tips and tricks for running a workshop

As a graduate student in Michigan, I benefitted from attending and participating in multiple subfield-specific workshops. As at many sociology departments, many of the most important substantive conversations and professionalization discussions happened in these workshops. I learned a ton in my graduate seminars on economic sociology or classical theory, but I learned just as much in the econ soc and theory workshops that I participated in for years after I’d stopped taking courses. As a faculty member, I’ve tried to export some of that model to Brown (which did not have as strong of a workshop culture). More recently, I’ve also had the opportunity to participate in a couple of different interdisciplinary workshops (for science studies students and for an interdisciplinary humanities group). Traveling across these different settings led me to reflect on some of my favorite practices that seem to make a workshop run well. Below, I’ll list a few small practices I’ve seen deployed to make workshops more engaging for participants and useful for presenters.

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devilish details: a reputational ranking of generalist and specialist sociology journals

The following is a guest post by Erin McDonnell and Dustin Stoltz.

Journal reputation or status is sometimes of practical interest to professional sociologists. How well-regarded are some newer and online journals? How do second-tier generalist journals fare versus specialty journals? How do sociological reputations differ from available metrics such as impact factors from Journal Citation Reports? To capture generalized status reputations we asked “Think CVs for an open job: Where would be better for a grad student to publish a solo-authored article?” (see the poll). Today, we examine 23,128 head-to-head evaluations of 92 journals by 422 unique user-sessions. 

For the TL;DR crowd: ASR and AJS are a clear top-tier, followed by Social Forces and then a cluster comprised of some generalist as well as top journals from some specialties. A dendrogram analysis based on similarities in win/loss patterns identifies five clusters: 1) ASR and AJS; 2) Social Forces, Social Problems, and Demography; 3) a cluster comprised of top Theory and (mostly quantitative) Methods journals, as well as specialist journals for Gender, Family, Organizations, Education, Networks, Race, Economic, Medicine, Culture, Social Psychology; 4) a cluster dominated by second-journals in the above specialties and top-journals for other specialties (Religion, Urban, Mobilization, Politics, and Qualitative Methodologies; 5) a cluster of lesser-known journals, which brings together journals with low impact factors as well as high-impact-factor journals that are very influential in some circles but not widely known in sociology as a whole.

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