May 30, 2023  
2021-2023 Undergraduate Catalog 
2021-2023 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Sociology Major, BA

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Program Description

Sociology is the study of human society and social behavior. Thus, the sociology program intellectually opens the doors of society, allowing students to see what goes on behind them and revealing ways in which our society and the groups to which we belong influence our attitudes, beliefs, perceptions and world view. Sociology majors obtain valuable insight into social relations in any social context and develop their conceptual and critical thinking skills to understand issues of diversity, social control, social institutions, inequality, social policy and socio-cultural change.

Being a sociology major at Winston-Salem State means reading, writing, working with others in a supportive academic environment, both inside and outside the classroom. It means doing research, developing communication skills, and thinking critically about issues that affect us all. All of these skills and experiences will serve a graduate well in all types of work, including graduate school.

Sociology majors are people who like to learn, to think, and to talk about the world we all live in - how things work, why they work the way they do, and how they might be changed for the better. They are curious about different people’s perceptions, different cultures, and different ideas about why people do the things they do.

A Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology will lead to career opportunities in the criminal justice system, social services, government, or business. It will also serve as preparation for graduate study in sociology, other social sciences or professions, such as social work, counseling, education, or law. 

Program Mission

The Sociology program employs an applied emphasis to provide theoretical and practical experiences preparing students to 1) enter graduate or professional school or 2) attain entry-level employment in non-academic settings. The program also serves the university’s general education component, helping provide non-majors with experiences essential to a liberal arts education. Sociology contributes to student understanding of society and social behavior, encourages critical thinking, and helps develop communication skills.

Program Goals

  1. To provide students with a broad background in sociology for a greater understanding of interrelationships in human society and for effective participation in a variety of occupations.
  2. To prepare students to be creative problem solvers, using critical thinking and communication skills.
  3. To prepare students for continued studies on the graduate and professional levels.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the major, the student will be able to:

  1. Participate effectively in professions and business.
  2. Demonstrate a greater understanding of interrelationships in human society.
  3. Creatively solve problems, using critical thinking and communication skills.
  4. Continue studies on the graduate or professional level.

Major Requirements

Students who major in Sociology must have a 2.0 cumulative grade point average to enter the program. Although the student is chiefly responsible for completing the 120-semester-hour curriculum, students will be advised by the Sociology program faculty to ensure that each student matriculates through the curriculum within the university-targeted four- to five-year time period. Each student will be assigned a faculty advisor by the student’s last name. The student and advisor must meet a minimum of twice during the academic year to ensure sequential selection of courses and to avoid delays in the student completing the major in Sociology.

Sociology majors must complete the following courses with a grade of C or better:

Foundation (18 hours)

The Foundation courses designated will give students a general view of sociology across its sub disciplines, including theory and methodology.  These are the basic elements needed to begin understanding the discipline. Additionally, the foundation menu has been selected to open up general education options for non-majors who wish to take these courses by providing knowledge that is easily transferable to other fields.

The new pathway seeks to designate Philosophy and Economics as required foundational courses; majors are strongly encouraged to complete both.  Though these courses are outside the major, they would provide the student with a more solid foundation for understanding issues of equity and social justice.

SOC 2301   General Sociology OR SOC SOC 2302  Health & Society: General Sociology

SOC 2326   Statistics for the Social and Behavioral Sciences (or MAT 2326  or PSY 2326  )

SOC 3342   Sociological Theory

SOC 3352   Methods of Social Research

ECO XXXX Economics

PHI XXXX  Philosophy

Breadth Courses (12 hours)

Breadth courses in the new pathway would introduce students to a wide variety of courses within the discipline.  The objective is to provide students with the opportunity to 1) experience, 2) explore and 3) gain some expertise in the varous subfields in the discipline including the approaches employed by Sociologist to understand social problems, equity and social justice related issues.

SOC 2302    Health, Gender, Justice

SOC 2305    African Americn/Health

SOC 2336    Social Problems

SOC 3323    Population Problems

SOC 3347    Deviant Behavior

SOC 3353   Criminology

SOC 3356   Family Sociology

SOC 3307    Social Psychology

SOC 3314    Social Anthropology

SOC 3344    Sex, Gender and Feminist Thought

SOC 3315    Medical Sociology

SOC 3392  Special Investigation/Research

SOC 3335    American Soc/Intelligent Development to 1865

SOC 3336    American Soc/Intelligent Development Since 1865

Depth Courses (16 hours)

Depth courses have more rigor; they reflect core areas flowing from the breadth courses.  In addition, depth courses will connect theory and practice towards a deeper understanding of society.  As depth courses are all at the upper level, students would be evaluated via comprehensive writing papers, applied sociology and more senior-level reading assignments in contrast with “Breadth” courses.

Depth Courses
Inequality Health & Wellness
Course Number Course Title Credit Hours Course Number Course Title Credit Hours
SOC 4317   Urban 3 SOC 3354   Sociology of Mental Illness 3
SOC 4364   Race & Culture 3 SOC 3303 Health, Society and Aging 3
SOC 4311   Sociology of the African American 3 SOC 3320   Society/Public Health 3
SOC 4333   Social Stratification 3 SOC 3304   Social Gerontology 3
SOC 4324   Social Organization 3 SOC 4401   Senior Seminar 4
SOC 4401   Senior Seminar 4 SOC 4360   Internship 3 to 6
SOC 4360   Internship 3 to 6      
Total Hours 16 Total Hours 16


Total semester hours in Sociology = 46, with a grade of “C” or higher in each course.

Additional elective hours in any discipline must bring the total credits earned to at least 120 semester hours.

A minor in another discipline is not required.


Minor Program in Sociology

A minimum of 18 semester hours in Sociology with a grade of C or better in each course is required for a minor in this field. The following courses are required:
General Sociology or Health & Society: General Sociology

Elementary Statistics (*waived for students whose major requires a statistics course)

Social Theory

Methods of Social Research (**waived for students whose major requires a social/behavioral science research methods course)

General Sociology (SOC 2301  ) or Health & Society: General Sociology (SOC 2302  ) is prerequisite to all 3000- and 4000-level courses in sociology. 

Sociology electives must be completed to bring the total semester hours in Sociology to 18.
Students for whom one or two required courses are waived must complete three hours of Sociology for each course that is waived.        

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