Department of Sociology and Anthropology

Dr. William P. Boyer Jr., Head


Bradfield, Busching, Carter, Geier, Steele, R. Thompson, Wylie

Associate Professors

Boyer, Travers

Assistant Professors

Eck, Imani, L.A. Lewis, Pike, Plass, Spivey

Adjunct Assistant Professor

L. Lewis

Course Descriptions: Sociology and Anthropology

The Department of Sociology and Anthropology offers both the Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees with majors in sociology and anthropology. In addition, the department offers minors in sociology and anthropology, and participates in the interdisciplinary minors in human services and criminal justice.

The department offers programs for students interested in the study of society, culture, social relationships and social services. These programs offer a broad general background for careers in government, business and industry, education, and social work, and provide the basis for advanced graduate training.


Dr. Timothy J. Carter, Coordinator

The sociology program is designed for students who want to develop abilities which enable them to understand social forces which influence human conduct. Students majoring in sociology will develop the ability to challenge commonly held assumptions, formulate questions, evaluate evidence and research reasoned conclusions. In courses which provide opportunities to present their ideas through discussion and writing, students acquire skills, including developing computer applications. Students are encouraged to view sociology as something which is done (practiced, lived, experienced), a mode of analysis that is designed to inform experience. The student majoring in sociology is helped to appreciate the diversity in society and to recognize that in a rapidly changing world one must understand one's place in society as well as our nation's place in the larger global system.

The student who takes sociology must learn to read, critique and do sociological research and applied sociology. All courses introduce the student to sociological research, and students who major in sociology must complete four required courses where strong emphasis is placed upon developing and refining theoretical and methodological skills, including elementary-level statistics. The sociology field practicum or internship provides students practical experience employing sociological expertise while learning at an organization of their choosing under coordinated supervision. In the capstone course, the senior seminar, students integrate previous experience in the major by "doing sociology" in the writing and presentation of a substantial paper displaying the student's sociological skills ­ theoretical, methodological and practical.

Graduating seniors are expected to participate in assessment activities. Assessment information is used to assist faculty in modifying curricula.

Major Requirements

Students pursuing either the B.A. or B.S. degree can elect to major in sociology. Minimum requirement for the major in sociology is 36 credit hours including a core curriculum of 18 credit hours.

In addition to completing the core courses, a sociology major must complete a minimum of 18 credit hours of electives in sociology. With prior approval of the sociology adviser, some of these electives may be chosen from other disciplines.

Required Courses Hours
SOCI 101. Introductory Sociology 3
SOCI 331. Introduction to Sociological Analysis 3
SOCI 380. Critical Analysis 3
SOCI 382. Interpretive Analysis 3
SOCI 384. Naturalistic Analysis 3
SOCI 480. Senior Seminar in Sociology 3
Electives 18


A concentration consists of four courses having some commonality of focus. While concentrations are not required, a student may select one of the following or construct one in prior consultation with their adviser.

Applied Sociology

Students who select this concentration should consider courses such as:

SOCI 265. Sociology of the Community
SOCI 302. Business in American Society
SOCI 315. Technology and Society
SOCI 321. Politics in Society
SOCI 352. Introduction to Population Studies
SOCI 492. Sociology Field Practicum

Deviance and Criminology

SOCI 102. Social Problems
SOCI 214. Social Deviance
SOCI 325. Criminology
SOCI 327. Juvenile Delinquency
SOCI/SOWK 330. Corrections
SOCI 369. Law and Society

Family and Lifestyles

SOCI 276. Sociology of the Family
SOCI 280. Social Gerontology
SOCI 303. Sociology of Death and Dying
SOCI 334. Socialization and Society
SOCI 337. Male and Female Sex Roles
SOCI 377. Lifestyles

Occupations and Bureaucracy

SOCI 240. Individual in Society
SOCI 302. Business in American Society
SOCI 344. Sociology of Work and Industry
SOCI 345. Sociology of Occupations and Professions
SOCI 361. Bureaucracy and Society
SOCI 369. Law and Society
SOCI 375. Medical Sociology

Social Psychology

SOCI/ANTH 236. Race and Ethnic Relations
SOCI 240. Individual in Society
SOCI 334. Socialization and Society
SOCI 346. Leisure in Contemporary Society


For a minor in sociology, a student must complete a minimum of 18 credit hours of sociology course work including:

SOCI 101. Introductory Sociology
Choose two of the following:
SOCI 380. Critical Analysis
SOCI 382. Interpretive Analysis
SOCI 384. Naturalistic Analysis

Teaching Licensure

Sociology is a strongly recommended major for students pursuing teaching licensure in early childhood and middle school education. Students desiring secondary teacher licensure, in addition to fulfilling the requirements for a major, must complete the sequences of professional education courses listed on page 157. Students are advised to seek admission to the teacher education program before enrolling in any of the professional education courses (see pages 147-148).

Students seeking licensure are encouraged to consult regularly with an education adviser.

