Crime, Justice, and Rebellion
Julie Collins-Dogrul | SOC 242 | Spring 2014
Professor Collins-Dogrul designed three interconnected digital assignments–one based on qualitative data and two on quantitative–for her sociology course SOC 242: Crime, Justice, and Rebellion. According to Collins-Dogrul:“I teach the sociological analysis of criminal behavior in relation to social structure and the criminalization process. The class situates crime, whether in the form of adult offending, delinquency, or white collar crime in relation to the family, peer groups, community, and institutional structures. Inequalities and differences along the lines of race/ethnicity, class, and gender are a major focus.”
The first assignment, “American Prison Writing” asked students to examine original non-fiction writing by incarcerated individuals gathered by the American Prison Writing Archive, and involved individual analyses, group discussion, and class presentations. Professor Collins-Dogrul states:“This digital experience was deep, disturbing, and contradictory in ways that added complexity to our understanding of crime and justice.”
The final two assignments, “Using Existing Statistics to Understand Fear of Crime and Crime Victimization” and “Using Existing Statistics to Test Social Disorganization Theory” required students to assess existing social scientific data available from the General Social Survey (GSS) and the Bureau of Justice Statistics, and then generate original quantitative analyses. These assignments proved difficult, but students reported learning many useful skills.