• Sociology
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    During Scholars Week presentations, faculty and students discuss their research

Sociology

Sociology is the study of social life, social change, and the social causes and consequences of human behavior. It is an expanding field that addresses challenging issues such as family dynamics, inequality, patterns of behavior, and forces for social change and resistance. Sociologists' research can be applied to virtually any aspect of social life, from crime to corporate downsizing. 

Gerontology, an interdisciplinary minor offered through the Aging Studies Program

Gerontology looks at aging population

An interdisciplinary minor in Gerontology, offered through the Aging Studies Program, is designed for students pursuing a career working with or for the older adult population. Students examine the biological, psychological, sociological, and cultural perspectives which influence the status of the aging individual in society.

Dr. Kevin Breault, professor of sociology

Faculty spotlight: Breault's a birder too

Dr. Kevin Breault, professor of sociology, is internationally known for research on homicide; suicide; religious participation in the U.S.; social control theory; and Emile Durkheim, the founder of scientific sociology. Breault writes children's books and is a competitive birder with a top ten ranking in the American Birding Association.

Graduates can work in aging/youth services, health services, community work, criminology/corrections, government services, and teaching.

Occupational fields also include social research, teaching, personnel, industrial relations, journalism, applied sociology or anthropology, religion, gerontology, foreign service, and social and cultural research.

Expertise in a specific subject may be crucial to an employer, such as aging, adolescence, demography, community organization, crime and law, health care, marriage and family, sexuality, poverty, religion, work and occupations, and race and ethnic relations.


Employers of MTSU alumni include

  • Government/international agencies
  • Social service agencies
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Businesses/consulting firms
  • Universities and colleges

Dr. Ronald H. Aday
Professor
ronald.aday@mtsu.edu

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Dr. Foster K. Amey
Undergraduate Program Director | Professor
foster.amey@mtsu.edu

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Dr. Kevin D. Breault
Professor | Co-editor of Sociological Spectrum
kevin.breault@mtsu.edu

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Dr. William L. Canak
Professor
william.canak@mtsu.edu

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Dr. W. Craig Carter
Professor
craig.carter@mtsu.edu

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Dr. Meredith Dye
Assistant Professor | Faculty Advisor
meredith.dye@mtsu.edu

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Dr. Jackie Eller
Department Chair, Professor
jackie.eller@mtsu.edu

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Dr. Brian Hinote
Associate Professor | Graduate Program Director
brian.hinote@mtsu.edu

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Dr. Vicky MacLean
Professor
vicky.maclean@mtsu.edu

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Dr. Angela Mertig
Professor
angela.mertig@mtsu.edu

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Dr. Deborah Mistron
Professor
deborah.mistron@mtsu.edu

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Dr. J. Brandon Wallace
Aging Studies Program Director | Professor
brandon.wallace@mtsu.edu

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Dr. Gretchen Webber
Associate Professor
gretchen.webber@mtsu.edu

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MTSU has a major in Sociology leading to the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) or a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree.

The Department of Sociology and Anthropology offers four minors including Anthropology, Criminology, Family Studies, and Sociology. Department faculty members coordinate interdisciplinary minors in Archaeology, Asian Studies, International Media Studies, and Native American Studies.

A Master of Arts (M.A.) degree in Sociology is offered.

Sociological Spectrum is the official journal of the Mid-South Sociological Association. It is a refereed interdisciplinary social science journal that publishes theoretical, methodological, quantitative and qualitative substantive research, and applied research articles in the areas of sociology, social psychology, anthropology, and political science.

Students are invited to join the MTSU Sociology Club.

Sociology (B.A.) Sociology (B.S.) 

An academic map is a suggested four-year schedule of courses based on degree requirements in the undergraduate catalog. This sample schedule serves as a general guideline to help build a full schedule each term. Milestones, courses, and special requirements necessary for timely progress to complete a major are designated to keep you on track to graduate in four years. Missing milestones could delay your program. 

