Social Sciences

Department Chair: Nancy Turner
Office: 152 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1789
E-mail: turnern@uwplatt.edu
Academic Department Associate:
Mary Kurth

Majors

Minors

About the Department and Majors

The UW-Platteville Department of Social Sciences, a combined program in the liberal arts, offers courses of study which challenge students to develop an understanding of the dynamics of individual and social behavior from a number of perspectives. The department offers programs in economics, environmental earth science, geography, geology, history, international studies, political science, social sciences comprehensive and sociology. Descriptions of these programs and courses are found below.

While the study of social sciences may also include criminal justice and psychology, these programs are listed under their own department headings.

Economics

Economics website

Contact: Brian Peckham
Office: 250 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1752
E-mail: peckham@uwplatt.edu
Professors:
John Ifediora
Terrence L. Liska
Abdollah S. Soofi
Associate Professors:
Brian W. Peckham

About the Economics Program and Major

The economics program at UW-Platteville is designed to bridge the gap between liberal and vocational education. In fulfilling requirements for the social sciences comprehensive major, the student will master the analytical core of economics as well as functional areas of business and behavioral sciences and the analytical approach to problem solving.

Economics is the social science of production, distribution and consumption of goods and services. The study of economics, in part, concentrates on the study of factors of production (i.e., natural resources, capital, labor and entrepreneurship). Economic ideas confront us every day, whether we are exchanging our labor for money or our money for goods and services, borrowing or saving or electing officials to represent us. We face many complex problems directly related to the economy, including inflation, unemployment, pollution, energy shortages and government deficits. The study of economics helps us to understand the nature and causes of such problems and enables us to develop policies, programs and strategies for dealing with them. A background in economics has cultural, ethical and political value and enables an individual to be a more effective decision maker as a producer, consumer and citizen.

Geography

Geography website

Department Chair: J. Elmo Rawling III
Office: 256 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1680
E-mail: rawlingj@uwplatt.edu
Professor:
Richard A. Waugh
Associate Professors:
H. Todd Stradford
Mari A. Vice
J. Elmo Rawling III
Assistant Professors:
Evan Larson
Rex J. (RJ) Rowley
Lecturers:
Alissa Hass
Christopher Underwood
Jackson Zimmerman

About the Geography Program and Major

Geography is the study of the Earth: its physical processes, peoples, societies and cultures. Geography is a "big picture" discipline that serves as an important connection among the social, physical and mathematical sciences as well as humanities. It incorporates aspects of many other fields such as geology, history, biology and anthropology. Given this, geographers are ideally suited to address some of the world's most pressing problems such as addressing global climate change, assessing the impacts of social policies, mediating debates over land use and sustainable development and assessing the interactions between nature and society.

The Geography and Geology programs at UW-Platteville are housed within the Social Sciences Department. We offer a major and minor in Geography as well as a minor in Geology. Geography students explore the human and natural world through classroom, laboratory and field experiences, as well as through individual research, internship and attendance at professional meetings. They learn to use modern computer equipment, the latest software and databases. The geography student is creative, enjoys challenges, can learn through observation and research and enjoys the satisfaction of improving global conditions.

A major in geography offers broad training in physical and human environments, on the major world regions, nature and society interactions, and geographic techniques. Upon graduation, geographers have diverse knowledge applicable to a wide range of careers. The largest employers of geographers with bachelor's degrees are federal, state and local governmental agencies as well as educational systems. Geography offers important skills for careers in planning, market analysis, economic development, travel-tourism, teaching, criminal justice, agriculture, environmental studies, natural resource management, international affairs, spatial data analysis, cartography and geographic information systems.

Mission Statement

The goal of this major is to train students to analyze global issues like a geographer, that is, to take the physical processes and/or human interactions of the Earth and integrate them over space and time. Geography will prepare students to use knowledge about global physical and human patterns and process them to critically analyze and solve current geographical issues, including global warming, conservation, globalization, terrorism and technology advances. This program fosters scientific, cultural and technological literacy's that will prepare geography students to think and act with professional, personal, civic and social responsibility in the 21st century.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates will:

  1. Recognize the unique subject and methods of geography, and be able to use geographical concepts contributing to the solution of societal and environmental problems.
  2. Understand the processes and patterns of the physical world and how human actions impact and interact with natural systems.
  3. Develop a perspective that allows them to understand spatial variation and diversity at global, regional and local scales.
  4. Have the skills to read, interpret, use and make maps and be able to solve, and communicate spatial problems using geographic technologies.
  5. Have the ability to conduct, process, prepare and present empirical geographic research at a fundamental level.
  6. Have knowledge of the potential career opportunities for geographers.

