Sociology

The Sociology Field Group (our name for “departments”) is a dynamic, diverse, and distinctive group of faculty, students, and alumni. We take pride in our teaching, devoting attention to students’ learning, developing ways of integrating students in community programs and research experiences.

In spite of our small size, we offer a wide range of classes! Find out more about our major, what courses you need to complete an undergraduate degree in sociology, and the kinds of courses you can take even if you decide not to major in sociology.

Most of our sociology courses are organized in two broad categories: foundation courses that are fundamental to the discipline of sociology (Category A) and courses that address social issues and social policies (Category B). Courses numbered over 100 are considered upper division courses and they have prerequisites or require the permission of the instructor [see individual course descriptions]. Another set of courses (Category C), open only to senior majors, is designed to allow students to practice the craft of sociology by engaging in an original research project (quantitative, qualitative, and/or theoretical). Students will normally complete the research as part of the requirements of the Senior Seminar (199a). Another option is to complete a research project or thesis as an Advanced Independent Research Study (199b) under the direction of a Pitzer sociology faculty member.

Faculty

The sociology faculty are dedicated teachers committed to undergraduate education and come from a wide-range of backgrounds with a variety of interests.

Come see what we are doing, who we are, and how to interact with us.

To contact us: Phone: 909-621-8218
Fax: 909-621-8481
Email: sociology@pitzer.edu

Requirements for the Major

Students who wish to graduate with a full major in sociology must satisfactorily complete a minimum of ten graded courses:

  • The introductory course: SOC 001 PZ
  • One theory course: SOC 109 PZ or SOC 110 PZ or SOC 112 PZ (students who are considering graduate work in sociology or a related field such as social work are strongly encouraged to take more than one theory course)
  • Two methods courses: SOC 101 PZ and SOC 102 PZ (students in the Ontario Program may use the methods course taught in that program in place of SOC 102 PZ and any Statistics course can be used to fulfill SOC 101 PZ) The Sociology field group strongly recommends that SOC 101 PZ/SOC 102 PZ should be taken prior to senior year or as soon as the major is declared
  • Five additional sociology courses, at least two of which should be from Category A
  • Three courses from Category B
  • Independent studies cannot be used to fulfill these requirements.

Minor: Students who wish to graduate with a minor in sociology must satisfactorily complete six graded courses:

  • Intro course—SOC 001 PZ
  • One theory course: SOC 109 PZ or SOC 110 PZ
  • One methods course: SOC 101 PZ or SOC 102 PZ  [If a student has already taken a statistics course in another field, then either the qualitative course (SOC 102 PZ) or any other sociology course should be substituted]
  • Three additional sociology courses, at least two of which should be from Category A.
  • Independent studies cannot be used to fulfill these requirements.
  • No more than three courses can be counted to fulfill the requirements in another major or minor, or be transferred from another institution

Pitzer in Ontario Courses: Sociology is continuing to accept any two of the three courses for credit towards the Sociology major.

Double Major: Students must complete the requirements of both majors, including any theses or honor requirements. Normally, no more than two courses can be counted to fulfill the requirements in both fields.

Combined Major: Students who wish to graduate with a combined major in sociology must satisfactorily complete eight graded courses: SOC 001 PZ; either SOC 109 PZ or SOC 110 PZ; both SOC 101 PZ and SOC 102 PZ; three additional sociology courses, at least two of which should be from Category A; one course from Category C. Normally, no more than two courses can be counted to fulfill the requirements in both fields.

Honors: Students who have a minimum GPA (cumulative and in sociology) of 3.5 may request that their senior thesis be considered for honors. Two sociology faculty members must evaluate the research project and make a recommendation to the Sociology Field Group. In the case of combined majors, one faculty member from each field must evaluate the project. Eligible students should begin thinking about an honors thesis at the end of their junior year and discuss their ideas for a thesis with two faculty members at the beginning of their senior year.

Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Identify and articulate the interplay of macro and micro level structural forces and the influence of culture in shaping behavior
  2. Understand the power dynamics in the social construction of society and its intersectionality with race, class, gender, sexuality and nationality
  3. Recognize and communicate effectively about institutional challenges to and opportunities for freedom and democracy
  4. Understand the stratified nature of globalization and the importance of intercultural differences within and between local and global communities
  5. Identify, describe, and apply core sociological theories/perspectives to sociological phenomena
  6. Understand and describe the connection between sociological theory and methods in a cogent manner
  7. Understand and distinguish quantitative and qualitative research methods and identify their strengths and weaknesses
  8. Incorporate ethical considerations into research and other scholarly practices