Sociology and Anthropology Bachelor of science degree

ebc34059-e56a-49a2-af0b-3fa3fa23e77a | 87079

Overview

This sociology major pairs anthropology with global topics of critical importance, such as the economy, politics, society, gender and sexuality, ethnicity, urban studies, health, and culture.


With a deep commitment to the broader values of justice and human rights, the sociology and anthropology major focuses on understanding social and cultural complexity and diversity. The program examines critical issues such as the economy, politics, gender and sexuality, race and ethnicity, urban living, the family, and health as they are shaped by social forces and cultural values. You’ll gain insight from a wide range of theoretical perspectives and you’ll develop the necessary research skills to further examine topics of critical importance in society. Students in the sociology and anthropology program build a strong foundation to pursue a wide range of career options both in the United States and abroad.

The sociology and anthropology major is dedicated to understanding and appreciating social and cultural complexity and diversity across the globe and through time. Students are exposed to critical perspectives, theories, and research skills that are necessary to engage in complex global and local issues that crosscut the economy, politics, society, gender, ethnicity, and culture. Understanding societies both past and present better prepares us to face the challenges of a rapidly changing world and to assume positions of leadership that promote vision and equity. 

Plan of study

This integrated, multidisciplinary degree program explores the common scholarly roots and creative differences of sociology and anthropology, through which students gain a synergistic set of perspectives and skills that prepare them for social analysis in the widest array of social and cultural settings. Students choose one of the following specializations: archaeology, cultural anthropology, sociology, or thematic.

Graduates pursue careers in medicine and public health, law, business, international development, the not-for-profit sector, urban planning, architecture, social work, education, and government, among other possibilities.

Pre-Law Advising Program

Law schools welcome applications from students majoring in a wide range of academic programs. If you are interested in pursuing law school, RIT’s Pre-Law Advising Program is designed to maximize your chances of admission to law school. The program includes personalized advising, LSAT preparation, academic counseling, and a time table for law school admission.

RIT/Syracuse University College of Law 3+3 Option

RIT has partnered with Syracuse University’s College of Law to offer an accelerated 3+3 BS/JD option for highly capable students. This option provides a fast-track pathway to law school in which students earn a bachelor’s degree and a juris doctorate degree in six years. In the 3+3 option, students interested in the following RIT majors–advertising and public relations, communication, criminal justice, economics, international and global studies, journalism, philosophy, political science, psychology, public policy, and sociology and anthropology–may apply to the option directly. Successful applicants are offered admission to RIT and given conditional acceptance into Syracuse University’s College of Law. Learn more about the RIT/Syracuse University College of Law 3+3 Option, including admission requirements and frequently asked questions.

Industries


  • Non-Profit

  • K-12 Education

  • Other Industries

  • Higher Education

Typical Job Titles

Archaeologist Foreign Service Officer
Social Worker Urban Community Developer

Experiential Learning

Cooperative Education

Cooperative education, or co-op for short, is full-time, paid work experience in your field of study. And it sets RIT graduates apart from their competitors. It’s exposure–early and often–to a variety of professional work environments, career paths, and industries. RIT co-op is designed for your success.

Students in the sociology and anthropology degree are required to complete one cooperative education experience. 

Other Learning Opportunities

In addition to a required cooperative education experience, students may apply their classroom knowledge with opportunities for hands-on learning through archaeological, ethnographic, or linguistic fieldwork, laboratory analysis, and study abroad.

Explore salary and career information for Sociology and Anthropology BS 

Curriculum for Sociology and Anthropology BS

Sociology and Anthropology, BS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
Choose one of the following: 3
   ANTH-102
   Cultural Anthropology
Human beings across the globe live and work according to different values and beliefs. Students will develop the tools for acquiring knowledge, awareness, and appreciation of cultural differences, and in turn enhance their abilities to interact across cultures. The course accomplishes these aims by examining the relationship between individuals and their communities, and the dynamics of ritual, religious, political, and social life in different parts of the world. Lecture (Fall, Spring, Summer).
 
