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SOC 255 Dating, Relationships, and Families • 5 Cr.


How have courtship and dating changed? What does it mean to be a ?family?? Is ?the family? falling apart? Explore changes in the culture and structure of families, and analyze how families play a central role in American life. Themes include single parenting, new family structures, cohabitation, marriage and divorce, and/or courtship and dating.


After completing this class, students should be able to:

  • Describe patterns in contemporary courtship/dating and illustrate how they’ve changed over time;
  • Analyze how gender, race, and class shape dating patterns as well as the dynamics of courtship;
  • Explain the complexity of “family” as an idea;
  • Discuss how ideas of “family” are socially constructed, culturally relative, and dynamic;
  • Explain how families are connected to and shaped by culture and all the major social institutions, especially political and economic processes;
  • Analyze the social structure of families;
  • Discuss the wide range of experiences within and between families;
  • Debunk common myths about the family;
  • Illustrate how gender, class, sexuality, and race structure families;
  • Appreciate the wide range of family forms;
  • Identify common areas of inequality within and between families and propose solutions;
  • Critically analyze social and political discourses about dating and families; and
  • Apply the course ideas to their own lives.



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Contact info

Bellevue College
3000 Landerholm Circle SE Bellevue, WA 98007-6484 U.S.A.
Work: (425) 564-1000