Professor: S. Schrader
Associate Professors: G. Sehested, W. Swart (chair)
Instructor: S. Bunger
In an increasingly complex society, it is vital for students to understand how society operates and to recognize the social connections between daily lives and experiences and larger societal forces. The Sociology department curriculum enables students to identify, understand, and critically explore these connections. Students may draw from a broad range of topical areas including family, religion, medical sociology, deviance, gender, gerontology and social inequality.
Because students of sociology grapple with a wide variety of contemporary social issues, a Sociology major or minor will equip students with basic tools for diverse career paths including graduate school preparation, administration, community development, human services, law, criminology, health-related fields, ministry, etc. A sociology faculty advisor will work with each student to identify career interests and to make appropriate course selections.
31 credit hours
SOCI 110 — Contemporary Society (3 cr)
SOCI 340 — Social Inequality (4 cr)
SOCI 350 — Social Science Research Methods (4 cr)
SOCI 360 — Sociological Theory (4 cr)
ECON 270 — Statistics (4 cr)
SOCI — Elective courses 1(2 cr)
Since several emphases are available in sociology, it is recommended that selection of courses be done in consultation with an advisor. The following guidelines will be helpful for those with specific career goals:
Law Enforcement Professions:
In addition to the required courses for the major add:
SOCI 240 — Deviance and Social Control (3 cr)
SOCI 250 — Delinquency and Crime (3 cr)
GOVT 290 — Criminal Law (3 cr)
GOVT 300 — Public Administration (4 cr)
Social Work/Human Service Professions:
Consider adding the Gender Studies or Gerontology Minor (if appropriate) and/or take:
SOCI 210 — Sociology of Families (3 cr)
SOCI 235 — Gender Work and Family (3 cr)
SOCI 280 — Race Ethnicity and Multiculturalism (3 cr)
SOCI 395 — Internship in Sociology (2-4 cr)
BSAD 320 — Principles of Management (4 cr)
ACCT 210 — Principles of Accounting I (4 cr)
SOCI 110 — Contemporary Society (Area 3.3) (3 credits)
Students will understand their personal life in relation to broader social structures and change. This awareness is accomplished through the application of the sociological perspective to human interactions, relationships, groups, and social institutions. Offered Every Semester.
SOCI 210 — Sociology of Families (3 credits)
A sociological examination of family dynamics with emphasis upon the development of the self, interaction patterns in mate selection, marriage and parenthood; and the effects of social class and ethnicity upon the family. The focus is upon contemporary American society with attention to historical and cross-cultural comparisons. Offered Every Fall Semester.
SOCI 220 — Social Gerontology (3 credits)
In addition to a thorough examination of theoretical perspectives on aging, the course will also address other social dimensions of the aging experience. Special emphasis will be devoted to social roles and life events while exploring the interrelatedness of aging and social institutions. Cross-Listed with GENS 220; Offered Spring Semester, Odd Years.
SOCI 230 — Medical Sociology (3 credits)
A survey of the relationship between social cultural backgrounds and medical and health practices. Topics include the socio-cultural context of illness; role of medical specialists in modern society; and the hospital as a social organization. Applies toward Gerontology minor. Offered Spring Semester, Odd Years.
SOCI 235 — Gender, Work and Family (Area 3.3) (3 credits)
Although Americans tend to think of gender, work and family only in terms of private experience, these actually constitute three distinct but closely interconnected social systems which have profound impact on the life experiences of everyone. The course will examine the historical connections among these social institutions as well as the changes that have occurred and are occurring. Cross listed with GENS 235; Offered Occasionally.
SOCI 240 — Deviance and Social Control (3 credits)
An examination of the social processes and structures related to deviation from the norms of society. Attention will be focused on the following kinds of questions: How and why do certain persons and kinds of behavior come to be designated as deviant? What are the consequences of these processes? What methods are used to prevent and/or control deviance and what are the consequences of these methods? Offered Fall Semester, Odd Years.
SOCI 250 — Delinquency and Crime (3 credits)
Introduces student to the problems of crime and delinquency, especially the nature and extent of crime, theories of criminal behavior and social response to crime. Offered Spring Semester, Odd Years.
