Social & Behavioral Sciences Courses

GIS 100

The nature and use of political power. Political analysis of social institutions and behavior and their impact upon the distribution of social values. Current political problems.

Problem Solving/Critical Thinking
SOC 100

This course provides an introduction to the basic concepts, theories, and methods in sociology. It explores the interactions between self and society by examining social structure, social consciousness, and social change. It takes the perspective that individuals both affect and are affected by values, norms, groups, and institutions.

Problem Solving/Critical Thinking
PSY 100

Introduction to psychological research methods, biological foundations, sensation and perception, states of consciousness, learning, memory, human development, personality, social behavior, psychological disorders and treatment, and applied psychology.

Problem Solving/Critical Thinking
CSJ 101

Introduction to Justice Systems and Systems of Inequality This course is an introductory overview of the justice systems and systems of inequality present in American society. The course focuses on the social systems of inequality in American society with an emphasis on: 1- race, class, and gender; 2- the distribution of wealth, opportunities and privileges within a society; and 3- connections between responses to crime, social justice systems and human rights. The course also examines the economic, social, and political consequences of rising inequality in contemporary society.

Prerequisites: General Education: Writing Course
GIS 102

International Studies is an interdisciplinary field drawing from disciplines such as anthropology, economics, geography, history, political science, and sociology. This first part of the course addresses questions regarding modernity and state sovereignty, along with the struggle of critical social theory to make sense of historical changes in the mode of capitalist societies–particularly modernization theories focus on development and its counter argument of underdevelopment. Other questions raised by critical theory concern relationships between time, space and capital/class formations and ideology, along with heightened concerns over how ideology figures in the reproductions of power relations and how science and technology contribute to emancipation or domination.

Transcultural & Global Awareness
GIS 105
Also Known As: ECN 105

(Also ECN 105) In this course we study the American political and economic systems; we explore their interdependence and investigate the nature of their integration. Since the United States Constitution is the single common unifying legal force in the American Society, we study the structure of the Constitution first. Then, we focus on the commercial and economic provisions of the Constitution. Next, we investigate the relationship between economics and politics and finally we discuss the social philosophies of the main political groups that compete for political power in America today.

Corequisites: WRT 102 Enhanced Argumentative and Analytic Writing , WRT 105 Argumentative and Analytic Writing , WRT 106 Accelerated Argumentative and Analytic Writing
GIS 200

Analysis of national government and politics. The branches of government, political parties and pressure groups, voting behavior and the distribution of power in the American political system. Particular attention to contemporary problems and issues.

Civic Engagement
PSY 201

An examination of various topics including classical conditioning, operant conditioning, memory, language, thinking, creativity and problem-solving.

Prerequisites: PSY 100 Introduction To Psychology
CSJ 201

 This course is an overview of the causes, methods, and outcomes of the wildlife trade and environmental crimes worldwide. Throughout the course students will gain an understanding of the complexities behind the trade of endangered and protected wildlife, and become familiar with timely scholarly research on the topic.

Prerequisites: General Education: Writing Course , CSJ 101 Introduction to Justice Systems and Systems of Inequality
GIS 202

The course is a continuance of the issues presented in International Studies I but can be taken without previously taking that course. In this course we contend with how critical theorists look anew at how social power reproduces itself. This course examines historically how different ideas regarding development, modernity, modernization and progress evolved in Europe and in the United States and how these ideas guided economic and social policies around the world. Additional topics covered include postmodernism, post-Fordism, post-colonialism, and post-structuralism. One of a the major theoretical shifts of this century has been the calling into question of the authoritativeness of knowledge. This course will delve into a critical analysis of such key concepts as the ‘world-system’, ‘hegemony’, and ‘empire’. The purpose of the course is gaining literacy, devising critiques and deriving inspiration in some areas of overlap among political economy, geopolitics and studies of representations of inferiorized otherness .

Transcultural & Global Awareness
PSY 203

An exploration of the applications of several theories of psychology to human interaction via the Internet, including impression formation and impression management, aggression, group dynamics, and attraction, with a focus on how the concepts and theories of psychology describe, explain and predict how people behave online. 

Prerequisites: PSY 100 Introduction To Psychology
GIS 203
Also Known As: LAC 203

(Also LAC 203) General problems of comparative analysis. Political communication, political culture, modernization and nation-building, conflict and revolution.

Transcultural & Global Awareness
GIS 204

Concepts and questions that are the basis of Western political thought. Conflicting notions of justice, the nature and role of authority, individualistic and majoritarian principles in modern political life. Emphasis on the role of these principles in resolving issues of contemporary significance.

Problem Solving/Critical Thinking
PSY 205

An introduction to the study of human development across the lifespan. The course focuses on research methodology and current literature in the areas of physical, cognitive, social, and personality changes from conception to death. Stress is placed on evaluating the relative contributions of nature and nurture to these changes.

