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Graduate Degree Programs

These course descriptions are not being updated as of August 1, 2016. Current course descriptions are maintained in LionPATH.

Sociology (SOC)

SOC 003 (GS) Introductory Social Psychology (3) The impact of the social environment on perception, attitudes, and behavior.

SOC 003 Introductory Social Psychology (3)
(GS)

(BA) This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements.

Social psychology is a discipline that bridges sociology and psychology. Sociology focuses on large-scale social trends while psychology emphasizes the individual organism and it's functioning. Social psychologists borrow perspectives and methods from both sociology and psychology. The major thrust, however, is on the influence of the social group areas such as socialization, social influence, conformity, group decision-making, interpersonal relationships, and social power. This course provides an overview of the major ideas and research streams that characterize modern social psychology.

Eight major goals guide the form and content of this course: (1) Survey existing theory and research in contemporary social psychology, (2) Enhance students' understanding of how social scientists conduct research, (3) Provide insight into the influence of social settings on human behavior, (4) Relate social psychology to other areas of social and behavioral science, (5) Help students to understand the interface between theory and research in social psychology, (6) Demonstrate the nature and outcomes of different cultural and sub-cultural processes, (7) Relate course material to contemporary personal and social problems, and (8) Provide opportunities for students to sharpen their critical thinking about human behavior. In general, this course is designed to enhance students' understanding of themselves, other individuals, and the world in which they live. For example, after taking the course, students will have a better understanding of why people sometimes help others in trouble and sometimes ignore them, what kinds of situations promote conformity to authority, what factors result in anger and violence, why intergroup conflict is so pervasive, and how attitudes are acquired.

Assessment is based on a combination of objective tests, a written group research project, individual papers, or a series of short research projects, depending on the instructor. All courses have at least one graded writing assignment. Group projects involve research on social influence. For example, students may use the Internet to study how political or religious groups attract supporters. Individual papers sometimes involve a critical book review. Alternatively, individual papers may be based on short research activities, such as examining the roles of women and men in rock videos or television commercials. Discussion and questions are encouraged in all sessions.

Sociology 003 meets a general education requirement in the social and behavioral sciences. This course also provides a useful foundation for advanced social science courses in economics, marketing, political science, counseling, child development, and law enforcement. It is a prerequisite for Sociology 403: Advanced Social Psychology.


General Education: GS
Diversity: None
Bachelor of Arts: Social and Behavioral Science
Effective: Spring 2003

Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.

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