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Fundamentals: Developing Sociological Imagination Handbook 2014 – 2015 School of Social and Political Sciences

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  • Fundamentals: Developing Sociological Imagination

    Handbook 2014 – 2015

     

    School of Social and Political Sciences

     

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    University of Edinburgh School of Social and Political Science

    Fundamentals: Developing Sociological Imagination

    Page Course details, team & learning outcomes 3 Learning tasks and resources 4 Assessment 4 Course programme at a glance 5 Session 1: Introduction 6 Session 2: Effective reading and critical thinking 6 Session 3: Locating sociological sources 7 Session 4: Evaluating online sources from a sociological perspective 7 Session 5: Writing and essay planning workshop 9 Session 6: Sociology 1A peer teaching session 9 Session 7: Numerical literacy for sociologists 10 Session 8: Understanding and making the most of feedback 11 Session 9: Semester 1 review and feedback 11 Session 10: Introducing the sociological diary 12 Session 11: Sociology and the news 12 Session 12: Presenting sociological ideas + Diary review 13 Session 13: Sociology and popular culture 14 Session 14: Writing workshop: learning from example essays 15 Session 15: Sociology 1B peer teaching session + Diary review 15 Session 16: Film-screening and sociological discussion 16 Session 17: Reflecting on feedback and preparing for final assessments 17 Session 18: Final review of diaries and feedback 18 Appendix: Blogging resources 19

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    Welcome to Fundamentals: Developing Sociological Imagination  

    This course is provided exclusively for year 1 students who are taking a Sociology degree programme (single or combined honours) or a degree in Sustainable Development with Sociology as their main subject. The course has a practical purpose in that it is designed to help you develop the academic skills necessary for studying sociology at university and will also help you to acquire practice-oriented skills applicable beyond universities and potentially useful for your future careers. But, just as importantly, the course aims to encourage you to take enjoyment in sociological ideas and see their relevance to everyday life. Finally, the course will help you get to know the other year 1 Sociology students right from the beginning of your degree programme.

    Time and Place Sessions take place immediately after the Sociology 1A/1B lectures on Tuesdays at 15.10. Most sessions are timetabled to end at 16.00, but please note that some sessions will end at 17.00. These sessions are highlighted in the handbook, but please try to keep Tuesdays free from 15.10-17.00.

    All sessions will be in teaching studios M2A/M2B in Appleton Tower (Mezzanine level).

    Course team Course Organiser: Ross Bond ([email protected]; tel 0131 650 3919)

    Other Lecturers: Susie Donnelly; Kate Orton-Johnson; Angélica Thumala

    Tutors: Nikki Dunne; Leah Gilman

    Course Secretary: Karen Dargo

    Course learning outcomes The course has two broad learning outcomes. By the end of the course, students should:

    1. gain competence and confidence in the key study skills required for sociology students at the University including:

    o critical sociological thinking o writing essays and other assignments o numerical literacy for sociologists o literature searching o evaluating online sources from a sociological perspective

    2. learn how sociological ideas can be applied in a range of everyday contexts including news and media consumption and various life experiences.

    The course generally should also support your learning on Sociology 1A and 1B and some sessions are more explicitly coordinated with 1A and 1B.

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    Teaching and Learning tasks and resources Most sessions will involve talks, discussion and exercises. Some require you to do preparatory work before the session. At the end of each session, please make sure that you know what you need to do before the next session. Most sessions have a list of further useful readings and resources, which are not essential reading but will help you if you want to further develop your skills in the particular area covered by the session. All of them are available either in the library or online.

    Assessment Assessment of the course is on a simple PASS/FAIL basis. You must pass the course to progress to year 2 of your degree. If you do not pass the course then you must write a letter of appeal to the Head of Sociology. The basis for assessment is as follows:

    Semester 1: Course Blog Following each session you are required to record your reflections on the session and what you learned from it. This should be done via a facility called PebblePad, which will be explained in the first session. Your blog will be reviewed by one of the course team at the end of the semester and discussed with you in a feedback session.

