Sociology majors are critical thinkers who are equipped to create social innovation and meaningful social change. Majors learn how to use theories and methods to challenge assumptions and test hypotheses. Along with developing advanced research skills, students have opportunities for fieldwork, internships, and independent study. For more detailed information please see the Sociology section of the course catalog and bulletin. All courses are designed to contribute in various ways to the College’s Learning Goals and the Sociology Learning Goals.
Students who major in sociology at Mount Holyoke become familiar with the works of major sociological thinkers and contemporary research methods and theory. They acquire the critical ability to understand social trends and problems and to collect and analyze data. All courses are designed to contribute in various ways to the College's Learning Goals and the Sociology Learning Goals.
There are 9 courses or 36 credits in the sociology major
- 123 Introduction to Sociology
- 223 Development of Social Thought
- 225 Survey Research and Data Analysis
- 317 Topics in Contemporary Social OR 333 Contemporary Social Theory
An additional 20 credits above the 100 level, including at least 12 at the 300 level (these can include the second theory class 317/333).
Electives may be taken during Study Abroad. Discuss your options in advance with your advisor to be sure credit will transfer. A signed permission form will also be required for the Registrar's Office.
Entrepreneurship, Organizations, and Society Minor
In today’s rapidly changing global world, the lines between workplaces — for-profit businesses, nonprofit organizations, social impact ventures, start-ups, and the public sector — are increasingly blurred. And today’s college graduates, as their career paths inevitably shift and evolve, will frequently navigate between different workplaces. The EOS interdisciplinary minor aims to prepare students from all majors for the economic realities and social challenges of today’s world. By combining critical analysis with firsthand experiences, students gain the entrepreneurial competence and fundamental knowledge to succeed in different career contexts and to contribute solutions to today’s most vexing problems.
The sociology minor is 20 credits, with a minimum of 16 credits in sociology beyond the 100 level, and at least 4 credits at the 300 level.
See the Sociology chapter of the course catalog for detailed informaiton on requirements for the major and minor.
Development Studies Nexus
Explore the relationship among history, politics, economics, and power that shape the world. The Development Studies Nexus track gives you the analytical skills to understand the complexities of global poverty, inequality, and injustice and strategies that state and non-state actors have used to improve the well-being of the people.
Educational Policy and Practice Nexus
Conduct a cross-disciplinary exploration of an education related topic that you are passionate about. Through the multidisciplinary approach of Educational Policy and Practice Nexus, gain valuable perspective on contemporary contexts and historical moments that shape and define knowledge, behavior, structures, organizations, and policies- both in and out of educational settings.
Journalism, Media, and Public Discourse Nexus
Examine the world with an educated, critical eye. Become knowledgeable and articulate across a wide array of subjects in the liberal arts, hone your creativity, and develop superior writing and analytical capabilities. With the Journalism, Media, and Public Discourse Nexus master the nuts and bolts of reporting and fact-checking a news story, examine the history of the New York Times, or analyze the role of media in contemporary society.
Law, Public Policy, and Human Rights Nexus
Learn about policies and legislation and how you can help to shape the future. Form a deep understanding of how relationships between local and national political processes create public policies and form legislation. Choose courses from several departments, including politics, economics, history, and sociology. Examine how both law and public policies are imbedded in a much larger social, historical, and economic realities through the Law, Public Policy, and Human Rights Nexus.
Museums, Archives, and Public History Nexus
Become fluent in understanding, analyzing, and communicating about visual artifacts, material culture/objects, historical landscapes, and digital sources. Through the Museums, Archives, and Public History, you will demonstrate your curatorial abilities by developing a professional portfolio. You will gain valuable hands-on training in your field of interest.
Five College African Studies Certificate
The Five College Certificate in African Studies offers students an opportunity to pursue an interest in African studies as a complement to any academic major. Drawing on the expertise and courses offered by more than 50 faculty members across the five campuses, students pursuing the Five College African Studies certificate work closely with a faculty advisor to plan a uniquely tailored course of study. See also the list of requirements for more information.
Five College Culture, Health, and Science Certificate
The Five College Certificate in Culture, Health, and Science complements any major, allowing students to deepen their knowledge of human health, disease, and healing through interdisciplinary inquiry. Under the guidance of faculty program advisors on each campus, students choose a sequence of seven courses available across the five campuses and identify (in consultation with their advisor) an appropriate project or internship that will count toward the certificate. (Four semesters of a second language is also recommended, but not required.)
Together with the visiting lectures and seminars sponsored by the Program, CHS provides a structure that is adaptable for students interested in pursuing health-related careers, as well as those curious to learn how different disciplines analyze the common human experience.
Teacher Licensure in Social Studies
Students interested in pursuing licensure in the field of history can combine their coursework in history with a minor in education. In some instances coursework in the major coincides with coursework required for licensure; in other cases, it does not. For specific course requirements for licensure within the major of history, please consult your advisor or the chair of the history department. See the Department of Psychology and Education's Teacher Licensure Program for more information.