2017-18 Academic Catalog

Sociology

Department Head: Dr. Leslie H. Hossfeld
Graduate Coordinator
: Dr. Stacy Haynes
207 Bowen Hall
Box C
Mississippi State, MS 39762
Telephone: 662-325-2495
E-mail: sociology@soc.msstate.edu
Website: http://www.sociology.msstate.edu

This department has graduate programs leading to the Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in sociology.

Admission Criteria

To apply to either degree program, the applicant must submit the following.

  1. A completed application packet for graduate study at MSU
  2. Official transcripts from previous institutions
  3. A GPA of 3.00 on the last two years of baccalaureate work
  4. An academic writing sample in English (a sample of the student’s choice)
  5. General Graduate Records Examination (GRE) scores
  6. Three letters of recommendation (from people who know the student’s academic abilities and potential)
  7. A statement of purpose (explaining why the student wishes to study Sociology at MSU and how the program at MSU will assist the student in attaining goals).

Academic Performance

Master of Science

Continuous enrollment in the M.S. program in Sociology is dependent upon a satisfactory evaluation of academic performance and progress toward completion of the degree.  Unsatisfactory performance will result in dismissal from the program.  A student’s performance is deemed unsatisfactory if one or more of the following occurs.

  • More than two letter grades below a B in a student’s graduate coursework
  • Failure to maintain a cumulative 3.00 GPA for two consecutive semesters
  • More than one unsatisfactory U grade for thesis research
  • Two failures on the M.S. exit examination
  • Two failures on the M.S. thesis defense

Upon the completion of coursework for a student's program of study, a student must defend a thesis proposal.  Once the thesis proposal is accepted by the student's thesis committee, the student may proceed to carry out the thesis research in close consultation with his or her thesis committee.  The student must pass a public defense of the thesis.

Doctor of Philosophy

Continuous enrollment in the Ph.D. program in Sociology is dependent upon a satisfactory evaluation of academic performance and progress toward completion of the degree.  Unsatisfactory performance will result in dismissal from the program.  A student’s performance is deemed unsatisfactory if one or more of the following occurs.

  • More than two letter grades below a B in a student’s graduate coursework
  • Failure to maintain a cumulative 3.00 GPA for two consecutive semesters
  • More than one unsatisfactory U grade for dissertation research
  • Two failures on the Preliminary Examination

Upon the completion of coursework for a student's program of study, a student must defend a dissertation proposal.  Once the dissertation proposal is accepted by the student's dissertation committee, the student may proceed to carry out the dissertation research in close consultation with his or her committee.  The student must pass a public defense of the dissertation.

Master of Science in Sociology - Thesis

SO 8103Graduate Theory I3
SO 8213Research Design3
SO 8274Graduate Social Statistics I4
Additional coursework 114
SO 8000Thesis Research/ Thesis in Sociology6
Total Hours30
1

 A minimum of 12 GPA credit hours of graduate coursework must be taken at the 8000 level.

Upon the completion of coursework for a student’s program of study, a student must defend a thesis proposal.  Once the thesis proposal is accepted by the student’s thesis committee, the student may proceed to carry out the thesis research in close consultation with his or her thesis committee.  After the thesis committee unanimously agrees that the thesis is defensible the student must pass a public defense of the thesis.

NOTE:  Thesis and dissertation research are subject to review and approval by the University’s Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Master of Science in Sociology - Non-Thesis

SO 8103Graduate Theory I3
SO 8213Research Design3
SO 8274Graduate Social Statistics I4
Additional coursework 126
Total Hours36
1

 A minimum of 15 GPA credit hours of graduate coursework must be taken at the 8000 level.

A student must take an exit examination.  The exit examination may be taken during the semester that all coursework for a student’s program of study is completed or the semester immediately following completion of the coursework.  The exit examination is a five hour, in-class exam which covers social theory, social research methods and statistic, and general sociology.

