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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Sports and Society by Duke University

1,143 ratings

About the Course

Sports play a giant role in contemporary society worldwide. But few of us pause to think about the larger questions of money, politics, race, sex, culture, and commercialization that surround sports everywhere. This course draws on the tools of anthropology, sociology, history, and other disciplines to give you new perspectives on the games we watch and play. It's the new and improved version of Professor Orin Starn's original "Sports and Society" for Coursera, which drew more than 40,000 students. We will focus on both popular sports like soccer (or “football,” as anyone outside America calls it), basketball, and baseball, and also lesser-known ones like mountain-climbing and fishing. You will never watch or think about sports in the same way again....

Top reviews


Nov 11, 2016

I loved this particular course. The topics are relevant. Each topic is supported by historical facts and examples and how is it relevant in the present time. It was a great learning experience!!!


Jan 13, 2017

This course tells us about how social customs and traditions have contributed to the evolution of sports and how sports has vice versa reflected the changes in social order of any age.

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26 - 50 of 302 Reviews for Sports and Society

By Ipek E

Dec 25, 2020

This was among the most fun courses I've taken on Coursera! The professor is incredibly engaging and explains the topics in a very accessible, easy-to-understand way. The subject material is interesting and I was never bored when listening to the lectures or reading the assigned articles. I would definitely recommend taking the course if you are intrigued by sports in any capacity!

By Techy R

May 8, 2022

One of the best courses you should definitely choose it.

In 7 weeks it will taught you the ups and downs going in the sports community due to gender discrimination, white people and black people etc.

You should definitely go for this course as this will help you to see what are the different types of sports, where it is famous and which sport/exercise is suitable for which people.

By Mark G

Jun 28, 2022

Very comprehensive course involving so many deep aspects of sports. Great job, Professor Starn! Truly enjoyed every one of your videos - super engaging presentation of material.. Would recommend this course highly to all who breathe sports at a cerebral level!

The last two sections the readings did not download, but you probably already heard that a thousand times...

By Estefanía B Á

Sep 11, 2020

I absolutley love how Orin Starn developed this course. It's great and it really makes you think about how sports are affected by society and viceversa. I would like him to update the course and talk more about modern problems like the movement #BlackLivesMatter and the involvement of NBA players in it. Or how great gymnasts like Simone Biles have empowered women today.

By Hugo S

Sep 18, 2020

Curso MUITO bom, super interessante e com aulas simples e didáticas. A relação entre esporte e sociedade sempre foi gigante, mas com esse curso eu cheguei a conclusão que é impossível separar um do outro. Queria também parabenizar o professor pelo conteúdo excelente e vasto repertório utilizado, conteúdo muito bem selecionado e explicado. Simplesmente sensacional.

By Samantha D

Jun 14, 2020

It exceded my expectations. Was an awesome course, didn't want it to end. I learned so much about sports from such a great teacher. It opened my mind to all the background they have, the very important role it plays in the society. Even how the evolution of society can be reflected into sports. Thanks for bringing your knowledge and enthusiasm for me to learn.

By Uyen N

Jul 14, 2021

I appreciate how this course addresses the relations between sports and other areas like history, politics,... For each section, I was provided several examples, and it seemed that I got the opportunity to learn history from a brand-new perspective. Second, I enjoy Professor Starn's lecturing style so much, it's not at bit sleepy.

Thanks for your endeavors!

By Samir B

May 7, 2020

Professor Orin Starn is so engaging and you can tell he's extremely passionate about the course content. I flew through this course in about 3 days because of how interesting each lecture was, and just wanted to continue to learn more and more each time. As a sports fan with a Kinesiology background, I really enjoyed this course and I'm sure you will too!

By Israel G

Sep 17, 2020

Soy periodista deportivo por dos décadas, pero admito que nunca había visto el deporte de la manera en la que el profesor Orin nos hizo ver el mundo deportivo. Es un curso fantástico, lo disfruté mucho y recomiendo a otros interesados en ampliar su horizonte en relación a los deportes que lo tomen, porque no se van a arrepentir y aprenderán muchísimo.

