Department of Sociology, College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Sociologists examine topics encompassing a vast array of human behavior: crime and punishment, the formation and dissolution of families, bureaucracy in organizations, conflicts between classes, and global inequalities. Sociology is distinctive in its focus on the way individuals’ lives are embedded within multiple social contexts that facilitate and constrain the range of possible actions. These contexts include generation, occupation, gender, religion, sexual orientation, family, health, nation, race and ethnicity, and many others.
Completion of the BA Sociology/Social Studies leads to an endorsement in social studies. To receive a recommendation for state of Washington certification for secondary education, students must complete the teacher certification program, including the content methods course SEC 426, which is offered by the Department of Secondary Education as 1) a part of the undergraduate BA degree, or 2) as a post-baccalaureate program, or 3) as part of the Master’s in Education degree.
See the Secondary Education section of this catalog for program admission, completion, and teacher certification requirements.
Why Consider a Sociology/Social Studies Major?
Sociology students develop an aptitude for critical thinking, improve their writing ability, and gain competence with statistical computing that will enhance their future career options. Sociology students also have the opportunity to participate in faculty-led study abroad programs.
A specialization in Sociology/Social Studies provides an excellent base of knowledge for individuals interested in becoming secondary-level social studies teachers.
Teacher - Secondary Education
How to Declare (Admission and Declaration Process):
The number of students admitted to the major is limited as a result of the structure of the sociology curriculum and departmental staffing capabilities.
All students wishing to become Sociology majors should meet the following criteria:
- Completion of at least 45 college-level credits
- Completion of at least 5 credits in Sociology with a grade of C- or better
- If the preceding criteria are met, students should complete the Sociology Major Admission form. The Sociology Department supports Western’s mission to bring together individuals of diverse backgrounds and perspectives in an inclusive, student-centered community. There are two paths to becoming a Sociology major.
- Path 1 (Immediate Declaration): Students with a cumulative GPA of 2.85 or higher may submit their admission form at any time to the Sociology Program Coordinator for approval and admission to the major.
- Path 2 (Application Review): Students with a cumulative GPA lower than 2.85 should submit their admission form to the Sociology Program Coordinator on or before Friday of the 2nd week of fall, winter or spring quarter. These applications will be reviewed and admission to the major will be based on a combination of overall GPA, Sociology GPA, and space available in the program. Students will receive notification regarding their admission status during the fourth week of classes.
A grade of C- or better is required for a student’s major or minor courses, and supporting courses for majors and minors. Courses required for a state teaching endorsement must be completed with a grade of C (2.0) or better.