Doctor of Philosophy in Sociology

Sociological Tools 123
Research Design 1
Graduate Theory I 1
Graduate Theory II 1
Advanced Quantitative Methods
Qualitative Analysis
Graduate Social Statistics I 1
Graduate Social Statistics II 1
Area of Specialization Coursework15
Electives12
SO 9000Dissertation Research /Dissertation in Sociology20
Total Hours70
1

After completing the sevencourses, a Ph.D. student is required to pass a Ph.D. qualifying examination in the areas of theory, methods, and statistics.  The student typically takes the qualifying exam during the third or fourth semester of study.

After completing all coursework, the student takes a comprehensive preliminary examination in the area of specialization.  Areas of specialization include the following.

  1. Criminology
  2. Rural Sociology
  3. Social Demography and Population Studies
  4. Social Inequality and Stratification.

After the completion of coursework for a student’s program of study, the successful completion of the Ph.D. qualifying examination, and the Ph.D. preliminary examination, a student is admitted into doctoral candidacy.  A doctoral candidate must defend a dissertation proposal.  Once the dissertation proposal is accepted by the student’s dissertation committee, the candidate may proceed to conduct dissertation research in close consultation with his or her dissertation committee.  After the dissertation committee unanimously agrees that the dissertation is defensible, the candidate must pass a public defense of the dissertation.

NOTE:  Thesis and dissertation research are subject to review and approval by the University’s Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Minor in Sociology

Graduate minors in Sociology must complete 12 hours of graduate courses in sociology and pass a written examination prepared by the minor professor.  A minor committee member must serve on the student’s graduate committee.

SO 6113 Social Organization and Change: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003 and junior standing). Three hours lecture. An intensive examination of recent research focusing on the prediction, explanation and control of social change with attention to trends in developing countries

SO 6123 Poverty Analysis: People, Organization and Programs: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003 and junior standing). Three hours lecture. Historical perspectives; problems of definition and measurement; socio-cultural situations contributing to deprivation; delineation of poverty groups; social consequences of poverty; poverty programs and organizations

SO 6173 Environment and Society: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite: AN 1103 or SO 1003 or consent of instructor). Three hours lecture. A study of the interaction between human society and the environment including the social aspects of environmental problems. (Same as AN 4173/6173)

SO 6223 Comparative Family Systems: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite: SO 1203). Three hours lecture. A systematic study of family patterns in selected cultures of the world

SO 6233 Juvenile Delinquency: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: CRM 1003 and SO 1003 or consent of instructor). Three hours lecture. Critical study of problems, causes, ways of handling; attitudes, roles and relationships of persons involved, including youthful offenders, social workers, court and law enforcement officials. (Same as CRM 4233/6233)

SO 6243 Drugs, Crime and Control: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003 and CRM 1003 or consent of instructor). Three hours lecture. Focus on the social factors which give rise to illicit drug use, patterns and trends in drug crime and strategies to control drug crime. (Same as CRM 4243/6243)

SO 6253 White Collar Crime and Elite Deviance: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003 and CRM 1003 or consent of instructor). Three hours lecture. An overview of the sociological and criminological literature in the area defined as ‘White Collar Crime’ (Same as CRM 4253/6253)

SO 6273 Sociology of Education: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003 and junior standing). Three hours lecture. A sociological analysis of education as a social institution, its role in the larger society, the organization of schooling, and the social dynamics of classrooms

SO 6303 Urban Sociology: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003 and junior standing). Three hours lecture. A sociological and ecological study of urban areas emphasizing the processes of population, environment, technology and social organization

SO 6323 Victimology: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite: CRM 1003 and SO 1003 or consent of instructor). Three hours lecture. A critical study of victims, examining theories of victimization, the social construction of victimization, the relationship between victims and offenders, and victim prevention efforts. (Same as CRM 4323/6323)

SO 6333 Sociology of Sport: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003 and junior standing). Three hours lecture. Examination of sport as a social institution in American society, its contributions to society and to participants

SO 6403 Sociology of Gender and Sexuality: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003, or approval of instructor). Three hours lecture. Changing character of gender and sexuality and significance in various social institutions. Intersection between gender, sexuality and other forms of inequality

