Please note that not every course listed is offered each year and that students should consult the following sources for current course offerings:
- Web Advisor – Online for students provides students the ability to search for specific classes.
- Registrar Services provides a printable list of all course offerings for each term.
SOCI-1006. Introduction to Sociology
A survey course that introduces students to the discipline of sociology with particular reference to Canadian Society. This course examines theories and research concerning the nature of social order and conflict in industrial society; the relations between important structures or elements of society, including the economy, family, education, religion, complex organizations, racial and ethnic groups, and the dynamics of social change. Several major theoretical approaches in sociology are compared throughout the course.
SOCI-2013. Research Design & Methods (nati, Ws/Gs)
An introduction to the main research approaches used in sociology. The course includes practical experience in developing a research program by considering research question development, research design, methods of data collection, research ethics and data analysis. Of particular interest are the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches.
SOCI-2023. Understanding Statistics (NATI)
Statistics are used and misused by social scientists, policy makers, and the media to describe the social world. Sociologists use statistics to understand social inequality and examine relations of power. In this course you examine the use and meaning of statistics in sociology, social policy and popular media to increase your ability to differentiate dodgy statistics from valid evidence. Note: To fulfill requirements for the Minor, Major or Honours in sociology, students may take this course or any other statistics course.
SOCI-2033. Classical Sociological Theory
A study of the classical tradition in sociological thought focusing on those theorists whose ideas constitute the foundation of contemporary sociological analysis. This will include a consideration of the work of Marx, Weber, Durkheim, among others.
SOCI-2106. Canadian Society
The purpose of this course is to give the student an understanding of the operation and functioning of the society in which we live. The configuration of Canadian institutions is analyzed in terms of their historical patterns of development.
SOCI-2116. Sociology of Atlantic Canada
This course is designed as an introduction to the sociological study of Atlantic Canada. The first term focuses on the development of the Maritimes and Newfoundland from mercantile societies to under-developed regions within the centralized Canadian economy. The second term focuses on the contemporary structure, problems, and issues of Atlantic Canadian society.
SOCI-2123. Intro. to Sociology of Globalization
Introduction to Sociology of Globalization explores social conditions characterized by global economic, political, cultural, and environmental interconnections and flows that cross existing political borders. Therefore, it challenges our existing conceptualization of an international world of borders and nation states. The course explores the concept of globalization and its relevance to our lives. Types of empirical topics covered include contemporary global inequalities; environmental problems; transnational communities and families; transnational migration; the effect of globalization on gender, race, ethnicity, and religion; transnational social movements; and the women's movement.
SOCI-2143. Interaction and Everyday Conduct
Studies in conversation analysis show that in their everyday human interaction people fine-tune their actions in co-ordination with others. Using practical, everyday reasoning, the members of society produce and sustain the ongoing orderly details of everyday life. The course will teach students to identify and analyze how people orient to and build up the numerous micro-structures of social interaction that make up daily life in the family, amongst friends, at work, in medical encounters, in the media, and in other institutions in society. Materials will be drawn from published observations, recordings and transcripts of everyday human interaction. Students will be taught how to begin making their own empirical observations and analyses. Controversies about the influence of social structure and social context on interaction will be examined.
SOCI-2213. Society and Ecology (ENVS 2213)
This course is an introduction to the sociological study of environmental problems and the issues they raise, using C. Wright Mills' notion of the 'sociological imagination'.
SOCI-2313. Deviance (WS/GS) (CRIM)
This course reviews theory and research with a focus on the social basis of deviance, deviance construction, and the consequences of social reactions to selected forms of deviance.
SOCI-2323. Sociology for Cyborgs: the Social Organization of the Internet
This course is a critical introduction to the social, political, economic, and cultural organization of the Internet. The purpose is to provide media literacy tools to penetrate beneath its commonly experienced surfaces. The focus is on who organizes the Web: its commercialization and the potential for democratization of its users. An important goal is discovering the academic Web as a resource for both Liberal Arts education and lifetime learning.
