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Frequently Asked Questions

What is sociology?

Sociology is the study of the development, structure, and functioning of human society. It employs a combination of theory and research to examine the cause and effect of human interaction.

How is the sociology curriculum structured?

UC Davis' Department of Sociology offers two majors: Sociology and Sociology-Organizational Studies. The Sociology major has four emphases: General, Law & Society, Social Services, and Comparative Studies & World Development.

What is the purpose of an emphasis?

An emphasis allows students to focus their coursework on a particular area of sociology. Emphases are designed to match students' interests and post-graduate plans. Students may only pursue one emphasis.

What kind of classes will I be taking if I am majoring in sociology?

The sociology program has a highly diverse curriculum that strives to incorporate a range of coursework. Please view our courses page to view current course offerings.

Can I really get a job with the Sociology and Sociology-Organizational Studies majors?

Receiving a degree does not guarantee anyone a job, and obtaining a job depends upon many diverse factors. Think about ways that you can combine your academic coursework with volunteer and leadership experiences, work experiences, and internships to make yourself a well-rounded candidate for jobs.

Can I take a course in my major requirement Pass/No Pass?

Yes (with the exception of SOC 46A, 46B and 100 which must be taken for a letter grade) however, there are some issues to consider first. Most graduate schools do not look favorably upon major courses that are taken Pass/No Pass (P/NP) but the P/NP option may be useful if protecting a GPA is important or if a student experiences an extremely stressful quarter. Also note that other majors may have different guidelines regarding P/NP in the major. The counselors at Advising Services can more appropriately assist you in answering this question.  They have direct contact with individual schools and can make recommendations.  Also, watch for various quarterly workshops advertised on their website.

How do I go about obtaining an internship?

Go to the Internship and Career Center. There are binders that list the internships that are offered throughout the year and the summer. Internship Coordinators are available to give you assistance. You may also arrange your own internship. Plan your internship at least a quarter in advance because there are early deadlines and a formal process that you must follow to obtain an internship. However, please note that the Sociology Department does NOT sponsor individual internships.


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Research Spotlight

Article Reference Educational attainment and self-rated health in contemporary China: A survey-based study in 2010 (The Social Science Journal, 50(4):674--680. 2013) Hu, A and Hibel, J

Article Reference The Enduring Significance of Racism: Discrimination and Delinquency Among Black American Youth (Journal of Research on Adolescence, 21(3):662--676. 2011) Martin, MJ, McCarthy, B, Conger, RD, Gibbons, FX, Simons, RL, Cutrona, CE, and Brody, GH

Article Reference Assimilation and emerging health disparities among new generations of U.S. children (Demographic Research, 25:783--818. 2011) Hamilton, E, Cardoso, JB, Hummer, RA, and Padilla, YC

Article Reference Patriarchy, Resources, and Specialization: Marital Decision-Making Power in Urban China (Journal of Family Issues, 34(7):885--917. 2013) Shu, X, Zhu, Y, and Zhang, Z