Department of Sociology (GRAD)
The Department of Sociology offers the master of arts and doctor of philosophy degrees in sociology. Students receive training that equips them for careers in both teaching and research. All sociology students take basic coursework in sociological theory, research methods and statistics, and substantive areas. The program emphasizes balanced training and the integration of theory, method, and substantive knowledge. Detailed information on graduate degree procedures is available online at the department's website. For further information, including information about financial aid for students, contact the graduate student services manager.
The department's main concentrations of faculty research interest and graduate training are in demography and population, stratification and social inequality, political sociology, research methods and social statistics, and labor force and complex organizations.
Graduate students making adequate progress receive financial assistance during the first five years of the program. Sources of aid include teaching assistantships, research assistantships, and nonservice fellowships.
Department faculty work closely with the Carolina Population Center, the Odum Institute for Research in Social Science, and other research centers and institutes on campus. The department also sponsors and edits Social Forces, one of the leading sociology journals in the world.
Following the faculty member's name is a section number that students should use when registering for independent studies, reading, research, and thesis and dissertation courses with that particular professor.
Howard E. Aldrich (38), Formal Organizations, Race and Ethnic Relations, Inequality, Evolutionary Theory, Social Networks
Kenneth T. Andrews (64), Social Movements, Political Sociology, Organizations, Race and Ethnic Relations, Environment
Kenneth A. Bollen (43), Comparative Political Structures, Statistics, International Development
Barbara Entwisle (46), Social Demography, Methods, Community, Environment
Elizabeth Frankenberg (65), Demography, Health, Illness, Medical Sociology
Guang Guo (48), Biosocial Interactions, Social Statistics, Demography
Karen Guzzo, Fertility, Family Demography; Measurement
Kathleen M. Harris (6), Social Demography, Family and Child Well-Being, Poverty, Public Policy
Robert Hummer (5), Demography, Population Health, Aging and the Life Course
Arne L. Kalleberg (47), Work, Organizations, Occupations, Social Stratification, Economic Sociology
Charles Kurzman (49), Political Sociology, Social Movements, International Development, Comparative and Historical, Social Theory, Islamic Studies
Ted Mouw (51), Social Stratification, Demography, Economic Sociology
Lisa D. Pearce (62), Family, Demography, Religion
Yang Yang (73), Population, Sociology of Health and Medicine, Methods and Models, Stratification
Yong Cai (72), Social Demography, Fertility, Sociology of Health, Chinese Society, Comparative Historical Sociology, Research Methodology
Neal Caren (68), Social Movements/Collective Action
Kate Weisshaar (58), Gender, Family, Inequality, Quantitative Methods
Scott Duxbury, Crime, Law and Deviance, Computational Social Science, Social Networks, Racism
Shannon Malone Gonzalez, Crime, Law and Deviance, Race and Ethnicity, Gender, Family
Taylor Hargrove, Sociology of Health, Racial/Ethnic, Gender, and Skin Tone Stratification, Aging and the Life Course
Tania Jenkins (60), Medical Sociology, Health and Illness; Work, Occupations, Labor Markets; Stratification, Gender, Ethnography
Alexandrea Ravenelle (42), Work, Organizations and Occupations, Social Stratification, Economy and Society, Qualitative Research, Entrepreneurship
Jessica Su (20), Family, Children and Youth, Fertility, Stratification, Public Policy
Kathleen Fitzgerald, Race, Gender, Sexuality, Social Movements, Food Justice, and Pedagogy
Glen H. Elder Jr., Life Course, Social Change, Family, Human Development
Joint Appointments/Adjunct Faculty
Tressie McMillan Cottom, School of Information and Library Sciences
Thurston Domina, School of Education
Carmen Gutierrez, Public Policy
Gail Henderson, Social Medicine
James H. Johnson Jr., Kenan–Flagler Business School
John D. Kasarda, Kenan–Flagler Business School
Douglas Lauen, Public Policy
John D. Stephens, Political Science
Francesca Tripodi, School of Information and Library Sciences
Zeynep Tufekci, School of Information and Library Sciences
Judith R. Blau
M. Richard Cramer
S. Philip Morgan
Anthony R. Oberschall
John Shelton Reed
Ronald R. Rindfuss
Peter R. Uhlenberg
Advanced Undergraduate and Graduate-level Courses
Varieties of organizational forms, their structures and processes; creation, persistence, transformation, and demise; role of organizations in contemporary society.
