Bachelors (BA) in Sociology

Overview

The primary mission of the sociology major (39-40 credits) is to develop students to thoughtfully engage in civic, occupational, academic, and personal endeavors from a Christian sociological perspective. The major facilitates this by preparing students to critically analyze social institutions and structures, empowering students to be change agents capable of bringing about greater social justice. Students are required to obtain a minimum grade of C- in all courses taken for the major.

Degree Outcomes

Graduates with a BA in sociology will:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the role of theory in building sociological knowledge and basic theoretical orientations
  • Analyze data and learn how to apply basic sociological methods of research
  • Identify and apply basic concepts in sociology and their fundamental theoretical interrelations, including culture, social change, socialization, stratification, social structure and institutions
  • Evaluate the reciprocal relationships between individuals and society, and how the self develops under the influence of societal and structural factors
  • Analyze the internal diversity of American society and its place in the international context, including the race, class, gender and age of its population
  • Evaluate the potential usefulness of sociological theory and methods to promote peace and justice in social institutions and structures
  • Integrate sociological insights with Christian commitments and calling

Major Requirements

Complete the following:

An introduction to the study of society, including the study of the shared relationships that create social organization and social processes of society. Required for sociology majors and for admission into the social work major.
Applied statistics for the social and behavioral sciences. Emphasis is placed on statistical logic and decision making. Recommended for the sophomore or junior year. Required for sociology and social work majors. (Identical to SWRK 340) Prerequisites: SOCI 150 Principles of Sociology and high school algebra.
Examines the nature, causes, and consequences of inequality in society. An understanding of how social resources are distributed, and the resulting distribution of life chances, is central to understanding the fundamental bases of social order and social organization. This course takes a sociological approach to the study of inequality in which we argue that inequality is a characteristic of societies, not individuals.
A critical study of major social philosophers from Comte to the present. Required for sociology majors. (Identical to SOCI 373) Prerequisite: SOCI 150 Principles of Sociology or PHIL 150 Introduction to Philosophy.
A study of the historical and socioeconomic factors experienced and lived by people of differing racial and ethnic backgrounds in the United States. Specific attention is placed on the social construction of race, social attitudes and past and present racial issues. Prerequisite: SOCI 150 Principles of Sociology or instructor's permission.
An overview of quantitative and qualitative research methods in the social sciences. Students will design a research project. Required for sociology and social work majors. Prerequisites: SOCI 150 Principles of Sociology, SOCI 373 Social Theory, and SOCI 340 Statistical Procedures or PSYC 240 Statistical Procedures.
Supervised experiences in private and public social agencies. Students may opt for 3 hours of SOCI 475 Internship as part of their concentration, or 3 hours of SOCI 475 Internship as an elective in the major. Pass/No Pass. Prerequisites: upper-division majors and by permission.
For sociology majors only, this course requires students to complete a research project. With an expectation of a literature review, data collection and analysis, students will produce a piece of original research that is worthy of publication and/or presentation. Prerequisite: SOCI 390 Research Methods.

Concentrations (15-16 hours) - choose one

Complete the following:

Students choosing to take SOCI 230/430 Sociology of Religion must register for the upper-division options (SOCI 430).

Complete the following:

This covers communication as it affects and is affected by language and culture. Topics include contextualized use of communication within speech communities, intercultural effectiveness, cultural communication theory, competent intercultural experiences in co-cultures (ethnic, gender, intergenerational, deaf, etc.) and global cultural groups. A student may not earn credit for both the lower-division and upper-division versions of this course.
A comparative study of world societies and their ways of life.
Explores socio-historic contexts, sources, and patterns related to social change, such as globalization, social movements, technological innovation, economic and political forces. Gives attention to understanding the role of individuals and groups in social change; moving toward a reflective, informed way of thinking and living as thoughtful Christians committed to justice.

