SC164-4-SP-CO:
Introduction to United States Sociology

The details
2024/25
Sociology and Criminology
Colchester Campus
Spring
Undergraduate: Level 4
Current
Monday 13 January 2025
Friday 21 March 2025
15
08 February 2024

 

Requisites for this module
(none)
(none)
(none)
(none)

 

(none)

Key module for

BA T700 American Studies (United States),
BA T702 American Studies (United States) (UK Study),
BA T708 American Studies (United States) (Including Year Abroad),
BA T710 American Studies (United States) (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA T712 American Studies (United States) (UK Study) (Including Placement Year),
BA T770 American Studies (United States) (including Placement Year),
BA T7P3 American Studies (United States) with Film,
BA T7P4 American Studies (United States) with Film (Including Placement Year),
BA T7P5 American Studies (United States) with Film (UK Study),
BA T7W6 American Studies (United States) with Film (Including Year Abroad),
BA T7W8 American Studies (United States) with Film (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA MT26 Criminology and American Studies (UK Study),
BA MT27 Criminology and American Studies (Including Year Abroad),
BA MT28 Criminology and American Studies (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA MT2R Criminology and American Studies,
BA MT3R Criminology and American Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA MT62 Criminology and American Studies (UK Study) (Including Placement Year),
BA T711 Latin American Studies (Including Year Abroad),
BA T721 Latin American Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA T731 Latin American Studies,
BA T7N3 Latin American Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BA T7N2 Latin American Studies with Business Management,
BA T7N4 Latin American studies with Business Management (Including Foundation Year),
BA T7M8 Latin American studies with Human Rights (Including Foundation Year),
BA T7M9 Latin American Studies with Human Rights,
BA L994 Global Studies with Latin American Studies,
BA L995 Global Studies with Latin American Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BA L996 Global Studies with Latin American Studies (including Placement Year),
BA L997 Global Studies with Latin American Studies (including Year Abroad),
BA L990 Global Studies and Latin American Studies,
BA L991 Global Studies and Latin American Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BA L992 Global Studies and Latin American Studies (including Placement Year),
BA L993 Global Studies and Latin American Studies (including Year Abroad)

Module description

This module, in our appreciation of American society, will attempt to understand both the 'big picture' and studies of small social worlds. The module will explore America by looking at democracy, race, crime, gender relations, cities, ecology and gangs. We will cover one key sociologist each week.

Module aims

The aims of this module are:



  • To introduce students to some important and interesting visions of American society.

  • To focus on particular writers that have located their studies in place, often by using travel as a method of discovering hidden layers of meaning in the landscape and the cities.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module, students will be expected to be able to:



  1. Have a broad appreciation of a variety of understandings of American society and the relevance of sociological thinking to them.

Module information

Spring Term



  • Week 16. American Democracy I (Alexis de Tocqueville).

  • Week 17. American Democracy II (Alexis de Tocqueville).

  • Week 18. The Great Depression: Men on the Move (Nels Anderson).

  • Week 19. Work and Bureaucracies: Office Workers (C. Wright Mills).

  • Week 20. Reading Week.

  • Week 21. Women and the Home (Betty Friedan).

  • Week 22. The Colour Line (W.E.B. Du Bois).

  • Week 23. Racial Segregation and Incarceration (Michelle Alexander).

  • Week 24. Communities at the Margins (Sudhir Venkatesh).

  • Week 25. Sacrifice Zones (Chris Edges and Joe Sacco).

Learning and teaching methods

This module will be delivered via:

  • One 1-hour lecture per week.
  • One 1-hour class per week (sometimes taught as a 2-hour seminar).

The lectures provide an overview of the substantive debates around the topic of the week, while the classes will give you the opportunity to reflect on your learning and actively engage with your peers to develop your understanding further. 

Delivery is in-person (face-to-face) and attendance is expected. Module materials are made available on Moodle.

The lectures will be captured and available via Listen Again. However, if you want to gain the most you can from these lectures it is very important that you attend and engage. Please note that the recording of classes is at the discretion of the teacher.

Bibliography*

The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course.
The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students.
Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Essay 1     50% 
Coursework   Essay 2    50% 

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%

Reassessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Carlos Gigoux Gramegna, email: cgigou@essex.ac.uk.
Dr Carlos Gigoux Gramegna
email: socugrad (Non essex users should add @essex.ac.uk to create the full email address)

 

Availability
Yes
Yes
Yes

External examiner

No external examiner information available for this module.
Resources
Available via Moodle
Of 27 hours, 27 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).

 

Further information
Sociology and Criminology

* Please note: due to differing publication schedules, items marked with an asterisk (*) base their information upon the previous academic year.

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