Minor in Human Services

The interdisciplinary minor program in human services is designed to prepare students to fulfill more effectively their responsibilities in public service settings. This program has three basic components ­ dealing effectively with persons on an individual basis, dealing with persons in a group setting, and coping with and understanding the complexities of an organization.

For more information see page 188.


Dr. Richard Thompson, Coordinator

The anthropology program provides students with a liberal arts education covering the three main divisions of anthropology: cultural, biological and archaeological. The degree program is designed for students seeking an understanding of the human condition, as this is expressed both biologically and culturally across the spectrum of human societies. Anthropology is committed to a global perspective based on an in-depth comparison of human cultures, both western and nonwestern, highly industrial and nonindustrial.

The anthropology curriculum is structured to build on the skills and perspectives fostered by the university's liberal studies program. Global awareness and an appreciation of cultural and biological diversity are crucial to the development of an anthropological perspective. Required and elective anthropology courses devoted to these areas are indicated in the description of anthropology courses listed in the catalog (GA = global awareness; CD = cultural diversity, BD = biological diversity). Students have indicated that this emphasis on global knowledge and diversity is their foremost reason for deciding to major in anthropology.

Other courses in the curriculum are designed to build upon skills deemed especially important for anthropologists. These skills are intensive writing directed at critical analyses of anthropological works, computer applications developed and used by professional anthropologists, and independent research and field experiences. Required and elective courses at the junior and senior levels require students to learn and develop one or more of these skills and are indicated in the catalog descriptions (W = intensive writing; C = computer applications; R = independent research; F = field experiences). Additionally, the required senior core consisting of ANTH 410 and either ANTH 450 or ANTH 455 is designed to integrate the theoretical and methodological basis of anthropology to prepare students for graduate study in anthropology or related areas of work or schooling that require competence in social scientific methods and theories.

Students majoring in anthropology may select either the Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree. Faculty advisers assist students in developing a program that suits their intended career plans. Individual programs can be designed to permit students to complete a major in anthropology and to prepare for advanced training for careers in business, law, medicine and other fields. Students are urged to consult their advisers early if they are interested in individually designed programs.

Graduating seniors are expected to participate in the assessment of the anthropology program as a means of assisting the faculty in designing and modifying the curriculum.

Major Requirements

To receive a B.A. or B.S. degree in anthropology, students must complete a minimum of 36 credit hours; 18 of these credit hours are from required courses; the remaining 18 hours are electives, up to six hours of which can be taken in disciplines outside of anthropology (e.g., history, sociology, economics, geology, philosophy, biology, etc.). Courses applied to the major from other disciplines should be 300- or 400-level courses and must be approved by the student's adviser.

Core Requirements Hours
ANTH 195. Cultural Anthropology 3
ANTH 196. Biological Anthropology 3
ANTH 197. Archaeology 3
ANTH 335. Ethnographic Genres 3
ANTH 410. History of Anthropological Theory 3
Choose one of the following: 3
ANTH 450. Ethnographic Methods and Analysis
ANTH 455. Archaeology: Methods of Analysis
and Interpretation
Anthropology electives 12
Approved electives (either anthropology or 6
those from other disciplines)


In choosing their anthropology electives, students are encouraged, but not required, to select areas of concentration which will fit their particular needs and interests. A concentration consists of four or more courses including both anthropology and nonanthropology, and having some commonality of focus. Students selecting concentrations must have frequent consultations with their advisers.

Cultural Anthropology

Students in this concentration are encouraged to become proficient in a foreign language and develop an area specialization (e.g., Middle East, Asia, Latin America, American studies, etc.). Courses at the 300- and 400-levels in history, political science, economics and sociology are recommended as is ENG 417, English Linguistics.


Students choosing this concentration should select anthropology electives in archaeology and courses in related disciplines such as geology, geography, history and biology.

Biological Anthropology

Students interested in biological (or physical) anthropology should select ANTH 315, Human Evolution, and related courses in biology, chemistry and geology. Especially important are BIO 230, Genetics, and courses dealing with anatomy and paleontology.

Minor in Anthropology

For a minor in anthropology, a student must complete a minimum of 18 credit hours in anthropology including ANTH 195, Cultural Anthropology; ANTH 196, Biological Anthropology; and ANTH 197, Archaeology.

Pre-M.B.A. Program

In conjunction with the College of Business, a cultural anthropology curriculum has been prepared which will permit students to attain a B.S. or B.A. degree in anthropology and, after one year of graduate study, receive the Master of Business Administration. This program is designed for students who wish to have a liberal arts education as a basis for future work in some area of business. While stressing a liberal arts base, the program incorporates courses from the College of Business which would make it possible for students to receive the M.B.A. in approximately one additional year instead of the normal two. The advantage of the program is that its completion provides students with two career options:

Successful completion of the curriculum requires students to maintain above average grades. In addition, acceptance to the business graduate school at JMU requires successful performance on the Graduate Management Admission Test.

Adviser for the program is professor Clarence Geier.

College of Arts and Letters Directory

Undergraduate Catalog Contents

1996-97 Undergraduate Catalog
Last reviewed: 30 November 1996
Information Publisher: Division of Academic Affairs
James Madison University