Examines the origins, dynamics, and consequences of protest and social movements including historical and contemporary movements from the United States and around the globe. Students may not receive credit for both SOCI 413 and 411.
Analysis of social structure and stratification in terms of class, status, prestige, and rank. Attention to social roles of elites, professionals, the middle class, and the working class and to comparative topics.
Examines the origins, dynamics, and consequences of protest and social movements including historical and contemporary movements from the U.S. and around the globe. Substantial field work for experiential education. Students may not receive credit for both SOCI 413 and SOCI 411.
The city as a social, spatial, and political-economic phenomenon in the modern world. Analysis of urban demographic trends, spatial characteristics and economic functions. Substantive topics include segregation, social turmoil, unemployment, fiscal problems, suburbanization, and urban public policy. Students may not receive credit for both SOCI 414 and SOCI 417.
Examination of the structure and operation of institutions where economy and society intersect and interact, such as education, industrial organizations, on-the-job training, labor markets, and professional associations. Emphasis on the contemporary United States, with selected comparisons with Western Europe and Japan.
The city as a social, spatial, and political-economic phenomenon in the modern world. Analysis of urban demographic trends, spatial characteristics, and economic functions. Substantive topics include segregation, social turmoil, unemployment, fiscal problems, suburbanization, and urban public policy. Students may not receive credit for both SOCI 414 and SOCI 417.
Designed to help students read complex pictures of contemporary China and to understand how China's rise affected people's lives, both inside and outside of China, from a sociological perspective. The course does not assume any background in Chinese studies.
Investigates issues such as tradition and social change, religious authority and contestation, and state building and opposition in Muslim societies in the Middle East and around the world.
Analysis of the reciprocal influences of state and social organizations upon each other; the social bases of political authority and stability, of revolution and counterrevolution.
This course focuses on the interaction between humans and their natural environments. Students will investigate the causes and consequences of environmental problems and their connections to dominant economic and political structures, cultural values, population dynamics, resource consumption, technologies, and systems of inequality.
Examines the uniqueness of the sociological perspective in understanding mental health and illness. Draws upon various theoretical perspectives to best understand patterns, trends, and definitions of mental health and illness in social context. Focuses on how social factors influence definitions, perceptions, patterns, and trends of mental health and illness.
An overview of theory and research on education and schooling, with an emphasis on inequalities in educational opportunities, education as a social institution, and the changing context of schools and schooling. Substantial field work for experiential education. Students may not receive credit for both SOCI 423 and SOCI 426.
A sociological analysis of comparative legal systems, the role of law in social change and in shaping social behavior. Topics may include the legal profession, property distribution, and the role of law in achieving racial and sexual justice.
An overview of theory and research on education and schooling, with an emphasis on inequalities in educational opportunities, education as a social institution, and the changing context of schools and schooling. Students may not receive credit for both SOCI 423 and SOCI 426.
Supply and characteristics of labor and of jobs, including industrial and occupation changes, education and mobility of labor, and changing demography of the workforce.
Sociological analysis of group beliefs and practices, both traditionally religious and secular, through which fundamental life experiences are given coherence and meaning. This course is a special version of SOCI 129 for juniors and seniors that explores the meanings and experiences of religion, as well as religion's role in communities, institutions, and societies through hands-on intensive research experience. Students may not receive credit for both SOCI 129 and SOCI/RELI 429.
We explore key sociological concepts through the lens of food: labor, power, social status, political economy, social inequalities, social movements, globalization, and social justice. Additionally, we examine the emergence of food related social movements, food policy, and food related social problems (famine, obesity, food deserts, food insecurity, GMOs (genetically modified organisms), CAFOs (concentrated animal feeding operations), industrial agriculture, environmental degradation, and poor health).
