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Sociology, B.A.

Sociology is the scientific study of human groups and their characteristics, changes, causes and consequences. Through teaching, research and service, sociology reveals a critical understanding of the different ways people relate to one another through the organization of society and how its structures and cultures influence lives.

At Saint Louis University, the Bachelor of Arts in Sociology program’s subject matter ranges from family life to large-scale organizations, from crime to religion, from the divisions of race and social class to the shared beliefs of a common culture, from poverty to prosperity, and from the sociology of work to the sociology of sport. Few fields have such a broad and exciting scope.

Curriculum Overview

SLU's sociology B.A. curricula include exciting fieldwork practicum courses and service-learning.

Students may complete the general sociology major or choose to use their sociology electives to pursue one of four concentrations:

Gender, Sexuality and the Body Concentration

The gender, sexuality and the body concentration examines how social forces cause masculine and feminine behavior, create gendered systems of privilege and influence the lives of individuals and groups.

Health and Medicine Concentration

The health and medicine concentration focuses on the interplay of interactions, inequality and institutions that shape health and illness, both locally and globally. Students preparing for health-related fields find this area of concentration relevant.

Law, Crime and Deviance Concentration

The law, crime and deviance concentration allows students to develop their sociological expertise on the making, breaking and enforcement of social norms. Students considering careers in law, forensic science and progressive law enforcement will be interested in this concentration.

Urbanization, Immigration and Demography Concentration

The urbanization, immigration and democracy concentration allows students to explore urban and community change and social justice. This concentration provides opportunities in careers in consulting, government, human services, social welfare, geoinformatics and geospatial statistics.

Fieldwork and Research Opportunities

SLU's Department of Sociology has many connections with social agencies throughout the St. Louis metropolitan area. Fieldwork practicums are available for sociology majors, including working at neighborhood centers in St. Louis or performing social research projects. Fieldwork practicums also provide an opportunity for students to be involved in agencies and organizations. Students meet with the department internship director for assistance in applying to any of the numerous local employment opportunities in St. Louis.

St. Louis boasts an excellent research laboratory for how social behavior is determined by social structure and physical environment, how community is a major factor in shaping human behavior and how humans adapt to their community. The sociology major provides a strong background in social science education that combines theory and empirical methods of analysis with an emphasis on social inequality and institutions. Students’ learning experiences may be enhanced through practical fieldwork experiences with St. Louis nonprofit organizations and governmental agencies.

Careers

Graduates of SLU's sociology program are involved in diverse careers and have occupied such positions as president of a management consulting firm, methodologist for a health organization, and directors of community centers.

Graduates of the sociology program can also continue with graduate work in sociology or in a wide range of programs, such as social work, law and health service fields.

Admission Requirements

Begin Your Application

Saint Louis University also accepts the Common Application.

Freshman

All applications are thoroughly reviewed with the highest degree of individual care and consideration to all credentials that are submitted. Solid academic performance in college preparatory coursework is a primary concern in reviewing a freshman applicant’s file.

To be considered for admission to any Saint Louis University undergraduate program, applicants must be graduating from an accredited high school, have an acceptable HiSET exam score or take the General Education Development (GED) test. 

Transfer

Applicants must be a graduate of an accredited high school or have an acceptable score on the GED.

Students who have attempted fewer than 24 semester credits (or 30 quarter credits) of college credit must follow the above freshmen admission requirements. Students who have completed 24 or more semester credits (or 30 quarter credits) of college credit must submit transcripts from all previously attended college(s).

In reviewing a transfer applicant’s file, the Office of Admission holistically examines the student’s academic performance in college-level coursework as an indicator of the student’s ability to meet the academic rigors of Saint Louis University. Where applicable, transfer students will be evaluated on any courses outlined in the continuation standards of their preferred major.

