chair

Robert Carlson, Ph.D.

Sociology Program Coordinator

Matthew Smith-Lahrman, Ph.D.

Professors

Matthew Smith-Lahrman, Ph.D.

Assistant Professors

Fanhao Nie, Ph.D.

Instructors

Robert Oxley, Ph.D.

Advisors

Craig Demke