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Sociology Faculty - Dr. Stephen Light

Professor of Sociology and Associate VP for Academic Affairs

Dr. Light as been a member of the SUNY Plattsburgh faculty since 1990 and served as Associate Dean of Arts and Science from 2001 to 2010. Currently, he serves as Associate VP for Academic Affairs. Several of the courses he teaches are offered online in a Web-based distance learning format.

Dr. Light has authored a textbook for the Introduction to Criminal Justice course (Understanding Criminal Justice, Wadsworth, 1999). He has also published articles and book chapters on a variety of sociological topics. Dr. Light is the author of numerous instructor's manuals, test banks, practice test manuals, and student study guides for publishers of major textbooks in sociology and criminal justice. He enjoys conveying his enthusiasm about sociology and criminal justice to his students. "As sociologists we are fortunate because our subject matter encompasses virtually the entire range of human activity," he states. "The topics that we study are deeply interesting, but they also have important practical implications for individuals and for society as a whole."

The parent of two grown sons, Steve enjoys playing banjo on a professional basis in various bluegrass bands across the Northeast.


  • Ph.D. in Sociology, SUNY Albany, 1987
  • Graduate Certificate in public policy analysis, SUNY Albany
  • Masters in Sociology, SUNY Albany, 1981
  • B.A. in Sociology, SUNY Cortland, 1977

Teaching Areas

  • Social Change and Social Movements
  • Sociology of Law
  • Social Problems and Social Policy
  • Criminal Justice
  • Introductory Sociology

Recent Publications

  • Pretest and Posttest Bank for Kendall's Sociology in Our Times: The Essentials, 7th edition (Cengage, 2009).
  • Practice Tests Manual for Diana Kendall's Sociology in Our Times, 5th edition (Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, 2004).
  • "Attica Correctional Facility," In M. Bosworth (Ed.), Encyclopedia of US Prisons and Correctional Facilities. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage (2003, in press).
  • Web Quizzes for Diana Kendall's Sociology in Our Times, 5th edition (Wadsworth, 2004).
  • Practice Tests Manual for Diana Kendall's Sociology in Our Times, 4th edition (Wadsworth, 2003).
  • Test Bank for Diana Kendall's Sociology in Our Times, 4th edition (Wadsworth, 2003).
  • Student Study Guide for Lindsey/Beach's Sociology, 3rd edition (Prentice-Hall/Pearson, 2003).
  • "Using Police as Custodial Officers: An Analysis from the Perspective of International Human Rights Standards," (with Dilip Das and Arvind Verma). Police Quarterly 4 (2), June 2001: 215-232.

Contact Dr. Steve Light

Office: Kehoe 206
Phone: (518) 564-2195