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Child and Family Studies

Course Descriptions

CJS 101 Intro to Criminal Justice Studies (4.00 SH). This course is designed as an introduction to the U.S. criminal justice system; including, but not limited to the history of the U.S. criminal justice system, foundational aspects of law, various components of law enforcement, the criminal court process and the practice of corrections. We will approach and discuss various issues related to crime, prosecution and corrections from a sociological perspective. The main goal of this course is to develop a general understanding of the history and current composition of the criminal justice system, as well as how it interfaces with individuals and societal intuitions.

CJS 201 Juvenile Delinquency & Justice (ST) (4.00 SH). An exploration of juvenile misconduct and its legal consequences. Theories explaining juvenile delinquency from a variety of perspectives will be examined. The emergence and present state of the juvenile justice system will be covered as well. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

CJS 202 Criminology (4.00 SH). This course covers the workings of the criminal justice system. Students will explore how we define and respond to crime, how the institutions of the criminal justice system (police forces, criminal courts and prisons) have developed and functioned, and the reasons criminal justice policies are adopted and the effects those policies have.

CJS 203 Victimology (2.00 SH). This course provides an introduction to the study of criminal victimization. We will investigate patterns of criminal victimization using empirical data, apply theoretical concepts to empirical patterns, analyze specific forms of victimization (e.g. intimate partner violence, child maltreatment, property victimization), consider the impact of crime on victims and society (e.g. fear of crime), the role of victims within the criminal justice system, specific remedies, and victim rights and services.

CJS 206 Corrections (2.00 SH). This course explores the history, development, current practices and future of correctional systems at the local, state, federal and, at times, global level. This course takes a multi-disciplinary view of selected areas and issues relevant to correctional goals (general/specific deterrence, incapacitation, rehabilitation, restitution, retribution and restorative justice) for offenders in secure confinement (jails and prisons) and community-based alternatives to jails and prisons (probation, parole, restitution, community service, intensive probation/parole, electronic monitoring, boot camps and community-corrections programs).

CJS 215 Drugs and Society (ST) (4.00 SH). In this class we examine drug-related issues in an objective manner, as informed by historical context, medical research, social scientific theory and data, policy analysis and, briefly, comparative perspectives. We pay special attention to the treatment of drug use and abuse within the criminal justice system. We consider questions that include: Do more lenient drug use laws necessarily produce greater drug use? How does the harm to society of the War on Drugs compare to that of drug use? What general costs and benefits surround drug regulation, and what unintended consequences does it produce? While both alcohol and tobacco are medically and legally considered to be drugs, given the broad scope of this topic we focus our attention on substances usually or sometimes considered to be illicit drugs.

ECE 201 Issues & Trends (3.00 SH). This course will focus on the current trends and practices of early childhood education programs which serve children from birth to age nine. Professional development, history and theories, programming, development and learning, and the special needs of young children will be addressed as they relate to early childhood education. PDE Stage 1 – Observation: 05-10 hours.

ECE 203 Family-School-Community Diversity (3.00 SH). This course will focus on understanding how families and communities are significant contexts for children’s development and school success. Based upon these insights, students will collaboratively explore ways to build bridges of understanding between diverse schools, families, and communities. Student engagement with diverse families as field experiences will allow the student to critically reflect on a family’s funds of knowledge considering different cultural ways of knowing. The students will use these discoveries to develop culturally responsive explorations for their future classrooms. PDE Stage 1 – Observation: 05-10 hours.

EDU 231C C:Educational Psychology (4.00 SH). This cluster discusses the analysis, comparison, and integration of learning theory applied to teaching and learning practices. Emphasis is placed on the diversity of human learning and includes studies of the various disabilities. Recent research on human learning fields including psychology and the neurosciences is presented. Observed performance of principles learned within the cluster is required through a practicum conducted in diverse settings and other disciplines outside of class hours. The course is required for students majoring in Early Childhood and Special Education, Child and Family Studies, Music Education and Secondary Education minors. Strategies presented can be used in other professions of society; non-majors are welcome.

EDU 450 Teaching Areas of High Need (2.00 SH). This course will address the racial, cultural, and economic needs of school districts trying to narrow the achievement gap. During the semester, students will analyze the historical, political, and socioeconomic factors that high-need school districts confront. Students will identify effective instructional and organizational practices, examine school and home connections, and discover disparities in available resources for urban and rural schools. Students will participate in an in-depth practicum in a high-need school under the mentorship of qualified educators. PDE Stage 2 – Exploration: 20-80 hours.

EDU 450S Teaching Areas of High Need (2.00 SH). This course will address the racial, cultural and economic needs of school districts trying to narrow the achievement gap. During the semester, students will analyze the historical, political, and socioeconomic factors that high-need school districts confront. Students will identify effective instructional and organizational practices, examine school and home connections, and discover disparities in available resources for urban and rural schools. Students will participate in an in-depth practicum in a high-need school under the mentorship of qualified educators.