   ANTH-103
   Archaeology and the Human Past
Archaeology is the study of the human past, from the origin of our species through to the development of modern, industrial states by means of the physical remains of past human behavior. In studying the past, archaeology seeks to explain how we, modern humans, came to be. This course investigates how archaeologists study the past, explains how human society has changed over time, and presents an overview of world prehistory. Specific topics include the evolution of modern humans, the peopling of the world, the development of agriculture, the rise of state-level societies, and associated social and material technologies such as writing and urbanism. Case studies will be used throughout to demonstrate how archaeological research is conducted and how archaeologists use their research to formulate explanations of the past that have relevance for the present. Lecture (Fall, Spring).
 
Choose one of the following:
3
   ANTH-110
   On the Cutting Edge: Research & Theory in the 21st Century (WI-PR)
Research is the primary pathway to theory formation in the social sciences. This course focuses on how ideas about social life emerge through research in sociology and anthropology. This course is designed as a seminar, in which students discover how scholars in these disciplines formulate research questions in relationship to theory and issues of public concern. (Prerequisites: Successful completion of one course in Anthropology (ANTH), Sociology (SOCI) or International and Global Studies (INGS) is required.) Lec/Lab 3 (Spring).
 
   SOCI-110
   On the Cutting Edge: Research & Theory in the 21st Century (WI-PR)
Research is the primary pathway to theory formation in the social sciences. This course focuses on how ideas about social life emerge through research in sociology and anthropology. This course is designed as a seminar, in which students discover how scholars in these disciplines formulate research questions in relationship to theory and issues of public concern. (Prerequisites: Successful completion of one course in Anthropology (ANTH), Sociology (SOCI) or International and Global Studies (INGS) is required.) Lec/Lab 3 .
 
SOCI-102
Foundations of Sociology
Sociology is the study of the social world and socialization processes. Sociologists study the broader picture of how societies are structured and organized through a macro-sociological analysis as well as how individuals create their own social reality symbolically through their interactions with others in a micro-sociological analysis. Students in this course will learn the fundamentals of each approach and come away with a sociological framework which they can critically apply to their own lives. Lecture (Fall, Spring, Summer).
3
YOPS-10
RIT 365: RIT Connections
RIT 365 students participate in experiential learning opportunities designed to launch them into their career at RIT, support them in making multiple and varied connections across the university, and immerse them in processes of competency development. Students will plan for and reflect on their first-year experiences, receive feedback, and develop a personal plan for future action in order to develop foundational self-awareness and recognize broad-based professional competencies. Lecture 1 (Fall, Spring).
0
 
General Education – Artistic Perspective
3
 
General Education – Ethical Perspective
3
 
General Education – First-Year Writing (WI)
3
 
General Education – Global Perspective
3
 
General Education – Mathematical Perspective A
3
 
General Education – Natural Science Inquiry Perspective‡
3
 
Open Elective
3
Second Year
Choose one of the following:
3
   ANTH-302
   Qualitative Research
Learning about social and cultural groups is a complex and ethically sensitive process. We explore common qualitative research methods for social and cultural research. We evaluate the utility of such methods for different purposes and contexts, including cross-cultural contexts. We consider common ethical dilemmas in research with human subjects, the ethical responsibilities of researchers, and common techniques for minimizing risks to subjects. (Prerequisites: ANTH-102 or ANTH-102H or ANTH-103 or SOCI-102 or SOCI-103 or INGS-101 or equivalent course.) Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
 
   SOCI-302
   Qualitative Research
Learning about social and cultural groups is a complex and ethically sensitive process. We explore common qualitative research methods for social and cultural research. We evaluate the utility of such methods for different purposes and contexts, including cross-cultural contexts. We consider common ethical dilemmas in research with human subjects, the ethical responsibilities of researchers, and common techniques for minimizing risks to subjects. (Prerequisites: ANTH-102 or ANTH-102H or ANTH-103 or SOCI-102 or SOCI-103 or INGS-101 or equivalent course.) Lecture .
 