International Applicants

All admission policies and requirements for domestic students apply to international students along with the following:

  • Demonstrate English Language Proficiency
  • Proof of financial support must include:
    • A letter of financial support from the person(s) or sponsoring agency funding the time at Saint Louis University
    • A letter from the sponsor's bank verifying that the funds are available and will be so for the duration of study at the University
  • Academic records, in English translation, of students who have undertaken postsecondary studies outside the United States must include the courses taken and/or lectures attended, practical laboratory work, the maximum and minimum grades attainable, the grades earned or the results of all end-of-term examinations, and any honors or degrees received. WES and ECE transcripts are accepted.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

There are two principal ways to help finance a Saint Louis University education:

  • Scholarships: Scholarships are awarded based on academic achievement, service, leadership and financial need.
  • Financial Aid: Financial aid is provided in the form of grants and loans, some of which require repayment.

For priority consideration for merit-based scholarships, apply for admission by Dec. 1 and complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by March 1.

For information on other scholarships and financial aid, visit the student financial services office online at https://www.slu.edu/financial-aid.

  1. Graduates will demonstrate an understanding of issues related to diversity, inequality, and social justice. Specifically:
    1. identify examples of cross-cultural diversity in beliefs and customs,
    2. identify examples of stratification by race/ethnicity, gender, and social class, and explain how inequality affects life chances, especially for marginalized others, and 
    3. does the student describe policies or practices that can help promote or impede social justice in local, national, or global contexts
  2. Graduates will understand the role of theory in social analysis. Specifically:
    1. describe the role of theory in building sociological knowledge, 
    2. compare and contrast basic theoretical orientations; or, identify assumptions in analyses and arguments, and
    3. apply theories to examples or situations
  3. Graduates will understand the role of qualitative and quantitative research methods in sociology. Specifically:
    1. compare and contrast methodological approaches for gathering data, 
    2. design a small study, and
    3. critically assess a published research report
  4. Graduates will communicate effectively in written and oral forms. Specifically:
    1. write a clear and convincing sociological analysis of an event, issue, or problem, 
    2. make an oral presentation that is succinct, clear, convincing, and professional, 
    3. use computerized and online resources to find information (e.g., databases, reputable internet websites, government statistics, etc.), and
    4. evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of information sources, and assess which references are appropriate for academic research

 Sociology students must complete a minimum of 30 credits for the major.

  • A maximum of two anthropology courses may count toward the sociology major.
  • A maximum of two anthropology, sociology, and/or forensic science courses may count toward both the anthropology and sociology majors.
Core Requirements
College core requirements57-66
For additional information about core courses
Introduction Requirements
SOC 1100Introduction to Sociology3
or SOC 1110 Introduction to Sociology: Diversity Emphasis
or SOC 1120 Introduction to Sociology: Diversity and Health Emphasis
Methods Requirement
SOC 2000Research Methods3
Theory Requirement
SOC 3150Theory of the Social Sciences3
Research Requirement
SOC 4015Quantitative Research Methods3
or SOC 4025 Qualitative Research
Senior Experience
SOC 4840Sociology Capstone3
or SOC 4990 Departmental Honors Thesis
Elective Courses
Select 15 credits from the following:15
ANTH 1200
Introduction to Anthropology
ANTH 2080
Urban Issues: Poverty and Unemployment
ANTH 2200
Cultural Anthropology
ANTH 2210
ANTH 2215
Biological Anthropology
and Biological Anthropology Lab
ANTH 2460
Global Mental Health
ANTH 2470
Medical Anthropology
ANTH 3240
Anthropology of Sex & Gender
ANTH 3270
Climate Change & Environmental Futures
ANTH 4530/SOC 5530
Urban Ethnography: Cities in a Global Perspective
SOC 1180
World Geography
SOC 1500
The Urban Community: Race, Class, and Spatial Justice
SOC 2110
Sociology of Sport
SOC 2250
Sexual Minorities in a Fluid Social World
SOC 2360
Health Inequalities in the U.S.
SOC 2480
Drugs and Society: Legal and Medical Implications of the "War on Drugs"
SOC 2490
Sociology of Medicine
SOC 2630
Religion and Social Sciences: Theoretical and Empirical Reflections on Religion
SOC 3180
Immigration
SOC 3220
Urban Sociology
SOC 3230
Gender and Society
SOC 3360
Racial and Ethnic Relations
SOC 3370
Violence in America
SOC 3430
Marriage and the Family
SOC 3490
Sociology of Mental Health
SOC 3510
The Structure of Poverty: Globally and Locally
SOC 3570
Sociological Theories of Crime
SOC 3580
Deviant Behavior: Drugs, Alcohol and Addiction
SOC 3590
Law and Society
SOC 3700
Health and the Social Sciences
SOC 3840
African-American Religious Traditions
SOC 4640
Demography: Measuring and Modeling Population Process
SOC 4650
Introduction to GIS
SOC 4660
Intermediate Geographic Information Systems
SOC 4670
Spatial Demography: Applied Statistics for Spatial Data
SOC 4800
Research Activity: Supervised
SOC 4980
Advanced Independent Study
Select one of the following concentrations:12
General Electives12-21
Total Credits120

