First Contact: Teaching and Learning in Introductory Sociology

Overview

The Introduction to Sociology course is usually the first contact that students have with the discipline of sociology. This course can determine whether students take other sociology courses or learn to use sociology in their lives as adults and citizens. First Contact identifies important issues facing instructors in introducing students to the sociological imagination. Drawing on the literature of teaching and learning in sociology and higher education more broadly, First Contact provides an overview of the ...

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First Contact: Teaching and Learning in Introductory Sociology

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Overview

The Introduction to Sociology course is usually the first contact that students have with the discipline of sociology. This course can determine whether students take other sociology courses or learn to use sociology in their lives as adults and citizens. First Contact identifies important issues facing instructors in introducing students to the sociological imagination. Drawing on the literature of teaching and learning in sociology and higher education more broadly, First Contact provides an overview of the scholarship of teaching and learning, best practices, and other essential information to create a successful first course in sociology. It walks the instructor through the course design process-from learning about whom your students are, determining appropriate course goals and learning objectives, and using these ideas to design, execute, and assess your course. It examines the core content of a first course. It discusses how to design a syllabus, select textbooks and readings, as well as how to design and deliver effective lectures, facilitate good discussions, and other course delivery options. An invaluable resource for anyone teaching the introductory sociology course — including grad students, new professors, and seasoned instructors who seek renewal in their approach to teaching this critical course in the sociology curriculum.

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Editorial Reviews

Diane L. Pike
First Contact has a clear focus on teaching Introductory Sociology effectively: the writing is cogent, the organization is thoughtful, and the research on teaching and learning is sound and deep. A carefully constructed primer that will be valuable in the field as a whole, this book should probably be required in every PhD granting program.
Carol A. Jenkins
Fully grounded in the sociological, pedagogical literature and SoTL, Greenwood and Howard have developed an insightful and practical resource for effectively communicating an introduction to sociology. First Contact is a welcomed and much needed resource for use in graduate level teaching pro-seminars, departmental faculty colloquiums, adjunct orientations, in-service training for dual enrollment high school teachers of sociology, and the professional development of anyone fortunate enough to teach introduction to sociology.
Caroline Hodges Persell
First Contact beautifully frames the teaching of Introductory Sociology. Nancy Greenwood and Jay Howard cover all the important issues-getting to know your students, deciding what and how to teach, how to begin, and how to assess what they've learned. They skillfully draw on their extensive knowledge of relevant research, while gracefully illustrating issues with examples from their own teaching. It is highly readable, informative, and valuable for both beginning and experienced teachers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780742528987
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 8/16/2011
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 180
  • Sales rank: 1,088,602
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Nancy A. Greenwood is associate professor of sociology and chair of the department of sociology, history, and political science at Indiana University, Kokomo.

Jay R. Howard is professor of sociology and dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Butler University. Both authors have served on the editorial board of the journal Teaching Sociology and are active members in the American Sociological Association's section on teaching and learning.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Chapter 1 Rethinking Introductory Sociology 1

Chapter 2 Discovering Your Students: What Does the Research Say?: Rationale for Finding Out About Your Students 19

Chapter 3 What Do You Want Your Students to Learn? Course Content and Objectives 35

Chapter 4 Tools of the Trade—The Textbook 55

Chapter 5 Tools of the Trade—The Syllabus 75

Chapter 6 Classroom Techniques—The Lecture 89

Chapter 7 Getting Students to Talk—Leading Better Discussions 99

Chapter 8 Making Contact the First Day and Every Day 115

Chapter 9 Faculty Development: Improving Teaching and Learning in Introductor Sociology 127

Chapter 10 The Importance of First Contact in Introductory Sociology 141

Appendix: Resources for Teaching and Learning in Introductory Sociology 145

Bibliography 149

Names Index 161

Subject Index 165

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