Choose one of the following:
3
   ANTH-303
   Statistics in the Social Sciences
The research conducted by sociologists and anthropologists generates large, complex data sets that are difficult to interpret subjectively. We will explore the basic quantitative tools that sociologists and anthropologists can use to understand these data sets and learn how to craft a research question and research design that utilize quantitative data, how to select appropriate quantitative techniques and apply them, how to present results, and how to critically evaluate quantitatively based knowledge claims. Lab 2, Lecture 2 (Fall Or Spring).
 
   SOCI-303
   Statistics in the Social Sciences
The research conducted by sociologists and anthropologists generates large, complex data sets that are difficult to interpret subjectively. We will explore the basic quantitative tools that sociologists and anthropologists can use to understand these data sets and learn how to craft a research question and research design that utilize quantitative data, how to select appropriate quantitative techniques and apply them, how to present results, and how to critically evaluate quantitatively based knowledge claims. Lab 2, Lecture 2 .
 
 
General Education – Elective
3
 
General Education – Immersion 1
3
 
General Education – Mathematical Perspective B
3
 
General Education – Scientific Principles Perspective
3
 
General Education – Social Perspective
3
 
Track Courses
9
Third Year
Choose one of the following:
3
   ANTH-301
   Social and Cultural Theory
This course explores influential classical and contemporary theories regarding society and culture. Students will assess the utility of different theories in addressing key enduring questions regarding human behavior, the organization of society, the nature of culture, the relationship between the individual and society, social control and social conflict, social groups and social hierarchy, the operation of power, cultural and social change, and the interplay between the global and the local. Theories will be marshaled to shed light on contemporary social and cultural phenomena and problems such as crime, violence, exploitation, modernity, and globalization. (Prerequisites: ANTH-102 or ANTH-102H or ANTH-103 or SOCI-102 or SOCI-103 or INGS-101 or equivalent course.) Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
 
   SOCI-301
   Social and Cultural Theory
This course explores influential classical and contemporary theories regarding society and culture. Students will assess the utility of different theories in addressing key enduring questions regarding human behavior, the organization of society, the nature of culture, the relationship between the individual and society, social control and social conflict, social groups and social hierarchy, the operation of power, cultural and social change, and the interplay between the global and the local. Theories will be marshaled to shed light on contemporary social and cultural phenomena and problems such as crime, violence, exploitation, modernity, and globalization. (Prerequisites: ANTH-102 or ANTH-102H or ANTH-103 or SOCI-102 or SOCI-103 or INGS-101 or equivalent course.) Lecture .
 
 
General Education – Electives
6
 
General Education – Immersion 2, 3
6
 
Track Courses
15
Fourth Year
Choose one of the following:
3
   ANTH-501
   Senior Research Project
Students will design and conduct a library-based research project with supervision of a faculty member, bringing to bear the knowledge and theoretical perspectives accumulated during the prior years of study. (Prerequisites: ANTH-201 or ANTH-301 or ANTH-302 or ANTH-303 or equivalent courses and 4th year standing.) Research (Fall, Spring, Summer).
 
    ANTH-502
   Scholar’s Thesis I
This is the first course of a two-semester Scholar's Thesis sequence in anthropology or urban studies in which students will conduct an original research project. In this first course, working with a thesis adviser, students will formulate a research question, conduct a literature review, prepare the research design, and begin data collection, following the conventions of cultural anthropology, archaeology, or urban studies. (This class is restricted to undergraduate students with at least 4th year standing.) Research (Fall, Spring, Summer).
 
