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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Bryan Sykes
SOC 331
Seattle Campus

Population and Society

Population growth and distribution, population composition, population theory, urbanization. Determinants and consequences of fertility and mortality trends and migration in economically developed and underdeveloped areas.

Class description

In this course we will cover demographic and economic theories of population growth and composition; population processes and their impact on society; the emergence of, and changes to, institutions that deal with population problems (e.g., social security, pension systems); and the methods & statistics demographers use to track changes in mortality, fertility, and migration. Classical and contemporary demographic debates and theories will be discussed. By the end of the course, students should be able to substantively engage anyone in a discussion of past, present, and future population problems that affect different societies.

Student learning goals

Questions this course will answer include: 1) What impact does immigration have on native wages?

2) How does population growth and changes in age structure affect social security and pension systems? More generally, what are the consequences of rapid population growth in the developing and developed worlds?

3) How have fertility and mortality changed in the last 200 years?

4) What are the historical and current health issues facing local and global populations, and how have health crises affected demographic accounts of population processes?

5) How does economic change and labor market expansion affect fertility and family unit composition?

6) What are the relationships between poverty, family composition, and health inequalities in a global context?

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Bryan Sykes
Date: 02/22/2008