Academic Catalog 2023-2024


College of Natural and Behavioral Sciences
Department of Sociology

Program Description

The study of Sociology offers students the opportunity to develop a critical understanding of society, its processes, and structures, so as to understand and intervene in life and work in our diverse global society. Students apply the tools of social analysis to a broad range of social and institutional situations such as those of the family, schooling, and policing. The methods and knowledge developed by sociologists reflect the complexity of human organization, social life, inequalities, and social justice. The newly emerging patterns of social change continue to alter our life, making the effective applications of social analysis more important than ever before in solving problems of inequalities, human organization, and justice at a local and global level.

The department of Sociology at CSUDH is committed to its mission, “sociology in service to the community.” The department is composed of a diverse, innovative and stimulating faculty who teach and pursue research in a variety of areas that are important in today's global societies. The sociology department offers undergraduate and graduate programs with several emphases that respond directly to the needs of today's students. We offer a wide range of opportunities to engage in theory building, service learning, applied research, community studies, and organizing.

Undergraduate majors, minors, and graduate students may concentrate their studies in a variety of areas including theory building, applied research, community studies, criminology, justice studies, the helping professions, and social change in a global context. Sociology prepares students for careers in social work, law, criminal justice, government, non-profit and community and international organizations, education, gerontology, medicine, community service, urban planning, politics, business, academia, human resources, and applied research.

Undergraduates majoring in sociology may elect to concentrate their studies in any of the areas mentioned above or in an area designed in consultation with faculty to best fit their academic or professional goals. Students majoring in other disciplines or professional programs may tailor a minor in sociology to complement their major field of study. A minor in Sociology complements a wide range of majors, including psychology, political science, computer science, liberal studies, human services, public administration, and many others. Graduate students often plan their studies in the context of more specific career and professional goals, or to augment their current professions.

Academic Advisement

Sociology faculty provide advisement for majors, minors, and graduate students in sociology. Students are advised to meet with a faculty advisor early, in order to take the best advantage of the opportunities offered by the Department. Although undergraduates may go to any faculty member for Sociology advising, each term an instructor has extended office hours dedicated to Sociology advising. Contact information for faculty and GE advisors can be found on the department website. For graduate studies, Dr. Katy Pinto should be contacted. Faculty are available for both daytime and night students. For faculty office hours and general questions, please call the department office at (310) 243-3431.


High school students contemplating a major in sociology are encouraged to take college preparatory courses, including English, mathematics, and social sciences. Courses in computers, logic, and life science also are recommended.

Students planning to transfer from a community college should consult with their counselor or advisor to assure that appropriate lower-division courses are completed before the transfer.

Student Internships

Student internships are made available in locations related to the subject areas in the Sociology Department including criminology and justice studies, helping professions, social change in global contexts, social inequalities and applied research and community studies and others where faculty research and professional practice provide such opportunities. Students interested in internships can enroll in the SOC 381 Field Studies in Urban Problems course which is offered in the Fall and Spring semesters. Internships can also be arranged under special circumstances with individual faculty. Interested students should talk with faculty involved in such areas.

Student Organizations

The department has a chapter of Alpha Kappa Delta, the International Sociology Honor Society, for students who meet honor society requirements.  There is a Sociology Student Club and a Pre-Law Club.

Graduation with Honors

An undergraduate student may be a candidate for graduation with honors in Sociology by meeting the following criteria:

  1. A minimum of 36 units in residence at CSU Dominguez Hills;
  2. A minimum GPA of at least 3.5 in all courses used to satisfy the upper-division requirements in the major;
  3. Recommendation by the Sociology faculty