Concentrations

Gender, Sexuality, and the Body Concentration

Elective Courses
Select four of the following:12
ANTH 3240
Anthropology of Sex & Gender
SOC 2110
Sociology of Sport
SOC 2250
Sexual Minorities in a Fluid Social World
SOC 3230
Gender and Society
SOC 3430
Marriage and the Family
SOC 3510
The Structure of Poverty: Globally and Locally
Total Credits12

Health and Medicine Concentration

Elective Courses
Select 12 credits from the following:12
ANTH 2210
ANTH 2215
Biological Anthropology
and Biological Anthropology Lab
ANTH 2460
Global Mental Health
ANTH 2470
Medical Anthropology
ANTH 3270
Climate Change & Environmental Futures
SOC 1120
Introduction to Sociology: Diversity and Health Emphasis
SOC 2360
Health Inequalities in the U.S.
SOC 2480
Drugs and Society: Legal and Medical Implications of the "War on Drugs"
SOC 2490
Sociology of Medicine
SOC 3490
Sociology of Mental Health
SOC 4640
Demography: Measuring and Modeling Population Process
SOC 3700
Health and the Social Sciences
Total Credits12

Law, Crime, and Deviance Concentration

Elective Courses
Select four of the following:12
SOC 2480
Drugs and Society: Legal and Medical Implications of the "War on Drugs"
SOC 3220
Urban Sociology
SOC 3525
Elite and White Collar Deviance
SOC 3370
Violence in America
SOC 3570
Sociological Theories of Crime
SOC 3580
Deviant Behavior: Drugs, Alcohol and Addiction
SOC 3590
Law and Society
Total Credits12

Urbanization, Immigration, and Demography Concentration

Elective Courses
Select four of the following:12
ANTH 2080
Urban Issues: Poverty and Unemployment
ANTH 4080
Urban Issues: Advanced Seminar
ANTH 4530/SOC 5530
Urban Ethnography: Cities in a Global Perspective
ANTH 4540
Environmental Impact
SOC 1180
World Geography
SOC 1500
The Urban Community: Race, Class, and Spatial Justice
SOC 3180
Immigration
SOC 3220
Urban Sociology
SOC 3360
Racial and Ethnic Relations
SOC 4640
Demography: Measuring and Modeling Population Process
SOC 4650
Introduction to GIS
SOC 4660
Intermediate Geographic Information Systems
SOC 4670
Spatial Demography: Applied Statistics for Spatial Data
Total Credits12

Continuation Standards

Students must have a GPA of 2.00 in Sociology major coursework to be retained in the major.

