SOCI2110 Introduction to Sociology


Fall 2008
SOCI 2110 Section 010
M,W,F 1:00PM - 1:50PM; 
Speight 00129
Office: Brewster 410-A
Office hours: M 2:00PM - 6:30 PM;
W, 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM or by appointment

I. Introduction

This course is designed as an introduction to the discipline of sociology. Sociology understands and explains human behaviors as a result of social and cultural contexts. Sociologists think that social and cultural contexts play more important role in shaping human behavior than do biological, psychological or economic factors. Although all these factors do play a part, sociologists concentrate on the social and cultural contexts.

When sociologist talk about social and cultural contexts they usually have in mind four very broad socio-historical processes that characterize the contemporary societies: industrialization of economy, the growth of the bureaucratic systems of power, urbanization of population, and its worldwide growth. From the very beginnings of sociology in the middle of the 18th century, sociologists tried to understand how these four socio-historical developments affect other human relationships, both in groups and as individuals and how individuals, in turn, shape some of these great social transformations.

In this course you will learn about these fundamental processes of social change, about basic ideas of sociology, and about the names and ideas of the most prominent sociologists. Taken together all this makes up the vocabulary and the language of sociology, which this course introduces.

The course us an introductory course and therefore does not seek to be comprehensive. It strives instead to introduce the basic concerns of sociologists. You may explore many other issues that sociologists are concerned with in the other courses in our department.

II. Required Texts

Henslin, James. 2007. Sociology. A Down-to-Earth Approach. 8th edition. Boston: Allyn and Bacon.

The textbook we will be using in this course has its own companion website at  Once this page will load, choose a chapter from the pull down menu and click Begin. Each chapter has a summary, study guide, practice quizzes, and links to the other relevant sources and materials. Here you will find some of the exam materials (essay and multiple choice questions) that I will use in this course. In addition, you can use CD-ROM companion which comes with the textbook. It contains the text of the book with the links to the sites where you can find materials relevant to the subject matter discussed in the textbook. I strongly urge you to use the web resources available.

III. Course Requirements


Each class will begin with a lecture that will provide an overview of readings assigned for class. The lecture will be followed by class discussion. Each student is expected to participate in the discussion of each week's readings. Therefore reading assignments should be completed by the date scheduled on the class calendar. University guidelines expect students to spend about 1.5-2.0 hours preparation for every 1 hour of class time; for our course this means 8-10 hours preparation per week. I will limit readings to 5-7 pages on average per session. Attendance is REQUIRED, because during the lectures material will be presented which is not covered in the readings. Lecture contents will be included on exams. Surveys show that students who miss classes have double rate of failure in intro to sociology courses comparing to those students who have not missed a class in the course.


There will be four closed-book, in-class exams, covering assigned readings, lectures, and films for the time period preceding the exam. Exams will consist of 60-70 multiple choice questions and 1-2 short essay questions. Examples of multiple choice and essay questions that will be used in exams are available at the Henslin textbook's companion website at  Exams will account for 85% of your grade. Exams will be held on Exams will account for 85% of your grade. Exams will be held on September 12th, October 6th, October 31st and December 4th. There will be NO cumulative final exam in the course. The first, third and forth exams will be worth 20% of your grade, while the second test will be worth 25% of your grade.


At the end of a class you will take a short quiz consisting of 3 multiple choice questions covering materials assigned for that day.  Total 15 quizzes will be administered during the course of semester each worth 4 points or a total of 15% of your grade.

Unless the student was ill, which is documented by the note from Student Health Services, or missed an exam upon authorization by the Office of the Provost and/or his or her designee there will be no make-up quizzes or exams.  For ECU policy on university-excused absences see ECU 2008-2009 Undergraduate Catalog, pp. 57-58 ( ) In order to be eligible for make-up quiz or exam, the student should contact an instructor within 10 (ten) university working days following the excused absence from the class.  No make-up assignment will be provided following the 10th university working day of a missed quiz or exam. All make-up quizzes and exams will be in essay format only.  This will allow the instructor to thoroughly test the knowledge of materials covered in missed classes.

IV. Grading:

1st Exam


2d Exam


3d Exam


4th Exam


15 quizzes





V. Grading Scale

360 points or more A
320-359 points  B
280-319 points C
240-279 points  D
239 points and below F

VI. Course Schedule: by Dates, Topics and Reading Assignments

1 Week: The Sociological Perspective: An Introduction

W, 08/20 Introduction and getting started. How to study for the course?
F, 08/22
Sociological Perspective; Origins of Sociology: Auguste Comte (Henslin, pp. 2-7)

2 Week: Theoretical Perspectives in Sociology 

M, 08/25 Herbert Spencer & Karl Marx (Henslin, p. 7-9)
W, 08/27
Emile Durkheim (Henslin, p. 9-10)
F, 08/29
Max Weber (Henslin, p. 10-11);

3 Week: Theoretical Perspectives in Sociology

M, 09/01 No classes.  Labor day.
W, 09/03
Symbolic interactionism (Henslin, pp. 21-24).
F, 09/05
Functional analysis (Henslin, pp. 24-26); test #1 study questions are provided in class as well as posted on instructor’s website at core/ecu/edu/soci/juskaa.

4 Week: Socialization

M, 09/08 Conflict theory (Henslin, pp. 27-29)
W, 09/10
Summary of the Chapter 1 and preparation for test #1.
F, 09/12 TEST #1.

