THE PENN SOCIOLOGY MAJOR PROGRAM
The Sociology major helps students identify and explain patterns of social life and human behavior by emphasizing how large-scale social phenomena (such as class, race and gender inequality) affect the everyday experiences of individuals, and vice versa. The major prepares students for a career in a variety of fields such as law, medicine and healthcare, marketing, education, scholarly and applied social research, social work, demography, journalism and media, management in the public and private sectors, administration, and government.
The program offers majors comprehensive advising and significant research and independent study opportunities. Our program is dedicated to nurturing a strong community of student-scholars, helping them to grow academically and professionally under the large-scale mission of the College of Arts & Sciences.
TO DECLARE AS A SOCIOLOGY MAJOR:
1. Prospective Majors must fill out a Major Declare Application/Questionnaire, which gives our department an idea of how familiar you are with our courses and faculty. Additionally, the questionnaire helps us to match you with a faculty member who will serve as your major advisor.
2. Once the questionnaire has been completed, prospective majors must meet with the undergraduate program manager, who will go over the requirements for the program and work with the student to create a course plan and an advising plan for completing the major.
3. Once a faculty member has been confirmed as the major advisor, the student will be entered into the Penn database as a major and will receive a confirmation email from the program manager.
4. All majors are added to the Sociology undergraduate listserv to receive program news, announcements, event listings and deadline reminders.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS: 14 CU’S, AT LEAST 12 OF WHICH MUST BE SOCIOLOGY COURSES.
• 1 cu must be SOCI001: Introduction to Sociology.
• 1 cu must be a course in sociological theory approved by the department: SOCI 125: Classical Sociological Theory or SOCI 126: Contemporary Sociological Theory.
• 3 cu’s must be approved courses in social research methods. Students must take SOCI 100: Introduction to Sociological Research, as well as SOCI 120: Social Statistics. The third course must come from our selection of methods courses such as: SOCI 128: Introduction to Demographic Methods; SOCI 221: Sample Survey Methods, SOCI 222: Field Methods of Sociological Research, or other methods courses which may be offered from time to time.
*Note: SOCI 100 should be taken first whenever possible, and ideally the methods sequence should be completed before the beginning of senior year, especially for those considering an honors thesis.
• 3 cu’s must be in an approved area of concentration. Areas of concentration include:
—Global and International studies
—Law and Society
—Sociology of Culture
—Sociology of Families and Populations
—Sociology of Health and Medicine
—Structures of Opportunity & Inequality
• 4 additional cu’s must be in SOCIOLOGY.
• The remaining 2 CU's of the major, subject to the discretion of the Undergraduate Chair, may be courses in Sociology, and/or courses offered in other departments that are directly related to Sociology or the student's concentration.
• Poster Presentation: As a culminating experience, every graduating senior in Sociology is required to submit a poster based on a paper or project they completed in a Sociology class, or with a Sociology faculty member. All posters are displayed at the annual Graduation Luncheon at the end of the academic year. The creation of this poster gives students a chance to critically display and demonstrate their knowledge in a visual context, an important practice and skill to develop in our Information Age. It also allows students to bring to bear a sociological problem or phenomenon to the larger University community. The creation of the poster is a months-long process with several deadlines that count toward a final score.
To complete the poster, seniors are required to work closely with the undergraduate program manager and the faculty member under whom their paper or project was completed. Seniors must receive at least a satisfactory score for their poster in order to complete the requirements of the major for graduation.