    Semester 2: Sociological Diary You will be required to keep a sociological diary throughout the second semester, again using PebblePad. We will use some sessions during semester 2 to discuss your ongoing diaries and final diaries will be reviewed by one of the course team at the end of the semester and discussed with you in a feedback session. You will be given more guidance on keeping the diary in the first session of semester 2. Regular attendance is essential to the satisfactory completion of these assessment tasks. If you are unable to attend any of the sessions then please inform the course organiser ([email protected]), preferably in advance or immediately after the session, briefly stating the reasons for your absence. We will take any justified absences into account when reviewing the material you submit for assessment.  

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    Course programme at a glance  

    Session (Date) Topic

    1 (16/9/14) Course introduction

    2 (23/9/14)

    Effective reading and critical thinking

    3 (30/9/14)*

    Locating sociological sources* *[until 17.00]

    4 (7/10/14)

    Evaluating online sources from a sociological perspective

    5 (14/10/14)

    Writing and essay planning workshop

    6 (21/10/14)

    Sociology 1A peer teaching session

    28/10/14 NO SESSION (Sociology 1A essay hand-in week)

    7 (4/11/14)

    Numerical literacy for sociologists

    8 (11/11/14)

    Understanding and making the most of feedback

    9 (18/11/14)*

    Semester 1 review and feedback* *[until 17.00]

    10 (13/1/15)

    Introducing the sociological diary

    11 (20/1/15) Sociology and the news

    12 (27/1/15) Presenting sociological ideas + Diary review

    13 (3/2/15) Sociology and popular culture

    14 (10/2/15) Writing workshop: learning from example essays

    17/2/15 NO SESSION (Innovative Learning Week)

    15 (24/2/15) Sociology 1B peer teaching session + Diary review

    3/3/14 NO SESSION (Sociology 1B essay hand-in week)

    16 (10/3/15)* Film screening and sociological discussion* *[until 17.00]

    17 (17/3/15) Reflecting on feedback and preparing for final assessments

    18 (24/3/15)* Session 18: Final review of diaries and feedback* *[until 17.00]

     

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    Session 1: Course Introduction (16th September 2014)

    Ross Bond and course t eam Aim:

    • Introduction to the Fundamentals: Developing Sociological Imagination course and its assessment

    Content: • Outline of course and assessment • Explanation of how to maintain the assessed blog • Activities to introduce Sociology and help students start to get to know others on their

    degree programme

    Preparation: • No preparation is required

    Session 2: Effective Reading and Critical Thinking (23rd September 2014)

    Susie Donnel ly

    Aim: • Developing skills of effective reading and critical thinking in Sociology

    Content: • Presentation and discussion of effective reading and critical thinking in Sociology • Exercises for students on developing skills of reading and critically analysing Sociological

    material.

    Preparation: • Read the assigned short text for this Session which is available on Learn.

    Further useful readings: Cottrell, D. (2011) Critical Thinking Skills: Developing Effective Analysis and Argument. 2nd ed.

    London: Palgrave Macmillan. Chapter 9: Critical Reading and Note-Making: Critical Selection, interpretation and noting of source material. [available on Learn]

    Hart, C. (1998) Doing a Literature Review: Releasing the Social Science Research Imagination. 1st ed. London: SAGE Publications.

    Brink-Budgen, R. (2010) Advanced Critical Thinking Skills. Oxford: Faber & Faber.

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    Session 3: Locating Sociological Sources (30th September 2014) Carol ine St i r l ing [THIS IS A DOUBLE SESSION]  

    Aim: • Developing skills to locate sociological sources in the library and on the web.

    Content: • The session will be run by the Academic Support Librarian from the School of Social

    and Political Science. • Students will learn how to locate sociological sources in the library, how to access e-

    journals, and how to download e-articles. Preparation:

    • Explore the general University of Edinburgh Library website: www.ed.ac.uk/is/library • Go to the website for the Main Library and explore the related links at bottom of page,

    including the virtual tours and guides: www.ed.ac.uk/is/main-library • Look at the Subject Guide page for Sociology: www.ed.ac.uk/is/subject-guides

    Further useful resources and readings:

    Cite Them Right

    http://www.citethemrightonline.com/

    Online tutorial on evaluating internet resources - Internet Detective

    http://www.vtstutorials.ac.uk/detective

    Cottrell, D. (2011) Critical Thinking Skills: Developing Effective Analysis and Argument. 2nd ed. London: Palgrave Macmillan. Chapter 8: Where’s the proof? Finding and evaluating sources of evidence.

