Sociology

The goal of the sociology major is to develop students’ sociocultural imaginations to understand how, and to what extent, individuals’ behavior is influenced by others in their society and those who share their culture. The objective is to have students apply the many theories in this paradigm to various social phenomena, such as conformity, deviance, family, stratification, prehistory, evolution, social welfare, cultures other than their own, and their own culture.

Learning Outcomes

Students who graduate with a major in sociology will:

  1. Develop their sociocultural imaginations, that is, the ability to conceive the connections between individuals' behavior and the larger group(s) to which they belong;
  2. Develop their sociocultural eye, that is, the ability to perceive and measure the connections between individuals' behavior and the larger group(s) to which they belong;
  3. Understand the metatheoretical assumptions of the broad range of social science paradigms and develop the ability to perform an analysis of these theories;
  4. Recognize the variety of social and cultural traditions in our world.

Major in Sociology

A minimum of 30 semester hours is required, including:
SOC 324: Sociocultural Theory
SOC 408: Introduction to Social Research
SOC 409: Practicing Social Research
SOC 477: Sociocultural Analysis of Subcultures: Cults/Sects

Choose one of the following:
SOC 101: Introduction to Sociology
SOC 242: Cultural Anthropology

Choose one of the following:
SOC 321: Criminology
SOC 353: Introduction to Social Work

Twelve credits in elective courses are also required.

Minor in Sociology

A minimum of 18 semester hours is required, with at least nine at the upper-division level, or six semester hours at the upper-division level if SOC 324: Sociocultural Theory is completed.

SOC 101 - Introduction to Sociology
Semester: Fall
Semester hours: 3
Students examine the nature of the sociological perspective, macro- and micro-sociological theory, and sociological methodology and research. Society's social organization, social structure, social interaction, socialization, social institutions, deviance and social control, social stratification, ethnic and racial minorities, gender, the family, education, religion, and other topics from a sociological perspective are also explored.
SOC 201 - Social Psychology
Semester: Fall
Semester hours: 3
Students study the behavior of individuals as it is controlled, influenced, or limited by the sociocultural environment, social interaction, and basic interrelations of the individual, society, and culture. This course is designed to enable students to see themselves as both shaping and being shaped by their culture. Attention is also focused on inclusion and diversity. This course is cross listed with PSY 201.
Prerequisite: PSY 101
SOC 242 - Cultural Anthropology
Semester: Spring
Semester hours: 3
Students are introduced to anthropological analysis of human behavior. Topics will include a cross-cultural examination of the systemic relations among economic, social, political, and religious behaviors in various cultures.
SOC 299 - Independent Study
Semester: On Demand
Semester hours: 1-3
This course allows a superior student to devise and pursue independent study in an area agreed upon in consultation with, and supervised by, a faculty member. Students should be either a major or minor and have a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or greater.
SOC 310 - Social Stratification
Semester: Fall; Alternate years
Semester hours: 3
Students examine the causes and consequences of the differential distribution of power, property, and prestige within social groups. Consideration is given to conservative as well as radical sociological perspectives on social stratification.
Prerequisite: SOC 101 or SOC 242 or permission of the instructor
SOC 321 - Criminology
Semester: Spring; Alternate years
Semester hours: 3
This course focuses on the nature and extent of crime and delinquency, including a historical survey of explanatory theories focusing on the economic, social, and psychological causes of criminal behavior and current methods of treatment, policy, and prevention.
Prerequisite: SOC 101
SOC 324 - Sociocultural Theory
Semester: Fall; Alternate years
Semester hours: 3
A study of the historical development of the fields of anthropology and sociology with an emphasis on the contributions of both classical and modern social theorists in the development of key concepts in the study of social and cultural behavior.
Prerequisite: SOC 101 or SOC 242 or permission of the instructor
SOC 342 - Deviance
Semester: Spring
Semester hours: 3
This course investigates deviant (normative and statistical) social behavior. A variety of psychological, economic, sociological, and anthropological theories are used to analyze the causes, consequences, and social responses to behaviors such as sexual violence, suicide, mental illness, illegal drug use, homosexuality, and heterosexual deviance.
Prerequisite: SOC 101 and SOC 242 or permission of the instructor
SOC 353 - Introduction to Social Work
Semester: Spring; Alternate years
Semester hours: 3
This course will provide the student with a general understanding of the professional field of social work and social work practice. The roles and functions of the professional social worker, as well as intervention strategies, will be addressed. The course will also acquaint students with important historical developments in, and the evolution of, social work as a profession. Students will learn from a variety of social workers from many different fields of social work.
SOC 384 - Evolution of Social Stratification
Semester: Fall; Alternate years
Semester hours: 3
The objective of this course is to muse about how the widespread modern phenomenon of social stratification originally evolved. While humans lived as egalitarian hunters and gatherers for 99% of their history, and all scientifically studied hunters and gatherers have an egalitarian social structure, no one knows how unequal power and wealth developed. How did societies in which having more than others or trying to tell others what to do were considered sure signs of insanity, change into stratified societies? This course explores ideas that chiefdoms, intermediate between tribes and states, hold some answers because they are the first to achieve non-kin-based organization with stratified power and wealth.
Prerequisite: SOC 101 and SOC 242 or permission of the instructor
SOC 408 - Introduction to Social Research
Semester: Fall; Alternate years
Semester hours: 3
Students will complete the tasks necessary for conducting sociological research prior to the collection of data. Students will write a research proposal to include the development of a research question (hypothesis), a literature review of existing research on this topic, identification of a population for study, choice of two research methodologies for data collection, choice of analytical tools, and a statement of expected results. After successful completion of this course students will be prepared for SOC 409: Practicing Social Research.
Prerequisite: SOC 324
SOC 409 - Practicing Social Research
Semester: Spring; Alternate years
Semester hours: 3
Students will complete an independent research project based on a research proposal. Data will be collected using two research methodologies and then statistically analyzed. Students will write a final report presenting the results of the research as compared to previous studies, a critique of the results, and suggestions for further work.
Prerequisite: SOC 408
SOC 450 - Internship
Semester: On Demand
Semester hours: 1-12
This course is a guided work experience in an already established place of business. The student must arrange the internship in agreement with the instructor and the Office of Career Services. The internship should relate to the student’s major or minor area of study. Contract is required.
Prerequisite: junior or senior standing
SOC 477 - Sociocultural Analysis of Subcultures: Cults/Sects
Semester: Spring; Alternate years
Semester hours: 3
This course uses sociology to examine a variety of historical and contemporary nontraditional groups in American society, such as the Oneida, People’s Temple, Heaven’s Gate, and Scientology. Students are expected to write a research paper using social science principles to examine a group or subculture not covered in class.
Prerequisite: one lower-division and one upper-division course in a related social science field: psychology, economics, or political science, or permission of the instructor; SOC 324 is recommended
SOC 499 - Independent Study
Semester: On Demand
Semester hours: 1-3
This course allows a superior student to devise and pursue independent study in an area agreed upon in consultation with, and supervised by, a faculty member. Students should be either a major or minor and have a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or greater.
Prerequisite: junior or senior standing
omniupdate