Ronald L. Akers
Spring 2010 Period 7 (1:55-2:45 pm) MWF Section 4863
Fine Arts C 127
    Course Objectives
    The course is designed to gain knowledge of sociological and related perspectives,  research, and policy on drug and alcohol use and abuse in society.  Although, the legitimate use of legal substances (alcohol, tobacco, prescription medications) in society will be included, the course will focus on criminal, illegal, and deviant drug and alcohol behavior, problems, and abuse.   The objectives are to gain an understanding of the facts, knowledge, explanation, differing views, and other issues related to the nature, distribution, and trends of substance use and abuse, theory and research on drug and alcohol behavior, and the nature, usefulness and effectiveness of law, policies, and programs  for control, prevention, and treatment of alcohol and drug problems.
    There will be three exams.  The first exam is tentatively scheduled for Feb. 5 during class time and the second for March 19 during class time.  The third exam is the final examination for the course and  will be given during the time scheduled  for Period 7 MWF, Exam Group 26D April 26 at 3:00pm. THE FINAL EXAM WILL NOT BE GIVEN THE LAST DAY OF CLASSES. Do not make travel plans that assume that you will not need to be on campus April 26..
    The examinations will not be cumulative; only material covered since the first exam will be on the second exam, and only materials covered since the second exam will be included on the final exam (thus, the final exam will not be comprehensive covering the entire course).  
    The examinations will include true-false and multiple choice questions, and may, at the instructor’s discretion, also include essay questions.  The nature of the exam and the  materials to be covered will be announced and reviewed in a class period prior to the date of the exam.  Each student is responsible for bringing to the exam at least one #2 lead pencil for marking exam answer sheets. If it is announced that the exam will include essay questions, each student is responsible for also bringing a "blue book" essay booklet (available at UF Bookstore and other bookstores).
    Course Grade
     The course grade will be assigned on the sum total of points each student scores on all  three exams. The grade of A  will be assigned for the sum of these scores equal to or greater than 90% of the total possible points adding all the exams together. The grade of B+  will be assigned for 85%, B for 80%, C+ for 75%, C for 70%, D+ for 65%, D for 60%, and E for less than 60%.   Note that the university system for calculating GPA from grades assigned changed last summer and is now A=4.0; A- =.67; B+=3.33;B=3.0; B- =2.67; C+=2.33; C = 2.0; D+=1.33; D=1.0; D- = .67; E=.0.0.
    Academic Honesty
     Academic honestly is assumed.  All students are encouraged to make it a matter of pride and conscience not to cheat in any way on exams or in fulfilling course requirements, neither seeking assistance nor assisting another student to cheat.  The Honor Code of the Student Body Statutes, endorsed by the University Senate reads: “We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to hold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity.” Your continued enrollment in this class is an expressed endorsement of this policy. In addition, the following statement will be inserted for your required signature on examinations: "On my honor, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid on this examination." There are procedures for sanctioning academic dishonesty including referral to the student honor court.
    Interaction with Instructor in and Outside of Class:
    I encourage class participation and discussion within the limits of the size of the class . Questions in class are welcomed and will be responded to reasonably.  During class time I may call upon students to respond to questions and ask for questions from students. I may also ask for summaries, reactions, or analysis of assigned readings during class time.  Also, I and my teaching assistant for this course are available and accessible for advising on the class or any academic issue related to your major, progress, and career goals.  If you have individual questions or need assistance with regard to any class or reading materials, or need advice, you may see me or the TA during office hours or by appointment if you are unable to come to the office during those times.
    CLASS WILL NOT MEET: MLK Day, Jan. 18; Spring Break, March 8-13

    Professor’s Office, Hours, Web Page and Internet Interaction
    My office is 3358 Turlington, and I shall hold office hours 9:30am to 10:30pm MWF.
    My email address is, and my homepage website may be found at

    Students enrolled in this class may access the eLearning web site and the links on it through MyUFL –> My Self-service –> eLearning.
    Required Texts                

1. Erich Goode, 2008.  Drugs in American Society. Seventh Edition, New York: McGraw-Hill, Paperback
Reading assignments from this text are listed below as Goode: Ch. #

2. James A. Incardi and Karen McElrath, eds., 2008. The American Drug Scene. Fifth Edition, New York: Oxford University Press, Paperback
.Reading assignments from this text are listed in the outline below as Incardi and McElrath,  reading # (not page number), Author.

