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Social Science BA
Sociology Track, Social Science BA

About The Program

Why Sociology?

The Sociology Track is an ideal course of study for students interested in:

  • How society shapes our daily lives, sometimes in invisible and coercive ways.
  • How differences of abilities, culture, race, class, gender, and sexual orientation contribute significantly to the shaping of societies.
  • How to develop the skills and tools to discover, analyze, and change those obscure social processes that shape our lives.

The Sociology Track focuses on the academic study of society while promoting social justice and cultural respect.

What will I do in the Major?

Sociology is a track within the Social Science Major. Courses in the Sociology Track fall into four areas of study:

  • Foundational concepts in Sociology, the study of what people do, think, and feel within formal and informal groups, organizations, institutions, and communities.
  • Sociological topics like social movements, the body, deviance, power, animals, food, and homelessness.
  • Social institutions like the family, religion, education, government, and business.
  • Social dimensions of the inequalities of gender, race, class, religion, culture, and sexual orientation.

Students in the Sociology Track learn fundamental skills in sociological analysis and research and conduct their own research to complete their degrees.

What can I do with the degree?

The Sociology Track offers graduates valuable training for professional or graduate work in several fields:

  • Nonprofit and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs)
  • Local, State and Federal Governments
  • Advocacy
  • Private Sector
  • Graduate School in sociology and related fields

More information on careers in sociology is on the American Sociological Association website.

Student outcomes

The learning outcomes for this major provide the knowledge, skills, and abilities to enter the 21st-century workplace to:

  • know and understand the essential concepts of social science;
  • comprehend the historical foundations, theoretical paradigms, and research methods of social science;
  • develop higher order thinking skills by analyzing and interpreting social science literature;
  • write analytically in a style that is informed, well-reasoned, and literate;
  • recognize and understand differences of gender and sexual orientation, race and ethnicity, religion, and social class;
  • understand and utilize a global perspective
  • develop civic skills by participating in community-based learning and internships
  • become advocates and leaders in their communities, our nation, and the globe.

Related minors

Courses and Requirements


Summary (40 credits)

At least half of the credits required for the major must be completed at Metropolitan State University. Students must earn a grade of C- or above in all major courses. Student should select lower division electives and upper division electives in consultation with an advisor. Transfer courses may be applicable to major requirements. The university's degree audit will specify transfer courses that are directly equivalent to major requirements. Other transfer courses must be approved by a faculty advisor in the department.

+ Lower division electives (up to 9 credits)

Students may take up to 9 credits in lower-division sociology courses. Please see an advisor for more information. Students may also select SSCI 100: Introduction to Social Science.

+ Survey Course (4 credits)


This course introduces and explores the sociological perspective. The central theme of the course is what C. Wright Mills called the sociological imagination which enables us to grasp history and biography and the relations between the two within society. Students explore how they are embedded in ever widening social circles that range from local to global. The focus is on how social forces such as culture, race and ethnicity, nationality, religion, social class, and gender contribute to the shaping of societies and the course of their histories. Students use conceptual tools drawn from sociology to analyze a range of contemporary social issues.

Full course description for Contemporary Sociology

This course introduces and explores the sociological perspective through the study of food. While eating is a biological necessity and often a social activity, the meanings of food are embedded in larger socio-cultural contexts. Food is connected to individual and cultural identities, structures of power and inequality, and activism and social justice. Students will examine the social forces and social relations surrounding food, and the links between food and bodies. Lecture, discussion, multimedia materials, and a variety of readings are used to study the complex connections between food, culture, and society.

Full course description for Food, Culture, and Society

+ Core Courses (17 credits)

All social science majors must complete all four core courses (SSCI 300, SSCI 311, SSCI 411, and SSCI 451/452). Sequencing: SSCI 300, SSCI 311, SSCI 411, and SSCI 451 or SSCI 452. Social science majors may take one core course at a time. Alternatively, majors may take SSCI 300 and SSCI 311 concurrently, or they may take SSCI 311 and SSCI 411 concurrently. SSCI 300, 311, and 411 must be completed before beginning a capstone class (SSCI 451 or 452).


Most of us are only dimly aware of how politics, culture, and society influence, and often coerce, our daily lives. The calling of a social scientist is to help us make these invisible social structures visible. In this course, students develop the skills and tools to discover, analyze, and interpret these obscure social processes. Ideally, this knowledge will have a liberating effect on their individual lives. Students will also perceive how their civic and ethical participation can change politics, culture, and society, as well as themselves.

Full course description for Seeing Like a Social Scientist


This course provides an introduction to the basic concepts of social science research. Students learn and implement a variety of research methods, and critically reflect on the relationship of these methods to philosophical traditions within social science. The courses examines two approaches to social science research, quantitative and qualitative, and the unique contribution of each approach for understanding social life. Experiential activities enhance classroom learning.

Full course description for Research Methods in Social Science


Social scientists study the world so that we may take informed action to solve social problems. In this class, students explore how theory contributes to solving social problems. Students will learn how theorists identify and analyze social problems, as well as offer potential solutions. Special emphasis will be placed on some of the most contested and controversial social problems of our time, such as neoliberalism and its role in deepening economic inequality, climate collapse, and the erosion of democracy globally. Students will also explore issues such as identity politics and oppression based on identity categories, which may include race, gender, sexuality, ability, and nationality. Students will consider how theory helps us to envision and pursue a more just, humane, and sustainable world.

Full course description for Theory and Social Problems


Social scientists investigate the patterns of human interactions and then seek to interpret, explain and communicate human behavior. This seminar is designed to provide a final, integrating experience for students with a social science major. Seminar participants complete a senior project that demonstrates an ability to design a study, collect new or existing data, analyze those findings and communicate the results.

Full course description for Empirical Research Capstone


The social sciences have been shaping our understanding of the human condition for 175 years. Students will be comparing and evaluating ideas that continue to engage and perplex thoughtful public intellectuals. The capstone project involves researching an idea that remains disputable. The goal of a student's thesis is an independent interpretation of a specific concept.

Full course description for Conceptual Research Capstone

+ Upper division electives (to reach 40 credits)

Students may select any 300-level courses in sociology. Students may also take SSCI 401 (Social Science Seminar: Contending Perspectives), which is offered only in the summer.