Honors Program

Small by design, the Sociology Honors Program is an academically rigorous program, designed for students who want closer intellectual contact with faculty, as well as students who are interested in graduate work in Sociology or related professional fields. Over the course of the year, the program creates a cohort experience for participants through shared coursework and training in research methods and statistics while building a community of undergraduate scholars. The current Sociology Honors Program Faculty Director is Professor Sara Curran.

Our Honors curriculum trains students to design and execute their own research through small seminars, independent study, and allows students the opportunity to include graduate level coursework as part of the honors experience. The Honors year culminates in the students’ presentations of their Senior Thesis projects at two Spring events.

Successful graduates of the Sociology Honors Program are awarded a “Bachelor of Arts with Honors in Sociology.” Students who complete both Interdisciplinary Honors and Departmental Honors are awarded a “Bachelor of Arts with College Honors in Sociology.”

Admission Requirements

  • Acceptance to the Sociology major
  • An overall GPA of 3.50 in all UW Sociology and relevant Statistics courses
  • A cumulative UW GPA of 3.30

Virtually all successful applicants have completed SOC 221 (or one of the other permitted statistics options) and SOC 316 prior to starting Honors.

Honors Program Requirements

Students must complete the following requirements to graduate with honors:

  • SOC 496-497: Honors Senior Seminar. This two-quarter sequence, taught by the Honors Director, covers study design, helps to refine students’ research questions and strategies, and prepares them to undertake original thesis research.
  • SOC 498: Honors Senior Thesis. Successful completion of a honors thesis through a credit/no-credit independent study course under direct supervision of an individual faculty member/graduate student mentor with expertise in the student’s area of interest.
  • In addition to the above courses, sometime during their honors year, students are required to complete one of the following:

    • A graduate level seminar. Students should discuss this with the Honors Director as well as the Professor teaching the class. Sociology graduate level courses are 3 credits but the department can facilitate a 2 credit SOC 499 add-on in cases where it’s needed for the student to reach 60 sociology credits in total.
    • A 400-level substantive W seminar with a faculty member in the department (in addition to any such courses students took prior to their honors year). This requirement may not be met with SOC 402/403/404, or SOC 499. Check with Sociology Advising before you sign up to make sure the class qualifies.
    • Students may also propose to meet this requirement by taking an advanced Statistics course (frequently SOC 504) instead of one of the above options. The student should discuss this option with the Honors Director, as well as the Professor teaching the class.
  • A SOC GPA of at least 3.50 and a UW GPA of at least 3.30 at graduation.
  • A total of 60 credits in Sociology coursework, including all of the Honors requirements. Honors students must meet all other degree requirements for the BA in Sociology.

For more comprehensive information please see the Sociology Honors Program Handbook and the Honors Requirements Checklist.


Applications for the 2024-2025 Sociology Honors Program will open in late June 2024.

Detailed Program Information

2021 Honors Poster Presentations

Students in the honors program prepare for a poster presentation with the help of a faculty mentor. This project is led by their ideas and research. 

Click here to view the poster presentations from last Spring