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Understanding Social Problems 10th Edition

Linda A. Mooney, Ph.D. | David Knox, Ph.D. | Caroline Schacht, M.A.

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This thoroughly revised edition of UNDERSTANDING SOCIAL PROBLEMS, 10th Edition, progresses from micro to macro analysis, focusing first on health care, drugs and alcohol, families, and crime and then looking at the larger issues of poverty and inequality, population growth, aging, environmental problems, and global conflict. Each chapter frames a social problem in a global and U.S. context, applies three theoretical perspectives, and explores alternative solutions. Pedagogical features such as "The Human Side" and "Self and Society" enable students to grasp how social problems affect the lives of individuals and apply their understanding of social problems to their own lives.

Linda A. Mooney, Ph.D., East Carolina University

Linda A. Mooney, Ph.D., is an associate professor of sociology at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. In addition to social problems, her specialties include law, criminology, and juvenile delinquency. She has published over 30 professional articles in such journals as Social Forces, Sociological Inquiry, Sex Roles, Sociological Quarterly, and Teaching Sociology, in addition to authoring several books. She has won numerous teaching awards, including the University of North Carolina, Board of Governor's Distinguished Professor for Teaching Award.

David Knox, Ph.D., East Carolina University

David Knox, Ph.D., is professor of sociology at East Carolina University, where he teaches courtship and marriage; marriage and the family; and sociology of human sexuality. He is a marriage and family therapist as well as the author or co-author of 12 books and over 100 professional articles.

Caroline Schacht, M.A., East Carolina University

Caroline Schacht, M.A. in Sociology and M.A. in Child Development and Family Relations, is Instructor Emeritus at East Carolina University. She retired from a career teaching sociology to become a certified Romana's Pilates instructor. She is co-author of several textbooks and balances her time writing and revising, teaching Pilates in her home studio, and writing children's verses and songs for her grandchildren.

MindTap® is the digital learning solution that powers students from memorization to mastery. It gives you complete control of your course—to provide engaging content, to challenge every individual, and to build their confidence. Empower students to accelerate their progress with MindTap.

  • "Social Problems Research Up Close" features provide examples of social science research to demonstrate the sociological enterprise from theory and data collection to findings and conclusions, offering students a valuable understanding of how research in the social sciences occurs in the real world.
  • Several "What Do You Think?" features in each chapter present questions designed to elicit critical thinking on key topics and encourage students to discover and clarify their own opinions. For example, students are asked to weigh privacy rights versus crime prevention in the growing use of video cameras in public places.
  • The "Animals in Society" boxes expose students to this exciting area of study, which examines the relationship between humans and animals in a sociological context. Topics include, among others, a discussion of the use of animals in scientific research.
  • The text organizes topics into four primary sections: Sociology and the Study of Social Problems, Problems of Well-Being, Problems of Inequality, and Problems of Globalization, supporting seamless progress from micro- to macro-level analysis and helping students to steadily build their knowledge and confidence with the material.
  • Full coverage of social problem issues related to race, class, gender, and sexual orientation is included, along with integrated coverage of feminist theory, ensuring that material will likely be relevant to students with a wide variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and interests.
  • "Self and Society" features throughout the text present social surveys designed to help students assess their own attitudes, beliefs, knowledge, or behavior regarding some aspect of a social problem. Examples include an assessment of attitudes toward homosexuals and a survey on fear of crime.
  • "The Human Side" features provide insight into the impact of social problems on the individual through first-hand accounts of those affected. Examples include a suicide note from a transgender youth and a letter to an editor on the frustration of being a public school teacher.

Understanding Social Problems


1. Thinking about Social Problems.
2. Physical and Mental Health and Health Care.
3. Alcohol and Other Drugs.
4. Crime and Social Control.
5. Family Problems.
6. Economic Inequality, Wealth, and Poverty.
7. Work and Unemployment.
8. Problems in Education.
9. Race, Ethnicity, and Immigration.
10. Gender Inequality.
11. Sexual Orientation and the Struggle for Equality.
12. Population Growth and Aging.
13. Environmental Problems.
14. Science and Technology.
15. Conflict, War, and Terrorism.

Training and Support

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Learn More

Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.


Online Instructor's Manual with Test Bank

ISBN: 9781305674943
Streamline and maximize the effectiveness of your course preparation using such resources as lecture outlines, classroom activities, student projects, video suggestions, chapter test banks and many other classroom support materials.

Online PowerPoint® Slides

ISBN: 9781305674967
These vibrant Microsoft® PowerPoint® lecture slides for each chapter assist you with your lecture by providing concept coverage using images, figures, and tables directly from the textbook.

Cengage Learning Testing, powered by Cognero® Instant Access

ISBN: 9781305672772
Cengage Learning Testing Powered by Cognero® is a flexible, online system that allows you to: import, edit, and manipulate content from the text's test bank or elsewhere, including your own favorite test questions; create multiple test versions in an instant; and deliver tests from your LMS, your classroom, or wherever you want.