General Requirements

Bachelor of Science Degree

Total for Graduation: 120 credits
General Education: 44-58 credits
Major Studies: 37-43 credits

Students must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.50 within the major studies for graduation.

Bachelor of Arts Degree

In addition to the bachelor of science requirements, students must complete nine supplemental credits in a foreign language.

Geography Major (37-43 credits)

Required Core Courses (six classes/19 credits):

*Students may fulfill these requirements using any course in the appropriate focus area so long as they meet any applicable prerequisites or have permission from the instructor.

Additional geography courses in any area of focus (six classes/18-24 credits):

Physical Geography Focus

Human Geography Focus

Nature and Society Focus

Geographic Techniques Focus

Regional Focus

Field Experiences Focus

Electives (only 6 credits count toward major):

Geography Minor (24 credits)

The Geography minor is designed to offer broad training in physical and human geography content and techniques giving students diverse knowledge applicable to a wide range of careers. Students will explore the human and natural world through classroom, laboratory and field experiences. This minor offers important skills for careers in planning, travel-tourism, teaching, criminal justice, agriculture, natural resource management and international affairs.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates will:

  1. Recognize the unique subject and methods of geography
  2. Understand the processes and patterns of the physical world and how human actions impact and interact with natural systems.
  3. Develop a perspective that allows them to understand spatial variation and diversity at global, regional and local scales.
  4. Be able to use geographical concepts in contributing to the solution of societal and environmental problems

Required core courses:

Geology

Geology Website

Contact: Mari A. Vice
Office: 252 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1055
E-mail: vice@uwplatt.edu

About the Geology Program and Minor

A minor in Geology demonstrates the relationship between the earth sciences and other fields. It provides students in reclamation, biology, engineering and other allied areas with a sound basis in geology essential for professional work. Practical field experience emphasizes biological evolution, geological history and environmental problems.

Geology Minor (24 credits)

Introductory course in Geology (3-4 credits):

Required courses (13 credits):

Electives (8-9 credits):

Environmental Science

Environmental Science website

Contact: Richard A. Waugh
Office: 260 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1386
E-mail: waugh@uwplatt.edu

About the Environmental Science and Minor

The Environmental Science minor is an interdisciplinary program designed to give students, particularly those in the natural sciences, a broad understanding of the relationship of humans to the environment and the processes that occur in the natural environment. Environmental Science has become an essential component of a wide variety of fields and in a variety of careers, and its importance will only increase in the future. This minor will help prepare students to respond to the demands of environmental understanding increasingly expected of 21st century people.

Environmental Science Minor (24 credits)

Required courses (9 credits):

One physical processes course from (4 credits):

Five credits of Chemistry chosen from:

Electives (minimum 6 credits):

* Requires BIOLOGY 1650 Unity of Life and BIOLOGY 1750 Diversity of Life as prerequisites.

** Requires BIOLOGY 2420 Fundamentals of Biological Investigation as prerequisite.

Geographic Information Systems Minor (24 credits)

The minor in geographic information systems prepares students for current modern trends in geospatial technology, computerized map- ping, digital image processing and spatial analysis. The GIS minor requires one course in computer science (COMPUTER 1130), four courses in GIS and remote sensing, and six hours of upper division coursework in selected classes, either in geosciences, computer science or business.

The GIS minor incorporates dynamic changes in current advances in spatial sciences and technology. The students that complete a GIS minor significantly enhance their employment opportunities, especially in environmental consultation agencies, mapping technology industries and surveying. The GIS minor pertains to any natural resource field such as geology and biology as well as social studies and business. A GIS minor combined with a computer science major is currently one of the most employable fields in geospatial analysis.

Required core courses:

Electives (6 credits):

History

History website

Contact: Nancy Turner
Office: 152 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1789
E-mail: turnern@uwplatt.edu
Professors: Associate Professors: Assistant Professors: Senior Lecturers: Lecturer:

About the History Program and Major

The UW-Platteville Department of Social Sciences offers a major and minor in history. History is the systematic study of the past. History is the foundation discipline within the liberal arts and the source of the social sciences. Understanding the past helps us understand human nature, broadens our perspectives, refines our judgments and provides insight into contemporary issues. The study of history is basic to our personal uniqueness, our professional identity and our civic lives.