SOCI-2333. The Sociology of Chinese Women in Literature and Film
This course explores the sociology of women and China in recent literature and film, particularly in recent work by women in China and of those Chinese origins in Western countries. Topics include 20th century migration, settlement and early family experiences. The novels focus on three generations of families and illustrate the traditional expectations for women within China and in North America. The films include recent works by Chinese filmmakers that comment on women's place in pre-revolutionary and modern society.
SOCI-2343. Surveillance Society
This course examines critical features of developing surveillance practices, including changes in privacy and identity, the integration of surveillance throughout the society, and the challenge to civil liberties that they raise,as well as resistance and opposition.
SOCI-2416. Inequality in Society (WS/GS)
This course explores existing patterns of social inequality and debates concerning the possibility and desirability of greater equality. Taking a theoretical and historical focus, this course examines the changing nature of inequality in contemporary Canadian society in the context of globalization. Throughout, we develop our understanding of how different forms of inequality - particularly social class, gender and race - intersect. One section of the course may have a service learning requirement, where students engage in volunteer work in the community, and then reflect upon their experiences through reading, writing, and discussion.
SOCI-2423. Social Problems I - Sociological Perspectives (WS/GS)
The various perspectives used by sociologists to examine social problems will be described and evaluated. Concrete social problems will be used as examples of these perspectives.
SOCI-2433. Social Problems II - Canadian Social Problems (WS/GS)
Several current Canadian social problems will be examined from the perspectives used in SOCI 2423. These problems include: poverty, minorities, Canadian identity, the effects of urbanization, and technology, etc. Prerequisite: SOCI 2423.
SOCI-2443. Racialization, Racism & Colonialism
This course explores the conceptual, theoretical, and methodological understandings most relevant to the sociological study of race, racialization, racism, and colonialism. We give particular attention to critical decolonial thinking on race. We examine the process of racialization, through which being white becomes the normative standard of just being human. We contextualize how the creation of whiteness as an identity-based entitlement has led to social division and oppression. We draw on the experiences of diverse groups of Black, Indigenous, and other People of Colour (BIPoC) in Canadian and global contexts. We begin with the premise that BIPoC share a common history in terms of dispossession, discrimination, and oppression, but also pursue a range of different struggles and dreams in relation to their lands and nation-states. We explore racialization of bodies in contemporary culture to probe a series of assumptions and theories about race, racism, and colonialism in both academic and popular thought.
SOCI-2513. Sociology of Communication
This course considers the mass media, (principally print and electronic), its place in, and impact upon Canadian society. Various perspectives and related research are considered with respect to the control and ownership of the media, the social organization of the production of news, facts, statistics, and other messages; and the themes expressed in popular culture as conveyed by the media. Underlying concerns are the social construction of what-is-taken-to-be reality and the language that is used in the conveying of messages.
SOCI-2523. Sociology of Aging (WSGS) (GERO 2113)
This course will explore the comparative situation of older women and men in different cultures and different historical periods within western societies. The cultural and social-structural determinants of their changing status will be examined through alternative theoretical perspectives within sociology. The social construction of 'elderly' as a status will be explored through how older people are perceived,described, talked about, and interacted with, in everyday behaviour and how these relations may be 'negotiated' by the elderly themselves. The political economy of aging focuses upon disparities of income, and the determinants and effects of poverty on the lives of older people.
SOCI-2543. Sociology of Religion
This course focuses on the relations between the beliefs and institutionalized practices that people hold sacred, and contemporary community life. Students explore the contradictory trends of mass secularism and the rise of religious fundamentalism, and the practices through which people collectively mobilize to sustain, challenge, and change religious identities. The question raised by Durkheim is explored: If religion expresses and reinforces community solidarity, how can modern societies accommodate religious diversity? A further question is: How are religions implicated in political struggles, the women's movement, nationalism, and war?
SOCI-2563. Sociology of Sport
This course unpacks issues associated with sport in North America. Students are asked to critically engage with sport practices as they intersect various social phenomena including identity, nationalism, the body, colonialism, and the family. Students examine how power operates through the practices associated with sport and consider the potential, and consequences, of using sport for social change.
