The Sociology major requires 50 credits, including the following:
Introductory Coursework (10 credits)
Soc 300: Foundations of Social Inquiry
One other 5-credit course in Sociology
Social Science Statistics Course (5 credits)
SOC 211: Stability and Change in American Society
(STAT 220, 290, 311 may be substituted for the SOC 211 requirement)
Sociology Theory Course (5 credits)
SOC 316: Introduction to Sociological Theory (5 credits)
Advanced Sociology Coursework (20 credits)
Any UW Sociology 300- or 400-level courses, except SOC 395, SOC 399, and SOC499
Students may also apply 5 credits of Practicum coursework toward this requirement. (SOC 3xx/4xx -- transferred courses -- may not be used.)
Sociology Electives (10 credits)
This includes sociology coursework at any level. (Maximum 5 credits total of SOC 399 or SOC 499.)
The minimum grade required for an individual course to count toward the major is a 2.0. The minimum UW Sociology GPA requirement for graduation is 2.50.
For more information on major requirements, download the Sociology Major Requirements Checklist.
Required courses: SOC 221, 300, 316
Quarters offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
We encourage students to take required courses as soon as possible. Material covered in 300 and 400 level sociology courses will make more sense and provide a richer experience for students who have taken these courses.
Special Topics courses: SOC 201, 301, 401
Quarters offered: Vary by instructor and may only be offered once
Elective courses are highly dynamic and change from quarter to quarter. Summer quarter often features courses rarely available during the regular academic year; such as courses on Social Psychology, Medical Sociology, as well as unique Special Topics coursework.
Repeating a Required Sociology Course
If you previously earned credit for SOC 221, 300, or 316 but your grade was below 2.0, you will need to retake the course to raise your grade for it to count toward the sociology major. However, students may only earn credit for a given course once. In other words, unless you earned a 0.0, NS, or withdrawal (W) for the required course, retaking that course will not give you additional credits; you are repeating the class for an improved grade only.
- Complete the Petition to Repeat promptly, as it requires a meeting with your former TA.
- If you are petitioning to retake SOC 316, schedule an appointment at the Writing Center.
- Schedule an appointment with a Sociology advisor to strategize academic success.
- Once petition is approved, Advising staff will register you for the class you are retaking.
SOC 221 is jointly listed with STAT 221 and CS&SS 221; a degree audit will recognize any one of the three as meeting the sociology statistics requirement. STAT 220 or STAT 311 are permitted alternatives to SOC/STAT/CS&SS 221. However, because of significant overlapping content among SOC/STAT/CS&SS 221, STAT 220, and STAT 311, a student may earn credit for only one of these courses. Retaking one of the statistics courses does not require a petition; students are able to register themselves but will not earn credit for the course.
Distance Learning Courses for the Final Year Residence Requirement
Students are sometimes surprised to learn about the UW’s Final Year Residence Requirement – reprinted on students’ DARS – which states, “45 of the final 60 credits of a student's degree program must be UW residence credits.”
Residence credits are credits students earn from courses taken in a classroom on the UW-Seattle campus. Foreign study credit earned through UW-sponsored programs are also transcribed as UW residence credit. Check with the Study Abroad office if you are considering a Study Abroad program. Non-residence credits are all other types of credits! It is important to note that non-residence credits include UW distance-learning (DL-prefix) courses, as well as credits taken by UW-Seattle students at the UW Bothell and/or Tacoma campuses.
If you are a sociology major considering taking DL courses in your final year, or if you have questions about UW residence-credit policy, you should schedule an appointment with a departmental advisor.
The International Sociology Honors Society
Alpha Kappa Delta (AKD)
Alpha Kappa Delta is the International Sociological Honors Society, (not to be confused with Sociology’s departmental Honors program.) AKD was founded in 1920 in order to acknowledge and promote scholastic excellence in the study of sociology. Membership in AKD is limited to the top 25% of Sociology majors, based on overall GPA and overall Sociology GPA. Every Spring quarter, qualifying Sociology majors are invited to join the University of Washington’s Alpha Chapter of AKD. Invitations to prospective members are extended after Winter quarter grades have posted.
Applying to Graduate
The conferral of a UW degree does not happen automatically after completing degree requirements. You must file a graduation application with the Sociology Advising Office for your degree to be awarded. Degree applications are due no later than the third Friday of the quarter in which you plan to graduate. We recommend that you file two quarters in advance (e.g., Autumn quarter for Spring graduation). This allows time to deal with any unexpected DARS issues. It also means you can use Graduating Senior Priority (GSP) registration status for your final two quarters. GSP lets graduating seniors register for courses the Friday before general registration opens.
For more information, see our Graduation page.