Spotlighted Courses – Fall 2022

Course Highlights Fall 2022 - Offered by Urban and Community Studies

Hartford Campus


ECON 2456 - Economics of Poverty (Ross): This course analyzes poverty in the United States examining the demographic and economic trends that have contributed to the changing patterns of poverty in the U.S., on the government programs intended to alleviate poverty, and on the changes in government policy over time.

HIST/URBN 2650 - History of Urban Latin America (Salcedo Ortiz): Nowadays, Latin America is deemed the most urbanized region in the world with over 80% of the population living in cities. Cities have been both centers of cultural, political, and economic power and social struggle, as well as sites of environmental change−"human ecosystem habitats" that in the process of urbanization have increasingly transformed their biosphere, surroundings, and more distant territories. This course is an introduction to the history of urban Latin America.

During this course, we will understand cities as social and environmental formations and will analyze the processes that have shaped urban Latin America. By looking at the material, geographic and architectural histories of cities like Mexico City, Buenos Aires, Bogota, Lima, Rio de Janeiro and Brasilia, we will explore the changing ideas, discourses and practices that have sought to define what is a "good city," as well as the social struggles for the city and the everyday lives of its inhabitants.

No previous coursework or knowledge is required but if you have any interests in specific topics or cities, this class will be a platform to support your exploration.


SOCI 3201 - Methods of Social Research (Price-Glynn):  It is often said that statistics and generalizations are only as good as the studies that produce them. Just pick up a newspaper, turn on the television, or startup a computer and you’ll find overwhelming amounts of information about historical trends and the behaviors of social groups. Frequently we do not know where this information comes from or how reliable it is. How can we distinguish good information from bad? One answer is to understand how research is produced.  This course will focus on the central methods used by sociologists including surveys, interviews, observations, ethnography, content analysis, experiments, and applied research.  We will lay a common foundation by evaluating the work of others. Students will also gain practical experience designing, and in some cases implementing, their own research through a series of in-class exercises and take-home assignments.

SOCI 3601 - Sociology of Gender (Price-Glynn):  Gendered is highly consequential for our social lives, not just through our embodied experiences, but through broader historical trends. This course explores sociological approaches to the study of gender, primarily in the U.S. Given the multidimensionality of gender, we will pay special attention to the intersections of gender and other facets of social organization including race, ethnicity, sexuality and class. Students will gain an understanding of overarching discursive and structural forces — historical, economic, social, and political — as well as the micro interactions of social actors that shape institutions, performances and understandings. Throughout this course we will examine how systems of gender inequality are reproduced, challenged and transformed.

URBN 3400E - Urban Parks and Sustainability (Birge-Liberman): Urban parks are critical inputs in the creation of sustainable cities. While urban nature has always figured centrally into city development, this relationship is not static, but instead shifts with differing urban capital accumulation strategies. This course will engage in both historical and contemporary analysis to explore a variety of park issues related to the social, ecological and economic sustainability of cities, such as: the racial politics of park advocacy, the changing social practices of park use, the privatization of public space, urban resilience and green infrastructure, and the relationship between parks, gentrification and urban sustainability


Summer – URBN 1400W, Site and Sound: Understanding Cities through Popular Music (Birge-Liberman). Meets Gen. Ed. CA2 and CA4 Requirements. Students will gain new understanding of American cities by examining popular music. Songs reflect the popular culture of a particular time and place, and students will examine the interplay between music, place and difference in American cities through various genres of music.

Exploring Your Community

URBN 1300

Online - Online - Winter Session
Mary Donegan
General Education: CA 2. CA 4

This course explores various aspects of urban and community life emphasizing the interplay of social justice, diversity, individual and social well being. Explores theories, concepts, and methods in community studies. May contain a service learning component. - Winter Session


GEOG 2000

Hartford Campus | Mondays from 4pm to 6:30pm
Rowan Kane
General Education: meets CA 2. CA 4-INT
UCS: Group II, Core offering

Globalization is foundational to our modern lives. This introductory, undergraduate course will focus on how Globalization impacts our economy, culture, politics, and environment. We will focus on the positive and negative effects of Globalization and discuss how policymakers are (successfully and not-so successfully) facing these trade-offs. In addition to understanding key terminology and concepts, students will be expected to provide their own critical thinking through regular responses to assigned readings as well as essays. 

Sociology of Carework

SOCI 3995: Special Topics

Hartford Campus| M/W/F 10:10am to 11:00am
Kim Price-Glynn
UCS: Related/Elective

There has, perhaps, never been a more important time for a Sociology of Carework course. The care crisis in the United States became a catastrophe during the global pandemic of COVID-19. Though pandemic circumstances are changing, the care crisis represents a continual struggle. Care, in its many forms, is a resource we all need. Nearly everyone can provide some form of care, but not everyone does in equal measure. The social organization of care is rooted in gender, racial, economic and global inequalities.

Through this course, students will gain an understanding of the various forces that shape the social organization of care. We will survey how scholars examine carework and apply that scholarship to students’ research on a local carework organization of their choosing. We will also engage with local carework organizations through guest speakers, including a therapeutic horseback riding center founder and a domestic violence prevention program faculty member. Please join us!