   SOCI-501
   Senior Research Project
Students will design and conduct a library-based research project with supervision of a faculty member, bringing to bear the knowledge and theoretical perspectives accumulated during the prior years of study. (Prerequisites: ANTH-201 or ANTH-301 or ANTH-302 or ANTH-303 or equivalent courses and 4th year standing.) Research (Fall, Spring, Summer).
 
   SOCI-502
   Scholar's Thesis I
This is the first course of a two-semester Scholar's Thesis sequence in sociology or urban studies, in which students will conduct an original research project. In this first course, working with a thesis advisor, students will formulate a research question, conduct a literature review, prepare the research design, and begin data collection, following the conventions of the disciplines. (4th year status, 3.2 gpa, and permission of thesis advisor) (This class is restricted to undergraduate students with at least 4th year standing.) Research (Fall, Spring, Summer).
 
 
General Education – Electives
15
 
Open Electives
9
 
Track Course
3
Total Semester Credit Hours
120

Please see General Education Curriculum (GE) for more information.

(WI-PR) Refers to a writing intensive course within the major.

* Please see Wellness Education Requirement for more information. Students completing bachelor's degrees are required to complete two different Wellness courses.

‡ Students will satisfy this requirement by taking either a 3- or 4-credit hour lab science course. If a science course consists of separate lecture and laboratory sections, students must take both the lecture and lab portions to satisfy the requirement. The lecture section alone will not fulfill the requirement.