SOCI 260 — Sociology of Gender (3 credits)
Examines the various ways in which gender is a basic component of social organization in contemporary and traditional societies and the ways in which the aspect of society is currently undergoing change. Cross-Listed with SOCI 260; Offered Spring Semester, Odd Years.
SOCI 270 — Introduction to Archaeology (3 credits)
The course is organized around the broadest possible definition of archeology: the study of artifacts in relation to human behavior at any time and place. Tracing the journey of humankind across two million years of evolution from crude chopping tools to high speed computers, archeology provides a framework for reading the stories of change from the material evidence. Cross-Listed With ANTH 270; Offered Fall Semester, Odd Years.. SOCI 270 or 271 may be counted toward the Sociology major, but not both courses.
SOCI 271 — Cultural Anthropology (Area 3.6) (3 credits)
An anthropological study of diverse cultures, past and present, focusing upon technologies and structure, kinship and family patterns, political relations, religious concepts, and artistic forms. Cross-Listed With ANTH 271; Offered Spring Semester, Odd Years. SOCI 270 OR 271 may be counted toward the Sociology major, but not both courses.
SOCI 280 — Race, Ethnicity and Multiculturalism (3 credits)
This course explores the dynamics of multicultural society. It takes a dual focus – one detailing the subjective processes of identity construction among diverse racial and ethnic groups and the other examining the experiences and consequences of discrimination and oppression. Particular attention will be paid to contemporary issues of multiculturalism. Offered Spring Semester, Even Years.
SOCI 291 — Sociology of Religion (3 credits)
This course sociologically explores American religion as a social institution which influences and in influenced by other social institutions. Students will develop an understanding of sociological theories, methods, and concepts associated with the scientific study of religion. Students will also explore current religious issues and demographics and come to appreciate the “face” of the contemporary religious landscape. Offered Fall Semester, Even Years.
SOCI 320 — Native American Social Systems (Area 3.6) (3 credits)
This course presents an “institutional” approach to Native American (specifically Lakota) society from pre-European contact to the present. It explores Lakota social institutions (political, economic, family, religious, and educational systems) prior to European contact, and examines the impact of non-Indian structures on the historical development of Lakota social institutions. This course fulfills the State of South Dakota’s teacher certification requirement. Cross-Listed with NAST 320; Offered Every Semester.
SOCI 340 — Social Inequality (4 credits)
An examination of social stratification which primarily explores the intersection of social class, race-ethnicity, and gender. Primary emphasis is on the system of stratification within the United States. Students will understand how these inequalities interact by exploring historical and contemporary realities of these inequalities from the voices of marginalized groups. Students will also examine classical and contemporary theoretical explanations and current solutions offered for these social inequalities. Offered Every Spring Semester.
SOCI 350 — Social Science Research Methods (W - Area 2.1B) (4 credits)
An interdisciplinary approach to basic social science research methods. The course introduces students to the several research methodologies used within the social sciences. Students participate in all stages of a research project. Cross-Listed with ECON 350, GOVT 350, and PSYC 350; Offered Every Semester.
SOCI 360 — Sociological Theory (4 credits)
This course presents a survey of the major European and American social theorists and theories of the late 19th and 20th centuries. Theories are tools that help sociologists understand their lives, communities, and place in history. The goal is to help students develop both an appreciation for the ideas of specific “great thinkers” and develop their skills in thinking theoretically. The course emphasizes the theoretical knowledge, application, and development. Offered Every Fall Semester.
SOCI 390 — Applied Sociology (3 credits)
What is the utility of sociology? This course offers a hands-on examination of the concepts and skills developed within sociology, ways to engage in seeking solutions to issues of structure, process, and social change within organizations, and application of a sociological perspective in potential career-related settings. Students will couple field experiences with a weekly class seminar to address these topics. Note: Student must meet with a sociology faculty member one month prior to the beginning of the term to identify an appropriate placement based on individual interests. Prerequisite: 9 Credits of SOCI or Consent of the Department Chair; Offered Every Semester.