Bachelor of Arts Core Curriculum Requirements

Please note: beginning in Fall 2022, all incoming SLU undergraduates—regardless of major, program, college or school—will complete the University Core curriculum. You can find more information about SLU’s common Core here: https://www.slu.edu/core/index.php
Core Components and Credits
Foundations of Discourse3
Diversity in the U.S.3
Global Citizenship3
Foreign Language0-9
Fine Arts3
Literature6
Mathematics3
Natural Science6
Philosophy9
Social Science6
Theology9
World History6
Total Credits57-66

Graduation Requirements

  • Complete a minimum of 120 credits (excluding pre-college level courses numbered below 1000).
  • Complete either the College of Arts and Sciences Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science Core Curriculum Requirements
  • Complete major requirements: minimum 30 credits required.
  • Complete remaining credits with a second major, minor, certificate, and/or electives to reach the minimum of 120 credits required for graduation.
  • Courses listed under the intensive English program do not count toward graduation requirements. EAP 1500 College Composition for International Students (3 cr), EAP 1900 Rhetoric & Research Strategies (3 cr) and EAP 2850 Nation, Identity and Literature (3 cr) count toward graduation requirements as equivalents to Department of English courses.

    In addition to those courses, six credits from EAP/MLNG courses at the 1000 level or higher may count toward graduation requirements
  • Achieve at least a 2.00 cumulative grade point average, a 2.00 grade point average in the major(s) and a 2.00 grade point average in the minor/certificate, or related elective credits.
  • Complete department/program-specific academic and performance requirements.
  • Complete at least 50% of the coursework for the major and 75% for the minor/certificate through Saint Louis University or an approved study abroad program.
  • Complete 30 of the final 36 credits through Saint Louis University or an approved study abroad program.
  • Complete an online degree application by the required University deadline.

Roadmaps are recommended semester-by-semester plans of study for programs and assume full-time enrollment unless otherwise noted.  

Courses and milestones designated as critical (marked with !) must be completed in the semester listed to ensure a timely graduation. Transfer credit may change the roadmap.

This roadmap should not be used in the place of regular academic advising appointments. All students are encouraged to meet with their advisor/mentor each semester.  Requirements, course availability and sequencing are subject to change.

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredits
Select one of the following: 3
SOC 1100
Introduction to Sociology  
SOC 1110
Introduction to Sociology: Diversity Emphasis  
SOC 1120
Introduction to Sociology: Diversity and Health Emphasis  
ENGL 1900
or ENGL 1940
or EAP 1900
Advanced Strategies of Rhetoric and Research
or Advanced Writing
or Rhetoric & Research Strategies
3
MATH 1200 College Algebra (or higher) 3
THEO 1000 Theological Foundations 3
HIST 1110 Origins of the Modern World to 1500 3
 Credits15
Spring
SOC 2000 Research Methods 3
Foreign Language 2010 (if qualified) 3
PHIL 1050 Introduction to Philosophy: Self and Reality 3
HIST 1120 Origins of the Modern World (1500 to Present) 3
Natural Science: BIOL, CHEM, EAS, FRSC, or PHYS 4
 Credits16
Year Two
Fall
SOC Elective 3
Theology 2xxx 3
Literature ENGL 2xxx 3
PHIL 2050 Ethics 3
Natural Science: BIOL, CHEM, EAS, FRSC, or PHYS 4
 Credits16
Spring
Soc Elective/Diversity in U.S. 3
Theology 3xxx 3
Literature 3-4xxx 3
Philosophy 3-4xxx 3
FPA 1xxx 3
 Credits15
Year Three
Fall
SOC 4025 Qualitative Research 3
SOC 3150 Theory of the Social Sciences 3
SOC Elective 3
SOC Elective 3
Elective 3
 Credits15
Spring
SOC Elective 3
SOC Elective 3
Global Citizenship Course 3
Elective 3
Elective 3
 Credits15
Year Four
Fall
SOC Elective 3
Elective 3
Elective 3
Elective 3
Elective 3
 Credits15
Spring
SOC 4840 Sociology Capstone 3
Elective 3
Elective 3
Elective 3
Elective 3
 Credits15
 Total Credits122