Tracks

Archaeology
Electives–Choose nine of the following
ANTH-103
Archaeology and the Human Past
Archaeology is the study of the human past, from the origin of our species through to the development of modern, industrial states by means of the physical remains of past human behavior. In studying the past, archaeology seeks to explain how we, modern humans, came to be. This course investigates how archaeologists study the past, explains how human society has changed over time, and presents an overview of world prehistory. Specific topics include the evolution of modern humans, the peopling of the world, the development of agriculture, the rise of state-level societies, and associated social and material technologies such as writing and urbanism. Case studies will be used throughout to demonstrate how archaeological research is conducted and how archaeologists use their research to formulate explanations of the past that have relevance for the present. Lecture (Fall, Spring).
ANTH-215
Field Methods in Archaeology
This course introduces students to the methods of archaeological fieldwork. The course begins with the student’s development of a research question and design. We then explore the feasibility of this research through the examination of sampling techniques, site survey, and excavation. Field methods of recording, photography, and artifact conservation will also be discussed. Students will be able to analyze the usefulness of the field techniques in light of the archaeological scientific methods for dating, and organic and inorganic analyses. Students should emerge from the course understanding the values of the techniques necessary for proper archaeological excavation towards the reconstruction of the past and the development of an understanding of our present. Lab, Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-230
Archaeology & Cultural Imagination: History, Interpretation and Popular Culture
People have been interested in their ancestors and the lives of past people likely for as long as we have been human. But this interest has rarely been disinterested. People have exploited, destroyed, or ignored the remains of previous societies. And how the past is understood has profound effects that ripple through all of society, at different times influencing group identity, political philosophy, art, architecture, literature, and film. The emergence of scientific archaeology in the last 150 years has created its own cultural references, including Indiana Jones and Lara Croft. Each semester this course is offered, a specific topic will examine the cultural context in which archaeologists do their work, what is made of their efforts, and how these are related to larger issues in society. Lecture 3 (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-250
Themes in Archaeological Research
One of the most fascinating dimensions of archaeology is the discovery that people have done essentially the same things in different places and different times, independently of developments elsewhere. Agriculture, writing, urbanism, complex economies, and so on, all have been independently invented multiple times in different parts of the world. This fact raises some intriguing questions about what it means to be human. By comparing how these developments occurred in different places and times, archaeologists can, in a sense, perform experiments on the past. Each semester this course is offered we will focus on a separate theme in archaeological research, such as the transition to agriculture; production, trade, and exchange; the origin of writing; imperialism, colonialism, and warfare; pseudoscience/pseudoarchaeology; or human evolution. We will study competing theoretical perspectives and different world regions to gain a broad understanding of the theme and how both theory and data are used to create a comprehensive understanding of the human past. Lecture (Fall, Spring).
ANTH-255
Regional Archaeology
Since the first humans set out from Africa nearly two million years ago, our ancestors and relatives managed to settle in almost every continent. Wherever they went, they left traces of their lives that are tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of years deep. We call these traces the archaeological record. Almost everywhere our ancestors settled, they did many of the same things, such as inventing agriculture, cities, writing, and state-level societies. However, they did this in ways unique to each region and time. This course examines the archaeology of a specific region, such as the Middle East, Mesoamerica, North America, or East Asia, in detail. We examine the geography, culture, archaeological record, and significance of the region to various key themes in archaeological research with respect to other world regions. Lecture (Fall, Spring).
ANTH-260
Native North Americans
This course examines the persistence and change in Native American cultures using archaeological, ethnohistorical, socioeconomic, ethnographic, linguistic, and autobiographical sources among others. In addition to broad regional and historical coverage, we will read about and discuss culture change, colonialism, federal law, gender, race, and places in Native American contexts. Our goal is to understand the lived experiences of Indian people and the many forces that shape Native American lives. Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
ANTH-312
People Before Cities
More than half the global population today lives in densely populated urban areas, which are further surrounded by complex networks of smaller communities. Yet, the earliest cities appeared less than 6,000 years ago, a small fraction of time since our species’ first appearance. The characteristics that define us as human were forged in radically different social universes from those of today. We lived our lives among not much more than 20-30 other people at any one time, hunting and gathering our food, and occasionally moving from place to place. This lifestyle was so successful and adaptable it endured pressures from more complex societies well into the 20th century. Understanding what life was like in such these small-scale societies is important because the material and social world in which they lived is the foundation for societies where food production, social hierarchy, and occupational specialization are the norm. This course will examine both the ethnographic and archaeological record of hunter/foragers from around the globe in an attempt to understand how it proved to be such a versatile and resilient way of life and how its successes, in fact, laid the foundation for social inequality, complexity, and food production. Lecture 3 (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-315
