Spring 2022 - SA 340 D100

Social Issues and Social Policy Analysis (SA) (4)

Class Number: 2751

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Jan 10 – Apr 11, 2022: Wed, 2:30–5:20 p.m.

  • Instructor:

    Kyle Willmott
    1 778 782-3767
    Office: AQ 5079
    Office Hours: Tues 3:30 - 4:20pm
  • Prerequisites:

    SA 101 or 150 or 201W.



How do environmental challenges, the contradictions of capitalism, and histories of violence shape contemporary life? How do social issues affect our identities, communities, and sense of belonging? Students learn how to wield sociological and anthropological concepts and theories through clear and analytical communication and writing.


This course is dedicated to examining how social policy shapes peoples’ lives. We begin with an examination of sociological theories of social policy and its political, social, and cultural functions. Throughout the course, students will have the opportunity to critically examine policies, programs, and methods involved in the governance of populations, the solving of “problems”, and the re-fashioning of government and the state. The course is dedicated to exploring the methodological and epistemological grounds on which (social) policies are justified and built, with a substantive focus on taxation, stratification, bureaucracy, citizenship, technocracy, welfare, and quantification.  In addition, the course includes a focus on the intersection between policies and knowledge production, and issues of gender, race, Indigeneity, and citizenship. The course blends practical policy analysis skills and theoretically informed approaches to social policy, with a focus on knowledge translation, specifically of social analysis into public-facing work.


  • Exam 1 20%
  • Exam 2 20%
  • Briefing Note Project 25%
  • Reading Responses 20%
  • Participation 15%


Grading: Where a final exam is scheduled and the student does not write the exam or withdraw from the course before the deadline date, an N grade will be assigned. Unless otherwise specified on the course syllabus, all graded assignments for this course must be completed for a final grade other than N to be assigned. An N is considered as an F for the purposes of scholastic standing.

Grading System: The Undergraduate Course Grading System is as follows:

A+ (95-100) | A (90-94) | A- (85-89) | B+ (80-84) | B (75-79) | B- (70-74) | C+ (65-69) | C (60-64) | C- (55-59) | D (50-54) | F (0-49) | N*
*N standing to indicate the student did not complete course requirements

Academic Honesty and Student Conduct Policies: The Department of Sociology & Anthropology follows SFU policy in relation to grading practices, grade appeals (Policy T20.01), and academic honesty and student conduct procedures (S10‐S10.05). 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.

Centre for Accessible Learning: Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need classroom or exam accommodations are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (1250 Maggie Benston Centre) as soon as possible to ensure that they are eligible and that approved accommodations and services are implemented in a timely fashion.

The Sociology and Anthropology Student Union, SASU, is a governing body of students who are engaged with the department and want to build the SA community. Get involved!  Follow Facebook and Instagram pages or visit our website.



There is no required text. All course readings will be uploaded 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


Teaching at SFU in spring 2022 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with safety plans in place.  Some courses will still be offered through remote methods, and if so, this will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the spring 2022 term.