Intro in SocSci – the outline

by Dr. Whoifof

Introduction in Social Sciences
Dr. Adela Fofiu (fofiu at fspac dot ro)
Journalism Department
College of Political, Administrative and Communication Sciences
Babes-Bolyai University

course hours 12:00-14:00
seminar hours 14:00-15:00
room III/1

office hours 11:30-13:00
room I/10

General objective

Introduction in social sciences is aimed at developing and promoting civic competence: students will develop the ability to make informed and reasoned decisions for the public good.
The course offers systematic study of disciplines such as sociology,  social psychology and anthropology. Students will better define and understand societal problems and situations, through the use of the scientific method and the concepts and theories provided.

Specific objectives

The course will:

  • Introduce fundamental concepts and theories in social sciences:  individual, group, society; culture, norms, values, institutions;  power, dominance, authority; globalization and the global village.
  • Elaborate on fundamental social issues in relation with the development of press material.
  • Cultivate critical awareness of events and phenomena in local and  trans-local contexts.

Students will be able to:

  • Explore new ideas by using the frames and vocabulary of social sciences in group and class discussions.
  • Share experiences, understanding, new ideas and special abilities within the new approaches offered by social sciences.


  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of concepts, theories, ideas in social sciences.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of current social issues with  particular reference to the Romanian context in a local and trans-local perspective.
  • Understand how society arises from the interaction of human behavior and social institutions.


  • Apply the theories and concepts of social sciences to situations and  problems in their professional life.
  • Apply the theories and concepts of social sciences in order to improve  personal self understanding.
  • Evaluate the theories and concepts of social sciences against their  experiences, values and beliefs.
  • Use logical arguments with the help of the scientific method, theories and concepts in social sciences.

Values and attitudes

  • Demonstrate awareness of social issues such as discrimination,  stereotyping, political power, multiculturalism, authority.
  • Demonstrate how diverse opinions can affect society, groups and/or  individuals.

Course outline

Part 1: Individual and society
3 March — 1. The individual as a social being. Socialization.
10 March — 2. Social groups. Development, dynamics. roles, conformity.
10 March — 3. Identity. Diversity. Difference.

Part II: Culture and society
17 March — 4. Definition and elements of culture.
24 March — 5. Social norms and values.
31 March — 6. Cultural and social change.

Part III: Power and politics
7 April — 7. Authority and dominance.
14 April — 8. Power relations.
28 April — 9. Political action.

Part IV: Globalization and the global village
5 May — 10. Local and global.
12 May — 11. Globalization. Definition. Effects.
19 May – 12. Conclusions. Social issues and journalism.

Seminar outline

1. Socialization processes.
2. Small group dynamics. Discrimination, stereotyping, prejudice.
In-class exercise. Film screening. Class discussion.
A Class Divided (1985)
3. Traditional communities. Modern societies. Intentional communities.
Group presentations:
Claude Levi Strauss – The Raw and the Cooked; Robert E. Park – the urban ecology; The Tairona people; Cloughjordan, Findhorn, Sieben Linden, Stanciova.
4. Authority, dominance, power.
Film screening. Class discussion.
The Stanford prison experiment
Group presentations:
Panopticon; Big Brother; Surveillance society.
5. Political action and social movements.
Film screening. Class discussion.
film tba
6. Globalization and culture.
Film screening. Class discussion.
Baraka (1992) / Samsara (2012)


Appadurai, Arjun, 1996, Modernity at Large. Cultural Dimensions of Globalization, University of Minnesota Press

  • Chapter 2 Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy

Back, Les, Andy Bennett, Laura Desfor Edles, Margaret Gibson, David Inglis, Ronald Jacobs and Ian Woodward, 2012, Cultural Sociology. An
Introduction, Wiley-Blackwell

  • Chapter 4 Class, Culture and Social Difference
  • Chapter 9 Globalization

Barnard, Alan and Jonathan Spencer, 2010, The Routledge Encyclopedia  of Social and Cultural Anthropology, Routledge

Delamater, John, ed., 2006, Handbook of Social Psychology, Springer

  • Chapter 9 Timothy J. Owens – Self and Identity
  • Chapter 12 Gregory R. Maio, James M. Olson, Mark M. Bernard, Michelle A. Luke – Ideologies, Values, Attitudes, and Behavior

Kendall, Diana, 2007, Sociology in Our Times. The Essentials,  Wadsworth Cengage Learning

  • Chapter 2 Culture
  • Chapter 3 Socialization
  • Chapter 16 Collective Behavior, Social Movements, and Social Change

Kornblum, William and Carolyn D. Smith, 2008, Sociology in a Changing  World, Wadsworth Cengage Learning

  • Chapter 5 Socialization
  • Chapter 6 Interaction in Groups
  • Chapter 15 The family
  • Chapter 16 Religion
  • Chapter 17 Education
  • Chapter 21 Population, Urbanization, and the Environment

Ritzer,George, 2007, The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology, Blackwell Publishing

Ritzer, George, 2012, The Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Sociology,  Wiley-Blackwell

  • Chapter 26 Kevin Fox Gotham – Urbanization
  • Chapter 28 Remy Cross and David A. Snow – Social Movements
  • Chapter 29 Paul Dean and George Ritzer – Globalization
  • Chapter 31 Meyer Kestnbaum – Organized Coercion and Political  Authority. Armed Conflict in a World of States

Tiemann, Kathleen A., Ralph B. McNeal Jr, Betsy Lucal and Morten G.  Ender, eds., 2008, The Intersections Collection: Pearson Custom Sociology, Pearson Custom Publishing

  • George Ritzer – The McDonaldization of Society
  • Kingsley Davis – Final Note on A Case of Extreme Isolation

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