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Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - SPC6213
Tracking Number - 2010

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Current Status: Approved, Permanent Archive - 2004-03-18
Submission Type:
Course Change Information (for course changes only):

Detail Information

  1. Date & Time Submitted: 2003-10-27
  2. Department: Communication
  3. College: AS
  4. Budget Account Number: 1217000
  5. Contact Person: Gil Rodman
  6. Phone: 9743025
  7. Email:
  8. Prefix: SPC
  9. Number: 6213
  10. Full Title: Social Construction of Reality
  11. Credit Hours: 3
  12. Section Type: D - Discussion (Primarily)
  13. Is the course title variable?: N
  14. Is a permit required for registration?: N
  15. Are the credit hours variable?: N
  16. Is this course repeatable?:
  17. If repeatable, how many times?: 0
  18. Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum): Social Construction of Reality
  19. Course Online?: -
  20. Percentage Online:
  21. Grading Option: R - Regular
  22. Prerequisites: Graduate Standing
  23. Corequisites:
  24. Course Description: Evolution of the concept of social construction; emphasizes the consequences of understanding lived experiences and discursive representations as social constructions. Topics include depression, child abuse, masculinity/femininity, and sexual harassment.

  25. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course: The course has been offered as a topics course on four occasions and is now part of the regular course rotation in the department.
  26. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service? The course is in demand from communication students as well as from graduate students in education, sociology, and anthropology. Enrollment has ranged between 12 and 20 students.
  27. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times? Yes. 4 times.
  28. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.) Ph.D. in Communication or closely related field.
  29. Objectives: During the course, we will examine various canonical representations (and knowledge) of such taken for granted “realities” as depression, addiction, disability, child abuse, mental illness, sexual identity, body image, pornography, and fertility. Specifically, we will focus on how these “perceived” realities (and their discursive representations as “knowledge”) may condition our moral sensibilities, our interaction with others we assign to particular social categories, our understanding of ourselves, and the grasp we have of what it means to be a human and relational being.
  30. Learning Outcomes: All students enrolled in the course are expected to participate in an original research project that emphasizes construction of social realities. The course is organized to facilitate the development, implementation, and completion of a research project grounded in a social constructionist orientation to inquiry. All of the reading for the course has been chosen to provide background and a framework for student research projects.
  31. Major Topics: What is Social Construction? How do we understand social realities? How do we create them?

    Perspectives on Social Construction.

    The Social Construction of Knowledge.

    Society As Subjective Knowledge.

    A Relational World View.

    Horizons of Inquiry.

    Social Construction: Of What?

    Cases In Point.

    Constructivist Practices.

  32. Textbooks: Robert M. Persig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Bantam, 1974.

    Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann, The Social Construction of Reality, Anchor Books, 1966.

    Mary Gergen & Kenneth J. Gergen (Eds.), Social Construction: A Reader, Sage, 1999.

    Ian Hacking, The Social Construction of What? Harvard, 1999.

  33. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases:
  34. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy:
  35. Assignments, Exams and Tests:
  36. Attendance Policy:
  37. Policy on Make-up Work:
  38. Program This Course Supports:
  39. Course Concurrence Information:

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