Marci CottiMarci Cottinghamngham  

Drawing on masculinity studies and gender saliency theory, one of my current projects looks at the relationship between gender and food, including the gender of individuals, the gender-composition of the groups in which they eat, and the “gendered” nature of types of food.  Our findings suggest that gender influences much more than just how many calories men and women purchase, but the gender of one’s group influences quantity as well as the number of “masculine” or “feminine” foods purchased. 

As I move my thesis work on sports fans and the emotion-based theory of interaction ritual chains toward publication, I am also looking increasingly at the sociology of emotion field for my dissertation work.  I am currently trying to conceptualize how an intersectional theoretical framework that includes gender, class-background, race, and age could be used to understand the experience and management of emotions among nurses. 


“Impact of Group Composition and Gender on Meals Purchased by College Students.” Molly Allen-O’Donnell, Marci D. Cottingham, Tom Nowak, and Kay Snyder. Journal of Applied Social Psychology.  Forthcoming.

“Disaster Prediction and Warning.” William Donner, David Cohen, and Marci D. Cottingham. Encyclopedia of Geography, edited by Barney Warf.   

"The Mist’ and Sociology of Religion: Film Clip Analysis.” Marci D. CottinghamTRAILS: Teaching Resources and Innovations Library for Sociology.   Revise & Resubmit

“Masculine Food Purchases across Gender and Group Composition.” Molly Allen- O’Donnell, Marci D. Cottingham, Tom Nowak, and Kay Snyder. Sex Roles.  Under Review.

“Interaction Ritual Chains Among Sports Fans.” Marci D. Cottingham. Qualitative Sociology.  Under Review.


"The Terrible Towel and Fair-Weather Fans: An Exploration of Steelers Nation as a Quasi-Religion.” 2009 Student Paper Winning Abstracts (  October 2009.


Michael Rickles

My dissertation research will look to explain how different social capital variables influence an individual’s socioeconomic status across the life course.  What I am specifically looking at is how different aspects of human capital (i.e. level of education, exposure to arts and literature, etc.) influence individuals at different points in their lives in an attempt to see if certain skills, qualities or attributes matter more for predicting socioeconomic status later in life.  This question was influenced by my training in the sociology of medicine and mental health and my interest in social inequality.  I have decided to apply the cumulative advantage/disadvantage hypothesis in health research to human capital variables to see how certain combinations of social characteristics work together to influence earnings, wealth and perceived status later in life.

Michael Rickles

One of the many projects that I have been working on during my time here is the development of critical thinking abilities in students taking Introduction to Sociology classes.  Along with other colleagues from the department and from around the country we are trying to ascertain which teaching methods and tools work to increase the critical thinking abilities of students in written assessments.  Using a variety of teaching and learning tools, we are tracking the development of the critical thinking abilities of students to improve the overall quality of our course offerings in the sociology department as well as the learning experiences of students at the University of Akron.

The ways in which individuals understand the social world is one of the key contributions that sociologists address in our research.  One of the major questions that have held interest in the discipline is how stereotypes and inequalities and perpetuated in our society.  This question has recently become the focus of a research project that I am involved with that seeks to understand how students gain and maintain stereotypic views.  I am specifically interested in how mass media socialization influences between-group understandings of one another.  The main goal of this research is to illuminate the nature of common stereotypes of several groups of interest that are held by students on this campus and to create a strategy for countering these negative images in the places that they are encountered.

I have recently had an article published with my advisor and other colleagues that looks at college binge drinking behavior.  This article, using a critical feminist framework, examines the relationship between gender role orientation and binge drinking behavior among college students.   Two measures of gender identity are employed: The Bem Sex Role Inventory (BSRI) and the Personal Attributes Questionnaire (PAQ).  In exploring the patterns of drinking behavior by sex, we test the hypothesis that traditional masculine gender role orientation is predictive of contemporary binge drinking behavior among college students.  Gender role orientation, as measured by each scale independently and combined, had a significant impact on binge drinking.   Masculine gender identity was a significant predictor of binge drinking even while controlling for respondent’s sex. 

Jared Rosenberger

Currently I am working on my PhD, focusing my research on the relationship betweJared Rosenbergeren the media and opinion towards various aspects of the criminal justice system. 

I am also involved in a content analysis collecting data on racial and gender depictions over twenty years of the television show Law and Order with Dr. Valerie Callanan.  Preliminary analysis suggests that racial minorities are vastly underrepresented as victims of crime, and as criminal justice professionals.  In addition, depictions of females and racial minorities have increased over the series’ twenty years, but these representations are largely negative and based on stereotypes.

The final research project will look to answer further questions about depictions on Law and Order including qualitative cues presented on race and gender, and how representations of criminal justice personnel on the show varies from those in real life. 


Rosenberger, J. S. and Callanan, V., 2010. “Crime-Related Media and the Goals of Criminal Sentencing.” Paper to be presented at the Joint Conferences of the Midwest Sociological Society and the North Central Sociological Association, Chicago, IL, March 30 - April 2.

Callanan, V., Ross, J., Rosenberger, J. S., and Yatsko, L., 2010. “ Law and Order: Race and Gender Depictions over Twenty Years.” Paper to be presented at the Joint Conferences of the Midwest Sociological Society and the North Central Sociological Association, Chicago, IL, March 30 - April 2.


Rosenberger, Jared S. and Callanan, Valerie. 2010. “The Influence of Media on Penal Attitudes.” Out for Review.

Callanan, Valerie and Rosenberger, Jared S. 2010. “Perceived Neighborhood Risk and Fear of Crime: Comparing the Effects of Crime-related Media across Gender.” Out for Review.

Callanan, Valerie and Rosenberger, Jared S. 2009.  “Media and Public Perceptions of the Police: Examining the Impact of Race and Personal Experience.”