The Archaeology of Cities
The long course of the human existence has been marked by a series of revolutions that have profoundly changed society and that ultimately produced the world we live in today. One of the key revolutions that made our world possible was the invention of urbanism. Cities first appeared in Mesopotamia about 6,000 years ago and since then have been independently invented in many different parts of the world. This course focuses on the prehistorical trajectories of urban development in different world regions, the multiple roles of cities, and their impact on the development of complex societies. We attempt to understand and explain how the city has developed and contributed to the constitution of modern society. Throughout the course we will work on developing a working definition of the city that encompasses urbanism in all its many forms. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
 ANTH-328
Heritage and Tourism
Tourism is a global industry and an important part of the human experience. There are many forces within tourism that act upon people’s lives, and in particular their environments, economies, cultural heritage, and identity. This course will explore tourism and its many dimensions. Beginning with an examination of kinds of tourism, this course unpacks tourism’s ancient trade and pilgrimage roots as well as its class dynamics of post-industrialization. Other aspects of tourism to be explored include strategies and effects of tourism development and production, nationalism and cultural identity, commoditization and marketing of culture and the ethics of development, labor and infrastructural changes, social inequalities, ecological impact, sustainable tourism, the experience of tourists, ritual and authenticity, and the relationship between tourists and tourism workers. This course provides opportunities for cross-cultural analysis of tourism sites, for participant-observation of the tourist experience, and for evaluation and recommendation of tourism site development in and around Rochester. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
ANTH-360
Humans and Their Environment
Humans and their societies have always been shaped by their environment, but as human societies became more complex, their relationship with their environment changed from one of simple adaptation to one in which they had the power to change their environment. Often, the changes they have wrought have had unintended consequences, forcing societies to adapt to the changes that they themselves have brought about. Although we tend to think that this is a relatively recent phenomenon, humans have been altering their environment since the first human societies made the transition to agriculture over ten thousand years ago, if not longer. In this class, we will use the tools of environmental archaeology to explore the history of human interactions with their environments and to draw lessons on how we could manage that interaction today. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-375
Native American Cultural Resources and Rights
Indian nations have substantial interests in access to and control of their cultural resources. In addition to land, those resources may include objects, traditions, and symbols. Many of those interests may be treated under tribal, federal, and/or international law as forms of property (including access to sacred sites, possession of funerary objects, masks), intangible resources (such as intellectual property of tribal names, symbols, stories), and/or liberty interests (including religious freedom, preservation of tribal languages, customs, Indian arts and crafts). Classroom lectures will be supplemented with roundtable discussions and instructions by museum professionals, guest speakers, and Native American representatives. At the conclusion of the course, students will comprehend the breadth of federal legislation regulating tribal cultural resources as well as the complex legal and social issues facing museums, academic institutions, and the community. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-415
Archaeological Science
Archaeology is one of the few social sciences that lends itself well to the application of analytical techniques from the physical sciences. This is due to the fact that archaeology relies primarily on physical evidence, artifacts and features, whose origin, composition, age, and manner of production can be elucidated through application of the physical sciences. This course examines the application of physical science techniques to archaeological questions, including the age and origin of materials, how things are made, what people ate, their daily activities, and their state of health throughout their life. The course will include in-class labs in which students have the opportunity to apply some of these techniques and a final research project in which the student picks their own archaeological question to answer. Lab 2, Lecture 2 (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-420
Exploring Ancient Technology
While it is commonplace to describe the present era as one dominated by technology, humans have always been critically dependent on technology. Many of today’s key technologies such as agriculture, writing, ceramics, woodworking, textiles, glass, and metals were invented before the dawn of recorded history. In this class, we will explore these ancient technologies, how they came to be invented, how they evolved, and how they were integrated into the social and economic life of ancient peoples to become the foundations of modern society. This course features lectures, readings, and hands-on laboratories and projects on ancient technology and experimental archaeology. Laboratories and projects will focus on how scientists create new knowledge about the past by testing hypotheses about ancient technology. The course concludes with either an individual project, such as replicating a particular artifact or process, or a class project, such as building and using a Mesopotamian glass furnace. Lab, Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-435
The Archaeology of Death
