Sociology offers students an understanding of social structure and interaction and an appreciation of the complexities of human societies, large and small. The program provides groundwork for careers in areas as diverse as criminal justice, law, journalism, social services, urban planning, government, education, public health and business.
Specialized courses prepare students who seek a professional career in sociology to pursue graduate studies. Students are encouraged to work closely with the faculty in developing programs best suited to their career goals. Whatever their concentrations may be, all students of sociology should acquire an appreciation of the manifestations of the human spirit and its milieu.
The department offers courses that examine topics such as the social and political implications of gender differences in America, the impact of prejudice and racism on our society and the ways in which individuals and groups challenge social inequalities. Students majoring in sociology can choose courses in social inequalities, gender differences in America, prejudice and racism, the sociological implications of sports and health, and the ways in which individual identities have been shaped by our society.
Students who major in sociology should use their freshman year to build a strong liberal arts background. The major program is developed so that it can be completed within a minimum period of two years. Students who want to explore interests in a sociology major may want to take any of several sociology courses that are in the general education program.
You should begin the major (or minor) with two courses, taken in sequence: Foundations of Sociology and Social Research Methods. At the same time, we encourage majors to take Social Psychology and a lower division elective. These four courses will prepare you to move into the upper division's required core and elective courses, of which you must take a minimum of six.
You will also need to take a course in statistics and a course centered around experiential work such as our Field Work course.
The final course, required of all seniors in your spring semester, is our Capstone Seminar, in which students reflect on how sociology has enabled them thus far, and look ahead to what their sociological imagination has prepared them for, as they graduate from our program and Pacific.
(Please see the latest General Catalog for current degree requirements.)