This map based on the 2013-2014 undergraduate catalog is not a substitute for academic advisement - contact your advisor if you have any questions about scheduling or about your degree requirements. Also see the current undergraduate catalog (catalog.mtsu.edu) for a complete list of requirements and electives.Note: Requirements are continually under revision, and there is no guarantee they will not be changed or revoked; contact the department and/or program area for current information. 

You may choose to attend a summer term to reduce your load during fall or spring terms but still stay on track to graduate in four years (see below). NOTE: Learning Support courses will alter the sequences on this map.

Sociology (B.A.) Academic Map

Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Middle Tennessee State University | Murfreesboro


Suggested Fall/Spring and Summer/Fall/Spring Four-Year Schedule

Refer to the scholarships website for information regarding use of the Lottery Scholarship for the summer term.

Click here for printer friendly academic map.

FRESHMAN FALL FRESHMAN SPRING
CourseHoursMilestones/Notes CourseHoursMilestones/Notes
ENGL 1010 (Comm)3  ENGL 1020 (Comm)3 
Hum/FA (Rubric 1)3ANTH 2210 rec. Nat Sci (Rubric 2)4 
SOC 1010 (Soc/Beh Sci) (Required)3Must earn C or higher MATH (Math)3 MATH 1530 rec.
Nat Sci (Rubric 1)4  SOC elective (lower division)3 
    Hum/FA (Rubric 2)3 
SUBTOTAL13  SUBTOTAL16 
SOPHOMORE FALL SOPHOMORE SPRING
ENGL 2020, ENGL 2030, or HUM 2610 (Hum/FA)3  SOC “critical perspectives” elective (Required)3SOC 3400, 4011, 4020, 4150 (Race, Class, Gender only), or 4240
Foreign Language3Required; see advisor. SOC 3050 (Required)4Must earn C or higher
SOC 3040 (Required)3Must earn C or higher HIST 2010, HIST 2020, or HIST 20303 
COMM 2200 (Comm)3  Soc/Beh Sci3ANTH 2010 rec.
HIST 2010, HIST 2020, or HIST 20303  Foreign Language3Required; see advisor.
SUBTOTAL15  SUBTOTAL16 
JUNIOR FALL JUNIOR SPRING
SOC 3060 (Required)3Must earn C or higher SOC elective (upper division)3 
SOC “institutions and soc imagination” elective (Required)3SOC 4050, 4100, 4360, 4511, 4520, 4560, or 4660 SOC elective3 
Foreign Language3Required; see advisor. Foreign Language3Required; see advisor.
Minor course3One 15- to 18-hour minor required Minor course3 
Minor course3  Elective3 
SUBTOTAL15  SUBTOTAL15 
SENIOR FALL SENIOR SPRING
SOC elective (upper division)3  SOC 4980 (Required)3Must earn C or higher
Minor course(s)3–6  Minor course(s)0–6 
Elective(s)6–9  Elective(s)6–12 
       