By Gwenne H O

Jun 6, 2020

This was a really interesting course, gives a lot of insight into the various types of sports in the world, explains the science and detailed theory behind some of the worlds most popular sports, not to mention a lot of trivia and history behind the sports and how it relates to society and the various cultural relations it has all across the world.

By Mehmet Y

Jul 22, 2020

If you are interested in sport, history, and anthropology this class fits your expectations. Dr. Ori makes this class even greater with his passionate presentation. I did enjoy it and also learnt a lot. In addition, do watch whole videos, read weekly articles and also watch recommended books and watch recommended movies as well. Thanks Dr. Orin.

By Yashoda V

May 31, 2022

I thoroughly enjoyed doing this course as it gave me a complete outlook to evolution of sports, culture and to modern society. Prof Orin Starn was extremely detailed and he kept each topic so interesting. He was also very candid with his thoughts and I recommend every sport ethusiast to take this course and enhance the knowledge about sports.

By Khurram Q

Jul 12, 2020

I have a recent Bachelor's Degree in Sport Management and I chose to do this course to add to that knowledge. I would say I already had an understanding for about 70% of the course along with the examples used. Nonetheless I loved doing this and definitely recommend this to those who are interested in learning about sport management.


Jul 27, 2020

This course has taught me various aspects of sports and how different sports are affected by different cultures. it has also taught me how money plays a huge role in sports and society. i would like to thank our tutor for such refreshing lessons on Sports and Society and touching every aspect related to Sports.

thank you.

By JeanLeeUCL

Apr 3, 2022

It is a very exciting and eye-opening experience to take this course. The professor is very energetic and ethusiastic, making it a distinguish style among other courses On Coursera. Certainly, I learn a lot while enjoy the time on watching it. Thank you so much for everybody's contribution for making this happen!

By Arif H C

Mar 21, 2023

This was a well-designed and influential course experience for me. Sports and its societal relationships were discussed with reference to concrete examples and related theories and figures. This course brings different discussion into the fore. Thanks for this course and opportunity for taking it from a distance!

By Fabiano C d s

Apr 21, 2021

Congratulations. Thanks for sharing all those informations. You talked very clear in a easy langrage to me. As a Brazilian I felt much greta of how you put our culture using the sport as a example. Please if possible need to know the Brazilian song that plays during the skate performance, loved it.

By Joshua A

Mar 12, 2021

what a course !!!.....Prof. Orin Starn makes teaching and learning so much fun........the course covered all the facets of Sports and its relationship with Society.........I thoroughly enjoyed the course and recommend same to all those interested in the subject of Sports and Society...........

By Swan L

Jun 16, 2020

Thoroughly enjoyed this course. Thank you, Professor Orin. I'll certainly be viewing sports in a different light now ... also it was an interesting time to be taking the racial segment of this course as the BLM protests (stemming from George Floyd) is happening in the US. Highly recommended.

By Aniket M

Apr 27, 2020

This is an absolutely fantastic course put up by University of Duke here. Loved the video lectures and the study material provided - additionally the book and film suggestions were wonderfully well thought too. Instructor Orin Starn and his team - you have my sincerest gratitude.

By Leon B

Jun 30, 2020

It's very good course, especially it's really explain many things in sports world and it's connection with society. Also, I want to express my gratitude toward Mr. Orin Starn who deliver the material in such high spirited and clear way that I can understand the course perfectly.

By Leo M

Apr 2, 2017

Excellent course not only in terms of content but also the instructor is very well spoken and knowledgeable on the subject. He also made it very entertaining and enjoyable; not just an academic exercise. Most definitely I will like to listen more courses by him on the subject.

By Lucas J d M C

Aug 5, 2020

I get emerged on a different way of thinking sports trought the impact of they in societys, and how these two elements are combined, sometimes, as one. I just had to thank and salute Professor Starn to give the opportunite of this imersions and for their outstanding classes.

By Yuva P J

Jun 5, 2020

I have learned everything about sports and society thanks for everything to providing the great opportunity like what happening around sports thanks for providing free and knowledgeable facilities to us. Thanks to Duke university for providing wonderful opportunity!!!