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Program Intro

In sociology, we study the social worlds in which we live. The sociology major is designed to provide you with a broad understanding of the discipline of sociology – the social scientific study of society and human behavior.

You’ll learn to apply sociological knowledge in practice as you gain analytic and problem-solving skills and data analytics and interpretation skills.

Department of Behavioral Sciences

Through research and publication, in-class teaching, and out-of-the-classroom experiences, our sociology faculty embody the best tradition of our discipline’s sociological analysis and community commitment. You’ll prepare for a variety of careers both in and outside of the social sciences.

Curriculum Overview

In this 120-credit-hour program, you’ll discover how historical, economic and political issues shape our world – and how an understanding of them can help change it for the better.

You can currently complete this degree at PNW’s Hammond campus.

Begin your studies with the First-Year Experience in Behavioral Sciences, Introductory Sociology and the Social Problems course.

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Sample Courses

  • BHS 10300 – First-Year Experience In Behavioral Sciences
  • SOC 10000 – Introductory Sociology
  • SOC 22000 – Social Problems

In year two, you’ll complete Introduction to Statistics in Sociology and at least one sociology elective course.

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Sample Courses

  • SOC 38200 – Introduction To Statistics In Sociology
  • SOC 35000 – Sociology of Family

This year, you’ll study research methods, take the Racial and Ethnic Diversity course and complete three more Sociology electives.

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Sample Courses

  • SOC 38300 – Introduction To Research Methods In Sociology
  • SOC 31000 – Racial and Ethnic Diversity
  • SOC 31700 – Sociology of Sexuality

In your final year, complete Sociological Theory and any remaining sociology elective courses.

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Sample Courses

  • SOC 40200 – Sociological Theory
  • SOC 30300 – Sociology of Violence
  • SOC 31500 – Gender in Society

Program Requirements

  • 120 Credit Hours
  • Minimum grade of C required for ENGL 10400 and all Foreign Language courses; C- required for BHS 10300, SOC 10000, and SOC 22000
  • Minimum GPA of 2.0 required for graduation


As a sociology graduate, you will acquire written and verbal communication, critical thinking, analytical, problem-solving and research skills.

These skills help prepare you for post-graduate studies and success in one of the many careers sociology can prepare you for.

A lion sculpture on PNW's campus PNW graduates at commencement


Your undergraduate studies in sociology can open doors in countless fields including health and social services, social and criminal justice, sales and marketing, teaching and law.

A sociology degree also helps prepare you for post-graduate education. Students seeking a sociology degree may go on to continue their education in the social sciences, education, counseling and social work, business and law school.


Beyond the Classroom

You’ll find plenty of opportunities to connect with faculty and peers in extracurricular activities, such as:

  • Alpha Kappa Delta (AKD) Honor Society
  • Midwest Sociological Society
  • American Sociological Association

Career Paths

There are a wealth of opportunities available to sociology grads, including:

  • Health and social services
  • Law and policy analysis
  • Research and academics


Our graduates are employed in:

  • Governmental and private social service agencies
  • Education and teaching
  • Advocacy organizations

Meet the Faculty

Ralph Cherry

Ralph Cherry, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Sociology

I am an Associate Professor and Coordinator of Sociology on the Hammond campus, where I thoroughly enjoy teaching social research methods, aging & the life course, health, and intro to sociology.

Kathryn Sweeney

Kathryn A. Sweeney, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Sociology

Kathryn A. Sweeney is an associate professor of sociology. Her research examines how structural level racial, class and gender disparities shape everyday life.

Alan J. Spector

Alan Jay Spector, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus

Currently focused on Race and Ethnic Diversity, Introductory Sociology, Social Problems, and International Change. Active on the Board of the Center for Global Studies and the Ronald E. McNair Program

A PNW Student in the Classroom

Take the Next Step

See how a PNW degree opens doors, from corporate boardrooms to non-profit leadership.

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