Students of history learn important skills. The study of history requires students to read, write, analyze and use logic. Students learn to do research, assess arguments and to interpret economic, social, political, cultural and technological change in a variety of contexts.

History majors can find work in many fields. Some are directly related to the subject matter of history, such as museums and archive work, teaching, documentary filmmaking or historical publishing. Others use the skills that the study of history cultivates. History is a liberal arts degree that provides the basis for work in business, advertising, journalism, public relations, public administration, planning and research and professional fields, such as law.

Mission

The History Program enables its majors to become broader in perspective, more literate, intellectually more astute, ethically more sensitive, and to participate wisely in society as competent professionals and knowledgeable citizens. Our students understand the complexity of the factors and forces that can cause historical change, and they are able to analyze and evaluate historical narratives that explain change. Students develop skills in reading, writing, analysis, and logic. History majors learn to do research, to assess arguments, to interpret economic, social, political, cultural and technological change in a variety of contexts.

Goals and Objectives

Students will:

  1. write historical essays with a clear and focused thesis, developed by a logical argument, and substantiated with factual detail;
  2. undertake historical research projects based on primary and secondary sources in both print and electronic formats, including the formulation of historically significant questions, gathering appropriate sources, and the application of appropriate methods of analysis and synthesis; and also to
  3. critically analyze works of history by demonstrating an understanding of a work's assumptions, method, sources, and point of view and evaluating its argument.

General Requirements

Bachelor of Arts Degree

Total for Graduation: 120 credits
General Education: 44-58 credits
Major Studies: 36 credits

Students must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.50 within the major studies for graduation.

History Major (36 credits)

Students must take the following required courses:

Choose two of the following U.S. History courses:

Choose two of the following European History courses:

Choose one of the following Non-Western courses:

Choose three elective courses from the above lists.

Students may also enroll in:

History majors must demonstrate competence in writing. See the department contact person for procedures.

History Minor (24 credits)

Required courses (12 credits):

From the courses listed under History Major above, choose:

International Studies

International Studies website

Contact: Travis Nelson
Office: 138 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608-342-1809
E-mail: nelsontra@uwplatt.edu

About the International Studies Program and Major

International studies is available as a comprehensive interdisciplinary major and a minor offered by the College of Liberal Arts and Education in the UW-Platteville Department of Social Sciences. The international studies major focuses on the global perspective in education. Through a cross-national approach, the major is designed to make visible and explicit the interdependence that has been created by economic, technological and communications development in the contemporary world.

Students in international studies must be self-directed and confident in their ability to plan their coursework to match their anticipated professional goals. This major is designed to prepare students to work effectively in the increasingly complex world. The program offers considerable flexibility for students to develop areas of specialization. Students are able to draw upon the offerings of other departments at this university. It is recommended that all majors study a foreign language and, if possible, complete a minor in that language. Also, education abroad programs are available and recommended for students in this major.

Mission

The international studies major provides an understanding of transnational and intercultural relations through interdisciplinary work across departments in the social sciences, humanities and fine arts. It includes curricular, experiential and skills components which enable students to engage in personal development, academic commitment, intercultural development in the form of understanding cultural values of different cultures and career development.

Goals and Objectives

Graduates will:

  1. exhibit familiarity with geographical, cultural, political, economic, literary and historical approaches to global issues;
  2. develop working knowledge of the methodologies central to the participating social science and humanities courses;
  3. undertake an international experience through an appropriate study abroad program; and
  4. demonstrate competency in a second language, at least equivalent to three courses of college-level work.

General Requirements

Bachelor of Arts Degree

Total for Graduation: 120 credits
General Education: 44-58 credits
Major Studies: 60 credits
Foreign Language Minor (suggested): 24 credits

International Studies Comprehensive Major (60 credits)

The International Studies major has a core requirement of 15 credit hours. Students must choose between Track I or Track II. The list of International Education courses is found below:

Required courses (15 credits):

Choose either track:

Track I

Track II

A semester abroad is strongly recommended. Most classes taken abroad will count toward the International Studies Major.

Students who major in international studies must complete at least two years of a foreign language, and a foreign language minor is suggested.

