Practicing Sociology: Selected Fields

Practicing Sociology: Selected Fields

Practicing Sociology: Selected Fields

Practicing Sociology: Selected Fields

Synopsis

Chronicling the revitalization of the field of applied sociology, Dentler offers an interpretive history of how the field has evolved over the years, how it was transplanted from Europe into the U.S., how and why it declined during the latter years of the 20th century, and its recent rebound. Providing a conceptual and historical framework for the practice of applied sociology, this work profiles a variety of practicing sociologists and offers case studies in the fields of education, organizational development, work and labor, and program evaluation. Students, faculty, and practicing sociologists who wish to better understand the foundations and growth of applied sociology as well as the ways in which they can unify the field around the theoretical resources of symbolic interactionism and its offshoots in participation and client empowerment will find what they need in this accessible and unique text.

Excerpt

This book was written for sociologists and their students who are studying, teaching, or working in the fields of sociological practice, applied sociology, and clinical sociology. These three semantic labels float about on many college and university campuses today. Their definitions and boundaries are matters subject to debate. Any one or all three labels and areas may be subsumed within a single course or a series of courses within an academic major, or indeed an entire degree program. The labels are also tossed about and put to different uses today by government agencies, businesses, and human service agencies.

The American Sociological Association (ASA) Directory of Programs in Applied Sociology and Practice (Vaughn and Krause 1997) lists 123 sociology departments in the United States with verified undergraduate or graduate courses in applied sociology, clinical sociology, and sociological practice. Some offer just two or three courses, whereas others sponsor whole degree programs. The ASA Guide to Graduate Departments (1997) lists twenty additional sociology departments claiming special programs of study in applied sociology, evaluation research, or sociological practice. An estimated 24,000 graduate students have enrolled each school year in recent years in courses in which practice was the main feature of the agenda.

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