SOCI-2613. Sociology of Gender (WS/GS)
This course focuses on particular aspects of the social processes that shape, and are shaped by female and male social roles such as gender and power, gender and social structures of work, and feminist social movements.
SOCI-2623. Gender in the Global South (Econ 2303) (WS/GS)
This course will critically examine the role of women in the Third World. It will concentrate largely on the changes in these roles and their correspondence with the transition from traditional to new forms of economic organization, production, and power.
SOCI-2633. Sociology of the Family (WS/GS)
A critical analysis of various conceptual frameworks in family research, and a cross-cultural analysis of marriage and the family, both past and present is pursued. Particular attention is paid to the current developments in marriage arrangements, changes in the meaning of marriage and the family, as well as the future of the family.
SOCI-2643. Selected Topics on the Political Economy of Women (ECON 2223) (WS/GS)
This is a seminar course examining selected topics on the political economy of women. Potential topics include women as paid workers, domestic labour, and women and poverty.
SOCI-2653. Sociology of Health
This course provides an introduction to the sociology of health. We analyse the social construction of health promotion knowledge, experiences of health, media representations of health, the social foundations of health inequalities, the formal institutions that define and manage health and health care, and the social consequences of the moralization of healthy behaviours.
SOCI-2733. Special Topics
The content of this course changes from year to year to reflect the special strengths of faculty and particular needs of students.
SOCI-2743. Special Topics: Sociology of Global Corruption
In contemporary societies, corruption is a significant threat to human, environmental, and financial security, reducing economic growth, increasing inequality, and destabilizing democracy. This course will introduce students to theoretical, empirical, and policy debates on (anti-)corruption from a global perspective. Students will examine the role of the state, the civil society, and the market in (anti- )corruption. The course will help students develop a high capacity for critical and independent thinking as well as research skills. Students interested in programs such as Sociology, Political Science, Criminology, Human Rights, Development, Economics, Journalism, and Social Work will benefit from this course.
SOCI-3023. Contemporary Sociological Theory
A study of contemporary developments in sociological theory, focusing on major trends, their interrelationships, and controversies. Prerequisite: SOCI 2033.
SOCI-3033. Seminar in Research Strategies
This course helps students learn what original research entails from its initial conception to its completion. It highlights the techniques and strategies successful researchers use to develop their research questions; select an appropriate research design and data collection method(s); meet university research ethics requirements; ensure the research is socially relevant and completed in a timely manner. Students are expected to design a research project and write a proposal outlining their plans. This exercise allows students to gain an appreciation of the research design process and the components of research. For some students the proposal will be the initial work towards an honours thesis; for others it will be a model for the preparation and planning of research in other courses or outside academia. After taking the course students should feel prepared to undertake research projects in any academic, government, research, or policy setting.
SOCI-3043. Qualitative Data Collection and Analysis
This course explores the theoretical foundations of qualitative research, data collection procedures, research ethics and analysis. Students will learn how to develop appropriate research questions and undertake research using basic qualitative techniques including but not limited to participant observation, in-depth interviewing, and visual methodologies.
SOCI-3113. Political Sociology
The focus of this course is on the type of political system known as liberal democracy. Particular emphasis is placed on the historical genesis of liberal democracy, on its structural dynamics, and on the role of the working class within the system. The examination includes an analysis of the sources of stability and cleavage governing the development of liberal democracies. Finally, the functioning of liberal democracies is contrasted with that of communist political systems.
SOCI-3123. Social Movements, Social Activism & Social Change
This course explores conceptual, theoretical and methodological understandings of social movements and activism as an organized way of effecting social change. It also examines a series of historical and contemporary case studies within Canadian and global contexts. Students analyze social movements or activism for social change in their local and/or global communities.
SOCI-3133. Sociology of Work
The sociology of work studies the changing nature of work from pre-industrial to contemporary times. It is concerned with how our work activities and occupations shape our everyday lives, how work is gendered and the implication of technological innovation on individual workers and societal processes. Different forms of work, occupational hierarchies and social relations of production are key themes explored within this course.
