Thiel College

Course Offerings


CJS 101: Introduction to Criminal Justice
3 CH   /  Offered Every Fall

This course serves as an introduction to the criminal justice system and its relationship to crime in American society. Topics such as social control, law enforcement and the public's perception of crime, punishment, rehabilitation, criminal courts, law and political power in decision-making will be examined.

CJS 221: Corrections in America
3 CH   /  Offered Every Spring

Corrections in America will provide the student with both the rudimentary understanding of the history of corrections and more importantly the evolution of punishment in America. Along with these two underlying goals, the student will also be offered numerous topics regarding various correctional issues and how they directly affect the larger social fabric of society.

CJS 230: Law Enforcement in America
3 CH

This course deals with the history and social issues surrounding law enforcement in American society. Some topics to be examined are the role and function of police, the nature of police organizations and police work, the stress that police officers may experience, and the patterns of police-community relations. Offered spring of even-numbered years.

CJS 301: Juvenile Justice Studies
3 CH   /  WIC

The social causes, control, punishment and rehabilitation of juvenile offenders in American society will be examined in this course. Theories of delinquency will be discussed and there will be an analysis of the criminal justice system in its handling of juvenile offenders. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor) Offered fall of even-numbered years.

CJS 303: Family Justice Issues
3 CH   /  WIC

This course will provide students with an in-depth study of the problems of violence in families including spouse abuse, child abuse, elder abuse and the dynamics and dangers of violent relationships. It will examine the root causes of family violence and the multigenerational effects of violence on its victims and society. Students will study current societal responses to family violence including protection services, treatment programs, legal defense strategies and current legislation. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper level SOC or CJS course - SOC 261 or higher - or permission from instructor) Offered fall of odd-numbered years.

CJS 371: Professional Seminar
1 CH   /  Offered Every Fall

This seminar is required of all sociology majors with junior standing. Students will learn academic and non-academic skills needed to succeed in their profession. Ethical issues of the profession will be stressed. (P: Junior or senior sociology or CJS majors or permission of instructor.)

CJS 431: Selected Studies
3 CH   /  WIC

Intensive study of a current sociological or anthropological topic. Topics offered vary. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121,141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

CJS 438: Criminal Due Process Rights
3 CH

This class provides an examination of the procedures utilized in the criminal justice system as they relate to criminal law and the administration of justice. Specifically, this course will examine how the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Eighth and 14th Amendments to the Constitution impact individual rights and the police powers of the State. (P: POSC 116 of CJS 101 or permission of the instructor.) Offered spring of odd-numbered years.

CJS 439: Criminal Law
3 CH

This course will explore traditional legal issues in substantive criminal law. It will examine the nature of criminal law and general principles of criminal responsibility, various defenses to criminal responsibility, including duress, necessity and insanity, and analyze specific crimes in detail, including inchoate crimes, crimes against persons and property.

CJS 451: Sociology Internship
1-6 CH

An in-service training course to enable the student to practically apply specialized knowledge in a public service agency. Students work approximately 20 hours per week in a local or state agency. A log book and a research project in which the student correlates academic knowledge with practical experience will be required. The student will meet regularly with the sponsoring faculty member. (P: Sociology or criminal justice studies majors only, juniors or seniors with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in sociology, with permission of the sponsoring faculty member)

CJS 455: Cooperative Education
1-12 CH

These credits do not count toward major requirements.

CJS 481: Special Projects
1-6 CH

An opportunity to do individualized academic work in a selected field of sociology. This project may not duplicate any other departmental offerings. Department approval is required. (P: Sociology or criminal justice studies majors, juniors or seniors and permission of the instructor)

CJS 491: Independent Study
1-6 CH

Individual study in an area of special interest to the student under the direction of a member of the Department of Sociology. This course is limited to junior and senior sociology or criminal justice studies majors who have completed at least three upper level courses in sociology and whose GPA in all sociology courses is at least 3.25. *Students planning to enroll in SOC/CJS 451, SOC/CJS 481 or SOC/CJS 491 must declare their intention during the first week of the preceding semester. Qualified students will be limited to one experience in each of these courses.

CJS 496: Thiel College's Semester in Washington
8 CH

An internship and seminar program in Washington, D.C., for juniors and seniors. Thiel's Semester in Washington, conducted through the Lutheran College Washington Consortium is designed to accommodate the interests of students with a wide variety of interests and goals. These include not only politics, policy and law, but also religion, social work, international affairs, theater, museum administration and business. (P: Junior or senior standing, 3.0 GPA and recommendation by sponsoring faculty.)

CJS 497: Seminar I
4 CH

Two four-credit seminars are required of all students participating in the Thiel College semester in Washington. Specific arrangements are made according to each student's major interests, subject to approval by supervising professors at Thiel College and supervisors at the Washington, D.C., site.

