• the study of society
  • a social science involving the study of the social lives of people, groups, and societies
  • the study of our behavior as social beings, covering everything from the analysis of short contacts between anonymous individuals on the street to the study of global social processes
  • the scientific study of social aggregations, the entities through which humans move throughout their lives
  • an overarching unification of all studies of humankind, including history, psychology, and economics

(cited from American Sociological Association)

Did you know that Michelle Obama, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Kal Penn, among others majored in Sociology in college?

SOC 3100 – INTRODUCTION TO SOCIOLOGY (3 crs. 3 hrs.)
An introduction to the scientific study of society and social
interactions. This course covers social theories, methods,
culture, deviance, social inequities (including race, class, and
gender) and social situations (such as the family, education,
and religion). Students learn to analyze, evaluate, and
critique social structures and to understand social change.

Flexible Core:Individual and Society (Group D)
Some sections are designated as Women's and Gender Studies, Writing Intensive, Honors Enrichment, and/or Learning Communities, check CUNYFirst for information.

SOC 3200 – URBAN SOCIOLOGY (3 crs. 3 hrs.)
The origin of the world's cities, industrialization and the
global spread of cities, post-industrial cities and cities of the
future. Urban research methods. The development and
contemporary life of multicultural American cities.
Prerequisite: SOC 3100 or ANT 3700
Flexible Core: U.S. Experience in Its Diversity (Group B)

(3 crs. 3 hrs.)
Focusing on problems whose origins lie outside the
individual and how their effects are reflected in the behavior
of individuals and the institutions of society. Students will
explore problems relating to health care, education, criminal
justice, inequality, etc.
Prerequisite: SOC 3100 or ANT 3700
Flexible Core: Individual and Society (Group D)

SOC 3500 – SOCIOLOGY OF THE FAMILY (3 crs. 3 hrs.)
The sociology of the family study areas include: definitions,
pattern variations, developmental theories and specialized
functions and their effect on socialization, courtship,
marriage, divorce and the life cycle.
Prerequisite: SOC 3100
Flexible Core: Individual and Society (Group D)

(3 crs. 3 hrs.)
Selected minority groups in American society are studied.
Topics discussed include: nature of prejudice and
discrimination, social meaning of minority, annihilation,
assimilation, competition, conflict, exploitation, social and
cultural change, past and present trends and
Prerequisite: SOC 3100
Flexible Core: U.S. Experience in Its Diversity (Group B)

SOC 3800 – SOCIOLOGY OF GENDER (3 crs. 3 hrs.)
An exploration of the ways people construct gender and
how gender structures our everyday lives and society in
general. Issues that are covered include: how gender is
produced, the relationship of gender to biology, gender and
sexuality, the social evolution of gender, the gendered
division of labor in the home and the workforce, gender and
religion, micro politics of gender and race, class and gender
as intertwined systems of inequality.
Prerequisite: SOC 3100
Flexible Core: Individual and Society (Group D)
Women's and Gender Studies Elective

SOC 3900 – THE SOCIOLOGY OF RELIGION (3 crs. 3 hrs.)
Introduction to the study of religion and society, basic
definitions and concepts, methods, organizational
structures, secularization, church-state, immigration and
multi-cultural environments, interactive effects with socioeconomic
status, ethnicity and gender.
Prerequisite: SOC 3100 or PSY 1100 or ANT 3700
Flexible Core: World Cultures and Global Issues (Group A)

SOC 81XX – INDEPENDENT STUDY (1-3 crs. 1-3 hrs.)
Independent study of sociology is developed individually
between student and faculty member and must be
approved by the Department.

SOC 82XX – (1-3 crs. 1-3 hrs.)
This course is of a topical and pilot nature and is designed to
meet the immediate needs and interests of various student
populations. It is offered for a maximum of two semesters.

SOC 31, SOC 32, SOC 33, SOC 35, SOC 36, SOC 38, SOC 39 are all Civic Engagement Certified Courses 


Alison Better, Ph.D.
Sociology Area Coordinator, Associate Professor
Courses Taught: SOC 31 (Introduction to Sociology) and SOC 38 (Sociology of Gender)
Office: D107
Telephone: 718.368.5894

Professor Alison Better is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Co-Director of Women's and Gender Studies at Kingsborough Community College. She holds a PhD in Sociology from Brandeis University. Dr. Better's research engages two distinct areas, one on sex-toy stores, women's sexual agency, and reimagining sexual categories and another exploring the role of using personal experience to enhance learning in urban community college sociology classrooms. Dr. Better was a member of the American Sociological Association's Task Force on Community College Faculty and served as a council member for the ASA Sections on Body and Embodiment and Teaching and Learning. She has published articles in Sexualities, Sexuality & Culture, Teaching Sociology, and The American Sociologist and is the co-editor (with KCC colleagues Emily Schnee and Martha Clark Cummings) of the book Civic Engagement Pedagogy in the Community College: Theory and Practice (Springer 2016).

Avri Beard
Office: E318
Phone: 718.368.5215

Avri Beard is a full-time Sociology lecturer, who joined the department in 2008. She holds Master's degrees in Community and Regional Planning and in Latin American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin and in Sociology from the University of California, Berkeley. Her past research examined the role of economic elites in democratic transitions in El Salvador and Guatemala. She currently teaches Introduction to Sociology and Urban Sociology and has taught Minorities in the U.S.


