Sociology

The Department of Sociology offers an A.B. in Sociology and a minor in Sociology.

Major in Sociology

Students seeking to major in Sociology with a grade of C+ or better in the introductory course will normally be accepted as majors in the department. At its discretion, the department may provisionally admit a student who fails to meet this requirement, and then review its decision after the student completes the required theory (SOCI 202) and methods (SOCI 201) classes. The Director of Undergraduate Studies (DUGS) is the advisor for all department majors. Prospective majors must arrange for an interview with the DUGS. We strongly recommend that students take Introduction to Sociology before enrolling in other sociology courses. Introduction to Sociology is listed as a prerequisite for some upper division courses. Please consult with the course descriptions.

Students majoring in Sociology are required to take ten courses in the department: six major core courses, two Core Topic Lectures, and two Advanced Seminars. The six required core courses are as follows: Introduction to Sociology, Methods of Social Research, Sociological Theory, Statistics for Social Research, and a two-part Senior Seminar: Data Collection/Analysis and Analysis & Writing.

Sociological Theory, Methods of Social Research, and Social Statistics should be taken during the junior year. In the Methods course students write a proposal for the research that will be the basis for their senior thesis, which is completed in the Senior Seminar in the senior year. Majors should consult with the Director of Undergraduate Studies about studying abroad or any unusual plans for completing the requirements.  

Course Offerings

Courses in the Sociology Department are divided into four categories, including the Required Core Courses which all majors must take.

Core Topics Lectures introduce students to the main subfields of Sociology, including gender and sexuality, race and ethnicity, education, social inequality, social movements, crime and deviance, and demography. The below list is not exhaustive:

SOCI 178: Capitalism: Culture, Markets and Power
SOCI 194: Criminology
SOCI 171: Culture and Consumption
SOCI 163: Education and Society
SOCI 145: Family and Society
SOCI 132: Immigrants and New Society
SOCI 192: Law and Society
SOCI 166: Modernization and Development
SOCI 158: Political Sociology
SOCI 131: Population Dynamics
SOCI 159: Privilege and Powerlessness
SOCI 144: Race and Ethnic Relations
SOCI 136: Religion and Society
SOCI 140: Social Inequality
SOCI 155: Social Movements
SOCI 179: Sociology of Food
SOCI 170: Social Networks
SOCI 161: Sociology of Gender
SOCI 109: Sociology of Health and Illness
SOCI 160: Sociology of Sexualities
SOCI 209: The City: Approaches to Urban Studies

Advanced Seminars enable students to develop in-depth knowledge of particular subjects through intensive seminars. Recent advanced seminars include courses about gentrification, poverty in America, the changing American family, the Obama presidency, public housing, Brazilian society, transgender issues, food justice movements, and social intelligence. The below list is not exhaustive:

SOCI 148: Barack Obama and Race
SOCI 190: Black Writers on White Identity
SOCI 257: Brazilian Society
SOCI 226: Consumer Culture in East Asia
SOCI 162: Education Policy
SOCI 273: Food, Farms and Society
SOCI 222: Gentrification, Justice and the Future of Cities
SOCI 157: Global Power Elites
SOCI 191: Interpersonal Violence
SOCI 284: Happiness and Society
SOCI 223: Public Housing: Theory and Practice
SOCI 139: Race, Color and Culture
SOCI 133: Race, Society and Cinema
SOCI 310: Religion and Globalization
SOCI 154: Sociology of the One Percent
SOCI 153: The Politics of Community
SOCI 134: Women and Development

Special Topics Lectures provide a lecture-style course that covers other special areas within the discipline, including courses on hip hop, death and dying, transnational crime, and happiness.  The below list is not exhaustive:

SOCI 196: Comparative Law Enforcement
SOCI 125: Death and Dying
SOCI 249: Family and Gender in Japan
SOCI 123: Sociology of Hip Hop
SOCI 195: Sociology of Terrorism
SOCI 165: Sociology of the Middle East
SOCI 126: Sociology and Culture: Beyonce
SOCI 143: Sport and Society

Requirements for the A.B. in Sociology 

  • SOCI 001: Introduction to Sociology (before junior year)
  • SOCI 201: Methods of Social Research (junior year)
  • SOCI 202: Sociological Theory (junior year)
  • SOCI 203: Statistics for Social Research (before senior year)
  • SOCI 303: Thesis Research – Data Collection & Analysis (fall of senior year)
  • SOCI 304: Thesis Research – Analysis & Writing (spring of senior year)
  • Two (2) Core Topics Lectures
  • Two (2) Advanced Seminars

Integrated Writing Within the Sociology Major

The Department of Sociology offers a wide array of courses which fulfill the integrated writing requirement. After taking a first General Education course focused on writing, the second such course which sociology majors will take must come from among selected sociology offerings.  Our majors get to choose from among those courses we designate as Integrated Writing courses (occasionally abbreviated below as “IW”).  

Sociology Courses with Integrated-Writing (IW) Strategies:  Race,Color, Culture; Sociology of Sexualities; Capitalism: Culture, Markets, and Power; Methods of Social Research; Sociological Theory; and many of the Advanced Seminars.


Minor in Sociology

Requirements for the minor are Introduction to Sociology, either Methods of Sociological Research or Sociological Theory, plus four electives, two of which should be Core Topics Lectures and one of which should be an Advanced Seminar. It is recommended that the four electives be selected from at least two areas of specialization.

Requirements for the Minor

  • Introduction to Sociology (SOCI 001)
  • Methods of Sociological Research (SOCI 201) or Sociological Theory (SOCI 202)
  • 4 electives. Of those four, two should be from the Core Topics Lectures above, and one an Advanced Seminar.

For course listings in Sociology see the Schedule of Classes