Sociology, the scientific study and interpretation of group life, develops students’ critical reasoning and writing skills as well as their willingness to consider ideas that don’t already fit into their worldview. At the center of our students’ studies are questions concerning gender, race, social class, social change and current social issues. For working in today’s multiracial, multiethnic and multinational environment, a sociological perspective is invaluable.
Our sociology program provides excellent preparation for a career in social work, journalism, politics, public relations, business, public administration or any field that involves utilizing research and critical thinking skills and working with diverse groups.
Featured CoursesSOCY 240 Work and SocietyThis course studies work from a sociological perspective in the context of the modern American workplace. Topics include career choices, occupational socialization and commitment, issues of gender, race and age discrimination in the workplace, larger social forces that shape the world of work, such as the relationship of work to the economy, and the future of work.
3 credits SOCY 242 Social Criticism in FilmSocial Criticism through Film examines social problems through the lens of historical and current documentary and fictional films and scholarly readings. Students will learn to critically evaluate the topics through use of sociological concepts. Topics include migrant labor, global warming, post 9/11 fears, AIDS, and the selection of other issues.
General Education Requirements: Critical Reasoning SOCY 261 Family and SocietyIntroduces students to the role of the family in the social structure. Examines the family in historical perspective, the institution of marriage, socialization, the importance of gender, and current issues in the modern family. Formerly SOC 261 Family and Society. SOCY 303 Minorities and Women in Criminal JusticeRace, ethnicity, sex, and other characteristics may define individuals as minorities who deserve equitable treatment in the criminal justice system. This course examines the roles of racism, sexism, and homophobia in theories of crimes and the treatment of minorities by various components of the criminal justice system.
3 credits SOCY 321 Inequality and SocietyExamines classical and contemporary theories of social stratification. Are we all created equal? Can we become equal? Particular emphasis is on the American class structure, its impact on social institutions, and the importance of gender and race as factors contributing to inequality in society. Formerly SOC 378 Inequality and Society.
Prerequisites: SOCY 100 SOCY 333 Women and Third World DevelopmentExamines insights that the feminist perspective brings to the issues of development, challenging the assumption that "integrating women into development" will solve problems caused by plans and policies that neglect women. This course is meant to be a guide to recent thinking and literature about women and development, and to the feminist critique of these. The course focuses on multinationals, rural development, and food production, including appropriate technology and income generation, health, migration, education, and communication. Formerly SOC 310 Women and Third World Development.
Prerequisite: SOCY 100. SOCY 381 Understanding AIDS: Interdisciplinary SeminarProvides students with a multi-dimensional approach to understanding AIDS. The course examines AIDS as a social construct utilizing Writing Across the Curriculum and cooperative learning techniques to build an interdisciplinary knowledge of AIDS. Formerly INT 340 and SOC 340 Understanding AIDS: Interdisciplinary Seminar.
Gen Ed V: Capstone Seminar SOCY 421 Sociological TheoryInvestigates the origin and development of classical sociological theory and how it is used in contemporary sociology. Formerly SOC 486 Sociological Theory.
Prerequisites: SOCY 100.
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Recent internship sites include the Department of Education, National Geographic Magazine, the National Museum of American History, the American Sociological Association, The Family Place and the Children’s Defense Fund.