    Session 4: Evaluating Online Sources from a Sociological Perspective (7th October 2014)

    Susie Donnel ly Aim:

    • Developing skill of evaluating online sources and identifying the most reliable and credible ones for assignments.  

    Content: • Brief presentation on evaluating online sources. • Students will discuss and evaluate online sources that they have found. See ‘Preparation’

    for more details. • Students will be provided with a number of texts from the more reliable and unreliable

    sources on the Internet. They will be asked to discuss the texts in small groups and evaluate them on a scale from 1 to 5: 1 being most reliable and 5 being the least reliable, justifying their answers.

    Preparation:

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    • Choose one of the following sociological concepts: social norms, values, culture, gender, social order, the self, social class, community, globalisation.

    • Search for various material on the concept of your choice on the Internet. • Print out the text directly from the websites (at least from two sources). Please see below

    an example of a print-out.

    Further Useful Resources:

    Cottrell, D. (2011) Critical Thinking Skills: Developing Effective Analysis and Argument. 2nd ed. London: Palgrave Macmillan. Chapter 8: Where’s the proof? Finding and evaluating sources of evidence.

    Evaluating Internet Resources An Annotated Guide to Selected Resources , Available at http://www.loc.gov/rr/business/beonline/selectbib.html

    Evaluating Online Resources Available at http://library.iit.edu/guides/evaluate_internet_resources/EvaluatingOnlineResources.pdf

    Evaluating Online Resources Available at http://edsitement.neh.gov/reference-‐shelf/tips-‐for-‐better-‐browsing/evaluating-‐online-‐resources

    Evaluating Internet Sources, Available at http://www.library.illinois.edu/ugl/howdoi/webeval.html

    Evaluating Web Pages: Techniques to Apply & Questions to Ask, Available at http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/TeachingLib/Guides/Internet/Evaluate.html    

    Evaluating Internet Resources, http://www.library.georgetown.edu/tutorials/research-‐guides/evaluating-‐internet-‐content

    Evaluating Print vs. Internet Sources, Available at http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/553/04/  

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    Session 5: Writing and Essay-Planning Workshop (14th October 2014)

    Ross Bond

    Aim: • Offering guidance to help students plan essays effectively and improve their writing skills

    Content:

    • A talk abut essay planning and writing. • An activity to encourage students to reflect on their writing and how they might improve

    it and to learn about different writing approaches.

    Preparation: • Reflect on your approach to planning and writing essays before university. Has your

    approach been successful? Might you want to change it? What do you think are your main writing strengths and weaknesses?

    Further useful readings:

    Cottrell, D. (2011) Critical Thinking Skills: Developing Effective Analysis and Argument. 2nd ed. London: Palgrave Macmillan. Chapter 10: Critical, Analytical Writing: Critical Thinking When Writing.

    Redman, P. (2001) Good Essay Writing: A Social Sciences Guide. London: SAGE Publications. [pp. 19-26, ‘What is a Social Science Essay?’ is available on Learn]

    Friedman, S. and Steinberg, S. (1989) Writing and Thinking in the Social Sciences. Prentice Hall. Orwell, G. (1968) Essays. London: Penguin. Strunk, W. (2006) The Elements of Style. Ithaca, N.Y.: Thrift Press

    Session 6: Sociology 1A Peer teaching session (21st October 2014)

    Leah Gilman

    Aim:

    • Demonstrate how peer teaching and learning can help you learn more effectively and provide some easy and practical ideas about how you can put this into practice.

    Content:

    • Short presentation to explain what peer teaching/learning is and how you can use it to learn more effectively and efficiently. (If you take this approach, you can actually learn more and understand sociological ideas in greater depth, in less time!)

    • Group activity 1: Collaborative reading to get an overview of a text or body of literature. • Group activity 2: Shared reading and analysis to tackle a more complex or challenging text. • Advice and discussion about setting up a reading group.

    Preparation:

    Read page 53-57 the following chapter, available via e-book and directly linked from the library catalogue website.