5 Week: Socialization

M, 09/15 Results of the first test will be provided and discussed. What is human nature?  Cooley (Henslin, pp. 63-68).
W, 09/17 Socialization into the self, mind and, emotions: Mead (Henslin, pp. 68-70); Freud & socialization into gender (Henslin, pp. 72; 75-78);
F, 09/19 Agents of socialization (Henslin, pp. 78-84);

6 Week: Deviance & Social Control

M, 09/22 Resocialization and socialization through the lifecourse (Henslin, pp. 85-91). W, 09/24 What is deviance? (Henslin, pp. 197-202);
F, 09/26  Symbolic interactionist perspective on deviance (Henslin, pp. 203-208)

7 Week: Deviance and Social Control

M, 09/29 Functionalist perspective on deviance (Henslin, pp. 208-214);
W, 10/01
Conflict perspective on deviance (Henslin, pp. 214-216);Test II study questions provided as well as posted on instructor’s website at
F, 10/03
Reactions to deviance (Henslin, pp. 216-225)

8 Week: Social Stratification

M, 10/06 TEST #2.  
W, 10/08
Results of the second test will be provided and discussed. Systems of social stratification: Slavery and caste (Henslin, pp. 231-235)
F, 10/10
Estate and social class; What determines social class?  (Henslin, pp. 235-238);

9 Week: Social Stratification and Social Class

M, 10/13 No class.  Fall break.
W, 10/15
Why is social stratification universal? How do elites maintain social stratification? (Henslin, pp. 238-242)
F, 10/17
Social class in the US (Henslin, pp. 259-266)

10 Week: Social Class

M, 10/20 Sociological models of social class.  Consequences of social class (Henslin, pp. 266-276)
W, 10/22
Social mobility and poverty (Henslin, pp. 276-282). Test #3 study questions provided as well as posted on instructor’s website at
F, 10/24
Poverty and its dynamics (Henslin, pp. 282-283)

11 Week: Social Class and Poverty

M, 10/27 Explanations of poverty (Henslin, pp. 284-287)
W, 10/29
Summary of chapters on social stratification and social class.  Preparation for test #3. 
F, 10/31 TEST #3

12 Week: Race and Ethnicity

M, 11/03 Results of the third test will be provided and discussed. Ethnic/Racial Identity (Henslin, pp. 325-331);
W, 11/05
Prejudice and discrimination.  Psychological perspectives on prejudice (Henslin, pp. 331-336)
F, 11/07 Theories of Prejudice (cont.) (Henslin, pp. 336-338)

13 Week: Race and Ethnicity

M, 11/10 Global patterns of intergroup relations (Henslin, pp. 336-338)
W, 11/12 Race and Ethnic Relations in the US: Latinos (Hispanics) (Henslin, pp. 341-346)    
F, 11/14 African-Americans (Henslin, pp. 347-353)

14 Week: Sex and Gender

M, 11/17 Defining sex and gender (Henslin, pp. 292-297);
W, 11/19
Gender inequality in global perspective (Henslin, pp. 297-304)
F, 11/21
Gender inequality in the US (Henslin, pp. 304-308); Gender inequality in education (Henslin, pp. 308-310); Test #4 study questions provided as well as posted on instructor’s website at

15 Week: Sex and Gender

M, 11/24 Gender inequality in workplace (Henslin, pp. 312-317). 
W, 11/26 No classes. Thanksgiving break
F, 11/28 No classes. Thanksgiving break

16 Week: Sex and Gender

M, 12/01 Gender and Violence; Gender roles in the future (Henslin, pp. 318-321)
W, 12/03 TEST # 4

East Carolina University is committed to equality of educational opportunity and does not discriminate against applicants, students, or employees based on race, color, national origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, or disability.

East Carolina University seeks to fully comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  Students requesting accommodation based on a covered disability must go to the Department for Disability Support Services, located in Slay 138, to verify the disability before any accommodations can occur.  The phone number is (252) 737-1016.

Academic integrity is expected of every East Carolina University student. Academically violating the Honor Code consists of the following:

·       Cheating: The giving or receiving of any unauthorized aid or assistance or the giving or receiving of unfair advantage on any form of academic work.

·        Plagiarism: Copying the language, structure, ideas, and/or thoughts of another and adopting those as one's original work.

·        Falsification: A statement of untruth, either verbal or written, regarding any circumstances relating to academic work. Attempting any act which if completed would constitute an academic integrity violation as defined above.

·        Procedures governing academic integrity violations are described in the student handbook called the Clue Book ( ). A printed version of the Clue Book is available from the Division of Student Life, Mendenhall Student Center Information Desk, Office of University Housing Services, Neighbor Offices, the Office of the Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Success, and the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Life.

No student may drop the involved course or withdraw from school prior to resolving an academic integrity charge.

You are expected to be familiar with ECU guidelines on academic integrity.  Cheating or plagiarizing in this class will earn you a zero on the assignment, test, or quiz in question, and may earn you a grade of "F" in the course.  Do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns regarding academic honesty policy in this course.

For more details on plagiarism see: 

Department Evacuation Drills

If fire alarm is activated students should leave the classroom immediately for the sidewalk in front of the TKE fraternity house (next to the music building). Do not use elevators.  If there is no room in that area, the class will  meet in front of the Newman Center.  The roll will be taken to account for all of students.

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