California State University Faculty Activity Report

For the period: July 1, 1997 through December 31, 1998.

(Post tenure review: Report submitted February 1, 1999.)

I submit the following report under protest at the "supervisorial" nature of the manner in which the report is requested and the circumstances dictated under which it shall be reviewed. I have done excellent work particularly over the last eighteen months in creating and bringing to international attention a web site through which I teach and share my research with students and colleagues, globally. This report offers one of the few opportunities for me to update and bring to the attention of the administration this continual successful effort. I believe that such communication is essential to any university. But I believe that the communication should fall within the bounds of faculty governance, which has been woefully and wrongfully denied by the California State University system.

1. Teaching and Contributions to Student Development/Other Primary Work Assignment

A. Fall 1998: Sociology of Law, Sociology of Women, Sociology of the Net, Statistics (Need to check Banner for enrollment.)

Spring 1998: Graduate Seminar in Criminal Justice and Social Change, Juvenile Delinquency, Statistics (Need to check Banner for enrollment.)

The statistics course has evolved to a point where the students are working effectively in groups, have solid knowledge in the basic concepts of statistics, and are comfortable with the use of the SPSS program and the Internet. The continuing high enrollment in this course indicates their satisfaction with it.

The students themselves, in Sociology of Law and Sociology of Women, moved towards creating Web pages that could be linked to our Web site. They did this in full cooperation with me and with each other. I found myself with dozens of them in my office, struggling with HTML as just another step in their learning.

By December 1998, students had learned that the Internet was a tool that offered them options and additional growth. They began to share in responsibility for the site, and by early 1999 had even begun to define peer review activities formally.

Taught with six new texts this semester, and have put up materials for all of them on the Web site. But did not discard the older texts, so that students could continue to share the old texts at a much lower price.

Worked with students to establish the Sociology Web Board, and to give students the knowledge necessary to a useful creation of web pages. This led us to extend the department's plans to include the purchase of a server on which we could give access directly to our students. Received an ASI technology grant to this end.

Expanded our KIDS' site to include an excellent index of museum sites and have begun work on "Help with Homework." In addition to that we followed Katzir's theme of coloring sheets from his art exhibition, shown globally, to a new methodological approach to photography as sociological methodology. The methods goes into our theory and methods papers, but the application is designed for our KIDS' site.

Freed of the responsibilities of Chair, when my term was duly ended in August, 1998, I have had more time to work directly with students, with the women's center, with women's studies, and with the older adult center. I have also had more time to devote to developing both criminal justice alternatives for our curriculum and social welfare alternatives, the two areas most likely to attract our students after graduation. All this has been done with a continuing heavy focus on the Internet.

I continue to act as a the department's social director.

II. Scholarly/Creative Activities and Professional Development/Practice

"High Tech, Low Tech and Survival: Technology and Criminal Justice Education." Jeanne Curran and Susan Takata. Paper prepared for presentation during the November 1998 meetings of the American Society of Criminology in Washington, D.C.

"Playing with Habermas: Testing Theory and Practice." Jeanne Curran and Susan Takata. Paper prepared for presentation during the November 1998 meetings of the American Society of Criminology in Washington, D.C.

"Teaching - What Does it Mean as We Approach the Millennium?" Jeanne Curran and Susan Takata. Paper presented during the August 1998 meetings of the American Sociological Association in San Francisco.

Technology grants. Continuing, in cooperation with Chair Robert Christie, to fund servers and web site links to coordinate our evolving curriculum development with the new media.

Team teaching in both criminology and sociology of law planned with Professor Susan Takata, University of Wisconsin, Parkside for Fall 1999. This process was already begun this Fall, as we posted course materials, and included Wisconsin's courses on our Web site.

B. Work in Progress

Susan Takata and I have continued to present our work in critical theory and Habermasian discourse at meetings in criminal justice and sociology. We have incorporated this work, as it develops, into our teaching, which inspired six students to accompany me to the Western Social Science Association Meetings this Spring.

The Web site has grown literally into a virtual community. We have carefully followed this development, together with Robert Christie, and with other professionals who have studied the phenomenon of the virtual community. We expect this to afford a primary area of growth both to the site and to the department.

III. University and Community Service

Department Social Director, in charge of cooling out ruffled feathers, with colleagues and with students. Have continued that task, successfully, this year. Our AKD chapter is back on track. Our Dear Habermas students are developing peer review patterns for their site. Our tutors are working with us on ways to encourage and to restrain free discourse on our Web Board.

B. Served briefly to replace Gary Colboth on the Senate's Budget Committee.

C. Professional Service Activities

Conduct panels for WSSA, several over the last five years.

Work with the Division of Women of the American Society of Criminology, creating a listserv and providing for Women in Criminal Justice a bulletin board.

Membership in ASA, WSSA, ASC, ACJS.

Work with high school students.

Work with intermediate school students.

Work with elementary school students.

IV. Special Accomplishments and Other Activities Not Listed Above

I was invited to join a group of global faculty who, like me, focus on narrative methodology, and who believe in the crossing of disciplines in an approach to meaningful discourse. Virtual Faculty can be accessed at

I was invited to join Howard Rheingold's Brainstorms Community: "A few hundred people from around the world communicate about technology, the future, life online, culture, society, family, history, books, health, home, mind, phun, money and academiaville." ( Since I have kept Rheingold's book on Virtual Community on my desk since the inception of Dear Habermas, the invitation to join this group is still pretty heady.

I find that the move to the study of virtual communities, and the Dear Habermas community that is developing, has been advantageous to my work on social welfare and criminal justice. Both are coming together with students' interest in planning career moves.

Are you willing to have your name published if awarded a faculty merit increase? Yes.

I attest that the information provided in this report is accurate and true to the best of my knowledge.


Faculty Member's Signature Date