SOC 305

Race and Ethnicity: Sociological Perspectives

4 Undergraduate credits
Effective August 1, 1998 – Present

Graduation requirements this course fulfills

This course uses comparative methods to explore the sociological significance of race and ethnicity in the United States. Theories of ethnic stratification are assessed, and students evaluate the causes and consequences of prejudice, discrimination and institutional subordination. Through the social history of a variety of ethnic groups, students examine patterns of migration and settlement, community and family life, gender and class, and cultural values and norms.


Learning outcomes


  • Ability to apply concepts and perspectives to personal experiences and observations of social life at an upper division college level.
  • Development of critical thinking skills needed to analyze and interpret the impact of race and ethnicity during various historical periods, and as a lived experience.
  • Knowledge of the sociological concepts and historical perspectives pertaining to the study of race and ethnicity at an upper division college level.
  • Understanding of the ways that the social construction of race and ethnicity has shaped American society and the opportunities available in that society.
  • Writes analytical papers that are informed, well reasoned, and literate at an upper division college level.

Minnesota Transfer Curriculum

Goal 5: History and the Social and Behavioral Sciences

  • Employ the methods and data that historians and social and behavioral scientists use to investigate the human condition.
  • Examine social institutions and processes across a range of historical periods and cultures.
  • Use and critique alternative explanatory systems or theories.
  • Develop and communicate alternative explanations or solutions for contemporary social issues.

Goal 7: Human Diversity

  • Understand the development of and the changing meanings of group identities in the United States' history and culture.
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the individual and institutional dynamics of unequal power relations between groups in contemporary society.
  • Analyze their own attitudes, behaviors, concepts and beliefs regarding diversity, racism, and bigotry.
  • Describe and discuss the experience and contributions (political, social, economic, etc.) of the many groups that shape American society and culture, in particular those groups that have suffered discrimination and exclusion.
  • Demonstrate communication skills necessary for living and working effectively in a society with great population diversity.