CJS 498: Seminar II
4 CH

Two four-credit seminars are required of all students participating in the Thiel College semester in Washington. Specific arrangements are made according to each student's major interests, subject to approval by supervising professors at Thiel College and supervisors at the Washington, D.C., site.

POSC/CJS 439: Criminal Law
3 CH

This course will explore traditional legal issues in substantive criminal law. It will examine the nature of criminal law and general principles of criminal responsibility, various defenses to criminal responsibility, including duress, necessity and insanity, and analyze specific crimes in detail, including inchoate crimes, crimes against persons and property.

SOC 121: Microsociology
3 CH   /  Offered Every Fall

An introduction to the field with a focus on the individual in society, this course analyzes the forms and processes of social interaction in everyday life. Topics include culture and socialization in the family, the peer group and the school; the dynamics of small groups and large organizations; deviance and social control; inequalities of race, ethnicity, age and gender; and an introduction to the methods of social research.

SOC 141: Macrosociology
3 CH   /  Offered Every Spring

An introduction to the field with a focus on human societies, this course presents an overview of societal development from the hunting-gathering period to the post-industrial era. The course focuses upon institutions and the processes of urbanization, stratification, demographic growth, and social change.

SOC 191: Social Problems
3 CH   /  Offered Every Fall

A course designed for majors and non-majors providing an overview of contemporary social problems which involve individual problems, problems of inequality and global concerns. Each problem presented and discussed will be viewed from several theoretical perspectives. Sample topics: crime, delinquency, discrimination, poverty, aging.

SOC 211: Anthropology
3 CH   /  Offered Every Spring

An overview of human physical and cultural evolution through the evidence of archeological and ethnological research. The course examines the variety of ways humans have adapted, and adapt to, physical and social environments in prehistoric and contemporary settings.

SOC 251: Minorities
3 CH   /  Offered Every Spring   /  WIC

Considers the nature, origins, and consequences of minority status in the United States and other selected societies. Topics include prejudice and discrimination; patterns of minority/majority relations; ideologies used to justify social inequality, institutional racism, sexism and ageism; comparisons of the relative positions of various racial, ethnic, religious and other minorities in society; and sources of change in minority/majority relationships. (P: SOC 121 and 141 or permission of instructor)

SOC 261/INDS 261: American Women's Experience: A Multicultural Perspective
3 CH   /  WIC

This course invites students at Thiel to consider themselves in relationship to American women's experience in contemporary culture. The course provides windows into the life experiences of women in the dominant culture and women whose lives are shaped by Hispanic, Native American, African American and Asian communities. The contributions of these women in the arts, humanities, natural sciences, social sciences and business will be considered as well as factors that inhibit women's full participation as bearers and shapers of culture. (P: SOC 121 or 141 or permission of instructor)

SOC 321: Deviance
3 CH   /  WIC

Sociological analysis of behaviors, attitudes and physical attributes that are viewed as unacceptable by some group, organization, community or society. Representative examples would include mental illness, physical disability, unconventional lifestyles, suicide and criminal behavior. Special attention is given to a delineation of social structures that encourage or inhibit the incidence of deviance, the societal reactions to deviance and the consequences of the labeling of deviants. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 331: Criminology
3 CH   /  WIC

An introduction to the sociological study of crime and criminality emphasizing societal reactions to violations of law and the organization of the criminal justice system. Topics include the major theoretical and methodological approaches in the study of crime, typologies of criminal behaviors, dilemmas of corrections and public policy options. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 341: Social Research Methods
3 CH   /  Offered Every Fall

This course is designed to be the first formal introduction to the theory and practice of social research. Small projects utilizing some of the various methods will be incorporated. While not required, it is recommended that students have a basic understanding of elementary statistics. The course includes an exposure to the ethics of research and the basic methodology used in the social sciences, which includes sampling, analysis and report writing. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 342: Sociological Theory
3 CH   /  Offered Every Fall   /  WIC

An historical overview of the sociologists and their precursors ranging from the "founding fathers" to contemporary schools. A paradigmatic approach is taken in order to expose the students to the assumption of each paradigm. The course is designed to provide a comprehensive base for an understanding of contemporary theory, offering an opportunity to all students to select a narrow sociological perspective or become eclectic in utilizing several theories to explain social phenomena. (P: SOC 121 and 141 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 351: Social Stratification
3 CH   /  WIC

Historical and cross-cultural analysis of the causes, structure and consequences of affluence and poverty in societies. Special emphasis is given to Marxist and functionalist theories of stratification, the institutional structure of caste- and class-based societies, and social mobility. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 361: Sociology of Religion
3 CH   /  WIC

Historical and cross-cultural analysis of religion as a social institution. Topics include the role of religion in society, analysis of religious groups and organizations, emergence of religious movements and social change. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 381: Medical Sociology
3 CH   /  WIC

Considers the social dimensions of health and illness. Some topics considered are social factors and health, the sick role, utilization of health services, the variety of health care practitioners, cross-cultural comparisons of health care delivery systems, economics of health care and ethical issues in health care. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 391: Sociology of Aging
3 CH   /  WIC

