Sociology courses

SOC 100: Introduction to Sociology

Sociology is the systematic study of human social behavior. Sociologists examine not only how social structures shape our daily interactions but also how society constructs social categories and social meanings. This course offers an overview of sociological theories, concepts and methodologies through readings and discussions. You will develop a deeper understanding of self and society by applying sociological concepts and methods in class and in lab projects.

Units: 3 — 4

SOC 197: Independent Study

Student and faculty member select topic of study and number of credits.

Units: 1 — 6

SOC 200: Social Inequality

This course explores the principles of sociology as they apply to social inequality between cultures, communities, ethnicity, and gender.

Units: 3 — 3

SOC 215: Introduction to Social Problems

This course explores various contemporary social problems facing the United States. It examines how problems affect and are affected by American culture and social institutions. Students learn to interpret social problems within the context of sociological theories. Additional topics may include substance abuse, aging, ethnic relations, urban issues, unemployment, terrorism, violence, and the role of ideology and interest groups in shaping social problems. (Credit/No Credit Available)

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 312: Sociology of Gender

Students will examine gender norms and socialization, gender identity and expression, and gendered structural inequality.  Particular attention will be given to examining gender from an inter-sectional perspective that encompasses race, class, and sexual orientation.  Modules will highlight the role of gender and gender inequality in social institutions such as the family, educational system, workplace, and government.

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 315: Marriage and Family

This course examines family as a social institution, combining functional and sociological approaches. It utilizes historical and cross-cultural perspectives to examine and compare patterns of family behavior. Additional topics may include human sexuality, divorce, family planning, communication, gender equity, courtship/dating, and the psychodynamics of family life. (Credit/No Credit Available) (Prereq: SOC 100: Introduction to Sociology (3-4 units))

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 317: Social Movements

This course will provide an overview of key theoretical concepts in the study of social movements, including framing, resource mobilization, political opportunity structure, strategy and tactics, coalitions, collective identity and emotions, and transnational movements.  Students will apply these concepts to case studies of social movements: historical and modern, conservative and progressive, in both the United States and elsewhere in the world.

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 320: Labor and Labor Movements

An introduction to work and unionization in the United States, with an emphasis on race, class, and gender as they are salient to workers and labor organizing.  Next, students examine case studies of unions at key points in United States history, tracing the US labor movement through its rise, heyday, and ongoing decline.  Finally, we examine additional topics of importance to modern workers, including unemployment, informal employment, work and migration, and globalization.

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 322: Political Sociology

Political sociology is, at its heart, the study of power: how to define it, gain it, use it, and lose it. Formal definitions and understandings of power underlie our analysis of formal and informal mechanisms by which people and groups engage political power. We explore nation-states; democracy, civic participation, and voting behavior; capitalism and social class; and social movements. Survey addresses those inequalities of race, class, and gender underlying the exercise of political power.

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 325: Sociology of Latinos

Introduces students to the sociology of Latinos in North America with an emphasis on the vast cultural diversity and historical complexity of this significant US population.  Reviews theories of race, ethnicity, and racialized immigration enforcement to address the racialization and marginalization of Latinos in the US. Extends the scope of this review to those sociological, economic, and political dynamics that underlie just how assimilation is deliberated.

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 332: Punishment & Social Control

What role does punishment play in those forms of social control deployed in modern democratic states? This course explores the nature, function, and dynamics of those forms of social control dependent on punishment, and its perceived place in promoting rehabilitation. Course content will review the social forces that shape institutional practice, including its manifestation in the penal system, and the role of poverty, inequality, race, and the media in framing contemporary practice.

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 333: Sociology of Deviance

This course examines the ways in which societies define deviance and their attitudes and beliefs. It employs a critical sociological approach to explore conformity/non-conformity and the relationship between individual liberty and social control. It also analyzes social reactions and outcomes of these definitions. Topics may include sexuality, suicide, prostitution, drug addiction, crime, and gender. (Credit/No Credit Available) (Prereq: SOC 100: Introduction to Sociology (3-4 units))

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 345: Wealth, Status and Power

This course utilizes historical and sociological perspectives to examine social stratification and inequality. It explores the unequal distribution of wealth, status and power and analyzes the cultural and economic systems that maintain them. (Credit/No Credit Available) (Prereq: SOC 100: Introduction to Sociology (3-4 units) and STAT 100: Introduction to Statistics (4 units))

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 360: Population and Contemporary Issues

This course studies historical, contemporary, and anticipated population conditions and trends as they relate to social issues and organization of society. It explores the population processes (fertility, mortality, and migration) as they affect and are affected by various influences such as urbanization, family, and environment. Additional topics may include undocumented migration, US-Mexico border, and globalization. (Credit/No Credit Available) (Prereq: SOC 100: Introduction to Sociology (3-4 units) and STAT 100: Introduction to Statistics (4 units))

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 365: Technology and Society

This course offers a broad introduction to the social dimensions of emerging information and communication technologies. An emphasis is placed on the specific historical and cultural contexts that shape practices of technology. Attention is given to the diverse ways technology shapes social life, including culture, economy, education, and military. It also examines how social structures of gender, race, class, sexuality, and nation are reproduced or reconfigured by technology. (Credit/No Credit Available) (Prereq: SOC 100: Introduction to Sociology (3-4 units) and STAT 100: Introduction to Statistics (4 units))

Units: 4 — 4

SOC 395: Special Topics

Studies a particular topic in Sociology. May be repeated for credit when topics vary. (Credit/ No Credit Available)

Units: 2 — 4

SOC 395L: Special Topics Lab

Student and faculty member select upper-division topics of study and total number of credit hours.

Units: 2 — 4