The process of aging from birth to death, with a concentration on the later years of life, examined from a broad perspective. Topics include individual change over the life-course, the social context of aging, and the aging of American society.
This course introduces students to reasons why people migrate, how citizens respond to that migration, how the federal government regulates migration, and how local communities manage the settlement of newcomers. By the end of the course students should have a solid understanding of major debates in the study of immigration.
Conceptualizations of gender, race, and class and how, separately and in combination, they are interpreted by the wider society. Emphasis on how black and working-class women make sense of their experiences at work and within the family.
The course examines how emotions are organized within social groupings and institutions. Differences in socialization by gender, ethnicity, social class, and age will be explored.
Theories concerning the development process (motivational vs. institutional economics vs. political and social development; similarity of sequential states and outcomes) will be related to policy problems facing the developing nations.
Analysis of current problems in general social theory; action and structure, justice and equity, social change and reproduction. Contrast and evaluation of leading approaches to solutions.
This course examines issues of poverty and social policy, single-mother families, the welfare debate, and homelessness.
The primary objective of the course is to explain how and why particular social arrangements affect the types and distribution of diseases, as well as the types of health promotion and disease prevention practices that societies promote.
This course introduces the principles of international cooperation and conflict resolution; theories of how international agreements develop or break down; and the logic of mediation, arbitration, and negotiation.
Permission of the department. SOCI 691H is required of senior honors candidates. Individual student research (under supervision of an advisor). Weekly seminar to discuss work on honors thesis, as well as special topics in sociology.
Permission of the department. Individual student research under supervision of an advisor. Weekly seminar to discuss work on honors thesis as well as special topics in sociology.
Permission of the instructor. Graduate study in sociology for undergraduate students. Undergraduate students taking a 700- or 800-level course in sociology register via this course and complete all requirements for the associated graduate course.
Graduate standing in sociology or permission of the instructor. Historic social ideas of Western culture are considered against a background of general cultural analysis in terms of systematic theory. Required of all graduate degree candidates in sociology.
Provides an introduction to measurement theory and a review of various methods of data-gathering. Gaining experience with a variety of techniques of measurement and preparing a pretested research proposal are required for all students.
Provides an introduction to probability theory, descriptive statistics, inferential statistics, and the algebra of expectations. Emphasis is on elements useful to research sociologists, including bivariate regression and correlation.
The course presents regression analysis and related techniques. The major topics are the assumptions of the regression model, dummy variables and interaction terms, outlier diagnostics, multicollinearity, specification error, heteroscedasticity and autocorrelation. The final section introduces path analysis, recursive models, and nonrecursive systems.
Permission of the instructor. Introduction to techniques and programs for analyzing categorical variables and nonlinear models. Special attention is given to decomposition of complex contingency tables, discriminant function analysis, Markov chains, and nonmetric multidimensional scaling.
Permission of the instructor. Theoretical and substantive issues in social network analysis. Focus is on models of social structure.
This course examines models sometimes referred to as LISREL models. Topics include path analysis, confirmatory factor analysis, measurement error, model identification, nonrecursive models, and multiple indicators.
This course provides an introduction to event history analysis or survival analysis, random effects and fixed effects models for longitudinal data, multilevel models for linear and discrete multilevel data, and growth curve models.
Students will learn the methods of participant observation and in-depth interviewing. Each student will collect data (provide detailed fieldnotes and transcriptions of interviews) in one group or setting for the duration of the course. Such topics as gaining access, ethics of research, and analysis of data will be covered.
Permission of the instructor. Statistical aspects of experimental designs, with emphasis on applied problems involved in executing a statistically sound design.
Permission of the instructor. The different sampling techniques are discussed. Major emphasis on planning of large-scale sample surveys rather than on statistical theory.
Reviews alternative data collection techniques used in surveys, concentrating on the impact these techniques have on the quality of survey data. Topics covered include errors associated with nonresponse, interviewing, and data processing.
Examines the stages of questionnaire design including developmental interviewing, question writing, question evaluation, pretesting, questionnaire ordering, and formatting. Reviews the literature on questionnaire construction. Provides hands-on experience in developing questionnaires.