Prerequisites: PSY 100 Introduction To Psychology , WRT 108 Enhanced Synthesis and Research Writing , WRT 109 Synthesis and Research Writing
Writing Intensive
GIS 205

Modern political thought with emphasis on political movements of this century: conservatism, liberalism, socialism, statism and radicalism. The role of political ideologies in modern political systems. The examination of competing ideologies in the light of contemporary issues.

Problem Solving/Critical Thinking
CSJ 205

This course centers on criminological theories belonging to the field of Crime Science, also known as opportunity theories, which discuss the importance of opportunity as a root cause of crime. The course also highlights the theory of Situational Crime Prevention as a tool for the prevention of crime and victimizations.

Prerequisites: General Education: Writing Course , CSJ 101 Introduction to Justice Systems and Systems of Inequality
GIS 208

This course aims to introduce you to several of the more prominent IR theories that now pervade the discipline: Realism, Liberalism, Marxism, Critical Theory, Normative Theory, Feminism, Historical Sociology, Post-Modernism, Social Constructivism, Green Political Theory, and Evolutionary Biology. In this sense, IR theory is the language that you need to learn in order to make sense of much, if not all, of the wide range of discourse and debate that transpire in IR circles. The course operates primarily in the ‘system’ level and gives special attention to political realism (Realpolitik)–the oldest and, arguably, the most popular theoretical perspective in the field–and recent ‘constructivist’ work. In the broadest terms, the course explores the place(s) of power, institutions, and values in international relations.

Transcultural & Global Awareness
PSY 209

An examination of the specialization in psychology that focuses on physical health. In particular, health psychology describes the interrelationships between behavior, psychological states, and physical health.

Prerequisites: PSY 100 Introduction To Psychology
GIS 210

This course provides a theoretical and historical introduction to human rights, on the premise that a sound understanding of contemporary practice and debates requires grounding in their historical and theoretical roots and foundations. We will focus especially on the practical and political implications of human rights in an attempt to understand how and why they matter for what actually happens in world politics as opposed to what one might wish would happen. We will ask questions such as: What obligations do states have to defend and guarantee human rights at home? How are those obligations enforced, if at all? To what degree do such obligations extend internationally? Who decides when international intervention is justified and what are the pitfalls associated with humanitarian action? Is religion compatible to secular views of universal rights? Did the industrial revolution and socialist tradition contribute to human rights? And, are there tensions between security and universal rights?.

Transcultural & Global Awareness
PSY 210
Also Known As: EDC 210

(Also EDC 210) The role of psychological concepts in educational practices, focusing on the nature and sources of intellectual development and readiness according to Piagetian, psychometric, and information process perspectives. Beyond these approaches to cognitive development, learning theory, motivation, and the role of emotion in learning will be discussed. This course will also include a section on individual differences in learning; exceptional students and social, ethnic, cultural, and gender differences. The related topics of measurement and evaluation of learning will round out the course.

Prerequisites: PSY 100 Introduction To Psychology
Problem Solving/Critical Thinking
SOC 211

This course examines the organization and function of social institutions in our society and how they relate to producing particular patterns of juvenile delinquency. Delinquency theories and analysis of the three primary components of the juvenile justice system; police, courts, and corrections, are included in the course.

Prerequisites: SOC 100 Introduction To Sociology , SOC 215 Statistics For Sociologists
With a grade of C or better.
CSJ 211

This course is an overview of juvenile delinquency, and the social systems and institutions that respond to the perceptions and realities of delinquency. The course also examines therapeutic and community-based tactics that may aid in the prevention of delinquency, and the reform of inequitable practices within juvenile justice systems.

Prerequisites: General Education: Writing Course , CSJ 101 Introduction to Justice Systems and Systems of Inequality
SOC 213
Also Known As: WMS 213

(Also WMS 213) This course examines the effects of gender, race and class on women’s employment opportunities and labor force participation rates. Topics may include: access to education and training, women in the military, professional women, women and poverty, prostitution and sex work, occupational health and safety, sexual harassment on the job, maternity leave, factory work, immigrant women, unemployment, unionization, and the changing structure of work and occupations throughout the world.

Prerequisites: SOC 100 Introduction To Sociology , SOC 215 Statistics For Sociologists
With a grade of C or better.
PSY 214

An in-depth study of a single topic in psychology. The course may be repeated for credit as topics change. 

Please contact your instructor for specific topic.

Prerequisites: PSY 100 Introduction To Psychology
GIS 215

We examine the social and political currents which first gave rise to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and how these helped it to come to power in 1949. We look at how the CCP consolidated its power and began its attempt to make China, strong, prosperous and socialist. This includes tracing the evolution of CCP ideology, the development and ultimate failure of Maoism (e.g. the Great Leap Forward and Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution). We examine how the CCP initiated a process of reform under Deng Xiaoping, a process which continues to have profound effects on the development of Chinese society and politics. Subsequent social change has created major problems for the CCP. We discuss the ability of the Party to respond to the challenges of political reform, such as whether and/or how to become more democratic, as well as the problems facing continued CCP rule.

Transcultural & Global Awareness

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