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    Howson, Alexandra (2013) “The Body, Gender and Sex” in The Body and Society: An Introduction. Cambridge: Polity Press

    http://catalogue.lib.ed.ac.uk/vwebv/holdingsInfo?searchId=3196&recCount=10&recPointer=19&bibId=2135587

    This is a short but fairly challenging text on the topic of sex/gender. Do not worry if you do not understand everything on first reading. We will be using this text in the second activity to learn how, by working together, you can get the most out of texts like this, which you might otherwise find difficult to get to grips with. Reading it in advance will help you participate in the activity.

    NO SESSION on 28th October (Sociology 1A essay hand-in week)

    Session 7: Numerical Literacy for Sociologists (4th November 2014) Ross Bond

    Aim: • Improving numerical literacy of students by engaging them in discussions and activities

    aimed at developing their understanding of numerical information of sociological significance.  

    Content:

    • Discussion of why numerical information and statistics are important in sociology, what they can tell us about social life, and how we can understand them.

    • Students will be given samples of statistical data on different subjects to discuss and interpret in small groups.

    Preparation:

    • Watch the film ‘The Joy of Statistics’ by Hans Rosling (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CiCQepmcuj8)

    Further useful readings/resources:

    Best, J 2007, ‘Birds–Dead and Deadly: Why Numeracy Needs to Address Social Construction’, Numeracy, vol. 1, no. 1.

    Best, J 2001, Damned Lies and Statistics: Untangling Numbers from the Media, Politicians and Activists, University of California Press.

    The Guardian 'Datablog' is an excellent regular feature and resource which often examines sociologically interesting data. Available at

    http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog Kahneman, D 2012, Thinking, Fast and Slow, Penguin. Ted talks. Making sense of too much data (10 talks). Available at

    http://www.ted.com/playlists/56/making_sense_of_too_much_data.html

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    Sesson 8: Understanding and Making the Most of Feedback (11th November 2014)

    Leah Gilman

    Aim:

    • To help you get the most out of feedback you receive on your coursework and from other sources.

    Content:

    • Presentation explaining what feedback is and how it is essential to the learning process and six very practical steps you can take, in order to make the most of the feedback you receive.

    • Discussion activity to “decode” feedback terms and marking criteria • Group activity – taking action in relating to feedback. Groups will identify next steps for

    imaginary students based on the feedback they receive. • Discussion of own feedback experiences

    Preparation:

    • None, although if you have recently received feedback from any of your courses, it would be helpful for you to re-read and reflect on that feedback before the session.

    Further useful readings/resources:

    Institute for Academic Development – contains information on courses available to undergraduates aimed at developing a range of academic skills.

    http://www.ed.ac.uk/schools-departments/institute-academic-development

    Hepplestone et al. (2010) Feedback: A student guide to using feedback Sheffield: Sheffield Hallam University. A very short, very practical guide to making the most of feedback, based on research with undergraduate students at Sheffield Hallam University.

    http://evidencenet.pbworks.com/f/guide+for+students+FINAL.pdf

    Session 9*: Semester 1 review and feedback (18th November 2014) *THIS IS A DOUBLE SESSION but each student need only attend for part of the session. Appointments will be arranged in advance but please keep clear the period 15.10-17.00 until your slot is confirmed.

    Aim: • Discuss and provide feedback on the assessed semester 1 blogs reflecting on each session

    and discuss more general student feedback about the course   Content:

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    • Course staff will meet with students in small groups to discus their blogs and provide feedback. Students may also provide staff with comments and feedback about the course so far.

    Preparation: • Read and reflect on your blog. Think about any comments or suggestions you have on

    the course so far.  

    Fundamentals resumes after the winter holiday

    Session 10: Introducing the Sociological Diary (13th January 2015) Ross Bond

    Aim: • Preparing students for the semester 2 assessment (the sociological diary) by providing

    examples and encouraging them to think about and understand their everyday lives and experiences sociologically.

    Content: • Staff introduce students to the value of keeping a sociological diary and discuss some

    examples of possible and actual diary entries • Students begin using their sociological imagination to discuss how they might keep a

    diary to reflect from a sociological perspective on different aspects of their lives, experiences, observations and/or the lives of their family members and friends.

    o Preparation:

    • Read the suggested reading by Cottrell (see below) to learn how to critically reflect on your experiences.

    Further useful readings:

    Cottrell, D. (2011) Critical Thinking Skills: Developing Effective Analysis and Argument. 2nd ed. London: Palgrave Macmillan. Chapter 12: Critical Reflection. [available on Learn]

     

    Session 11: Sociology and the News (20th January 2015) Angél i ca Thumala

    Aim: • Learning how to analyse contemporary news stories using a sociological lens.

    Content: • Presentation on analysing news stories sociologically. • Each student is expected to prepare and present a brief report on a print news story, and

    bring this along with them. Please see ‘Preparation’ for more details of this activity. • Students will be provided with feedback by tutors on their analysis.

    Preparation: • Please read a news story and prepare a brief report on it to discuss in the class based on

    the following questions:

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    o What are the key points in the story? o How is it presented? o Are all the parts/people involved in the story/event presented in the same way? o Is there a particular aspect of the story/event which was not presented? If yes,

    how did it impact the presentation of the news? o What impressions did you get from the images used? Why do you think

    particular images were used? o Do you think the media outlet presenting the news made an effort to make the

    news interesting? If yes, why is the news made interesting? o How is the reader of the news attracted? How is his/her attention drawn? o Are the news readers expected to understand or interpret the news in a certain

    way?

    Further useful readings: Bignell, J. (2004) Media Semiotics Manchester University Press

    Session 12: Presenting Sociological Ideas + Diary review (27th January 2015)

    Angél i ca Thumala + Course t eam Aim:

    • Developing students’ presentation skills and briefly reviewing some early entries in their sociological diaries

    Content: • Talk on how to present effectively. Students will be provided with a range of key

    principles that they can apply for designing and delivering their presentation successfully. • Working in groups and/or in pairs, students will be asked to discuss experiences that

    they have had of a presenter successfully getting their attention, and of a presenter keeping their attention. Groups will then report back two or three key points to the larger group.

    • Brief discussion in small groups of student entries in their sociological diaries. Preparation:

    • Prepare notes to feed into a small group discussion about experiences that you have had of a presenter successfully getting your attention, and of a presenter keeping your attention.

    • Prepare notes to give a short presentation to a small group about one of the entries you have made in your sociological diary.

    Further useful readings:

    Kaul, A.(2005) The effective presentation: talk your way to success. New Delhi; Thousand Oaks, Calif.; London: Response Books.

    Mandel, S. (2000) Effective presentation skills: a practical guide for better speaking. Menlo Park Calif.: Crisp Publications.

    Mandel, S. (1993) Effective presentation skills. Menlo Park, Calif.: Crisp Publications. McCarthy, P. and Hatcher, C. (2002) Presentation skills: the essential guide for students. London:

    Sage. Chapter 1. [available on Learn] O’Shea, J. and Lamm, N. (2001) Effective presentations: student manual. Boston, MA: Thomson

    Course Technology.

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    Theobald, T.(2013) Develop your presentation skills. E-book: Kogan Page. Access URL: http://books.cyberlibris.com/book/?docID=88810843

    Vam Emden, J. and Becker, L. (2010) Presentation skills for students. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

    Session 13: Sociology and Popular Culture (3rd February 2015) Kate Orton-Johnson Aim:

    • Encouraging students to analyse popular culture sociologically.

    Content: • Presentation by staff member on the ways in which we can analyse popular culture

    sociologically and on why it is important and valuable for sociology to study and understand popular culture.

    • Students will report on and discuss their TV viewing and observation. See ‘Preparation’ for more details.

    Preparation:

    • Please observe 2 genres of TV programme during the week before the session. The first genre should be reality TV (this could be “scripted” reality TV, social experiment reality TV, celebrity reality TV etc.). The second genre should be a fictional programme (this could be a soap, a drama etc). You can watch any show that fit these categories but not sporting events or news.

    o Take notes about the characters for two hours. How are they dressed? What are their bodies like? Their faces? What do they do for a living? Are they rich, poor, or middle class? What race or ethnicity are they? How do they refer to themselves? What is their age? Etc.

    o For both genres – think about what type of “reality” and “fiction” is being represented in the show you chose.

    o What are your views on the way TV shows affect audiences? o Come prepared to the class to discuss your observations.

