Spring 2019 - SA 327 J100

Sociology of Knowledge (S) (4)

Class Number: 3156

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Jan 3 – Apr 8, 2019: Tue, 5:30–9:20 p.m.

  • Prerequisites:

    SA 101 or 150 or 201W.



An examination of sociological theories concerning the interaction of social structures, and meaning and belief systems.


In this course, students will learn about knowing, ideas, fact, truth and belief. We will explore the relationship between knowledge, social and cultural structures, and systems of knowledge production. The course begins by introducing students to some of the key questions that sociologists have asked about knowledge, science, and expertise, and by surveying some key theories in the sociology of knowledge. Some of the questions we will explore include: how do we know what we know; how do we know what is true and who decides; how are facts made; how and what forms of knowledge and science gain legitimacy. The course then addresses specific topics such as the production of scientific knowledge; Indigenous knowledge; the politics of elite ideas; the sociology of conspiracy theories; and how professors think.


  • Paper 30%
  • Group presentation 15%
  • Participation 15%
  • Exam 1 20%
  • Exam 2 20%


Grading: Where a final exam is scheduled and you do not write the exam or withdraw from the course before the deadline date, you will be assigned an N grade. Unless otherwise specified on the course outline, all other graded assignments in this course must be completed for a final grade other than N to be assigned.

Academic Dishonesty and Misconduct Policy: The Department of Sociology and Anthropology follows SFU policy in relation to grading practices, grade appeals (Policy T 20.01) and academic dishonesty and misconduct procedures (S10.01‐S10.04). Unless otherwise informed by your instructor in writing, in graded written assignments you must cite the sources you rely on and include a bibliography/list of references, following an instructor-approved citation style.  It is the responsibility of students to inform themselves of the content of SFU policies available on the SFU website: http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student.html.



All readings will be available on Canvas.

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html