"One of the most admirable things was that after every section we filled out evaluations and suggestions for improving section. Sharon’s willingness to accept criticism and suggestions embody what Stanford is all about, an institution which constantly looks to self improve and ignite student’s understanding and passion over a range of academic fields."          -- from a student's nomination letter for the Diane Middlebrook Graduate Teaching Prize
"As busy as Stanford undergraduates are, I consider a student voluntarily taking the time to write to me to be a strong indicator of Sharon’s exceptional work as a TA. I think this student’s email conveys a sense of what makes Sharon special. She displays a deep concern and respect for students as individuals and they respond to that. Perhaps most importantly, Sharon seems to have been especially effective with students who were having the most trouble in the course (as this student was). She took the time to reach out to these students and really turn their performance around. They (and I) benefited from her dedication and efforts."     -- Professor Shelley Correll
"As a Sophomore, I have had over a dozen Teaching Assistants, and to be completely honest, none have been as dedicated as Sharon was to our class."     -- from a student's nomination letter for the Diane Middlebrook Graduate Teaching Prize 
"I think Sharon did an excellent job as a section leader. She know when to let students discuss and she knew when to probe further. She was also very good at picking up when the student were confused about something, and was then able to explain the concept or idea better."     -- from anonymous student evaluation
"I can honestly say Sharon is one of the best TA's I have ever had. She was obviously very committed to her students and was always ready to do everything it took to have us succeed. Her slideshows for section were a great cumulative review for the week, but she was able to balance humor with learning. I really could not recommend a better TA to anyone."  -- from anonymous student evaluation

 

Inequality, Poverty, and Policy in the United States (Soc 135/235)
Department of Sociology, Stanford University, Teaching Assistant

 Student evaluations

 Student evaluations

Course Description:  This class explores the nature and extent of poverty in the United States. We will look at its causes and consequences. We will also explore the antipoverty effects of existing and proposed government programs and policies. The types of questions that we will be addressing throughout the quarter include the following: What is poverty? Why is poverty so persistent? How has it changed over time? Why are poverty rates for minorities so high? Is there a culture of poverty? What is the relationship between poverty, family structure, inner city neighborhoods, labor market conditions, and public policies? Is poverty passed on from one generation to the next?

 

 

Sociology of Gender (Soc 142/242)
Department of Sociology, Stanford University, Teaching Assistant

For this course I received the Diane Middlebrook Graduate Teaching Prize

Student evaluations

Student evaluations

Course Description:  People have many ideas about gender—about women, men, femininity, and masculinity. These ideas organize our social lives in important ways and often in ways that we do not even notice. They are often so taken for granted that we simply assume they are part of the “normal” or natural way that life works. As part of its focus, sociology investigates and exposes aspects of social life that are usually taken for granted. In this course, we will critically examine the multiple ways that gender structures the social world in which we live. We will highlight social practices at multiple levels of analysis, including socioeconomic structures, patterns of interaction among individuals and biological and socialization processes at the individual level. We will then use this multilevel framework to examine the workings of gender in the American workplace, and as individuals balance work and family obligations. Next, we will explore how gender shapes the interactions between and among women and men, creating and recreating gender. Finally, we will conclude by considering the possibilities of a “degendered” or less-gendered society.

 

 

Introduction to Modern Sociological Theory (Soc 170/270)
Department of Sociology, Stanford University, Teaching Assistant

Student evaluations

Student evaluations

Course Description: This course is an introduction to the foundations of sociological theory. The goal of the course is to critically evaluate the major theorists and debates within classical and contemporary theory. For most of the quarter, we will examine the three key figures in classical theory: Karl Marx, Max Weber, and Emile Durkheim. In addition, we will focus on more recent theories including symbolic interactionism, conflict theory, and structural functionalism. Topics include the problem of social order and the nature of social conflict; capitalism and bureaucracy; the relationship between social structure and politics; the social sources of religion and political ideology; and the evolution of modern societies.