    General Textbook type overviews of the field:

    Hodkinson, P (2010) Media, Culture and Society. An Introdution. London Sage Storey, J (2012) Cultural Theory and Popular Culture: An Introduction. London Routledge Strinati, D. (2004) An Introduction to Theories of Popular Culture London Routledge

    Further useful readings: Brown, J.F. (2011) 'Hulk Smashed! The Rhetoric of Alcoholism in Television’s Incredible

    Hulk', Journal of Popular Culture, 44: 1171–1190. Donnelly, A. (2012) 'The New American Hero: Dexter, Serial Killer for the Masses', The

    Journal of Popular Culture: 45: 15–26. Edgerton, G. (ed) (2010) Mad Men: Dream Come True TV. London: Tauris & Co. Foster, K. (2011) 'Snobs, Yobs, and Italian Jobs: European Union, British Identity, and the

    Crime Film', Journal of Popular Culture, 44: 1010–1026. Gayles, J. (2012) 'Black Macho and the Myth of the Superwoman Redux: Masculinity

    and Misogyny in Blade', Journal of Popular Culture, 45: 284–300. Johnson, M. (ed.) (2007) Third Wave Feminism and Television: Jane Puts It in a Box.

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    London: Tauris & Co. Penfold-Mounce, R. et al (2011) 'The Wire as Social science-fiction?', Sociology, 45: 152-167. Phalen, P., Kim, J. and Osellame, J. (2012) 'Imagined Presidencies: The Representation of

    Political Power in Television Fiction', Journal of Popular Culture, 45: 532–550.  

    Session 14: Writing Workshop: learning from example essays (10th February 2015)

    Ross Bond  

    Aim: • Encouraging students to reflect further on their writing by reviewing and discussing

    examples of work by other students Content:

    • Students will assess and discuss sample essays in small groups. • Group discussion with a tutor will focus on such questions as what strengths and

    weaknesses sample essays had and whether they succeeded in developing and presenting arguments based on the relevant academic literature and met marking criteria.

    Preparation:

    • Read the sample essays available on Learn and give them a mark and feedback using an SPSS essay feedback form available on Learn.

    Further useful readings:

    Cottrell, D. (2011) Critical Thinking Skills: Developing Effective Analysis and Argument. 2nd ed. London: Palgrave Macmillan. Chapter 10: Critical, Analytical Writing: Critical Thinking When Writing.

    Redman, P. (2001) Good Essay Writing: A Social Sciences Guide. London: SAGE Publications. [pp. 19-26, ‘What is a Social Science Essay?’ is available on Learn]

    Friedman, S. and Steinberg, S. (1989) Writing and Thinking in the Social Sciences. Prentice Hall. Orwell, G. (1968) Essays. London: Penguin. Strunk, W. (2006) The Elements of Style. Ithaca, N.Y.: Thrift Press

    NO SESSION on 17th February (Innovative Learning Week) Although there is no formal session this week, students are encouraged to take part in at least one of the ILW activities organised by Sociology.

    Session 15: Sociology 1B peer teaching session & diary review (24th February 2015)

    Nikki Dunne + Course t eam Aim:

    • Following on from the previous peer teaching session, this session further focuses on how peer teaching and learning can help you learn more effectively and provide some easy and practical ideas about how you can put this into practice.

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    Content: • Short presentation recapping on what peer teaching/learning is and how you can use it

    to learn more effectively and efficiently. • Group activity 1: Group analysis exercise to help tackle a complex or challenging text. • Group activity 2: ‘To teach is to learn twice’. Peer teaching – moving out of your groups,

    take turns being the tutors and the tutees, and share knowledge on a topic in Sociology 1B.

    • Brief discussion in small groups of student entries in their sociological diaries. Preparation:

    • You will be divided into groups in the previous week’s session and asked to prepare to teach your peers on one of the units in Sociology 1B; the body, religion, and the media. You are free to choose which aspect you would like to focus on for teaching, and will be given guidelines in advance about peer tutoring.

    • Prepare notes to give a short presentation to a small group about one of the entries you have made in your sociological diary.

