Dec 06, 2022  
2015-2016 University Catalog 
2015-2016 University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Sociology, Department of

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Department Chair

Eileen T. Walsh

Department Office/Website

College Park 900


Anthony Alvarez, Christine Chin, Dana Collins, Alan Emery, Jorge Fontdevila, Hilla Israely, Sharon Kim, Edythe Krampe, Patricia Literte, Edwin Lopez, Maria Malagon, Michael Perez, Carter Rakovski, Devon Thomas, Berna Torr, Eileen Walsh


Sociology is a social science that studies the social lives and behaviors of people, groups, institutions and societies. Sociology examines social phenomena at multiple levels by using a variety of methods, including qualitative and quantitative approaches. It covers a wide range of social processes, from the analysis of brief interactions among strangers to the study of large-scale global change. Sociologists ask questions like: What types of social relations and processes create and maintain class or racial inequalities in society?  What are the bases of social solidarity, trust and cohesion among people in an organization? What are the social causes and consequences of crime and deviance? How do social movements shape the health care system? What is the role of institutions in regulating gender and sexual behaviors? Are modern societies becoming more secular or more religious?

A degree in sociology is part of a strong program of liberal arts studies that fosters critical thinking and analytical abilities, as well as develops the writing and communication skills that prepare students for a diverse and increasingly global job market. Majoring in sociology prepares students for a wide range of occupations including social work, market research and statistical analysis, education, criminal justice, business and management, graduate school, and community and social services, among others.

The Sociology Department at California State University Fullerton is committed to providing our students with the skills and methods to study social behavior from a sociological perspective. Our mission is to develop among our students a critical, ethical and inclusive understanding of complex social phenomena. Our students examine and reflect upon social phenomena, including intersecting structures and processes that reproduce social inequalities, causes and consequences of collective and political action, and other social processes in various institutional contexts. Our faculty conducts academic research on a wide variety of areas of expertise, including race and ethnic relations, education, demography, gender and sexualities, crime and deviance, health and illness, economic sociology, political sociology, religion, and migration and globalization. We contribute to the public good by producing knowledge, engaging public policy and by our commitment to social and scientific responsibility in the communities we study. The department offers rigorous and quality undergraduate and graduate academic programs in sociology that provide a supportive student-centered learning environment and promote civic engagement in the local and global communities.

We achieve our mission by:

  • Engaging in quality social research and other scholarly activities that advance knowledge in the sociological discipline and can be applied to our teaching activities
  • Providing our students with knowledge and understanding of key sociological concepts, findings, and theoretical approaches so that they can apply them critically and reflect on complex social issues and contexts, including their own
  • Fostering critical thinking and analytical abilities among our students to identify, for example, the structure of an argument, examine the implicit assumptions of an institutional practice or media message, and more generally, meet the challenges of a rapidly changing and uncertain world
  • Creating a learning environment where students acquire and practice qualitative and quantitative research design and methods, academic writing skills and interpersonal communication skills to be professionally competitive in a multicultural and increasingly transnational job market
  • Offering our students opportunities to engage in experiential, cultural diversity learning and other high-impact educational practices, including student-faculty research collaborations, independent research, graduate assistantships, peer tutoring, community-based applied research, service learning, internships and study abroad programs.
  • Promoting civic engagement and good democratic citizenship among our students, including respecting the rights, worth and dignity of all people, training in the standards of ethical research, professional fairness, and social and scientific responsibility

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Students will apply key sociological concepts
  • Students will compare, contrast and critique major theoretical and epistemological orientations in sociology including functionalism, conflict, interactionism and feminism
  • Students will demonstrate critical thinking from various sociological perspectives, such as reflecting on their social location, evaluating the implicit assumptions of everyday life, challenging commonsense understandings and assessing the structure of an argument
  • Students will demonstrate clear and effective written and oral communication skills
  • Students will demonstrate knowledge of qualitative and quantitative research design and methods and evaluate their appropriate use
  • Students will use sociological knowledge and skills to engage with local and global communities for the purpose of social justice
  • Students will demonstrate a critical understanding of power, privilege and oppression across a range of cultures, human experiences and the intersections of social locations and historical experiences, including their own

Sociological Internship

SOCI 495  offers opportunities to participate in supervised field activities. Students must make arrangements with the Internship Coordinator during the semester prior to enrollment in the course.

Independent Study

SOCI 499  allows students to expand upon their special interests in the field of sociology. Independent studies are usually in areas not covered by the normal course offerings of the department and consists of individual research projects. Enrollment in the course requires that students meet regularly with their faculty supervisors.

Programs and Courses Offered


    Bachelor of ArtsMaster of ArtsNon-Degree



      Courses are designated as SOCI in the class schedule.

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