Functionalism Tutorial
Functionalism Tutorial

These short video tutorials are basically a variant on “podcasts with pictures”: a talking head tutor in one corner of the screen explains something while the occasional picture or real-time whiteboard illustration is displayed.

In other words, the 40+ films available here are relatively simple video lectures of the “listen and learn” variety – which is not necessarily a criticism, merely an observation that this is what’s on offer.

I’m guessing the objective is to get students to sign-up with the on-line tutors behind the films (Chegg Tutors – judging from the accents they’re an American-based company) but since these tutorials cost no money to view, that’s an option you’re free to ignore.

And in case there’s any confusion, I’m not promoting or endorsing either the tutors or the tutorials. I’m merely observing their existence.

Anyway, most of the tutorials are relatively short – averaging around 5 minutes – but a couple, such as Labelling Theory and Gender Socialisation run to around 9 minutes.

For some reason that’s not entirely clear, Sex v. Gender runs to 20-odd minutes. Even though it’s Quite Interesting in parts – in a “this is the science behind it” kind of way – I’m guessing most students and teachers would find the length and depth something of an overkill for a distinction that is, on the face of things, pretty basic.

Somewhat oddly, not all the tutors introduce themselves (“Hi, I’m Michelle and I’m a tutor for…”) as sociologists and while this isn’t necessarily a Bad Thing – getting an alternative perspective on things can be useful – if you’re a teacher using these tutorials it’s probably going to be a good idea to check each one through before you point your students in their direction. Overall, however, there’s a good selection of tutorials (from perspectives such as the aforementioned Functionalism and Symbolic Interactionism to concepts like Ethnicity, Norms and Social Class) and if you want to check all the tutorials you’ll find them stored in this handy Playlist.

How you might want to use them, if at all, is of course up to you – but they might come in handy as catch-up viewing for students who have missed classes or, more likely perhaps, as another possible Flipped Teaching resource…

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