       
SUBTOTAL15  SUBTOTAL15 

TOTAL HOURS IN PROGRAM: 120

FRESHMAN FALL FRESHMAN SPRING
SOC 1010 (Soc/Beh Sci) (Required)3Must earn C or higher Nat Sci (Rubric 2)4 
Hum/FA (Rubric 1)3ANTH 2210 rec. MATH (Math)3MATH 1530 rec.
Nat Sci (Rubric 1)4  SOC elective (lower division)3
ENGL 1010 (Comm)3  Hum/FA (Rubric 2)3 
    ENGL 1020 (Comm)3 
SUBTOTAL13  SUBTOTAL16 
SOPHOMORE SUMMER
ENGL 2020, ENGL 2030, or HUM 2610 (Hum/FA)3  COMM 2200 (Comm)3 
SUBTOTAL3  SUBTOTAL3 
SOPHOMORE FALL SOPHOMORE SPRING
SOC 3040 (Required)3Must earn C or higher SOC “critical perspective” elective (Required)3SOC 3400, 4011, 4020, 4150 (Race, Class, Gender only), or 4240
SOC 3050 (Required)4Must earn C or higher HIST 2010, HIST 2020, or HIST 20303 
HIST 2010, HIST 2020, or HIST 20303  Soc/Beh Sci3ANTH 2010 rec.
Foreign Language3Required; see advisor. Foreign Language3Required; see advisor.
SUBTOTAL13  SUBTOTAL12 
JUNIOR SUMMER
Minor course3One 15- to 18-hour minor required SOC elective (upper division)3 
SUBTOTAL3  SUBTOTAL3 
JUNIOR FALL JUNIOR SPRING
SOC 3060 (Required)3Must earn C or higher Minor course3 
SOC “institutions and soc imagination” elective (Required)3SOC 4050, 4100, 4360, 4511, 4520, 4560, or 4660 Foreign Language3Required; see advisor.
Minor course3One 15- to 18-hour minor required SOC elective3 
Foreign Language3Required; see advisor. Elective3 
SUBTOTAL12  SUBTOTAL12 
SENIOR SUMMER
Elective3  Elective3 
SUBTOTAL3  SUBTOTAL3 
SENIOR FALL SENIOR SPRING
SOC elective (upper division)3  SOC 4980 (Required)3Must earn C or higher
Minor course(s)3–6  Minor course 0–6 
Elective3–6  Elective3–9 
       
SUBTOTAL12  SUBTOTAL12 

TOTAL HOURS IN PROGRAM: 120

Graduation information may be accessed here.



Sociology (B.S.) Academic Map

Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Middle Tennessee State University | Murfreesboro


Suggested Fall/Spring and Summer/Fall/Spring Four-Year Schedule

Refer to the scholarships website for information regarding use of the Lottery Scholarship for the summer term.

Click here for printer friendly academic map.

FRESHMAN FALL FRESHMAN SPRING
CourseHoursMilestones/Notes CourseHoursMilestones/Notes
ENGL 1010 (Comm)3  ENGL 1020 (Comm)3 
Hum/FA (Rubric 1)3ANTH 2210 rec. Nat Sci (Rubric 2)4 
SOC 1010 (Soc/Beh Sci) (Required)3Must earn C or higher MATH (Math)3 MATH 1530 rec.
Nat Sci (Rubric 1)4  SOC elective (lower division)3 
    Hum/FA (Rubric 2)3 
SUBTOTAL13  SUBTOTAL16 
SOPHOMORE FALL SOPHOMORE SPRING
ENGL 2020, ENGL 2030, or HUM 2610 (Hum/FA)3  SOC “critical perspectives” elective (Required)3SOC 3400, 4011, 4020, 4150 (Race, Class, Gender only), or 4240
SOC elective3  SOC 3050 (Required)4Must earn C or higher
SOC 3040 (Required)3Must earn C or higher HIST 2010, HIST 2020, or HIST 20303 
COMM 2200 (Comm)3  Soc/Beh Sci3ANTH 2010 rec.
HIST 2010, HIST 2020, or HIST 20303  Minor 1 course3 
SUBTOTAL15  SUBTOTAL16 
JUNIOR FALL JUNIOR SPRING
SOC 3060 (Required)3Must earn C or higher SOC elective (upper division)3 
SOC “institutions and soc imagination” elective (Required)3SOC 4050, 4100, 4360, 4511, 4520, 4560, or 4660 Elective3 
Minor 1 course3  Elective3 
Minor 2 course3  Minor 2 course3 
Minor 2 course3  Minor 2 course3 
SUBTOTAL15  SUBTOTAL15 
SENIOR FALL SENIOR SPRING
SOC elective (upper division)3  SOC 4980 (Required)3Must earn C or higher
Minor 1 course3  Minor 1 course3 
Minor 1 course3  Minor 1 course or elective3 
Minor 2 course3  Minor 2 course or elective3 
Elective3  Elective3 
SUBTOTAL15  SUBTOTAL15 

