Posts tagged Deviance

Image for Sociology of Deviant Behavior

2013-08-12 20.27.09I snapped this photo at a Duane Reade in NYC last week. I’m using it on my syllabus for Sociology of Deviant Behavior. Feel free to snag it and use it in your own class (with credit). I wonder how many people used their bare hands before DR decided to post a sign. Of course, this was at Times Square, so it’s possible there were cultural differences among tourists that influenced the sign.

Including Resume Items on a Syllabus

I am experimenting with including an entry called “Resume Items” on my syllabi this fall. I can wax poetic about what I believe college should be for, but the reality is that for most students (at least at my institution), they are after a credential to secure a job and hopefully experience some upward mobility. Combine this with the other known reality in that years later, students can’t recall what exactly they learned in a sociology course that was particularly useful or relevant to her or his life. My “Resume Items” entry hopes to correct for this to some extent.


Here is what the entry looks like for my Sociology of Deviant Behavior course (lower-level undergrad):



Upon successful completion of this course and all course requirements, you should be able to include the following items on a resume:[1]

  1. Use computer resources to develop a reference list
  2. Identify ethical issues in research
  3. Teamwork skills in diverse groups
  4. Critical thinking and analytic reasoning
  5. Written and oral communication


I suggest opening a word document with the above items noted and begin keeping a record of the ways in which you practice these skills during this course (and others). At the end of the semester, you will be the best judge as to whether you can demonstrate these skills and talk about them in a job interview. You might also specify your degree of skill: beginner, intermediate, advanced, expert, and so on.

[1] American Sociogical Association. 2009. 21st Century Careers with an Undergraduate Degree in Sociology. Washington DC.


I struggled with how many items to include. I made sure that they follow the learning outcomes for the course and the types of assignments students will actually complete. Each item comes directly from the ASA’s publication noted above.


I gave students some guidance as to what to do with this information, because I want students be clear about how they should use this information. They should not just copy and paste the items to a resume. They have to decide whether or not these are skills they can claim. 


What do you think? What would you include in your course? Do you include “Resume Items” on your syllabus?

Monographs for Deviance?

Here is the question I posed to the Teaching Sociology Google Group yesterday:


I am teaching Sociology of Deviant Behavior this fall and I am looking for suggestions for monographs. I plan to have students write book reviews, but need some ideas for books for them to review. What are books that you and your students like in deviance?


Some background: I teach at a community college. Most of the students in the course should be sophomores, but there will be a few that will be freshman. They have a range of reading levels. Many are planning to continue in criminal justice or social work, so I would like to have a few books with a criminal justice or social work bent. The class overall, is weak regarding deviance at the global level, so suggestions here would also be appreciated. We already use Adler & Adler’s Constructions of Deviance and Venkatesh’s Gang Leader for Day as our course texts.
So, tell me, what are your favorite monographs for a deviance course?