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The Undergraduate Program consists of two majors:

Sociology Major: Sociology covers a broad range of subject material and a wider range of theory and methods than most majors. Auguste Comte, a founding father of the discipline, referred to sociology as the "Queen of the Sciences" because it embodies the basics of all the other social sciences.

The department has developed four distinct programs of study within the sociology major. Students selecting the Sociology major may choose from four options (also referred to as "emphasis") within this major:

  • General: Allows students to obtain a broad understanding of the concepts, methods, and theories of sociology
  • Law and Society: Designed for students interested in law (probation, enforcement, delinquency) & politics. Law and Society also has some flexibility; expect to take courses in delinquency, deviance, law, criminology and social problems.
  • Social Services: Designed for students interested in social work agencies, public service, counseling and related areas. It also allows flexibility in course selection. Required courses include social problems, social stratification, the family, social welfare, research methods, and ethnic studies.
  • Comparative Studies and World Development: This area is designed for students interested in the development of industrial and developing societies. Particular attention focuses on the relationship between today's developing countries and the more advanced nations of the international system. This course work is interdisciplinary, and students can expect to take classes in Economics, Anthropology, Geography, Political Science and History. Careers pursued by students majoring in sociology include work in public and private research firms, city planners and teachers, as well as political organizations.

The Sociology-Organizational Studies Major: The Sociology-Organizational Studies Major is designed to develop a broad understanding of the political, social, and economic organizations that comprise modern society. The major introduces students to a range of theories and methods that social scientists use in the analysis of organizations. Students should expect to take classes from the disciplines of Economics, Political Science, Rhetoric, Psychology, Community & Regional Development, Agricultural & Resource Economics, History, and of course, Sociology.

Taken from Department of Sociology.

Careers in Sociology: What Can I Do With a Sociology Degree? (article on StudentAdvisor.com)

In the News

In 2011, Robert Faris and Diane Felmlee presented findings on the nature of school bullies that made headlines around the world and caused him to be interviewed by various news agencies.

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2010-01-29 08:34:26   I got interested in sociology after taking Professor Bill McCarthy's Social Problems class (SOC 3) back in Winter 2003. That class became one of the defining features of my time as an undergrad here. It also got me interested in both law and policy, and played a big part in my eventual decision to go to law school. Last I checked someone else was taking Soc 3, but if you have a chance to take any class with Prof. McCarthy, jump on it! It's a decent amount of work, but you won't regret it. Drew Halfmann's Political Sociology class (118) was also particularly memorable, and is worth a look if you're interested in politics, regardless of your major. —TomGarberson

2011-01-17 11:21:18   I took one class in Sociology, and it was absurd. My "discussion leader" (TA) opined that "White people can never really feel discriminated against," and another TA used personal insults to critique my midterm, saying that it appeared to have been written by a kindergartner, and that I did not appear to have the talents required to obtain a degree. Needless to say, I hurried back to the Engineering side of campus, and never took another Sociology class. —JoePomidor