Sida Liu

Sociolegal researcher

I began my teaching career at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2009 with almost no prior teaching experience (except for two very small seminars at China University of Political Science and Law and the University of Chicago). Believe it or not, I had never been a teaching assistant in graduate school and used to consider teaching a waste of time - an idea that I find totally appalling now. Four years later, I won the UW-Madison Sociology Department's 2013 Award for Excellence in Teaching by a Member of the Faculty and still cherish it as one of my fondest achievements as a scholar.


While in Madison, I taught five different courses at both the undergraduate and graduate levels: (1) Sociology of Law (Sociology/Legal Studies 641); (2) Sociology of Occupations and Professions (Sociology 643); (3) The Legal Profession (Sociology/Legal Studies 415); (4) Contemporary Chinese Society (Sociology 225/East Asian Studies 301); and, (5) Socio-Legal Studies (Sociology 930). I also supervised a number of undergraduate and Ph.D. students in semester-length guided research projects.  


During my seven years at UW-Madison, I worked with dozens of outstanding graduate students and learned many things from them. I served regularly on three preliminary exam committees at Wisconsin Sociology: (1) Crime, Deviance, and Social Control, (2) Law and Society, and (3) Organizations and Occupations. I was also a faculty co-sponsor of the Legal Studies Workshop, the campus-wide law and society workshop that trains a large number of students interested in law-related interdisciplinary research. Besides regular mentoring of doctoral students in sociology, I also advised graduate students in law, political science, anthropology, history, business, and communication arts on an occasional basis. Furthermore, I frequently advised students interested in China studies at UW-Madison and other institutions. 


My course instruction at the University of Toronto will start in 2017-2018 after the completion of my 2016-2017 membership at the Institute for Advanced Study. I will teach undergraduate courses in the Criminology, Law and Society program at the Mississauga campus and graduate courses on the sociology of law and sociological theory in the tri-campus graduate program at the St. George (downtown) campus. 

My UW-Madison course syllabi can be downloaded from here: 
















Teaching