Choose two of the following:

A study of how societies construct gender similarities and differences. The impact of gender upon individuals and social institutions, and the implications of a sociological understanding of gender for the Christian faith will be explored.
Why do wars and conflicts occur and how do we prevent these? This course considers the causes of global insecurity (from wars between countries to transnational terrorism to genocide) and examines the various approaches to their resolution, including the creation of international institutions and military alliances. Special emphasis will be placed on the role of religion in global political conflict.
This course introduces students to causes and consequences of 'the wealth of nations.' Students will learn theories of economic growth and poverty alleviation. Topics to be covered include: globalization, education, international trade, holistic conceptions of development, and the role of institutions. (Identical to INTL 370 and SOCI 370.) Prerequisite: ECON 212 Principles of Microeconomics
A study of the world's cultural regions developed through the themes of location, human environmental relationships, movement, and regions, with emphasis on the interrelatedness of culture, physical, economic, historical, and political geography in creating the dynamic cultural landscapes existing today. (Identical to INTL 200.)
An introduction to the theory and practice of teaching English (or any language) to non-native speakers. Topics include principles of language teaching, communicative and interactive approaches, teaching methods and techniques for improving different language skills, lesson planning, materials selection and adaptation, testing, cultural issues, teaching English as Christian witness, and working with English-as-a-second-language students in a mainstream class. Students relate theory to practice in a school- or community-based practicum.
One semester of college-level world language study at the appropriate level.       (3-4 hours)

Complete the following:

A study of how societies construct gender similarities and differences. The impact of gender upon individuals and social institutions, and the implications of a sociological understanding of gender for the Christian faith will be explored.
A study of marriage and the family from a sociological perspective, including historical, cross-cultural, and economic backgrounds. A Christian faith perspective will emphasize the worth of people, the importance of the family as a place of nurture, and the gift of marriage. (Identical to HLTH 223.)
Explores socio-historic contexts, sources, and patterns related to social change, such as globalization, social movements, technological innovation, economic and political forces. Gives attention to understanding the role of individuals and groups in social change; moving toward a reflective, informed way of thinking and living as thoughtful Christians committed to justice.

Choose two of the following:

An introduction to the macro aspects of the social science concerned with the allocation of resources. Consideration is given to the fundamental principles of the economy as a whole, dealing with economic data, behavior, and theory at the aggregate level of the economy. The course studies topics such as government spending, taxation, and monetary policies, as well as events and issues in the global economy. ECON 211 and ECON 212 are complementary courses; however, it is preferred that ECON 211 be taken first.
An introduction to the micro aspects of the social science concerned with the allocation of resources. Consideration is given to the fundamental principles governing production, distribution, consumption, and exchange of wealth. The course studies the behavior of microeconomic units such as individuals, households, firms, and industries. ECON 211 and ECON 212 are complementary courses; however, it is preferred that ECON 211 be taken first. Prerequisites: Students must have completed MATH 180 College Algebra or higher math course, or an SAT math score of 620 or higher or an ACT score of 28 or higher.
A study of communication principles found useful in managing conflict productively. Focus is given to conflict occurring in institutional and organizational settings between individuals and groups. Attention also is given to conflict in social, national, and international settings. (Identical to PSCI 310.)
A study of the social and psychological processes of human interaction. Major topics to be covered include conformity, aggression, self-justification, persuasion, prejudice, attraction, and interpersonal communication. Prerequisite: PSYC 150 General Psychology.
A comparative study of world societies and their ways of life.
This course will cover the theological and historical backgrounds of alternative systems of justice, and the criminological principles undergirding a variety of restorative justice programs, particularly community policing, problem-solving courts and community corrections, and will apply an international comparative component as well as a study the programs’ effectiveness. Prerequisites: SOCI 150 Principles of Sociology, SOCI 331 Crime and Deviance, and SOCI 333 Juvenile Delinquency.
A sociological examination of the meaning and function of religion in human society. Gives attention to the development of religious organization, the relationship of religion to class and politics, the nature of the sacred, dimensions of religiosity, and denominational diversity in the United States. (Identical to RELI 430.)