TOTAL HOURS IN PROGRAM: 120

FRESHMAN FALL FRESHMAN SPRING
SOC 1010 (Required)3Must earn C or higher Nat Sci (Rubric 2)4 
Hum/FA (Rubric 1)3ANTH 2210 rec. MATH (Math)3 MATH 1530 rec.
Nat Sci (Rubric 104  SOC elective (lower division)3
ENGL 1010 (Comm)3  Hum/FA (Rubric 2)3 
    ENGL 1020 (Comm)3 
SUBTOTAL13  SUBTOTAL16 
SOPHOMORE SUMMER
ENGL 2020, ENGL 2030, or HUM 2610 (Hum/FA)3  COMM 2200 (Comm)3 
SUBTOTAL3  SUBTOTAL3 
SOPHOMORE FALL SOPHOMORE SPRING
SOC 3040 (Required)3Must earn C or higher SOC “critical perspective” elecitve (Required)3SOC 3400, 4011, 4020, 4150 (Race, Class, Gender only), or 4240
SOC 3050 (Required)4Must earn C or higher HIST 2010, HIST 2020, or HIST 20303 
HIST 2010, HIST 2020, or HIST 20303  Soc/Beh Sci3ANTH 2010 rec.
SOC elective (upper division)3  Minor 1 course3 
SUBTOTAL13  SUBTOTAL12 
JUNIOR SUMMER
Minor 1 course3  SOC elective (upper division)3 
SUBTOTAL3  SUBTOTAL3 
JUNIOR FALL JUNIOR SPRING
SOC 3060 (Required)3Must earn C or higher Minor 1 course3 
SOC “institutions & soc imagination: elective (Required)3SOC 4050, 4100, 4360, 4511, 4520, 4560, or 4660 Minor 2 course3 
Minor 2 course3  Elective3 
Minor 2 course3  Elective3 
SUBTOTAL12  SUBTOTAL12 
SENIOR SUMMER
Minor 1 course3  Minor 2 course3 
SUBTOTAL3  SUBTOTAL3 
SENIOR FALL  SENIOR SPRING
SOC elective (upper division)3  SOC 4980 (Required)3Must earn C or higher
Minor 1 course3  Minor 1 course or elective3 
Minor 2 course3  Minor 2 course or elective3 
Elective3  Elective3 
SUBTOTAL12  SUBTOTAL12 

TOTAL HOURS IN PROGRAM: 120

Graduation information may be accessed here.

Sociology

SOC 1010 - Introductory Sociology
3 credit hours
Counts toward General Education Social/Behavioral Sciences requirement. Covers the central concepts, theories, and methods of sociology. Focuses on social processes and institutions in modern societies. Assists students in understanding and applying this knowledge in their everyday lives.

SOC 2010 - Social Problems
3 credit hours
A survey of issues defined as problems by society; examines programs and agencies that address them. Problems addressed include poverty, crime, environment, energy, health, etc.

SOC 2105 - Introduction to Latin American Studies
3 credit hours
(Same as SPAN 2105, PS 2105, ART 2105, ANTH 2105, GEOG 2105.) A multidisciplinary, team-taught introduction to Latin America. Covers the cultures and societies of the region: prehistory, history, geography, politics, art, languages, and literatures. Required course for all Latin American Studies minors.

SOC 2150 - Topics in Sociology
3 credit hours
An in-depth study of a special topic or a current topic of sociological interest.  

SOC 2500 - Marriage and Family
3 credit hours
Social, cultural, and personal factors relating to mate selection, intimate relationships, and family life with an emphasis on families in the United States.

SOC 2600 - Introduction to Gerontology
3 credit hours
(Same as GERO 2600.) Basic concepts, overview of the field, illustrations of problems, and applications for an aging America.

SOC 3040 - Research Methods
3 credit hours
(Same as ANTH 3040.) Issues and strategies used by sociologists in their scientific studies and in their applied work in society.

SOC 3050 - Data Analysis
4 credit hours
(Same as ANTH 3050.) Analysis, interpretation, and reporting of social science data. Incorporates the use of a statistical package such as SPSS or SAS. Offers fundamental applied research skills for the job market. Laboratory required.