I. Introduction and Overview
    A. Problems of Drugs and Alcohol in Society
    B. Theories and Explanation of Alcohol and Drug Behavior

Reading Assignments for I
Goode: Ch. 4

II.  Basic Concepts, Types, and Effects of Drugs
     A.  Concepts of Drug and Alcohol Behavior          1.  What is a drug?
         2.  Deviant drug use and abuse
         3.  Habituation and addiction
     B.  Principal Types and Effects of Drugs

Reading Assignments for II
Goode: Ch. 1; Ch. 2
Inciardi and McElrath, Intro. pp. xvi-xix;

III.  Explanations of Alcohol and Drug Use/Abuse
     A.  Biological Theories
     B.  Personality Theories
     C.  Sociological and Social Psychological Theories
Reading Assignments for III
Goode: Ch. 3
Inciardi and McElrath: 1. Lindesmith; 2. Syvertsen; 3. Hirsch et al.

IV. Use and Abuse of Alcohol and Drugs in American Society

       A. Myths and Realities of Drug Use/Abuse
       B. Historical and Contemporary Trends in Prevalence and Patterns of Substance Use and Abuse in American Society
       C. Social Characteristics of Users
Reading Assignments for IV
Goode: Ch. 5; 6; 7;
Inciardi: 16. Inciardi and Syvertsen; 25. Miller and Leger

V. Alcohol and Tobacco
     A. Alcohol and Alcohol Behavior
    a. Physical and Health Effects of Alcohol
    b. Sociocultural and psychological factors in drinking behavior
    c. The Disease Concept of Alcoholism
    d. Social Correlates of Alcohol Behavior

Reading Assignments for V         
Goode: Ch. 8
Inciardi and McElrath: 7. Siegal and Inciardi; 10. Nichter

VI.  Marijuana, Hallucinogens, and Other Drugs
    a. Short Term and Long Term Effects of Marijuana
    b. Medical Marijuana
    c. Marijuana as a Gateway Drug
    d. Social Correlates of Marijuana Use
Reading Assignments for VI
Goode: Ch. 9
Inciardi and McElrath: 11. Anslinger and Cooper; 12. Grinspoon; 13. Sifaneck et al.
VII.  Stimulants: Cocaine and Amphetamines
    a. Effects of Stimulants
    b. Addiction and Crack and Powder Cocaine
    c. Social Patterns and Trends in Cocaine Use
Reading Assignments for VII
Goode: Ch. 10
Inciardi and McElrath: 20. Musto; 22. Clatts, et al; 24. Miller;

VIII.  Heroin and Opiates
    a. Effects of Opiates
    b. Addiction to Heroin and Opiates
    c.  Social Patterns and Trends in Opiate Use
Reading Assignments for VIII
Goode: Ch. 11
Inciardi and McElrath: 16. Inciardi and Syvertsen; 17. Tunnell; 18. Preble and Casey

IX. Drugs, Crime, and Illicit Drug Industry
    a. Alcohol, Drugs, and Crime
    b. Criminal and Illicit Drug Industry
Reading Assignments for IX
Goode: Ch. 12, Ch. 13
Inciardi and McElrath: 32. Nurco, et al. 34. Goldstein

X.  Public Policy, Criminal Justice, and Programs on Illegal Drugs
     A. Control of Demand and Supply
    B.  Laws and Law Enforcement
    C.  Decriminalization and Legalization
    D.  Harm Reduction
    E.  Drug Treatment, Prevention, and Education

Reading Assignments for X
Goode: Ch. 14, Ch. 15
Inciardi and McElrath: 40. Rosenbaum; 41.  Nadelmann; 43. Kleber and Inciardi; 37. National Institute on Drug Abuse

XI. Social Control, Law, and Public Policy on Alcohol and Tobacco
     A. Regulation of Sale, Distribution, Place, and Time
     B.  Law, Alcohol, and Criminal Justice System
     C.  Alcohol Prevention and Treatment Programs
     D.  Stopping and Preventing Smoking

Reading assignments for XI

Final Exam Group 26D April 26 at 3:00pm. THE FINAL EXAM WILL NOT BE GIVEN THE LAST DAY OF CLASSES. Do not make travel plans that assume that you will not need to be on campus April 26.