SOCI-3153. Political Sociology of War
The sociology of war explores organized mass violence across societal boundaries. Topics include the rise of the military-industrial complex, cultures of militarism, the political economy of war in the context of global struggles to control resources, and the active practices that militarize religious and ethnic identities, moralize political and economic conflicts, and impose dominant justifications onto the conduct of war.
SOCI-3173. Women and Education
With the rise of neo-conservative governments in Canada, we see changes in schooling and higher education due to the restructuring of government finances and privatization. By beginning from the standpoint of women engaged in mothering, classroom teaching, graduate studies and university teaching, this course examines the impact of re-structuring on gender, ethnicity and class in the classroom and in higher education.
SOCI-3183. Sociology, the Self & the Other
We are nearly always relating to other people, even when we are alone. In this course, we look at several aspects of this relationship between self and other, using a variety of different theories. Topics may include: Taking the attitude of the other towards yourself (Theory: Symbolic Interaction); Being intensely engaged with another person (Theory: Phenomenology) The moment-by-moment co-ordination of our activities with others (Theory: Conversation Analysis.) Presenting a version of ourselves to others (Theory: Goffman); Mourning the death of someone close to us (Theory: Deconstruction). A number of feature films engaging with the themes of the course will be viewed and analyzed. Students are encouraged to discuss popular culture and their own experiences in light of the themes of the course.
SOCI-3193. Capitalism and Modern Culture
The course explores how transformations in material life have produced new cultural forms, which in turn have made possible new types of economic organization. The course decentres capitalist culture by looking at empirical historical and anthropological evidence. It discusses some of the main cultural changes that made capitalism possible, from the ideological advent of calculative reason and self-interest, to the reorganization of time and space by new technologies such as the clock and train transport. The course aims to trouble the naturalness of the modern mass consumer society in which we live, in order to consider some of its key cultural and organizational problems anew, from a sociological vantage point that questions the ultimate ends of capitalist economic action.
SOCI-3223. Globalization and Gender (WS/GS)
Globalization and Gender examines how definitions of gender and sexuality are reproduced, negotiated and deployed in the context of globalization and transnational flows. Through a critical inquiry into a variety of theoretical texts, ethnographic case studies and analysis of media representation, students examine the topics of citizenship, global labor flows, migration, militarization, neoliberalism and the construction of the gendered global subject. They study both the opportunities and challenges that are inherent in postcolonial and transnational feminist scholarship and activism.
SOCI-3243. Sociology of Men and Masculinities (WS/GS)
In this course, students examine the social production of masculinities in North America and the impacts of these gender expressions on the lives of boys and men, and girls and women. Students are introduced to theoretical perspectives used to understand the lives of men and boys, while examining topics such as fathering, the social construction of men's bodies, the ways the media (re)produces notions of masculinity, and sports masculinities.
SOCI-3263. Capitalism and Modern Culture
The course explores how the emergence of new forms of commerce and production gave rise to new cultural ideas and social formations in the 19th and 20th centuries. Emphasis is placed on the historical emergence of taken for granted themes in modern culture. This will enable students to better appreciate current developments in culture and in our economic system.
SOCI-3293. Animals & Society
In Sociology we study human society. Humans, however, have always lived in relation to other non-human animals, and these relations and these animals have in fact been central to human society. In this course we will re-think what we mean by 'human society,' by showing how integral animals have always been to what we take to be 'human society.'
SOCI-3313. Sociology of Law (CRIM)
This course critically examines law from various sociological perspectives, with particular reference to Canada. The course is designed to cover sociological jurisprudence and selected theories of law, as they relate to family, administrative, labour, criminal and other types of law.
SOCI-3323. Sociology of Women and Law (WS/GS)
This course explores the relationship of women to the state and to law. The ways in which criminal and family law influence gender relations in society are analyzed, including the implications of legal intervention and non-intervention in family relations. Sex-specific and sex-related legislation concerning such issues as sexual harassment, rape, pornography, and affirmative action, are also examined. Theoretical concepts and issues, such as the position of women within capitalism, patriarchy, sexuality and reproduction, formal and informal control, are addressed.