Death and burial are how most individuals enter the archaeological record and one could say that deliberate burial of the dead is the first direct evidence we have for the emergence of ethical and religious systems of thought. Human remains, their mortuary treatment, and associated material culture illuminate past patterns of social organization, economics, belief systems, health, and the negotiation of gender, status, and identity. In this course we explore the scientific and theoretical tools used to analyze and interpret past mortuary practices, how archaeologists create new knowledge about the past through the formulations and testing of hypotheses, survey mortuary practices from their first occurrence in the archaeological record, and what human remains can tell us about changes in the human experience over time and space. We will learn how human remains are identified, how determinations of age, sex, biological affiliation, health, and injury are made, how to interpret formation processes, to interpret associated material culture to understand the negotiation of gender and status; how humans have cared for the deceased members of their societies at different times and places in the human past; and the ethics of studying human mortuary remains. Lab 2, Lecture 2 (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-489
Topics in Anthropology
This topics course focuses on specific themes or issues in anthropology, chosen by the instructor, vetted by the department chair, announced in the course subtitle on SIS, and developed in the syllabus. The topics of this course will vary, but the course number will remain the same. Students may not repeat the same topic. Seminar 3 (Fall, Spring).
ANTH-503
Scholar's Thesis II
This is the second course of a two-semester Scholar's Thesis sequence in anthropology or urban studies in which students will conduct an original research project. In this second course, working with a thesis adviser, students will finalize data collection, analyze the data, write and defend a thesis paper, following the conventions of the discipline. (Prerequisites: ANTH-502 or equivalent course.) Research (Fall, Spring, Summer).
ENVS-250
Applications Geographic Information Systems
Through hands-on projects and case studies, this course illustrates concepts and applications of raster and vector geographic information systems (GIS) in a variety of disciplines, such as environmental science, biology, geology, geography, sociology, and economics. Students will learn how to use GIS software and spatial analyses, plan a project, create a database, and conduct an independent project. Students should have completed a foundational course in their major and be comfortable working with computers. Experience with programming is also useful. (Foundational course in student's major field of study or permission of instructor). Lec/Lab 6 (Fall).
Cultural Anthropology
Electives–Choose nine of the following
ANTH-104
Language and Linguistics
Language has a crucial role in our lives as a functional system of human communication. Language is central to our cultures and societies. This course provides an introduction to the field of linguistics. It considers both how language is described and analyzed by linguists and how evidence from language can shed light on a variety of social, cultural, and cognitive phenomena. The course provides an orientation both to human language and the field of linguistics. It introduces the languages of the world, how languages have been described, the diversity in language structure, the issue of language endangerment and death, and the efforts to document and preserve the world’s languages, among other topics. Lecture 3 (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-201
Ethnographic Imagination: Writing about Society and Culture
This course explores the politics and poetics of writing about society and culture. Writing is a form of power, in that our representations of people influence the way that others think about and act toward them. The way that social researchers write is therefore shot through with ethical implications and weighty decisions. Critical issues include whether people are objectified, cast as wholly Other, culture-bound or creative, out of the past or coeval, racialized or of a common humanity, problematic or multifaceted, passive or agentive, mystified or perceptive, and mechanical or extraordinary. Writing about society and culture is also poetic. We can convey something of people's life experiences, thoughts, agency, and the constraints within which they lead their lives. How well we do so depends upon our ethical reflexivity and attention to the poetics of language. In this course, we will consider these ethical questions, read experimental texts, and discuss how writing style implicitly conveys social theory. (Prerequisites: Successful completion of one course in Anthropology (ANTH), Sociology (SOCI) or International and Global Studies (INGS) is required.) Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
ANTH-210
Culture and Globalization
By exploring critical issues of globalizing culture, we examine how ideas, attitudes, and values are exchanged or transmitted across conventional borders. How has the production, articulation, and dissemination of cultural forms (images, languages, practices, beliefs) been shaped by global capitalism, media industries, communication technologies, migration, and tourist travels? How are cultural imaginaries forged, exchanged, and circulated among a global consumer public? How has the internationalizing of news, computer technologies, video-sharing websites, blogging sites, and other permutations of instant messaging served to accelerate cultural globalization? Students will be introduced to anthropological perspectives on cultural globalization, the transmission of culture globally, and the subsequent effects on social worlds, peoples, communities, and nations. (Prerequisites: ANTH-102 or ANTH-102H or INGS-101 or minimum of 2nd year level standing.) Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
ANTH-220
Language and Culture: Introduction to Linguistic Anthropology
Language is a core element of culture, both as a repository of meaning, and also because it is the primary means through which humans carry out social relationships, share ideas, and contest received understandings. Linguistic anthropology investigates this interplay between language and culture. Topics will vary by semester, and may include metaphor and narrative; language acquisition in relationship to childhood socialization; language, thought, and worldview; language and identity; multilingualism; the social contexts of language change; literacy; and the politics of language use and language ideologies. Lecture 3 (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-225
