Urban Community Studies (UCS)

UCS-411. Theoretical Foundations In Urban Community Studies. 3 Hours.

This is the orientation for the Master’s Degree program in Urban Community Studies. This course is designed to provide students with a rigorous grounding in the theoretical frameworks that analyze and understand the Inner City. This course will explore the intellectual foundations of the human condition in the part of urban America referred to as the “inner city” by comparative investigation<br />of cultural, education, economic, social, and political issues in these spaces.

UCS-412. Methods In Urban Community Research. 3 Hours.

Research design and analysis of data; methods for collecting and interpreting data, observation, formulation of hypotheses, techniques of interviewing, questionnaire construction, and writing of reports. The primary objective of the course is to train students to read research studies with understanding and to apply the findings to their own research projects.

UCS-415. Urban Ethnography. 3 Hours.

Urban Ethnography introduces students to ethnographic data collection methods associated with the study of urban environments. Students will explore the foundations of urban ethnography through classical sociological and anthropological studies. Students will conduct their own ethnographies and learn how to incorporate ethnographic analysis into their research writing.

UCS-416. The African-American Experience In Urban Communities. 3 Hours.

This course explores how pull and push factors influence social, political, and economic outcomes for African Americans living in urban spaces. Students will examine how issues of race, class, gender, urban development gentrification and displacement impact African-American urban life.

UCS-420. Migration And Diaspora In Urban Communities. 3 Hours.

Migration and Diaspora in Urban Communities is an examination of movement and diaspora in the historical, cultural and socio-political development of urban communities. Special emphasis is placed on the Great Migration and the Bronzeville community as well as migration experiences in local Chicago communities such as Englewood, Austin, Humboldt Park and Pilsen.

UCS-421. Faith Institutions As Political Instruments. 3 Hours.

The focus of this course is to examine faith institutions as sites of political discourse, engagement, and activism. Special attention is given to examining the history of Black institutions, the intersection of race and gender on religiosity, and the role of resistance movements from contemporary faith-based institutions.

UCS-426. History And Philosophy Of Urban Education. 3 Hours.

Examine the various theoretical constructs, pedagogy, and policies defining urban education since the Post Reconstruction Era. Navigate the journey of how school reform from a philanthropic paradigm and urban policy-planning framework develop and influence textbook selections, curriculum benchmarks, testing requirements, school arrangements, and employment trends.

UCS-431. Systemic Challenges In Public Education. 3 Hours.

The course contrasts and compares how educational ordeals and outcomes are universal throughout many school districts. From addressing minority teacher shortages to cultural curriculum applications, the course will examine a variety of best practices, policy interventions, and instructional strategies required to better teach and service marginalized and traditional youth impacted from external school forces, e.g. family issues, parental arrangements, drugs, social media, poverty.

UCS-432. Curriculum And Pedagogy In Urban Schools. 3 Hours.

The course offers a historical analysis, contemporary examination, and ethnographic review of educational policies and school initiatives framing urban America’s curriculum pedagogy. The purpose of the course is to advance an interpretive understanding of how urban policy planning and school equity influences the construction of a school curriculum.

UCS-433. Popular Culture. 3 Hours.

Popular Culture is an examination of critical issues and theoretical approaches to the study of popular culture with special attention of popular culture within an urban context. The course will explore the way that Popular culture analysis occurs in a number of different fields, including Sociology, Communications, Anthropology, History, Cultural Studies, English, Women's Studies, Ethnic Studies, and Urban Studies. Special focus will be placed on the relationship between urban communities and several areas of popular culture including television, film, advertising, popular music, and social media.

UCS-441. Urban Culture. 3 Hours.

Urban Culture examines the social practices and shared expression of groups that live in urban settings. This course is intended to introduce students to the changing nature of community, social inequality, political power, socio-spatial change, technological change, and the relationship between the built environment and human behavior. Special emphasis will be placed on the urban cultures of various ethnic groups in Chicago.

UCS-443. Research Writing. 3 Hours.

This course will offer instruction in writing reports, proposals, papers and the thesis with consideration given to form and style. Moreover, this course is intended to help you master the strategies and conventions of academic research writing. In the broadest terms, we do research whenever we gather information to answer a question that solves a problem. At its most fundamental level, the basis for research writing is to collect all of the available information/data (within reason) on a specific topic, read it, categorize and analyze the information (process) and produce a written report of your findings.

UCS-445. Critical Analysis Of Hip Hop Culture. 3 Hours.

This course explores the social, political, and cultural forces that influence hip-hop culture and the rap music industry. The conceptual paradigm used in this course will be guided by an activist-scholarship paradigm which involves the shaping of public policy via participatory research and community empowerment. The research presented and conducted in this course is intended to contribute to the forces of activism for social justice in the inner city. An outcome of this course will be to use hip-hop to mobilize inner-city populations to become involved in the shaping of public policy and civic engagement.

UCS-446. Urban Health And Wellness. 3 Hours.

Urban Health and Wellness examines the historical development and current state of urban health and wellness particularly the ability of urban health agencies to meet community health needs. The course will pay special attention to contemporary public health issues and the ways these issues are addressed by urban health agencies and communities as a whole.

UCS-447. Urban Youth Culture And Development. 3 Hours.

The focus of this course is to examine complexities of youth development within an urban context. Specifically, this course will use critical race theory and systems theory to explore youth development within the context of neurobiology, violence management, sexuality, civic engagement, and media consumption.

UCS-452. Field Internship. 1 Hour.

The field internship allows students to receive professional training aligned to their existing research topics and thesis to support their completion of the master thesis requirement. Students are not only directly engaged in the fields of varied organizational agencies to gain work-related experience, but also asked to write reflective exercises as a means to apply various data tools to summarize varied learning experiences. Furthermore, students are to develop a portfolio/e-portfolio that captures the intellectual and practical experiences encountered servicing people in urban environments. To be taken concurrently with UCS-453. Students are required to complete 100 intern hours.

UCS-453. Seminar. 3 Hours.

ICSE-453 is the seminar section of ICSE-452, which allows students to review and analyze qualitative methodology and data collection tools in the fields including social work, criminal justice, and education. The seminar research course also investigates the theories, perspectives, and data used to assess and interpret urban challenges and social phenomena. To be taken concurrently<br />with UCS-452.

UCS-5901. Research And Thesis. 1 Hour.

Supervision and advisement in the research and writing of a thesis to fulfill the requirements for the Master of Arts degree in Urban Community Studies. This course requires the approval of the instructor, program facilitator and the appropriate College Dean(s). Students will have completed the required courses with a B average or higher, and have obtained the approval of their graduate advisor before registering for the thesis hours.

UCS-5902. Research And Thesis. 2 Hours.

Supervision and advisement in the research and writing of a thesis to fulfill the requirements for the Master of Arts degree in Urban Community Studies. This course requires the approval of the instructor, program facilitator and the appropriate College Dean(s). Students will have completed the required courses with a B average or higher, and have obtained the approval of their graduate advisor before registering for the thesis hours.

UCS-5903. Research And Thesis. 3 Hours.

Supervision and advisement in the research and writing of a thesis to fulfill the requirements for the Master of Arts degree in Urban Community Studies. This course requires the approval of the instructor, program facilitator and the appropriate College Dean(s). Students will have completed the required courses with a B average or higher, and have obtained the approval of their graduate advisor before registering for the thesis hours.