SO 6413 Aging and Retirement in American Society: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: Nine hours of sociology or related disciplines). Three hours lecture. A study of the social and economic aspects of aging and of the social problems in American society related to the aged and retired groups

SO 6423 Health and Society: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite:3 hours in sociology). Three hours lecture. Examines health and the health care structure of the United States as it relates to our culture,norms and social institutions

SO 6433 Sociology of Death and Dying: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite:3 hours in Sociology). Three hours lecture. Examines death as a social event,the social nature of death, relationships at the end of life, and social structural impacts on death and dying

SO 6503 Gender and Work: 3 hours.

Three hours lectures. This course presents research and theories on the role of gender in shaping labor market opportunities, experiences, and rewards; remedies for enduring problems, including those applied in the United States’ workplace and abroad; and new research directions

SO 6513 Correctional Systems: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: CRM 1003 and CRM 3603 or consent of instructor). Three hours lecture. Survey of contemporary correctional systems and practices. Emphasis placed on the formal organization and functioning of penal systems (same as CRM 4513/6513)

SO 6523 Law and Society: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003 and CRM 1003 or consent of instructor). Three hours lecture. Explores the social origins of law and how law can both maintain social order and bring about social change (Same as CRM 4523/6523)

SO 6623 Language and Culture: 3 hours.

Three hours lecture. Examination of language as a part of culture, a source of knowledge about other aspects of culture, and a social behavior. (Same as AN 4623/6623 and EN 4623/6623)

SO 6633 Language and Society: 3 hours.

Three hours lecture. Examination of relationship between language and society. How language varies regionally and socially; people’s use of and attitudes toward different ways of speaking. (Same as AN 4633/6633 and EN 4633/6633)

SO 6703 Population Problems and Processes: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite: SO 1003 or consent of the instructor). Three hours lecture. World population growth and its consequences, population change and national policies, family planning, recent U.S. population trends, basic demographic measurement, the demographic report

SO 6713 Methods in Population Research: 3 hours.

Review and evaluation of censuses, vital statistics, and demographic surveys and their uses, with emphasis on measurement, methods, and analytical techniques

SO 6733 Community: Organization and Relationships: 3 hours.

(Prerequisites: SO 1003 and junior standing). Three hours lecture. Rural-urban approach to community; types of local societies and community organizations; perspectives in community study

SO 6990 Special Topics in Sociology: 1-9 hours.

Credit and title to be arranged. This course is to be used on a limited basis to offer developing subject matter areas not covered in existing courses. (Courses limited to two offerings under one title within two academic years)

SO 7000 Directed Individual Study in Sociology: 1-6 hours.

Hours and credits to be arranged

SO 8000 Thesis Research/ Thesis in Sociology: 1-13 hours.

Hours and credits to be arranged

SO 8103 Graduate Theory I: 3 hours.

Social theories and intellectual antecedents: European and American origins and development. Includes entire range of socio-cultural complex associated with 19th- and early 20th-century sociology

SO 8113 Graduate Theory II: 3 hours.

Focus on post-19th century theory and antecedents. Delineation of the basic postures in the discipline and relative relationships of these postures to theory development

SO 8213 Research Design: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite: SO 8274). Three hours lecture. Emphasis on overall design, plan, structure, and strategy. Also limitations of theory, measurement, sampling and statistical testing in research

SO 8223 Advanced Quantitative Methods: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite:SO 8213). Experimental Design, questionnaire and question construction,sampling,field procedures, advanced techniquesof analysis, presentation of statistical materials

SO 8233 Qualitative Analysis: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite: SO 8213). Three hours lecture. Qualitative approaches to understanding social behavior. Exposure to all phases of qualitative research: epistemology, design, field work, ethics, and writing research results

SO 8243 Spatial Analysis of Social Data: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite:SO 8284 or equivalent, or consent of instructor). Three hours lecture. Spatial theorires of society;relevant digital databases; procedures for visualizing data;exploratory spatial data; local and global spatial regression models

SO 8274 Graduate Social Statistics I: 4 hours.