    NO SESSION on 3rd March (Sociology 1B essay hand-in week)

    Session 16*: Film screening and Sociological discussion (10th March 2015)

    Ross Bond

    *THIS IS A DOUBLE SESSION. Please keep clear the period 15.10-17.00.

    Aim: • To encourage students to develop further and use their sociological imaginations when

    viewing media such as feature films or documentaries Content:

    • We will view a short feature (or part thereof) or documentary that raises issues that could be understood from a sociological perspective

    • The film will be followed by a class and/or group discussion about the issues raised and how these might be understood sociologically

    Preparation: • No preparation necessary

    Further useful readings and resources:

    • See the readings for Session 13 on Popular culture

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    Session 17: Reflecting on feedback & preparing for final assessments (17th March 2015)

    Nikki Dunne Aim:

    • To help you get the most out of feedback you receive on your coursework and from other sources, and to help you prepare for a take-home exam.

    Content:

    • Discussion activity on how you have used your feedback over the past year • Presentation suggesting how you can work with feedback and how you might go about

    interpreting it. The presentation will also suggests steps for working through some common feedback comments.

    • Group activity – making the best use of comments. Students will discuss their own feedback, and will suggest advice for each other based on the comments shared with the group.

    • Short presentation on how to prepare for a take-home exam. Preparation:

    • By this stage, you will have received feedback in multiple forms from courses over the year. Feedback is private and does not have to be shared, but it can be helpful to have others help you in interpreting and ‘decoding’ your feedback. If comfortable, write down some of the feedback comments that you have received so far, and bring to the session for sharing in a small group. If you are not comfortable in sharing your feedback with a small group, re-read and reflect on the feedback you have received before the session, and come prepared to talk more generally about your feedback.

    Further useful readings/resources Institute for Academic Development – contains information on courses available to undergraduates aimed at developing a range of academic skills. http://www.ed.ac.uk/schools-departments/institute-academic-development Hepplestone et al. (2010) Feedback: A student guide to using feedback Sheffield: Sheffield Hallam University. A very short, very practical guide to making the most of feedback, based on research with undergraduate students at Sheffield Hallam University. http://evidencenet.pbworks.com/f/guide+for+students+FINAL.pdf

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    Session 18*: Final review of diaries and feedback

    Course t eam

    *THIS IS A DOUBLE SESSION but each student need only attend for part of the session. Appointments will be arranged in advance but please keep clear the period 15.10-17.00 until your slot is confirmed.

    Aim: • Discuss and provide feedback on the semester 2 assessed sociological diaries and discuss

    more general student feedback about the course   Content:

    • Course staff will meet with students in small groups to discuss their diaries and provide feedback. Students may also provide staff with comments and feedback about the course so far.

    Preparation: • Read and reflect on your diary. Think about any comments or suggestions you have on

    the course so far.  

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    Appendix:  Blogging  Resources  

    Resources on how-to-blog:

    This is a comprehensive guide to all things blog-related: http://blogging2learn.wordpress.com/

    Dos and Don’ts: http://www.writersdigest.com/online-editor/the-12-dos-and-donts-of-writing-a-blog  

    Examples of sociology blogs:

    All that is Solid: http://averypublicsociologist.blogspot.co.uk/

    Culture Digitally: http://culturedigitally.org/

    Cyborgology: http://thesocietypages.org/cyborgology/

    Digital Sociology: http://digitalsociology.org.uk/

    Everyday Sociology Blog: http://www.everydaysociologyblog.com/

    Montclair SocioBlog: http://montclairsoci.blogspot.com.au/

    Sociological Images: http://thesocietypages.org/socimages/blog/

    Sociology in Focus: http://www.sociologyinfocus.com/

    The Grumpy Sociologist: http://thegrumpysociologist.blogspot.co.uk/

    The Sociological Imagination: http://sociologicalimagination.org/

     

    Further reading:

    Fevre, R. and Bancroft, A. (2010) Dead White Men and Other Important People: Sociology’s big ideas. Houndsmills: Palgrave Macmillan.

    Why don’t more sociologists blog? http://thesocietypages.org/contech/2008/08/23/why-dont-more-sociologists-blog/