A number of external speakers from government and industry will describe various problems they encounter in surveys. Students will be challenged to develop proposals for addressing the problems, citing the literature as appropriate.
Introduces basic statistical concepts and practices emphasizing the analysis of real data. Provides training in the use of the SAS statistical analysis system and the practical problems of stratification, clustering, and weighting in survey analysis.
An examination of selected recent work of general significance in sociology. Themes vary.
Introduction to the new evolutionary theory and associated research.
Introduction to basic theoretical approaches in social psychology, including social learning, social exchange, symbolic interaction, cognitive consistency, and affect control.
Examination of how human populations adapt to their environments. Emphasis on linkages among population, organization, environment, and technology. Research applications of this approach to urban communities and organizations.
Brief exposition and evaluation of Marx's theory of human nature, societal change and evolution, class, the state, family, and other institutions. Summary of dependency theory and critical theory.
This course in metatheory analyzes methods of theorizing. It examines the criteria for constructing and evaluating scientific theories developed by philosophers of science and applies them to social theorizing. The hypothetico-deductive model of theorizing is contrasted with other theoretical approaches.
Examination of selected writing, concepts, and issues of a major sociological theory or theoretical approach.
The objective of the course is to illustrate three aspects of macrosociological theory: 1) the conception of macrosociology, 2) the structural approach in sociology and 3) hypothetico-deductive theorizing. A hypothetico-deductive macrostructural theory developed by the instructor is analyzed, and extensive empirical tests of the theory are presented.
The structure and dynamics of social movements and their societal environment, with special reference to sociopolitical movements of minority and low status groups in industrialized and third world societies.
The relationships between social structure and political decisions. Regimes and social structure; bureaucracies, political associations, and professions; science and politics; closed and open politics; political movements and change.
Under the conditions of globalization, civil society takes on new and different meanings. Course examines what the term means and how it is applied.
This course examines the development, achievements, present crisis, and future of welfare states in advanced industrial democracies.
Exploration and use of techniques for the comparative study of social processes and historical events. Special attention is devoted to methodologies that facilitate the collection, analysis, and interpretation of historical and/or comparative phenomena.
The course covers the major traditions of democratic theory from ancient Greece to the present, ethnographies on political organization, and 19th- and 20th-century observations on democracy.
This course reviews the historical and contemporary sociological literature on race and ethnicity. Students will gain an advanced state-of-the-art understanding of how racial and ethnic groups emerge and evolve, how these constructs shape societies, how they influence intergroup relations, and their role in identity formation.
Introduces students to a wide range of studies in the sociology of family, to develop familiarity with the empirical, theoretical, and methodological foundations of family research in sociology. Examines demographic trends; marriage and family relationships; race/ethnicity; poverty and social class; work/family issues; childbearing and rearing; and mate selection.
Provides an intense introduction to the life course as a theoretical orientation and methodology (logic of inquiry).
Overview and critical assessment of sociological theory applied to aging, including explicit theories of aging. The course examines the historical development of the field and considers the nature of theory development.
Student will learn key theories and methodological approaches for how social processes, socio-spatial organization, and social inequality are associated with health patterns, changes, and disparities; theories/approaches for studying human health from a biological perspective; and strategies using integrated social and biological research perspectives and address advantages and challenges.
This seminar surveys the major theoretical paradigms, methodological tools and empirical studies of aging and cohort analysis that are of enduring importance to the understanding of social change, epidemiologic trends, and related population and life course processes and dynamics. It aims to provide a sweeping review of the theoretical models in recent life course and aging research and introduce useful guidelines on how to conduct empirical analysis.
Graduate seminar that integrates theory and research on health and developmental trajectories across the early life course using the design and data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (Add Health). Within the social and epidemiology life course frameworks, this course facilitates student research using Add Health.
A basic introduction to the discipline of demography. Materials covered include population history, data sources, mortality and fertility trends, and differentials and techniques of analysis.
A continuation of SOCI 830. Materials covered include population growth and stable population theory, migration and distribution, population policy, and population estimates and projections.