The major requirements also include a written competency certification developed by the department. Please check at the department office for details.

A semester or year in a foreign study program, which is strongly recommended, is an ideal way to fulfill Parts Three and Four of the major.

Education Abroad Programs

International studies majors are encouraged to give consideration to a semester or year abroad in an international study location. A semester abroad is an ideal way to complete the third part of the major because a student actually lives in the geographical region of specialization and studies aspects of the culture. For most programs, fluency in a foreign language is not a prerequisite for participation.

Primary education abroad locations include: London, England; Newcastle, Australia; Suva, Fiji; Nagasaki, Japan; Rome, Italy; Seville, Spain; Townsville, Australia; Belfort, France; Darmstadt, Germany; Galway, Ireland; Dronten, Netherlands; Zwolle, Netherlands; and Jonkoping, Sweden. In addition, students can choose from locations all over the globe through affiliation arrangements. Detailed information about each program is available from the Education Abroad office located in Royce Hall, Room 111, www.uwplatt.edu/intprog/, phone 608..342.1726.

International Studies Minor (24 credits)

In our global society, employers increasingly expect graduates to possess an understanding of other nations and cultures. The international studies minor provides students with the opportunity to study international topics from an interdisciplinary perspective. Students pursuing the minor in international studies must be self-directed and able to plan coursework to complement their major field of study. Students pursue 12 credits of foreign language in one language and complete 12 credits from the list of courses fulfilling the international education university requirement.

Political Science

Political Science website

Contact: John Rink
Office: 140 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1795
E-mail: rink@uwplatt.edu
Professors:
John R. Rink
Rosalyn Broussard
Assistant Professor:
Travis Nelson
Senior Lecturer:
Scott Nikolai

About the Political Science Program and Major

The UW-Platteville Department of Social Sciences offers a major and minor in political science. Political science is the study of governmental institutions and decision-making in the political arena. Political science focuses on political systems by looking at American institutions, public law, public administration, public policy, political theory, political behavior, comparative politics and international relations. Political science is a discipline in the social sciences and part of the liberal arts approach to education.

Students in political science learn skills in writing and critical thinking. They are asked to learn to question, analyze and consider solutions to political problems. Research abilities are important for future individual and professional success.

Students seeking employment rather than graduate or professional (law) school should consider courses in administration and management. Those planning on graduate school should take political theory courses and research methods.

Mission

The Political Science Program enables its majors to improve substantially their understanding of themselves and the world. The department seeks to educate students to have knowledge and appreciation of politics, the development of political thought and governance, and the essential knowledge of their chosen fields. It attempts to enable students to live more meaningfully in the world. The department seeks to prepare its graduates for employment and/or advanced study, and to stimulate students to anticipate their future roles as professionals and citizens.

Goals and Objectives

Graduates will:

  1. demonstrate an understanding of the origins, development, structure and operation of American government with emphasis on the roles of the executive, legislative and judicial branches and their political actors;
  2. develop an ability to explain the linkages of individuals and groups to the political process, the structure and functions of public policies, the decision making process and follow national and world issues intelligently; and
  3. demonstrate a knowledge and appreciation of political thought and social research methods.

General Requirements

Bachelor of Arts Degree

Total for Graduation: 120 credits
General Education: 44-58 credits
Major Studies: 36 credits

Political Science Major (36 credits)

All students must take the following courses:

Choose 24 credits from the following:

Political science majors must demonstrate a writing proficiency. Please see the department contact person for the requirements.

Political Science Minor (24 credits)

Social Sciences Comprehensive

Social Science website

Contact: Nancy Turner
Office: 152 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1789
E-mail: turnern@uwplatt.edu

About the Social Sciences Comprehensive Program and Major

Note: some emphases are administered by departments other than the Department of Social Sciences. For simplicity, however, all emphases and their requirements are listed in this section.

Economics Program
Contact: Brian Peckham
Economics Office: 250 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1752
E-mail: peckham@uwplatt.edu
History Emphasis
Contact: Nancy Turner
History Office: 152 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1789
E-mail: turnern@uwplatt.edu
Geography Emphasis
Contact: J. Elmo Rawling
Geography Office: 256 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1680
E-mail: rawlingj@uwplatt.edu
Psychology Emphasis
Contact: Elizabeth Gates
Psychology Office: 231 Warner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1724
E-mail: gatese@uwplatt.edu

The social sciences comprehensive major includes coursework in economics, geography, history, political science, sociology and psychology. A minor in geography, history or psychology is required; this is considered the area of emphasis. Students who wish a broad liberal arts program will find it within the social sciences comprehensive major.

