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Evolving a Developmental Curriculum in Sociology: The Santa Clara Experience

Charles H. Powers
Teaching Sociology
Vol. 28, No. 1 (Jan., 2000), pp. 41-49
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1319420
Page Count: 9
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Evolving a Developmental Curriculum in Sociology: The Santa Clara Experience
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Abstract

Sociology students at Santa Clara University are expected to learn to do four things in developmental stages: recognize basic concepts to cultivate sociological perspective, apply sociological concepts, interpretive frameworks, and analytical tools to real world problems (fostering greater commitment to life-long learning about one's community and the world at large), offer explanations extending one's own thinking, sensibly gather data to test those explanations (providing the tools for a culture of inquiry and evidence), and envision how sociology can be used for organizational effectiveness and improvement of community outcomes (empowering our students for lives of constructive involvement). A variety of assessment strategies are proving vital. Broad stakeholder input was used when clarifying program objectives. Deliberations about how to change our program are being stimulated by performance problems in internships and on major papers. We have learned that developmental goals are not readily achieved without changes throughout the program's curriculum, and implementation has been incremental. Initial changes have increased the confidence of graduating seniors, and job placement has improved.

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