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ERIC Number: ED135717
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1976-Sep-1
Pages: 9
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Teaching Social Problems: A Review and Discussion of Possible Approaches.
Scherer, Jacqueline
The author discusses findings of a content analysis of readers and texts on social problems and identifies questions raised by the task force which performed the analysis. The purpose of the study was to ascertain the nature of social problems courses and to determine if such courses are appropriate as undergraduate "first courses" instead of traditional introductory sociology courses. Four social problems most frequently cited in texts are poverty, social stratification, crime, and violence. Twenty-three fairly common additional topics are identified. Most texts represent social problems current to the time of publication. An examination of texts in terms of client-centeredness, scope, and specialization reveals that they are strongest in the area of client-centeredness, meaning they prepare students for post-college employment, develop skilled human resources, and stress action orientation toward solving theoretical problems. Social problems course outlines are found to reflect the same learning outcomes as traditional introductory courses. One problem is that students with high school sociology backgrounds usually have been taught social problems with an action orientation, and introductory college courses have difficulty teaching them the methodology of scientific investigation. The author sees a need to develop students' skills of analysis, interpretation, and systemic investigation. Mere presentation of social problems is not an adequate teaching strategy. (Author/AV)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (New York, New York, August 30-September 3, 1976)