Course Profile

KNES 287: Sport in American Society

Created by Dr. David L. Andrews, this is sociology course that helps introduce social theory and cultural studies to Kinesiology majors at the University of Maryland, College Park. This course is taught both online (Summer & Winter) and in-person (Fall & Spring).

Course Description

Sport will be related to such social problems as delinquency, segregation, collective behavior, and leisure; to social processes such as socialization, stratification, mobility, and social control; and to those familiar social institutions as the family, the school, the church, the military, the economy, the polity, and the mass media.

KNES 287 Course Learning Objectives:

1. [Following C. Wright Mills] Develop their own sociologically-based sporting imaginations, through which they will be able to identify and interpret sporting institutions, practices, and bodies as being both constituted and constituting elements of the contemporary American context in which they are located.

2. Derive a better understanding of the relationship between sport and the social, cultural, economic, political, and technological forces and relations operating in twenty-first century America.

3. Assess the dominant power structures, processes, and relations in and through which contemporary sport culture operates, and examine their effects upon shaping particular class, race, gender, sex, age, and nation-based bodies, identities, and experiences.

4. Illustrate the existence of, and be able to propose solutions for, any disparities, inequalities, and/or injustices operating within contemporary sport culture.

5. Think both critically and reflexively about their own sporting experiences and bodies, and the degree to they are enabled and/or constrained by wider societal forces, structures, and power relations.

6. Synthesize and apply concepts drawn from social and cultural theorizing in critically appraising various empirical dimensions of sport.


Module 1: Structures and Processes

Module 2: Bodies and Identities

Module 3: Collectivities and Spaces

Course Format

  • Traditional lecture style 50 minutes (twice weekly)
  • Discussion sections 50 minutes (weekly)

Learning Assessments

  • Quizzes (12)
  • Minor Writing Assignments (2)
  • Major Writing Assignments (2)
  • Participation (15% of total grade)
  • Module Exams (3)
  • Final Exam
%d bloggers like this: