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Sociology

Sociologists investigate the underlying forces that connect our personal troubles to larger social problems.

With a major in sociology, you’ll be prepared to shape societal improvements to how individuals interact with institutions, organizations and cultures.

Overview
Gain perspective on a personal and global scale

Throughout your sociology courses, you will receive rigorous theoretical and methodological training. This will help you gain meaningful insights to understand all levels of society — from the intimate micro-interactions of everyday life to the broader dynamics of globalization.

By employing the critical perspective you’ll learn in the program, you will be able to effectively evaluate social issues and understand social change to make positive contributions in an increasingly diverse and global society.

Produce sociological knowledge through research

There are two required research methods courses in our major program. Your professors will provide one-on-one mentorship while you conduct research on topics of your choice. You can then expand your projects into research papers and go on to present at local, regional and national conferences.

Gain an interdisciplinary lens

Explore specific interests through a broad range of elective courses, covering topics such as:

  • Gender
  • Race and Ethnic Relations
  • Deviance in U.S. Society
  • Religion and Culture
  • Sexuality
  • Popular Culture
  • Immigration
  • Medical Sociology
  • Families and Intimate Relationships

At a Glance

Degree Type

Bachelor of Arts

Department

Sociology

School/College

College of Arts and Sciences

Next Steps

Interested in this major? Here's what you can do next:

The Curriculum

With challenging and relevant courses, outstanding faculty, small class sizes, and an emphasis on hands-on learning, the sociology program will position you to succeed in your chosen career.

Program Details

Find out what it takes to earn a degree in sociology and explore the courses.


Highlighted Courses

Get familiar with some of the courses you might take in this major.

SOC 103: Contemporary Global Issues

A critical review and assessment will be undertaken of the origin and present condition of the major global issues and how these issues are being addressed by the local and international organizations. We will also explore the subjects of human trafficking, human rights, coexistence among peoples of different cultures, and other critical global issues such as poverty eradication, environmental degradation, health crises and family/gender issues.

See description
SOC 214: Introduction to Public Health

This course introduces students to key public health concepts and provides a foundational understanding of the history, systems, and practice of public health. Students learn the process of how health issues in a population are identified, treated and prevented through public health efforts and utilizing epidemiologic tools. Additionally, the social, behavioral and environmental factors that impact health are examined within a public health framework.

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SOC 300: Sexuality and Society

Primarily focusing on the United States, this course examines sexuality through a sociological lens. We will explore how sexual attitudes and behaviors have changed over time, looking at which sexual attitudes and behaviors are considered "normal" vs. "deviant," and "moral" vs. "immoral" in mainstream society and different subcultures.

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SOC 318: Immigration in the Global Age

International immigration is an integral part of the globalization processes. This course explores the key current theoretical and empirical debates in the study of this global phenomenon. The course covers transnational networks, the formation and implementation of labor recruitment (including human trafficking), migration policies, political conflict, economic and social adaptation, the development of socio-cultural traditions (ethnic identities0, and the transformation of gender relations.

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SOC 360: Racial and Ethnic Relations

The course examines the historical, political, economic, and cultural dimensions of racial and ethnic relations in the United States from the mid-1800s to the present, with an emphasis on racism. Includes an investigation of the link between residential segregation and opportunity for African Americans, a critical interrogation of whiteness and white privilege, and an exploration of racism in California, particularly for California Indians.

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SOC 370: Deviance in U.S. Society

Introduces students to sociological concepts of deviance, social control, social power, and identity construction/management. Focusing on the topic of deviance, an exploration of how groups of people have the power to shape and apply social definitions of "normalcy" and "morality" will provide an analytical lens through which to look at the consequences for those labeled as "deviant."

See description


Recommended Minors

Want to add even more value to your degree? Consider one of these minors to gain a unique combination of skills and perspectives.


The Experience

We offer hands-on opportunities that give you the freedom to explore your passion through real-world work and prepare for a fulfilling career.