SOCI-3413. Employment Equity Policy and Gender Inequality at Work (WS/GS)
This is an advanced course on the organization of gender inequality in the labour force. It begins by studying how gender segregation is organized in the occupations of teaching, clerical work, and other professions. The course examines from a sociological perspective, the federal and provincial government policies which are aimed at the equal and fair treatment of individuals regardless of sex: pay equity legislation, employment equity programmes, contractual provisions and human rights legislation on fair employment practices
SOCI-3513. Sociology of Education
This course focuses on the nature of the relationship between school systems and the broader societies of which they are a part. This is done with two purposes in mind: (1) to determine both the structural configuration and the functions of education in contemporary society and (2) to demonstrate the effects of this relationship on the internal functioning of schools. A variety of theoretical perspectives on the conceptualization of the school-society connection are examined.
SOCI-3523. Sociology of Knowledge
This course is concerned with the social organization of knowledge. The focus is on the political and social processes and contexts in which local and ruling forms of knowledge are produced. For the purposes of this course, knowledge may range from common sense and popular culture to ideology, science, and information. Topics may include the connection between knowledge and power and how they are controlled by states, corporations, and professions, and the implications of the nature and distribution of print and electronic information. This course combines discussion of major theorists with an examination of current issues.
SOCI-3533. Science and Scientific Knowledge (STS 3533)
This course examines science and scientific knowledge from a sociological perspective. It focuses on the effort of the Edinburgh School to provide a materialist resolution to the debate between positivist and relativist epistemologies.
SOCI-3553. Sociology of the Body
This course explores the interaction between society and the body. It begins with an examination of classical and contemporary theories of the body, and then explores special issues with regard to the development of the civilized body, as well as gender, sexuality, marginalization, deviancy, chronic illness and disability.
SOCI-3563. Sociology of Music (FNAR)
This course combines a number of macro- and micro-sociological perspectives on music. The former refers to the wider socio-cultural context in which music is produced, distributed, and listened to. It includes the social functions and uses of music ranging from rituals and ceremonies to its political-economic organization in cultural industries. Forms of music, such as the functional harmony vs. the Afro-American traditons, area related to forms of society. Micro perspectives analyze how performers create and make music together in terms of the interaction among musicians, audience, and conductor. The practices of improvisation and maintaining synchrony will be examined principally in both classical and jazz contexts.
SOCI-3573. Sociology of Art and Culture (FNAR)
Employing both classical and contemporary sociological perspectives, this course explores the nature of art in society by looking at how art objects are produced, distributed, and consumed. Theoretical perspectives are related to historical and contemporary examples from a range of artistic media (e.g., pictorial art, film, photography, literature, and music) to expose the interplay between art and society. The relationship between the fine arts and popular culture are examined, as well as the role of technology in the various arts.
SOCI-3583. Research for Social Change (WS/GS)
This seminar course encourages students to explore how research can inform social justice and social change. Examining specific debates from the fields of feminist research, Indigenous methodologies, and critical race theory, students will gain new understandings in the various ways research can both reproduce and challenge operations of power and privilege. This course offers students the opportunity to engage in debates around these methodologies as they consider how to do research for social change.
SOCI-3663. Queer Sociology
This course explores the social construction of queerness in heteronormative societies. Students apply sociological concepts and theories to the study of queer identities, communities, and sexual practices. They examine social and political responses to queerness, and the ways in which these responses shape the lives of queer people. Prerequisite: SOCI 1006 and 6 credit hours of sociology at the 2nd-year level.
SOCI-3693. Discourse and Society
Discourse analysis is the study of language in use, and is thus distinguished from approaches that treat language formally and structurally, as an abstract system of signs and symbols. We examine instances of written and spoken language that occurs in a wide range of contexts, including: everyday conversations among friends, encounters between professionals and clients, the activities of creating, disseminating and consuming mass-mediated texts, and governmental and corporate settings where policies are established, monitored and changed. Combining a theoretical and practical orientation, the course draws primarily on the work of sociologists, but also includes that done by scholars in disciplines such as sociolinguistics, psychology, anthropology, semiotics and literary studies. A basic premise of the course is that in our so-called information or knowledge-based global society, a critical awareness of discursive practices is becoming a prerequisite for democratic citizenship.