EDU 610 Advanced Topics (4.00 SH). Advanced Topics

ELL 206 English Language Learners (3.00 SH). The exploration of language, culture, standards-based instruction, assessment, and professionalism to understand and teach linguistically diverse learners effectively. Careful attention is given to the design of learning environments and curriculum to meet the teacher competencies related to fulfilling the instructional needs of English language learners. Teacher certification students ECE PreK-4/SED PreK-8, 7-12, and PreK-12 are required to take this course. PDE Stage 1 – Observation required: 05-10 hours.

PSY 101 Introduction to Psychology (ST) (4.00 SH). Principles of human and animal behavior. The study of individual, group and institutional behavior in context. Offered every semester. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

PSY 210 Social Psychology (4.00 SH). The psychological study of human thought and behavior in social context. Core themes of this course include intergroup relations, cultural diversity, and interpersonal relationships.

PSY 212 Personality (ST) (4.00 SH). A critical survey of the major theories of personality structure, dynamics, and development. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

PSY 213 Psychology of Prejudice (ST) (4.00 SH). This class will apply social psychological theory and research to understand the psychological underpinnings of prejudice. Students will explore the impact of prejudice on members of targeted groups with a particular emphasis on understanding the experience of racism. Grounded in psychological theory and research, students will explore current social issues related to prejudice as well as specific ways to reduce stereotyping and prejudice on both a personal and societal level. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

PSY 219 Early Child Development (ST) (4.00 SH). A chronological approach to the principles and theories of child development from birth-11 years of age. This course fulfills the developmental psychology requirement for early childhood education majors.

PSY 225 Lifespan Development (4.00 SH). A chronological approach to the study of lifespan development from infancy to old age. This course meets the developmental psychology requirement for nursing majors.Offered every spring semester.

PSY 241 Organizational Psychology (4.00 SH). A study of the interaction of individual and structural characteristics which influence productivity and human dignity in all organizational settings. Primarily utilizing case-study methods.

PSY 281 Principles of Learning (4.00 SH). Analysis of the variety of mechanisms by which our behavior and our representations develop from experience. Prerequisite: PSY 101.

PSY 291 Adulthood and Aging (4.00 SH). An examination of the theories and research regarding development and change from young adulthood through old age.

PSY 431 Abnormal Child Development (4.00 SH). An overview of problems and processes that lead to abnormal development in childhood and adolescence. Included is an in-depth examination of early psychological disorders. Prerequisites: PSY 101 or 221.

SED 402 Behavior Management Spec Edu (4.00 SH). This course is designed to provide a basic understanding of the characteristics of students with learning and behavior problems with respect to factors that influence the instructional environment while providing classroom management theory and practical applications for students who have special needs. Early Childhood PreK-4/Special Education PreK-8 majors must take this course in combination with SED 462 Special Education Practicum.

SED 411 Legal Issues Assessment (2.00 SH). The focus of the course is on the analysis of legislation, litigation, and administrative rulings related to special education. The course will emphasize the development of legally sound policies and procedures to ensure an appropriate education for students with disabilities. Pre-service teacher candidates will become familiar with a variety of assessment instruments and techniques to use to effectively instruct children who have disabilities in PreK-8 settings. Early Childhood PreK-4/Special Education PreK-8 majors must take this course in combination with SED 462 Special Education Practicum.

SED 412 Assessment Methods (2.00 SH). The course will emphasize the development and implementation of assessment procedures for students who have disabilities. Pre-service teacher candidates will become familiar with a variety of assessment instruments and techniques to administer to effectively evaluate children who have disabilities in PreK-8 settings. Early Childhood PreK-4/Special Education PreK-8 majors must take this course in combination with SED 462 Special Education Practicum.

SED 413 High Incidence Strategies (2.00 SH). This course is designed to provide practical application of knowledge about learners who have high incidence disabilities, theory, best practices, regulations, and research as related to a practicum component in PreK-8 schools working with students who have special needs in a classroom setting. The goal of the courses is to assist future special educators to prepare for the unique role of a teacher in a field that is rapidly changing as a result of shifts in public school policies, school reform, questions of efficacy, limitations of resources, teacher roles and expectations, and advocacy. Early Childhood PreK-4/Special Education PreK-8 majors must take this course in combination with SED 462 Special Education Practicum.

SED 414 Low Incidence Strategies (2.00 SH). This course is designed to provide practical application of knowledge about learners who have low incidence disabilities, theory, best practices, regulations, and research as related to a practicum component in PreK-8 schools working with students who have special needs in a classroom setting. The goal of the courses is to assist future special educators to prepare for the unique role of a teacher in a field that is rapidly changing as a result of shifts in public school policies, school reform, questions of efficacy, limitations of resources, teacher roles and expectations, and advocacy. Early Childhood PreK-4/Special Education PreK-8 majors must take this course in combination with SED 462 Special Education Practicum.

