Undergraduate Bulletin

Fall 2016

Requirements for the Major in Sociology (SOC)

The major in Sociology leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree. All sociology courses completed for the major, except those graded S/U, must be passed with a letter grade of C or higher. Excluding required courses, credit can be awarded for just one P graded course.  

Completion of the major requires 39 credits, of which 27 to 30 credits are in Sociology courses.

A. Study within the Area of the Major

1. Required courses

  • SOC 105 Introduction to Sociology
  • SOC 201 Research Methods
  • SOC 202 Statistical Methods in Sociology or another allowed statistics course
  • SOC 361 Historical Development of Contemporary Sociology

2. Sociology electives
In addition to the required courses above, students must complete an additional 18 credits of coursework from among all sociology course offerings. 

Only six credits of independent study courses (SOC 447, 487, 488, 495, 496) may be used toward the requirements of 18 elective credits in sociology. 

B. Study in Related Areas

At least three courses (nine credits) chosen from one of the following related social sciences: Africana studies (only those courses with designator AFS), anthropology (only those courses with designator ANT), economics, history, linguistics, political science, psychology, and women's studies. Credits from applied social science professions such as social work, police science, education, and management science are not applicable. 

C. Upper-Division Writing Requirement

Sociology majors are expected to fulfill the upper-division writing requirement by the time of graduation. Students may meet the requirement by having their writing evaluated in certain upper-division courses. Normally this requirement is met through SOC 361, the required Historical Development of Sociological Theory course, which also satisfies the SBC WRTD requirement.  Alternatively, students who have indicated that they wish to have their writing evaluated in an upper division sociology course with the equivalent of an 8 – 10 page paper, should co-register for the 0-credit SOC 459 and will receive a grade for SOC 459, in addition to their regular course grade.

Students whose writing is not judged adequate should consult with the director of undergraduate studies on further steps to fulfill the writing requirement.

Students should consult with the department advisor to ensure that their plan for completing the Upper Division Writing Requirement is consistent with university graduation requirements for General Education.  Students completing the Stony Brook Curriculum (SBC) must complete a course that satisfies the "Write Effectively within One's Discipline" (WRTD) learning objective to graduate.  The Upper Division Writing Requirement is consistent in most cases with the SBC learning outcomes for WRTD.

Notes for Transfer Students:

1. The Department of Sociology requires that transfer students take at least 12 credits in sociology in residence at Stony Brook to complete the sociology major.
2. No transferred sociology course with a grade lower than C is accepted for credit in the major.

Honors Program

The honors program is open to seniors majoring in Sociology who have maintained a g.p.a. of 3.50 in the major and 3.20 overall, and who have completed or are in the process of completing the methods and statistics requirement and the upper-division writing requirement. Students should apply for the honors program before the beginning of their senior year. With the approval of the sponsoring faculty member, the student must submit a written proposal for a major paper or research project to be completed during the senior year. Acceptance into the honors program depends on the approval of the proposal by the Department.

In the senior year, the student enrolls in SOC 495 during the first semester and SOC 496 during the second semester, for a total of six credits. The student's major paper or research project must be completed no later than four weeks prior to the end of the second semester, to allow for possible revisions. It is read and evaluated by a committee consisting of the student's sponsor, one other Sociology faculty member, and one faculty member from another department.

If the honors program is completed with distinction and the student has achieved a 3.50 gpa in all sociology courses and a 3.2 overall, honors are conferred.