SOCI-3723. Special Topics: Food Advocacy and Activism
This course will explore the contemporary move away from the centralized and monopolized industrial food system that has significantly contributed to hunger, obesity and poor health, floods and droughts, food worker conditions, animal violence, and patents on seeds. We will look to answer important questions: What is a failing food system? How are individuals and collectives fighting back? What is food justice? Who are freedom farmers? What is a seed monopoly? What does 'violence of the green revolution' mean? What is agroecology? Who is Dolores Huerta and how is she a hero to migrant workers? How can 'we' help secure an equitable fair food system? What is the local food justice network? Students will explore food action movements and participate in what is called the 'good food revolution'.
SOCI-3733. Special Topics: Sociology of Death, Dying and Memorialization
Encountering death and dying in everyday life can be very challenging. It is often difficult to know what to do or say when a loss occurs as reactions to death and dying can include a wide range of personal, cultural or political meanings that continue to shift over time. This course explores these shifts and examines the contemporary meanings of death, dying and memorialization in Canada. Students will develop theoretical tools to analyze and engage in emerging debates, such as physician-assisted suicide, the corporatization of the funeral industry, alternative burial practices or online memorialization.
SOCI-3913. Sociology of Disease
This course explores the social construction of disease in modern medicine. We will examine the process of medicalization, focusing on the classification of human experience into disease categories; medical authority to diagnose and treat disease; the ways in which disease categories validate or invalidate experiences of illness; and the effects of being labeled as diseased. These topics are explored through sociological analyses of specific diseases, including diseases that are contested and stigmatized.
SOCI-3973. Intro to Narrative
Framed around three key approaches to narrative this course will provide students with the basis on which to develop their understanding of narrative and their skills in narrative analysis. The three approaches are: the narrative study of lives; the narrative analysis of texts; and, the analysis of narrative dynamics. Through these approaches students will be introduced to the work of key narrative thinkers. The course, in content and delivery, reflects the inter-disciplinary nature of narrative
SOCI-4006. Honours Thesis
The Honours thesis is a scholarly essay or research paper on a topic chosen by the student in consultation with a faculty committee composed of a Thesis Supervisor and another advi¬sor. When completed, the thesis is read and graded by this thesis committee. To pass the thesis a minimum grade of B is required.
SOCI-4013. Senior Seminar
The senior seminar is a one-semester course, required for a Major degree in sociology, which is to be taken in the final year of study. The course is organized around substantive issues, with different sections devoted to different topics. The issues are addressed as puzzles or lines of inquiry that explore current concerns. Students are expected to bring the knowledge they have acquired of the competing traditions of sociological inquiry to bear on the theme. This course will be conducted as a seminar, with students taking responsibility for researching, presenting, and discussing material. Regular attendance and active participation will be emphasized. Enrolment limited to approximately 15 students in each section.
SOCI-4023. Honours Workshop
This is a required course for Honours students in their final year. Enrolment is restricted to Honours students. The course is organized around two sets of activities: 1) workshops oriented to the development of knowledge and skills directly applicable to the process of thesis research, covering such topics as ethical decision-making in social research, practical problems in collecting and analyzing research material, writing in social research and 2) student presentations of thesis proposals, progress reports, and final results. Entry of non-Sociology students is with permission of instructor.
SOCI-4033. Advanced Sociological Theory
A critical examination of selected orientations from contemporary sociological theory. The implications of these perspectives for both the nature of sociological inquiry and the prevailing models of society are considered. Prerequisites: SOCI 2033 and 3023.
SOCI-4043. Independent Study
A programme on independent study under the direction of a member of the faculty selected by the student. It is designed for students who wish to pursue an area of special interest through reading, research, and writing.
SOCI-4053. Independent Study
A programme on independent study under the direction of a member of the faculty selected by the student. It is designed for students who wish to pursue an area of special interest through reading, research, and writing.