External Resources for Teaching Undergraduates

  • Active Learning in Political Science. Active Learning in Political Science is a blog whose goal is to provide resources and ideas for using active learning techniques in the political science classroom and to promote general discussion about innovative teaching methods.
  • Association of Religion Data Archives (ARDA). The Association of Religion Data Archives (ARDA) provides data on American and international religion, as well as features for educators, journalists, religious congregations, and researchers. Teaching materials include learning modules to interactively explore religion topics, syllabi, assignments, and links for teaching religion in multiple disciplines.
  • Consortium for the Advancement of Undergraduate Statistics Education (CAUSE). CAUSE is a national organization whose mission is to support and advance undergraduate statistics education in four target areas: resources, professional development, outreach, and research. Resources for instructors include lesson modules, computer and hands-on activities, homework projects, classroom pedagogy, data sets, humorous items related to statistics (cartoons, jokes, puzzles, quotes,...), and multimedia.
  • Gapminder. The aim of Gapminder is to foster a "fact-based world-view" by offering data on more than 400 indicators of global historical development that can be explored through interactive graphs. The site also provides sample lectures and activities (quizzes, card games) using Gapminder World to foster interest in statistics.
  • MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching). MERLOT provides a wide range of peer reviewed online teaching and learning materials in disciplines ranging from the arts to the social sciences.
  • National Numeracy Network. Although made up largely of individuals in math and science fields, the National Numeracy Network is still a good starting place for materials about quantitative literacy (QL; also called numeracy, quantitative reasoning, and statistical literacy). This site includes a list of books/articles on QL, teaching resources, and more.
  • New Educational Materials on Trends in Inequality. This downloadable slideshow, presented by the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality, offers a broad set of facts and figures on inequality of all types. The educational materials include fourteen modules, each examining a different face of inequality: debt, education, employment, family, gender, health, immigration, income, mobility, politics, poverty, race and ethnicity, violent crime, and wealth.
  • Office Hours. Audio conversations with top social scientists about their research and the social world. The interviews cover a broad range of topics and contemporary social issues.
  • POV. POV (a cinema term for "point of view") showcases independent non-fiction films on contemporary social issues. Resources for instructors include lesson plans, discussion guides, and reading lists.
  • Roper Center for Public Opinion Research. The Roper Center for Public Opinion Research is one of the world's leading archives of social science data, specializing in data from surveys of public opinion. The data held by the Roper Center range from the 1930s, when survey research was in its infancy, to the present. Most of the data are from the United States, but over 50 nations are represented. This site offers assignments and lesson plans about polling and attitude-related topics.
  • Social Science Data Analysis Network (SSDAN). SSDAN is an organization that creates demographic media (such as user guides, web sites, and hands-on classroom computer materials) that make US census data accessible to policymakers, educators, the media, and informed citizens. Through products such as DataCounts! (an archive of census-based datasets and teaching modules designed to provide educators with resources to integrate data analysis exercises into their curricula) and CensusScope (which displays U.S. demographic trends through eye-catching maps, graphics, and exportable trend data), SSDAN provides online tools and resources to facilitate the exploration of demographic trends and further quantitative literacy.
  • Sociological Images. Sociological Images offers brief sociological discussions of compelling and timely imagery that spans the breadth of sociological inquiry. Instructional resources include image guides (organized in a way that follows standard syllabi for frequently-taught sociology courses or cover particular books, articles, or theorists) and sample assignments.
  • Sociology in Focus. This site helps educators take sociology out of the textbook and into the "real world" by providing real-time examples of sociology from the media, pop culture, or the news. Posts end with thought-provoking questions that can be used to start a class discussion or a lecture, or incorporated into graded assignments.
  • Statistics Rap. If you're looking for an ice-breaker or "mood lifter" for a statistics course, this rap might fit the bill.
  • Teaching Integrity in Empirical Research (TIER). This protocol teaches undergraduate students professional standards of statistical research (good practices in data management and documentation) by taking them through all the steps needed to conduct data analysis and document their work carefully and rigorously.
  • Teaching With Data. A collection of assignments, lesson plans, data sets, visual representations of data, and more classified by discipline, topic, and context for use to allow for easy searching.
  • TRAILS (Teaching Resources and Innovations Library for Sociology) A project of the American Sociological Association, TRAILS is an online, dynamic, modular (by topic and type of teaching tool) and searchable database that reflects a major innovation in the creation and dissemination of peer-reviewed teaching resources. Effective, vetted teaching techniques and materials include syllabi, assignments, and class activities.
  • The Sociological Cinema. This site provides video clips tagged with appropriate sociological themes to help faculty incorporate video into their classes.
  • The Teaching Professor. This is a fantastic blog for teaching faculty! It's authored by Maryellen Weimer, who is also the author of Learner-Centered Teaching: Five Key Changes to Practice and several other books on teaching and learning. Her blog, like her books, features thoughtful entries about practical topics. Weimer keeps up on the teaching literature in a variety of fields (marketing, economics, business, etc.) and brings the research together in useful entries.
  • US Census Bureau Data Visualization Gallery. The Data Visualization Gallery offers visualizations of social data ranging from historical population data, to household and family dynamics, migration and geographic mobility, and economic indicators.

Found a problem? Use our Report Problem form to let us know.