Matthew Lawrence

Assistant Professor of Sociology

 
 work(802) 443-5182
 Spring Term: Mondays 3-5; Thursdays 4:30-5:30
 Munroe Hall 206

 

Courses

Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

SOAN 0212 - Family in Contemporary Society      

The Family in Contemporary Society
This course will investigate the social, economic, and political forces that have brought about changes in family life in the beginning of the 21st century. We will begin by looking at various attempts to define "the family," and we will then explore a range of topics, including the webs of family relationships (e.g., mothering, fathering, kin networks), labor and family intersections (e.g., mediating between work and family; the household division of labor), gay and lesbian family life, and domestic violence. Although the focus will be on contemporary United States, we will also examine some cross-cultural and historical material. 3 hrs. lect. (Sociology) AMR CMP NOR SOC

Spring 2017, Fall 2017

More Information »

SOAN 0240 - Inequality &American Dream      

Inequality and the American Dream
In this course we will explore sociological attempts to explain who “gets ahead” in the contemporary United States. We will discuss two distinct issues that are often conflated in public discussions: economic inequality and social mobility. We will consider the conceptual and empirical associations between these measures, how each has changed over time, how the United States compares to other countries, and how different social environments (such as colleges, neighborhoods, and families) influence life chances within and across generations. We will also examine the challenges of producing research about these topics, focusing on both theoretical and methodological issues. 3 hrs. lect./disc. AMR NOR SOC

Fall 2016, Spring 2018, Fall 2019

More Information »

SOAN 0245 - Social Life in Age of Big Data      

Social Life in an Age of Big Data
Until recently, quantitative social science relied on surveys or official statistics. Today, sociologists may link social media profiles to census records or student loan statements. In this course, we will consider some of the insights that such sources and methods of "Big Data" reveal about society. We will also critically examine the ethical dilemmas and cultural consequences of living in a world where many of our actions and interactions can be turned into data. Readings, discussions and occasional applied exercises will introduce students to core sociological topics and develop the tools to consume and engage quantitative social science research. 3 hrs. lect. DED SOC

Fall 2017, Fall 2018

More Information »

SOAN 0301 - Soc Research Methods      

The Logic of Sociological Inquiry
In this course students will be introduced to the basic tools of sociological research including problem formulation, strategies of design and data collection, and analysis and presentation of results. This class will help students formulate a research question and develop a research strategy to best explore that question. Those strategies may include interviews, structured observation, participant observation, content analysis, and surveys. This class, strongly recommended for juniors, will culminate in the submission of a senior project proposal. (SOAN 0103 or SOAN 0105) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Sociology) CW SOC

Spring 2019

More Information »

SOAN 0385 - Social Statistics      

Social Statistics
In this course we will learn the practical tools social sociologists and other scientists use to analyze data quantitatively. Topics will emphasize applications with statistical software and data from the General Social Survey and other datasets. We will explore methods to describe statistics about samples, apply the principles of probability to make predictions about populations, and estimate the significance of those predictions through inference and hypothesis testing. We will conclude with an introduction to linear regression. (Open only to majors or by Instructor Approval) 3 hrs. lect./disc. (Sociology)/ DED SOC

Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019

More Information »

SOAN 0430 - Higher Education and Society      

Higher Education and Society
Concerns about quality, value, and cost have raised doubts about whether higher education remains a pathway to opportunity. In this seminar we will consider these issues by reviewing research on the changing demographics of students, the evolving definition of “merit” in admissions, the challenges of assessing what students learn, and the relationship between student loan debt and economic inequality. We will also examine how college shapes later outcomes such as income, health, and family formation. Finally, we will discuss efforts to reform higher education and the potential for innovations like global expansion to reshape postsecondary schooling in the future. 3 hrs. sem. (Sociology)/ SOC

Fall 2016, Fall 2018

More Information »

SOAN 0500 - Advanced Individual Study      

Prior to registering for SOAN 0500, a student must enlist the support of a faculty advisor from the Department of Sociology/Anthropology. (Open to Majors only) (Approval Required) (Sociology or Anthropology)

Fall 2016, Winter 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020

More Information »

SOAN 0700 - One-Semester Senior Project      

One-Semester Senior Project
Under the guidance of a faculty member, a student will carry out an independent, one-semester research project, often based on original data. The student must also participate in a senior seminar that begins the first week of fall semester and meets as necessary during the rest of the year. The final product must be presented in a written report of 25-40 pages, due the last day of classes. (Sociology or Anthropology)

Fall 2016, Winter 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020

More Information »

SOAN 0710 - Multi-Semester Senior Project      

Multi-Semester Senior Project
Under the guidance of a faculty member, a senior will carry out an independent multi-semester research project, often based on original data. The student must also participate in a senior seminar that begins the first week of fall semester and meets as necessary during the rest of the year. The final product must be presented in a written report of 60-100 pages, due either at the end of the Winter Term or the Friday after spring break. (Sociology or Anthropology)

Fall 2016, Winter 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020

More Information »

Department of Sociology & Anthropology

Munroe Hall
427 College Street
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753