SOC 3060 - Sociological Theory
3 credit hours
Theoretical foundations of sociology with emphasis on the major theories in sociology and their development. Addresses diverse intellectual traditions in both classical and contemporary theory.

SOC 3151 - Life Cycle and the Social Environment
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 1410 or SOC 1010 or SOC 2010. Overview of life course structure and processes examining physical, cognitive, social, and personality development including the role of institutions.

SOC 3210 - Drugs and Alcohol
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOC 1010, SOC 2010, or permission of instructor. Sociological, historical, political-economic, and cultural dimensions of drugs and alcohol in society.

SOC 3250 - Social Deviance
3 credit hours
A general survey and theoretical review of the definitions, causes, and consequences of deviance and social control. Analyzes drugs, panics, sex, media violence, and emotions in society.

SOC 3320 - Public Opinion and Propaganda
3 credit hours
Nature of public opinion and its role in the political and social process; myths, symbols, and other instruments and techniques of propaganda in opinion formation.

SOC 3400 - Gender and Society
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOC 1010 or WGST 2100. A sociohistorical and cultural exploration of the socialization patterns, relationships, expectations, influences, organizational, institutional, and aging experiences of women and men in American society.

SOC 3770 - Organizational Conflict, Negotiation, and Dispute Resol
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOC 1010. Analysis of multiple approaches to assessing conflict at individual, group, and organizational levels; review of multiple negotiation processes and skills associated with successful negotiating strategies and tactics. Consideration of alternative dispute resolution domains, including mediation and arbitration. Emphasis on organizationally based conflict and skill building through exercises wherein students master analysis of conflict, practice negotiating contracts, and engage in mock mediation and arbitration activities using case study materials.

SOC 3950 - Social Organizations and Institutions
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOC 1010 or SOC 2010. Theory, analysis, and public policy applications for contemporary organizations (corporations and social agencies) and institutions (family, education, health, media.)

SOC 4011 - Social Inequality
3 credit hours
The origins, variations, and consequences of class, status, and power in society. Individual and group economic interests, social prestige, ideology, market and institutional inequality.

SOC 4020 - Sociology of Aging
3 credit hours
Demographic, social, and cultural aspects of aging with particular emphasis on the types of problems encountered by older persons in American society.

SOC 4030 - Topics in Gerontology
3 credit hours
(Same as GERO 4030.) An opportunity to integrate gerontological theory and research techniques with the practical problems of older persons.

SOC 4040 - Health Care Delivery Issues
3 credit hours
Sociological analysis of health care delivery and major issues facing providers, patients, and citizens in the twenty-first century, from the level of social interaction through the broader structures of health care systems and policies. Includes sociological approaches to health and medicine, health care institutions, insurance and reimbursement structures, and vulnerable populations, along with future issues and directions in U.S. health care delivery.

SOC 4050 - Sociology of Families
3 credit hours
Analysis of the family as a social institution with an emphasis on contemporary trends and diversity.

SOC 4090 - Health Care Management
3 credit hours
Details of the technical aspects of health care management with an emphasis on long-term care settings.

SOC 4100 - Sociology of Work
3 credit hours
Comparative analysis of work structure and processes in organizational contexts, including study of management and employee organizations and legal environments regarding workplace relations.

SOC 4140 - Violence in the Family
3 credit hours
(Same as CDFS 4140.) The causes, dynamics, and consequences of violence in the family. Includes a discussion of violence toward children, spouses, dating partners, siblings, and elders. Emphasizes the social conditions that lead to these types of violence.

SOC 4150 - Topics in Sociology
3 credit hours
An in-depth study of a special topic which is significant in current sociological literature.

SOC 4155 - Media and Emotions in Global Perspective
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOC 1010 or permission of instructor. Examines sociological and social-psychological perspectives on emotions, emotion management, and emotional behavior. Particular attention paid to emotions in global media.  

