Sociology of Sociology

Author: Weeber, Stan C.
Sociology has split into two groups, an elite core of departments and a considerably larger “mass” of departments, consisting of the sociology “teaching schools” in the lower tier of the U.S. News and World Report ranking system. Sociologists are familiar enough with the elite; this book is about sociology’s “mass.” Relatively little has been written about these lower-ranked teaching institutions, and there have been very few works highlighting how sociology looks from the perspective of sociologists teaching at these institutions. Accordingly, this book is a snapshot and analysis of the field of sociology “from below,” or “from the ground up,” and shows how professional sociology is accomplished at some of the teaching institutions. Several chapters are examples of the kind of work being done in the teaching schools as it relates to the three major objectives of these institutions: teaching, research, and university/community service. This book will be of interest to sociologists working in, or training for, teaching jobs in the lower-tiered sociology schools. It is also a snapshot of what it was like to be a “working sociologist” in American in the late 20th and early 21st centuries.


“ ... this work should be required reading for every sociology major, and most certainly required reading for any student giving serious thought to graduate level study in the broad field of sociology ... Dr. Weeber points out with remarkable supporting detail the very real caste system that exists within the academic community writ large now referred to politely as a Tier System for departmental rankings. Much of this work applies to academic disciplines other than sociology as well ...” – (from the Preface) Professor Billy M. Turner, McNeese State University

Table of Contents

Preface by Billy M. Turner
1. Stan Weeber – The Two Sociologies, Separate and Unequal
2. Stan Weeber – ‘The Big Picture’ of Sociology in the Teaching Institutions – Teaching, Research, and Service
3. Ivan Chompalov, Stan Weeber, and Frank Taylor – Lower-Tiered College Students’ Perceptions of Their Learning Environemnt: Evidence from the Northeast and the South
4. Stan Weeber – ‘The Great Revolving Door?’ Teaching Institutions and the Recruitment and Retention of Sociology Faculty
5. Stan Weeber – Afterword, Conclusions, and Recommendations