SOC 101 Principles of Sociology (ST) (4.00 SH). In taking this course, students will become more aware of the effects of social forces on the individual. The course provides an introduction to the concepts and methods used in the systematic study of society. Topics include: social norms, social groups, social conflict, social inequality, social institutions, social change, and the sociological perspective. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

SOC 106 Individual & Society (ST) (4.00 SH). Analysis of the interrelationship between society, culture, and the individual with emphasis upon the emergence of self and the participation of the individual in social processes. Attention is paid to comparative theories of action and empirical studies. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

SOC 107 Sociology of Gender (ST) (4.00 SH). An examination of the social and historical influences upon behavior as it is differentiated by gender. The pattern of learning sex roles as well as the current redefinition of such roles will be discussed. Material from a variety of sources will be examined with the intent of both documenting and explaining this differentiation of roles. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

SOC 108 Social Problems/Policies (ST) (4.00 SH). An examination of societal intentions and actions for resolving issues of public concern such as poverty, unemployment, and the well-being of those who are sick, disabled, displaced, at risk, dependent or racial/ethnic minorities. Both historical and ideological factors will be explored as will be the consequences of action in terms of social programming and policies. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

SOC 200 Studies in Sociology (4.00 SH). This course will deal with specific aspects of society not included in the regular curriculum. Topics will be announced prior to registration.

SOC 204 Social Work (4.00 SH). An exploration of the knowledge base, theories, and methods that social workers use. Several of the major fields of practice are examined including family and child welfare, health care, mental health, criminal justice, and gerontology.

SOC 209 Minority/Majority Relations (ST) (4.00 SH). This course will trace the history of race as a concept, examine how racial and ethnic relations changed over time in the U.S., analyze the causes and consequences of prejudice and discrimination, and consider how majority-minority relations shape life chances for various groups in the U.S. and throughout the world. Some of the topics we cover include: ethnic identity, popular culture, segregation, immigration, racial profiling, and interracial relationships. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

SOC 210 Gerontology (HC) (4.00 SH). A study of the different social, biological, and demographic aspects of aging. Population characteristics of people over 65 as well as patterns of age-graded expectations will be examined. Special attention will be paid to the changing roles of the elderly in our society as well as attitudes toward aging. Meets Humanity and Culture Intellectual Perspective requirement (HC).

SOC 214 Social Class in America (ST) (4.00 SH). An examination of the various forms and systems of social inequality in human societies, with attention to the mechanisms that perpetuate inequalities, ideologies that legitimate them, and possibilities for social mobility. Particular focus is on the pronounced and growing income and wealth inequality in the contemporary United States and the social problems of poverty and food insecurity. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

SOC 215 Women in Cross-Cultural Persp (ST) (4.00 SH). This course examines the contemporary situations of women in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America, with particular attention to how their economic, political, family, and religious roles and dominant cultural ideologies influence their world-views, opportunities and experiences. Particular attention is paid to how women themselves construct and experience their lives in various cultural contexts. The experience of societal development within these nations, and its particular consequences for women, will be highlighted throughout. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

SOC 241 Sociol Violence NonViolence (4.00 SH). Violence, from a sociological perspective, is considered a social phenomenon that evolves in a socio-historical-political moment. This course will evaluate theory and research on violence and nonviolence from both a macro and micro sociological lens. Topics investigated will be interpersonal violence, violence against animals, hate crimes, school violence, bullying, terrorism, structural violence, and social movements that involve both violence and nonviolence. We will also investigate how race, social class, gender, sexual orientation, age, and ability shapes who is more likely to be a victim or perpetrator of violence.

SOC 260 Food, Culture and Society (ST) (4.00 SH). This course is an introduction to the emerging field of study called the Sociology of Food. We explore social, cultural and political issues, at the global, national and local levels, around the production, distribution, preparation, consumption and symbolism of food. Choices and outcomes regarding these processes reflect individual and group identities and relationships, access to resources and position in various social hierarchies. Students also are asked to reflect on the ethics of food processes and policies and their own food choices. Meets Social Thought and Tradition Intellectual Perspective requirement (ST).

SOC 306 Sociology of Family (4.00 SH). This course examines the function, structure, and variety of families. Topics include: the historical origins of contemporary American family life; patterns in family formation and dissolution, including dating, cohabitation, marriage, and divorce; sexuality and families; work-family (im)balance; and social problems, such as poverty and intimate violence. We will discuss and debate the implications of changing family life in the United States and abroad. Prerequisite: Four semester hours of sociology or criminal justice studies coursework or permission of instructor.

SOC 327 Medical Sociology (4.00 SH). A study of the social aspects of illness and wellness. Special emphasis will be placed on the roles of participants in the health care system, as well as the development of the system itself. Prerequisite: Prerequisite: Four semester hours of sociology or criminal justice studies coursework or permission of instructor.

SOC 350 Social and Criminological Theory (4.00 SH). This course provides a general introduction to the major classical and contemporary theories in sociology and criminology. We examine the major tenets and critiques of these theories while embedding them in their historical and cultural contexts. We also discuss theoretical applications in contemporary sociological and criminological research. Taken fall of the junior year. Prerequisites: Eight semester hours of sociology or criminal justice studies courses or instructor permission.

 

What can you do with a Child and Family Studies degree?

Imagine yourself a private, parochial school, or charter school teacher, a preschool teacher, a therapeutic support staff worker, a family support staff worker, a child care center teacher, an early intervention specialist, a family caseworker, or a career counselor.