Treats migration trends, patterns, and differentials and their effects on population distribution in continental and regional areas. Attention is given to theoretical and methodological problems in the study of population movement.
Study of fertility differentials by social and economic factors, changes over time, the manner in which these factors affect fertility, and the implications thereof for fertility-control programs.
This advanced seminar covers mortality date and measurement, the inequality of death, trends in morbidity and mortality, and explanations of mortality decline. Social demographic perspectives receive primary emphasis.
Permission of the instructor. The study of the aged in our society.
Basic theories and methods in attitude research, with special attention to attitude dynamics and social relations.
The generic processes by which individuals become members of a society, with emphasis on the influence of social structure on socialization and the patterning of personality.
Permission of the instructor. Analysis of theoretical issues and empirical research relevant to socialization. Special emphasis upon group process effects on the evolution of the social self, the "fit" between personality and role, and other issues.
Permission of the instructor. The relation of social norms to conforming and deviant behavior. Types of social and personal controls. Theoretical and research problems are reviewed.
Analysis of major theories of and approaches to the study of social inequality, with attention to how the various theories and approaches are operationalized. Focus on recent research in labor markets and worldwide inequality.
Reviews theory on variation in men's and women's gender roles, with emphasis on industrialized societies and women's roles.
Emerging new theory and research paradigms in the sociology of education are reviewed. The course covers the following: racial and ethnic variation, parenting, contextual variation, peer influence, and school variation.
Requires permission of the instructor. Examination of selected issues regarding societal, economic, and political inequality and questions of justice in the United States and Western Europe.
Theory and research in the study of the location and growth of urban areas, the effect urban areas have upon behavior, and the study of social behavior in different urban subareas. Each member of the seminar completes a project interrelating theory and research.
This graduate seminar will study trends, causes, and consequences of poverty in America, covering the topics of single-mother families, child poverty, low-wage work, immigrant families, and welfare reform and social policy.
Permission of the instructor. Structural features of organizations. Behavior in organizations. Organizational career patterns. Comparative analysis of structure, behavior, and careers in different types of organizations. Interorganization and organization-environment relations.
The changing occupational system. Structural types of labor markets. Occupational organization, role sets, power relations, careers, and satisfaction in different types of labor markets and occupations.
Considers various treatment settings, socialization and job performance of health workers, patienthood, the relation between organizational structure and effectiveness, and professional self-regulation.
This seminar provides a broad introduction to the sociology of health and illness. Classic and contemporary perspectives, as well as empirical evidence, are covered. Questions such as, "how (and why) are health and illness socially constructed and socially distributed?" and "what can be done to address these phenomena?" are examined.
Focuses on substantive and theoretical issues in this field and their intellectual origins. Topics include organizations, art, religion, science, class, and politics. Quantitative and qualitative approaches are examined.
An introductory, graduate-level survey of the sociology of religion as a field of study, reviewing literature on important theoretical approaches and key problems and issues in the field.
This course examines the production of scientific knowledge. The focus is on the processes by which scientific knowledge and technological artifacts are constructed through cultural practices and the organizational of scientific work.
Permission of the instructor.
Applied workshop in sample survey design and implementation. The student works in a data collection center under the guidance of the instructor. Course focuses on real world problems in data collection and their practical, cost-effective solutions.
Permission of the instructor. The course description for a particular semester is available in the departmental office.
Continuing seminars in selected topics.
Permission of the instructor.
Library research or field research on a selected topic under guidance of the instructor.
Permission of the instructor. Special work on selected problems of research methodology.
Permission of the instructor. Special work on selected problems of research methodology.
Permission of the instructor. This seminar exposes students to a variety of issues related to journal publication in sociology, such as types of journals and collaboration, the experience of writing an article for submission to a journal, reviewing articles for journals, and responding to editorial decisions.
Doctoral candidacy in sociology or permission of the instructor. Examines the teacher's role and the teaching process, planning a course and constructing syllabi, testing for teaching or grading, evaluating teacher performance and the needs of different student populations.
Individual research in a selected field under the direction of a member of the department.
Individual research in a selected field under the direction of a member of the department.