SOC 4160 - Sociology of Gangs
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOC 1010. History of gangs in the United States, the factors that account for their formation and perpetuation, and current empirical data on gang composition, demographics, and culture. Policy strategies for prevention, law enforcement, and nonlegal intervention assessed.

SOC 4200 - African American Film, Theater, and Television Images
3 credit hours
(Same as AAS 4200.) Prerequisite: SOC 1010 or PSY 1410. Survey of African American film, theater, and television images in relation to social movements and social policy. Human behavior theory application and sociological paradigm application required.

SOC 4240 - Race and Ethnic Relations
3 credit hours
The dynamics of race and ethnic relations in the United States from a socio historic perspective.

SOC 4300 - Criminology
3 credit hours
Theories of the causes of criminal behavior and coverage of its development and incidence; punishment and methods of control and rehabilitation.

SOC 4360 - Medical Sociology
3 credit hours
Sociological analysis of health, biomedicine, epidemiology, and disease, along with critical analysis of major issues facing providers, patients, and citizens in the twenty-first century. Focuses on social epidemiology, social determinants and patterning of disease, health care delivery, institutions, and policy in the U.S. and other nations, and major theoretical developments in the sociology of health, illness, and healing.

SOC 4361 - Contemporary Issues in Women's Health
3 credit hours
Examines the social and cultural issues that shape women's health-related experiences and disparities in health and illness in contemporary culture. Critically analyzes problems associated with medicalization, technological favoritism, and for-profit intrusion. Explores issues and experiences among women by race/ethnicity, socioeconomic class, age, sexual orientation, and abilities.

SOC 4500 - Social Interaction and Identities
3 credit hours
Individual behavior in social contexts and symbolic interaction in groups. Includes social influences on perception, conformity, attitudes, communication, group structure, leadership, and role behavior.

SOC 4511 - Social Movements and Social Change
3 credit hours
Study of the major sociological theories of revolutions, rebellions, civil wars, and protest movements of the past and present and their relationship to significant social changes.

SOC 4520 - Population and Society
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOC 1010 or SOC 2010 or permission of instructor. Examines world and U.S. population trends and the impact of social forces on such demographic variables as births, deaths, migration, age, sex, education, and marital status and how these impact social conditions.

SOC 4540 - Juvenile Delinquency
3 credit hours
Social factors related to delinquency including family, peer-group, school, and community. Includes juvenile justice system and its agents.

SOC 4550 - Sociology of Religion
3 credit hours
Religion as social process and institution. An ideological, structural, and functional analysis. Specific U.S. religions examined in detail.

SOC 4560 - Organizational Structures and Processes
3 credit hours
Analysis of structure and processes of change, organizational environments, modes of power, ideologies, forms of control and resistance including alternatives to bureaucracy.

SOC 4640 - Health: Organizations, Policy, and Ethics
3 credit hours
(Same as SW 4640.) A resource allocation assessment of U.S. health care systems. Applied ethics topics (i.e., justice, virtue, and informed consent) included.

SOC 4660 - Urban and Community Studies
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: SOC 1010. Focuses on the concept of community as a core idea in the historical development of sociology, concentrating on theories and historical trends of urbanization and current urban problems and policies.

SOC 4790 - Sport and Society
3 credit hours
(Same as LSTS 4790.) Behavioral approach to sport and leisure from the related perspectives of sociology and anthropology.

SOC 4800 - Special Projects
1 to 6 credit hours
Field experiences or reading courses through which special interests or needs of the student may be pursued under individual supervision. Arrangements must be made with an instructor prior to registration.

SOC 4900 - Sociology Internship
3 to 6 credit hours
Supervised independent study in which student is placed in an organization on a contractual basis as a means of applying the principles of his/her training in preparation for eventual employment. Arrangements should be made with the intern supervisor prior to registration.

SOC 4980 - Senior Seminar in Sociology
3 credit hours
Prerequisites: At least 18 hours of sociology, including SOC 1010, SOC 3040, SOC 3050, SOC 3060, and senior standing. Integrates coursework in the major through coverage of theory and method, analysis of critical issues, and applications to modern society.