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Dr. Marion Willetts

Sociology Associate Professor
Sociology and Anthropology
Schroeder Hall - SCH 358
Office Hours
Mondays and Wednesdays, 1:00 - 2:00 and by appointment.
  • About
  • Education
  • Awards & Honors
  • Research

Current Courses

499.001Independent Research For The Master's Thesis

493.001Pro-Seminar In Sociology

471.001Quantitative Research Design & Analysis

260.001Wealth, Power, Prestige: The Haves and the Have-Nots

112.001American Family: Change & Diversity

Teaching Interests & Areas

I teach courses primarily in stratification and in Animals and Society, as well as in research methods (both graduate and undergraduate). I also teach on occasion courses in family history.

Research Interests & Areas

My research focuses on animal shelters and sanctuaries. Most recently, my research has focused on animal hoarding among animal rescue workers, and capture-neuter-vaccinate-release programs for street dogs in Bhutan.

Ph D Sociology

University of Florida
Gainesville, FL

MA Sociology

University of Virginia
Charlottesville, VA

BA Sociology

Gettysburg College
Gettysburg, PA

RISE to the COVID Challenge Recognition

Illinois State University

Outstanding University Teaching Award - Category I Nominee

Illinois State University

CAS Outstanding Teacher of the Year 2016-2017

College of Arts and Sciences

CAS Outstanding Teacher of the Year 2015-2016 Nomination


CAS Outstanding Teacher of the Year 2014-2015 Nomination


Book, Chapter

Willetts, M., & Nock, S. The effects of childhood family structure and perceptions of parents' marital happiness on familial aspirations. Effects on young adults patterns of intimacy and expectations for marriage. Routledge (2014): 3-23.
Willetts, M., Sprecher, S., & Beck, F. Overview of sexual practices and attitudes within relational contexts. The Handbook of Sexuality in Close Relationships (2004): 57-85.
Sprecher, S., Felmlee, D., Orbuch, T., & Willetts, M. Social networks and intimate relationships: Their mutual influences and changes over time. H.T. Reis & M.A. Fitzpatrick (EDs). Stability and Change in Relationships (2002): 257-284.

Creative Works/Broadcast Media

Willetts, M. The Involvement of Animal Advocates in the Prosecution of an Alleged Animal Hoarder. American Sociological Association (2020)


Willetts, M.C. (2016). Domestic partnerships in the United States. In C.L. Shehan (Ed.)., Encyclopedia of Family Studies.
Willetts, M. Intercourse, frequency. Patricia Whelan and Anne Bolin (EDs), The International Encylopedia of Human Sexuality. Wiley-Blackwell Reference (2015)
Willetts, M.C. (2010). Domestic partnerships. In M. Shally-Jensen (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Contemporary American Social Issues, pp. 891-899. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, LLC.
Willetts, M. Coupling policies. Encyclopedia of Human Relationships (2009): 351-355.
Willetts, M. Domestic partnerships. Vincent Parillo (EDs). Encyclopedia of Social Problems (2008)

Journal Article

Willetts, M.C. (2022). Convictions and penalties among rescue and non-rescue non-human animal hoarders. Society & Animals.
Warner, C., & Willetts, M.C. (2021). Protecting companion animals from domestic
abuse: A comparative analysis of legal developments in the U.S. and the U.K. Global Journal of Animal Law 9.
Willetts, M.C. (2020). An exploratory investigation of companion animal custody disputes following divorce. Journal of Divorce and Remarriage. DOI: 10.1080/10502556.2020.1830258
Willetts, M.C. , & Beck, F.D. (2020). The influences of Buddhism and development on the well-being of Bhutan's street dogs. Animal Studies Journal 9 (2), 56-86.
Cook, M., & Willetts, M.C. (2019). Affiliations for homeless individuals through social enterprise employment. The Social Enterprise Journal, 15(2), 215-232.


Willetts, M. Family innovation: Heterosexual licensed domestic partners. The Report: National Council on Family Relations (2005): F26-F27.


The Participation of Animal Advocates in the Investigation of a Non-human Animal Hoarder. Annual Meeting. American Sociological Association. (2020)
Convictions and Penalties Among Rescue and Non-Rescue Non-Human Animal Hoarders. Annual Meetings. American Sociological Association. (2019)
Gross National Happiness and the Well-Being of Bhutan's Street Dogs. American Sociological Association Annual Meeting. American Sociological Association. (2018)
Gross National Happiness in Promoting the Well-Being of Bhutan's Street Dogs. University Club. Illinois State University. (2018)
The influences of Buddhism and Gross National Happiness on the well-being of Bhutan's street dogs. Department of Sociology & Anthropology Brown Bag Series. Department of Sociology & Anthropology. (2017)
When rescue is not rescue: Hoarding among animal welfare workers. American Sociological Association Annual Meeting. American Sociological Association. (2017)