SubjectsSubjects(version: 953)
Course, academic year 2023/2024
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Insights on Current Society - ASGV01000
Title: Insights on Current Society
Guaranteed by: Department of Sociology (21-KSOC)
Faculty: Faculty of Arts
Actual: from 2023
Semester: summer
Points: 0
E-Credits: 5
Examination process: summer s.:
Hours per week, examination: summer s.:2/0, Ex [HT]
Capacity: 30 / unknown (unknown)
Min. number of students: unlimited
4EU+: no
Virtual mobility / capacity: no
Key competences:  
State of the course: taught
Language: English
Teaching methods: full-time
Teaching methods: full-time
Additional information:
Note: course can be enrolled in outside the study plan
enabled for web enrollment
Guarantor: Mgr. Petra Poncarová
Teacher(s): Mgr. Petra Poncarová
Class: A – Mezioborová nabídka VP: Sociální vědy
Exchange - 14.2 Sociology
Exchange - 14.9 Others-Social Sciences
Files Comments Added by
download Syllabus_current_society_SS_24_updated.pdf Mgr. Petra Poncarová
The course offers an introduction to some more specific areas of sociological thought and research. The goal of the course is to develop sociological imagination and relate key sociological concepts, theories, and expertise to specific and relatable topics. Thus,
the course is also very well suited to Czech students of sociology as well as to sharpen their analytical skills and continue with their introductory courses in a different setting.
To students of other disciplines, this course offers a non-traditional introduction
to sociology through specific examples of sociological research.
Each semester, four to five topics are covered within the course, showcasing the sociological research and theory. Each topic is first introduced in a lecture. Students are then given a reading (one article or chapter) to prepare for a seminar next week which explores the topic in greater depth. Therefore, students are not passively introduced to topics, but are invited to actively engage with them.
Since the course invites students from abroad as well as Czech students, each topic covered can be approached through comparative cross-national perspective. Students are invited to do so, especially in the group work (see Course requirements).
Last update: Poncarová Petra, Mgr. (06.02.2024)
Course completion requirements

Course requirements and examination:

Students are required to:

A)    attendance: maximum of 3 absences (attendance tracked by signatures on the attendance sheet). If you feel ill – let us know, these absences will not be counted;

B)    preparation: such preparation may include reading a provided text, reflecting upon it in a short written answer and/or answering some questions – this is for reflection and getting in the mood for the lecture – 3 (out of 4) preparations per semester are required

SUBMISSION of preparation work before each seminar class until Tuesday 23:59 in Moodle;

C)    prepare a team presentation:

a)     each team (4-5 students) will prepare and submit a video presentation on a selected topic (app. 10-15 minutes long)

b)     submission in Moodle due 23rd of May

c)      each presentation will be evaluated by the lecturers (max. of 28 points, 16 points as a minimum to pass) and by the peers (students) (max. of 12 points).

The goal of the TEAM PRESENTATION TASK (instructions here!) is to

             i.     formulate a specific (= narrow, well defined, tangible!) research question aimed at comparing two or more cultures/societies in a specific area, topic or issue;

             ii.     find and analyse scientific literature on which the team will base the comparison of the selected cultures/societies and the conclusions of this comparison (i.e., the answer to the selected question);

             iii.     illustrate the comparison with own experiences or experiences of others (e.g. through media, narratives etc.);

             iv.     present the results of analysing, comparing/contrasting, and illustrating (as to the points above).

Examples of relevant research questions:

·         How do the inhabitants of countries x and y relate to natural landscape and nature in general and what may be some causes of observed differences in how they relate to nature?

·         What attitudes do the inhabitants of countries x and y have about prison sentences and why?

·         How media in countries x and y present issue z and why?

Students may improve their grading by: submitting a short essay (2-3 norm pages) on the topic of their team presentation but using their own individual perspective and using additional sources, i.e. the essay is a standalone individual work which is by no means a copy of the presentation or purely derivative of the presentation.

Whole grading system (exact points) can be found in the file that is attached.

Last update: Poncarová Petra, Mgr. (07.02.2024)

Literature and study materials will be provided for each lecture in Moodle.

Last update: Poncarová Petra, Mgr. (06.02.2024)
Teaching methods

Course policies:

Course recording: No student may record any classroom activity without express written consent from the course guarantor (Petra Poncarová).  If you have (or think you may have) a disability such that you need to record or tape classroom activities, you should contact the Office of Disability Resources to request an appropriate accommodation.

Zero Tolerance of Cheating & Plagiarism: Plagiarism means using words, ideas, or arguments from another person or source without citation. Cite all sources consulted to any extent (including material from the internet), whether or not assigned and whether or not quoted directly.  For quotations, four or more words used in sequence must be set off in quotation marks, with the source identified. 

Any form of cheating will immediately earn you a failing grade for the entire course
By remaining enrolled, you consent to this policy.

How to Get Help

Since the teaching staff for this class is large, you might wonder who you should see about what.  Here are some general guidelines.

If you need to skip a class due to health or family issues, e-mail the Teaching Assistant (see e-mail address in attached pdf).

In general, all questions regarding

·         Interim tasks (reading assignments),

·         Moodle,

·         Task submission,

·         Class materials,

·         Your grades and scores, and

·         Your attendance,

should be directed at the course guarantor (see the e-mail address above). They are happy to answer your questions by e-mail or in person before/after each lecture.

If you feel that your team is not working properly and you need some advice, contact the course guarantor. They will assess the situation and will try their best to help you.

If you need feedback or guidance on your team presentation, such as feedback on your research question, structure, sources, argumentation, and/or presentation, contact the course guarantor. They will happily provide some guidance if you feel uncertain about whether your work is on track.

If the course is taking too much of your time: This course is supposed to take, on average, 4-5 hours per week (not counting the lectures!).  If on average you are spending significantly more than this, we want to know.  Please send the course guarantor an email message telling them.  Sometimes it is hard for us to judge the difficulty of an assignment and your message lets us know when there is a problem.

If you have an academic question regarding a specific lecture, feel free to contact the lecturer. You will find their name in the course schedule. Our Teaching Assistant can provide you with their e-mail address.

If you have a general academic question, contact the course guarantor. They will be happy to answer or direct you to someone able to discuss the matter with you further.

Last update: Poncarová Petra, Mgr. (06.02.2024)

22. 2.

Welcome & Introduction

Petra Poncarová

29. 2.

The Problems of Human Nature: Responsibility for Environmental Crises Lecture

Eva Richter

7. 3.

The Problems of Human Nature: Responsibility for Environmental Crises Seminar

Eva Richter

14. 3.

Criminology: TBA Lecture

Jiří Buriánek

21. 3.

Criminology: TBA Seminar

Jiří Buriánek

28. 3.

Deans’s Day

4. 4.

Group Work Session

Petra Poncarová

11. 4.

“Flesh and Bones” and Society: Menstruation and the Normal Working Body Lecture

Petra Poncarová

18. 4.

“Flesh and Bones” and Society: Menstruation and the Normal Working Body Seminar

Petra Poncarová

25. 4.

Social Stratification: TBA Lecture

Jiří Šafr

2. 5.

Social Stratification: TBA Seminar

Jiří Šafr

9. 5.

Work on Presentations (“Get It Done Session”)

Petra Poncarová

16. 5.


Petra Poncarová

Last update: Poncarová Petra, Mgr. (07.02.2024)
Learning resources

Online course support (materials, forums):

Last update: Richter Eva, Mgr., Ph.D. (03.02.2022)
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