  • Internships

    In the Applied Sociology course, you will use your knowledge and skills to solve social issues that are relevant to your internship with a non-profit organization or government agency.

  • Travel Courses

    Exploring Japanese Society, Popular Culture, and Media in Japan is a travel course that introduces you to Japanese society and culture. At the end of the semester, students will visit Japan for approximately two weeks to directly observe interactions of Japanese people, experience Japanese life style, and visit Japanese media sites.

  • Research Opportunities

    Through courses in research methods and individual guidance from sociology faculty, you will have the opportunity to conduct your own research and present it at conferences within the field.

Student photo

I would definitely recommend Sociology to future students if they are interested in studying and learning more about behaviors in society and the different aspects involved within it. If you interact with other humans every day, then you’re already participating in the major itself. So, why not learn more about it?

Marc Munda '23
Sociology Major

Career Paths

Our alumni are well prepared for graduate study and professional work in sociology, social work, law, public health, non-profit management, teaching and other fields that require the ability to think ethically and critically about a wide range of key issues.


Potential Careers

Eligibility Interviewers, Government Programs

Determine eligibility of persons applying to receive assistance from government programs and agency resources, such as welfare, unemployment benefits, social security, and public housing.

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Community Health Workers

Promote health within a community by assisting individuals to adopt healthy behaviors. Serve as an advocate for the health needs of individuals by assisting community residents in effectively communicating with healthcare providers or social service agencies. Act as liaison or advocate and implement programs that promote, maintain, and improve individual and overall community health. May deliver health-related preventive services such as blood pressure, glaucoma, and hearing screenings. May collect data to help identify community health needs.

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Educational, Guidance, and Career Counselors and Advisors

Advise and assist students and provide educational and vocational guidance services.

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Rehabilitation Counselors

Counsel individuals to maximize the independence and employability of persons coping with personal, social, and vocational difficulties that result from birth defects, illness, disease, accidents, aging, or the stress of daily life. Coordinate activities for residents of care and treatment facilities. Assess client needs and design and implement rehabilitation programs that may include personal and vocational counseling, training, and job placement.

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Sociologists

Study human society and social behavior by examining the groups and social institutions that people form, as well as various social, religious, political, and business organizations. May study the behavior and interaction of groups, trace their origin and growth, and analyze the influence of group activities on individual members.

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Human Resources Specialists

Recruit, screen, interview, or place individuals within an organization. May perform other activities in multiple human resources areas.

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Social and Community Service Managers

Plan, direct, or coordinate the activities of a social service program or community outreach organization. Oversee the program or organization's budget and policies regarding participant involvement, program requirements, and benefits. Work may involve directing social workers, counselors, or probation officers.

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Education Administrators, Postsecondary

Plan, direct, or coordinate student instruction, administration, and services, as well as other research and educational activities, at postsecondary institutions, including universities, colleges, and junior and community colleges.

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Looking for more career paths? Search these related areas to discover more options.

Employers

Graduates from this major have gone to work at:

  • California Lutheran University
  • Chapman Leonard Studio Equipment
  • CommonSpirit Health
  • Conejo Health
  • County of Ventura
  • Coalition for Family Harmony
  • George Mason University
  • Hope of the Valley Rescue Mission
  • Interface Family and Children Services
  • Mercy House Living Centers
  • Planned Parenthood
  • Stanford University
  • UCLA

Graduate Schools

Our alumni have pursued advanced degrees at:

  • Boston University
  • California State University, Northridge
  • California State University, San Diego
  • Cornell University
  • George Mason University
  • Georgia State University
  • Golden Gate University Law School
  • The London School of Economics and Political Science
  • Southwestern Law School
  • University of Barcelona
  • University of California, Davis
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • University of Denver
  • University of Southern California
  • Vanderbilt University

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license. Some occupations listed above may require a related graduate degree.

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After you graduate from Cal Lutheran, you receive free access to Career Services for life, as a valued member of our alumni family.

Learn more about career outcomes

of Cal Lutheran graduates find a job or enroll in graduate school within nine months

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