Students who plan to teach will also find the social sciences comprehensive major useful. (Additional information appears below.)

Mission

Our program provides majors with a broad grounding in the Social Sciences and the equivalent of a minor in History.

"Social sciences" is not a discipline, in itself, but combines many disciplines. Therefore it provides no unique skills and concepts separate from those offered by Economics, History, Psychology, Political Science, and Sociology.

In addition to the broad liberal arts education provided by each of the component disciplines, the Social Sciences Comprehensive Major with an Emphasis in History prepares social sciences instructors to teach in the public school system.

Goals and Objectives

Goals and objectives specific to each discipline are assessed as part of the assessment of the individual disciplines. The unique goal of the Social Sciences Comprehensive Major with an Emphasis in History is to provide a broad knowledge of Social Science and History facts and concepts.

General Requirements

Bachelor of Arts Degree

Total for Graduation: 120 credits
General Education: 44-58 credits
Major Studies: varies

Students must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.50 within the major studies for graduation.

Geography Emphasis (63 credits)

Geography required courses (25 credits):

Students planning to teach must take GEOGRPHY 3330 Environmental Conservation and are strongly urged to take GEOGRPHY 3120 Geography of Wisconsin.

History Required Courses:

Economics required courses (6 credits):

Political Science required courses (6 credits):

Psychology required courses (6 credits):

Sociology required courses (6 credits):

History Emphasis (60 credits)

History required courses (24 credits):

Twelve additional credits: two U.S. history, one European history, one non-Western history; 36 credits from the following list (30 are required, six are electives)

Geography Required Courses:

One of the following may be used as an elective:

Economics required courses (6 credits):

One of the following may be used as an elective:

Political Science required courses (6 credits):

One of the following may be used as an elective:

Psychology required courses (6 credits):

One of the following may be used as an elective:

Sociology required courses (6 credits):

One of the following may be used as an elective:

Psychology Emphasis (69 Credits)

Psychology required courses:

Geography required courses:

History required courses:

Economics required courses:

Political Science required courses:

Sociology required courses:

Social Sciences Comprehensive majors not in education must demonstrate competence in writing. See the department contact person for procedures.

Students planning to teach may want to choose a Social Sciences minor.

Social Sciences Minor (30 credits)

History required courses:

Geography required courses:

Note: Geography 3330, Environmental Conservation is a DPI GER requirement for education majors, but it does not count toward the Social Sciences Minor.

Economics required course:

Political Science required course:

Note: POLISCI 1230 Introduction to American Government is a DPI GER requirement for Education majors, but it does not count toward this Social Sciences minor.

Sociology required course:

Psychology required course:

Note: PSYCHLGY 3530 Adolescent Psychology can be taken to satisfy GER requirements for Education majors, but it does not count toward the Social Sciences minor.

Students who complete either the Social Sciences Comprehensive major with an Emphasis in History or the History major and the Social Sciences Comprehensive minor, will be qualified to teach history at all grades and levels, and social studies courses in middle school and high school. Students who complete sequences of courses in the specific disciplines listed below may be licensed to teach those specific disciplines in middle and high school.

Sociology

Sociology website
Contact: Michael G. Dalecki
Office: 136 Gardner Hall
Phone: 608.342.1807
E-mail: dalecki@uwplatt.edu
Professor: Assistant Professor Lecturer:

About the Sociology Program and Minor

Sociology is the study of society and its component parts, groups, cultures, norms, roles and their institutional and organizational relationships. Sociology is a discipline in the social sciences and part of the liberal arts approach to education. The UW-Platteville Department of Social Sciences offers a minor in sociology which requires a minimum of 24 credits including no fewer than 12 credits at the 3000 level or above.

Students often minor in sociology if their majors are criminal justice or psychology. Both of these disciplines lead to employment in the criminal justice system, or the social welfare system.

Students of sociology learn important skills in reading, writing, analysis and logic. Students learn to do research and to interpret social, economic, political, cultural and technical change in a variety of contexts.

Sociology Minor (24 credits)

The sociology minor requires a minimum of 24 credits including no fewer than 12 credits at the 3000 level or above.