Evrick Brown 
Assistant Professor 
Introduction to Sociology, Social Problems, Race and Ethnicity, Urban Sociology 
Office:     T8-110A  
Phone:     718-368-6820             

Evrick Brown received his Ph.D. in Sociology from the State University of New York at Albany and is currently an Assistant Professor in the Behavioral Sciences Department at Kingsborough Community College.  He is the co-author of two edited volumes with Timothy Shortell entitled Walking in the European City: Quotidian Mobility and Urban Ethnography with Ashgate Press and Walking in Global Cities: Quotidian Mobility as Urban Theory, Method, and Practice with Temple University Press. His areas of interest include Urban Sociology through the exploration of Mobility and Community, along with Political Sociology and Race and Ethnicity.

Anna Karpathakis, Ph.D
Associate Professor
Teaches Introduction to Sociology, Urban Sociology, Race & Ethnicity, Sociology of the Family, Social Problems
Office: E107
Phone: 718-368-5238
Research and Writing Interests: Immigration and Immigrant studies, Race & Ethnicity, Religion

Jennifer Mitchell 
Courses Taught:  Introduction to Sociology, Minority Studies, ESL, Integrative Seminar 
Office: E319 
Phone: 718.638.5219

Jennifer Mitchell joined Kingsborough in the Fall 2009. She is a full time lecturer of Sociology.   Her previous experience includes teaching Sociology in West Texas as well as working in Community Development organizations in the Mississippi Delta and the Bronx.   Ms Mitchell earned a Master's of Community Development from Delta State University in Cleveland, Mississippi.

Stuart Parker
Assistant Professor
Courses Taught: Introduction to Sociology, Sociology of Religion, Urban Sociology
Office:  D302
Phone: 718-368-6751

Professor Parker has been teaching sociology at Kingsborough since 2011. Before that he worked for 25 years in urban public schools as a teacher, program developer and administrator. His most recent position prior to moving back to Brooklyn was as the Director of Alternative and Vocational Education for an urban district in Pennsylvania. His primary research interests are in the fields of urban education, race theory and narrative analysis.

Katia Perea, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Courses Taught: Introduction to Sociology, Sociology of Gender, Urban Sociology, Social Problems
Office: M-116
Phone: 718-368-5679 

Katia Perea holds a PhD in Sociology and Media Studies from the New School for Social Research. She is a cartoon scholar, her research specializes in television girl cartoons where she explores the counter-hegemonic potential that exists within the culture industry in the form of playful transgression to gender normative coding.


Dr. Charles Swift
Assistant Professor
Courses Taught: SOC 31 (Introduction to Sociology) SOC 35 (Sociology of the Family), SOC 36 (Minority Groups In the United States)
Office: E223
Phone: 718-368-5658

Charles Swift began his teaching career as an adjunct in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Baruch College; He is presently an assistant professor in the Department of Behavioral Sciences at Kingsborough Community College. He has also served as an adjunct lecturer in the Department of Latino and Caribbean Studies at Rutgers University. Prior to teaching Dr. Swift served as a Research Scientist at the Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research and as a Program Director at FEGS--a behavioral health organization. He received his MPhil/Ph.D. in Public and Urban Policy from The New School, MSW from Fordham University, and B.A. in Sociology from Delaware State University.  His research interests include Caribbean immigrants, migration, and urban health policy. 

Dominic Wetzel
Associate Professor of Sociology
Courses Taught: Introduction to Sociology, Sociology of Gender, Social Problems
Office: D211
Phone : 718-612-1200

Professor Wetzel received his PhD in Sociology from the CUNY Graduate Center. His interests include critical social theory, politics, gender and sexuality, cultural studies, social justice, labor, critical pedagogy, ecology and religion. His work has been published in Situations: Project of the Radical Imagination; Research in the Sociology of Work; Capitalism, Nature, Socialism; and in the Routledge anthology Religious Queers, Queering Religion. He is currently working on a book based on his dissertation: Re-enchanting the World; Religion, Desire and the Crisis of Modernity.  ​

Pierre Balthazar
Adjunct lecturer
Courses Taught: Introduction to Sociology and Urban Sociology
Office: E 320
Phone : 718-368-5888

A former student, Professor Balthazar joined KBCC in 2003. He hold a BA in sociology from York College, a MS in urban studies from Hunter College, a MS in Education. He is currently working toward completing his Doctoral Degree in Transformational Leadership at Concordia University, Portland, Oregon.  

Emmanuel Garcia 
Adjunct Lecturer 
Courses Taught: Soc31 (Intro to Sociology) Soc36 (Race and Ethnicity in Society)
Office: E320
Phone 718-368-5888

Emmanuel Garcia has been with the Behavioral Sciences Department at Kingsborough since 2014. He also works with New York City youth, teaching documentary video as a means of developing critical literacy and youth led civic engagement. He holds an MA in the Sociology of Education from NYU. 

Orit Hirsh, Ph.D.
Adjunct Assistant Professor 
Courses Taught: Sociology 31 (Introduction to Sociology)
Phone: 718.368.4780

Orit Hirsh holds a PhD in Education with concentration in Educational Technology from Walden University. Her research interests is centered on teaching and designing engagement in online courses and integration of technology and social network applications in education.

Alan Hoffner
Adjunct Lecturer
Courses Taught: Sociology 31 (Introduction to Sociology), Sociology 35 (Sociology of the Family)
Phone: 718.982.2381

AA (Liberal Arts), Kingsborough Community College; BA (English/Education), Brooklyn College, MS.Ed (Education), Baruch College, ABD/Ph.D (Sociology), CUNY Graduate Center
TAUGHT AT: Kingborough Community College, College of Staten Island, Wagner College, Hudson County Community College

Michael Ortiz
Adjunct Lecturer
Courses Taught: SOC 3100
Office: E320

Michael Ortiz has been teaching Introduction to Sociology at Kingsborough since 2012. "I enjoy teaching sociology because students can have fun and learn at the same time."