A sociological perspective on human aging. The course will focus on the implications and consequences of aging for individuals in their role relationships, social groups and society. Students will be exposed to relevant theoretical orientations and research methods. It will include a cross-cultural comparison of societal attitudes and responses toward older persons. (P: SOC 121 and 141 or permission of the instructor)

SOC 401: Sociology of the Family
3 CH   /  WIC

Examines the family as a social institution. The focus is mainly on the United States but includes some cross-cultural comparisons. Some topics included are family organization, various family life-styles, dating and mate selection, sexual relationships, parenting, domestic violence, divorce and remarriage, family in the later years and changes over the family life cycle. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 411: Organizations
3 CH   /  WIC

This course focuses upon the theory and design of formal organizations. Structure and the dynamics of behavior within the structure are analyzed to ascertain whether or not the purpose of the organization is being fulfilled or how the organization's effectiveness and/or efficiency can be improved. The course seeks to expose students to case studies (drawn from businesses) that reflect open systems, rational and social systems, and manifest the techniques of control. The course involves lectures, discussions and case presentations and analyses by students. (P: Two of the following courses: SOC 121, 141, CJS 101 and one upper-level SOC or CJS course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 421: Gender and Society
3 CH   /  WIC

Examines the origins, nature and consequences of gender role definitions and stereotypes upon the lives of men, women and society. Historical and cross-cultural comparisons are made of the relative positions of women and men. It includes an examination of sexism in social institutions, controversial issues and relevant social movements.

SOC 425: Urban Sociology
3 CH   /  WIC

Traces the development of urbanism from the pre-industrial city to the present post-industrial age. The course focuses upon urban growth and changes of demographic patterning, life styles, and economics. Theoretical models of urbanism will be discussed. Offered fall of even-numbered years.

SOC 431: Selected Studies
3 CH   /  WIC

Intensive study of current sociological or anthropological topic. Topics vary, but are offered on a regular rotation. (P: SOC 121, 141, and one upper-level sociology course numbered 261 or higher or permission of the instructor)

SOC 435: Popular Culture
3 CH   /  WIC

The objective of this course is to explore the effects of popular culture upon our perceptions and definitions of ourselves and our socio-political reality. Examinations of the products of the entertainment industry and mass media will serve to provide myriad examples for analysis. Offered fall of odd-numbered years.

SOC 451: Sociology Internship
1-6 CH

An in-service training course to enable the student to practically apply specialized knowledge in a public service agency. Students work approximately 20 hours per week in a local or state agency. A log book and a research project in which the student correlates academic knowledge with practical experience will be required. The student will meet regularly with the sponsoring faculty member. (P: Sociology or criminal justice studies majors only, juniors or seniors with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in sociology, with permission of the sponsoring faculty member)

SOC 455: Cooperative Education
1-12 CH

These credits do not count toward major requirements.

SOC 481: Special Projects
1-6 CH

An opportunity to do individualized academic work in a selected field of sociology. This project may not duplicate any other departmental offerings. Department approval is required. (P: Sociology or criminal justice studies majors, juniors or seniors, and permission of the instructor)

SOC 491: Independent Study
1-6 CH

Individual study in an area of special interest to the student under the direction of a member of the Department of Sociology. This course is limited to junior and senior sociology or criminal justice studies majors who have completed at least three upper-level courses in sociology and whose GPA in all sociology courses is at least 3.25. *Students planning to enroll in SOC /CJS 451, SOC /CJS 481 or SOC /CJS 491 must declare their intention during the first week of the preceding semester. Qualified students will be limited to one experience in each of these courses.

SOC 496: Thiel College's Semester in Washington
8 CH

An internship and seminar program in Washington, D.C. for juniors and seniors. Thiel's Semester in Washington, conducted through the Lutheran College Washington Consortium, and is designed to accommodate the interests of students with a wide variety of interests and goals. These include not only politics, policy and law, but also religion, social work, international affairs, theater, museum administration and business. (P: Junior or senior standing, 3.0 GPA and recommendation by sponsoring faculty.)

SOC 497: Seminar I
4 CH

Two four-credit seminars are required of all students participating in the Thiel College semester in Washington. Specific arrangements are made according to each student's major interests, subject to approval by supervising professors at Thiel College and supervisors at the Washington, D.C. site.

SOC 498: Seminar II
4 CH

Two four-credit seminars are required of all students participating in the Thiel College semester in Washington. Specific arrangements are made according to each student's major interests, subject to approval by supervising professors at Thiel College and supervisors at the Washington, D.C. site.

SOC/CJS 371: Professional Seminar
1 CH   /  Offered Every Fall

This seminar is required of all sociology majors with junior standing. Students will learn academic and non-academic skills needed to succeed in their profession. Ethical issues of the profession will be stressed. (P: Junior or senior sociology or criminal justice studies majors or permission of instructor.)