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Social Stratification Syllabus
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How to Cite

Newton, Daniel. 2015. “Social Stratification Syllabus”. TRAILS: Teaching Resources and Innovations Library for Sociology, April. Washington DC: American Sociological Association.


This syllabus captures the learning outcomes, resources, readings, and an outline of the assessment strategies for a service-learning oriented course. Partnering with a community organization illustrates to students the complexity and diversity of the workforce, as well as encouraging reflection and analysis of the class structure.

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Subject Area(s):
Resource Type(s):
Class Level(s):
College 400
Class Size(s):

Usage Notes

Since Seaver College/Pepperdine University is a small liberal arts college in an exclusive, wealthy community, I suggest that the course project be undertaken by any faculty member who can reasonably partner with a community organization or social service provider to engage in mutually-beneficial relationship. Our project includes a direct service...

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Learning Goals and Assessments

Learning Goal(s):

  1. Discuss, compare, and contrast theories of inequality and stratification.
  2. Explain the social forces driving dynamics in income and wealth inequality in the U.S. from 1900 to present.
  3. Create and distribute life history narratives from clients at the Malibu Labor Exchange. Apply sociological concepts and perspectives to these life history narratives.

Goal Assessment(s):

  1. Daily Papers: For each class period, you will write a one-page, single-spaced paper that succinctly summarizes the argument, including the thesis and supporting evidence, of at least one article and/or reading selection for that class day.
  2. Leading in-class discussion. Each student will be responsible for leading at least one hour of discussion. This means developing good, discussion-provoking questions about the readings of the day; monitoring classroom discussion; ensuring classroom order.
  3. Your major assessment for the term will be to interview clients of the Malibu Labor Exchange. You will apply sociological theories and concepts to the personal narratives that you and your colleagues collect.

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