(Prerequisite: ST 2113 or equivalent). Three hours lecture. Two hours laboratory. Probability, hypothesis testing, tests of means and proportions, contingency table analysis, analysis of variance, bivariate linear regressions correlation; data analysis and interpretation using current statistical software

SO 8284 Graduate Social Statistics II: 4 hours.

(Prerequisite: SO 8274). Three hours lecture. Two hours laboratory. Hypothesis testing, analysis of variance, multiple linear regression and correlation, causal models, exploratory factor analysis; data analysis and interpretation using current statistical software

SO 8293 Structural Equations Modeling with Latent Variables in Sociology: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite: SO 8284 or equivalent). Three hours lecture. The application of structural equation modeling techniques to sociological problems containing unobserved variables, focusing on estimation and interpretation of model parameters with errors of measurement

SO 8313 Political Sociology: 3 hours.

Three hours seminar. Study of power relations within and across societies and the relationships between social groups and politics. Special attention given to the links between stratification, power, and contentious politics

SO 8343 Complex Organizations: 3 hours.

Theory and research in organizations. Nature and types of organizations; determinants and consequences of organizational growth; organizational effectiveness; production, authority, and control systems in organizations

SO 8403 Seminar in Race Relations: 3 hours.

Three hours lecture. Contributions of anthropology, sociology and psychology to the field of race relations. Critical analysis of recent studies, current racial theories and programs

SO 8413 Seminar in Social Stratification: 3 hours.

Three hours lecture. Critical analyses of theories and research on social class and related social structures. Explores race/gender/class stratification and policies to alter income.wealth inequality

SO 8423 Seminar in Deviant Behavior: 3 hours.

Examination of relation between social conditions, social problems, deviance, and deviant careers. The organization of social control activities, and the social differentiation of deviant populations

SO 8433 Seminar in Criminology: 3 hours.

Exploration of conceptual, methodological, and substantive problems of research in the field of criminology. The classification of criminals and criminal careers receives special emphasis

SO 8503 Seminar in the Family: 3 hours.

An advanced seminar on the family institution, emphasizing theoretical and conceptual frameworks, topics of current concern to family sociology, and major literature in the area

SO 8523 Symbolic Interaction and Social Structure: 3 hours.

Review of classic and current sociological literature in symbolic interaction and development of self as process and product of social structure

SO 8703 Seminar in Population: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite: SO 4703/6703 or equivalent). Study of population dynamics; theories of optimum population; population policies and programs; zero population growth; interrelationship of population phenomena with socioeconomic developments

SO 8900 Fields of Sociology: 1-3 hours.

(Hours and credits to be arranged up to 3 hours.) A seminar in selected areas of sociological research and practice

SO 8963 Exploring Issues in Gender: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite:Graduate standing and enrollment in the Diveristy Certificate Program).Three hours lecture. An intensive introduction to theories of gender structures social, economic and cultural inequalities. Designed for online Diversity Certificate Program students. (Same as GS 8963 )

SO 8973 Gender and Work: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite: Graduate standing and enrollment in the Diversity Certificate Program).Three hours lecture. An intensive examination of how gender impacts experiences of work from the home to the corporation. Designed for online Diversity Certificate Program Students. (Same as GS 8973 )

SO 8983 Seminar in Race Relations: 3 hours.

(Prerequisite:Graduate standing and enrollment in the Diversity Certificate Program). Three hours lecture. Contributions of anthropology, scoiology , and psychology to race relations. Critical analysis of recent studies, curretn racial theories and programs. Designed for online Diversity Certificate Program students

SO 8990 Special Topics in Sociology: 1-9 hours.

Credit and title to be arranged. This course is to be used on a limited basis to offer developing subject matter areas not covered in existing courses. (Courses limited to two offerings under one title within two academic years)

SO 9000 Dissertation Research /Dissertation in Sociology: 1-13 hours.

Hours and credits to be arranged