Globalizing Africa
This course introduces students to processes of interconnection, local, regional, national, and global, that have altered and continue to impact life in Africa, taking into account the enormous impact of Africans on one another and on those of us living outside of the continent. In the course, we will focus on how past, present, and anticipated future events in African movements of people, ideas, and things, across time and space effect the reception of new events. We will pay particularly close attention to how the relationships of time and space are formulated and understood by Africans in the present. While the historical past is never completed, but continuous in the present, its diverse contours lead to differently remembered, embodied, and enacted expressions. We will evaluate these diverse expressions in pre-colonial, colonial, and neo-colonial encounters as they have changed ideas of self and other, political philosophies and political economic systems, genders and sexualities, generational relations, religions, expressive arts, violence, and health on the African continent and around the globe. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-235
Immigration to the U.S.
This course examines immigration to the U.S. within the context of globalization. We examine the push- and pull-factors that generate immigration, and changing immigration policies and debates. We consider how changes in the American workplace have stimulated the demand for foreign workers in a wide range of occupations, from software engineer to migrant farmworker and nanny. We review the cultural and emotional challenges of adapting within the American cultural landscape, transnationalism and connections with the homeland, the experiences of refugees, and how immigration has changed since 9/11. Special attention is given to immigration from Latin America, the largest sending region. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-245
Ritual and Performance 
The world’s cultural diversity is most vividly and dynamically displayed through ritual and festival. Ritual is anything but superfluous; rather, some of the most important work of culture is accomplished through the performance of ritual. Through cross-cultural comparison, by way of readings and films, we explore the following dimensions of ritual: symbols, embodiment, emotion, discipline, contestation of tradition and authenticity, and the orchestration of birth, childhood socialization, gender, maturation, marriage, community, hierarchy, world renewal, and death. Written expression is enhanced through drafting, revision, and peer review. Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
ANTH-246
Gender and Health
This course examines connections between gender and health that are both conceptual and empirical. Students will explore the causes of gender-based differences in health outcomes through case studies of sexual and reproductive rights, HIV/AIDS epidemics and violence. Students will also examine global gender and health trends. The course concludes with an examination of gender inequity in health care and policy implications of these inequities. Lecture 3 (Annual).
ANTH-260
Native North Americans
This course examines the persistence and change in Native American cultures using archaeological, ethnohistorical, socioeconomic, ethnographic, linguistic, and autobiographical sources among others. In addition to broad regional and historical coverage, we will read about and discuss culture change, colonialism, federal law, gender, race, and places in Native American contexts. Our goal is to understand the lived experiences of Indian people and the many forces that shape Native American lives. Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
ANTH-265
Native Americans in Film
This course will examine the parallels of anthropological works and resulting government policies in the late-19th and 20th centuries as they relate to the genre of Native Americans film, both popular and ethnographic works. In addition, an extensive regional and historical literature review will complement the possible films. Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
ANTH-270
Cuisine, Culture, and Power
Physically, culturally, and socially, humans live through food and drink. Spanning the globe, as nearly limitless omnivores, humans have developed myriad ways of collecting and cultivating food and taking advantage of local environments. We also put food to work for us socially by creating cuisine. Through cuisine, we forge and nourish relationships, commune with deities, and through luxury choices, demonstrate our "taste" and lay claim to elite status. Through the cultural practices of production and consumption of food and drink, we wield power. Food and drink consumption patterns have sustained slavery, poverty, malnutrition, and illegal immigration, and have laid waste to the environment. In this class, we explore physical, cultural, social, political, and economic dimensions of food and become more aware of how the private, intimate act of a bite connects us to the rest of humanity. Lecture 3 (Fa/sp/su).
ANTH-295
Global Public Health
Global health is a term that reflects a complex series of problems, policies, institutions and aspirations that have only recently made their way to the global stage. From its earliest days, global health was guided by principles in public health that situate the nation-state as responsible for the health of its population. While international health and tropical medicine, the precursors to global health, was driven by the distinction between wealthy and poor nations, global health today, as this course explores, is oriented to the unequal burden of disease around the world. The course will consider major global health challenges, programs, and policies through an integrated social science lens. After placing global health in historical context, we will focus on how the science of disease cannot be dissociated from the social context and policies that both drive the emergence of disease(s) and respond to the unequal burden of disease around the world. We will analyze current and emerging global health priorities, including emerging infectious diseases, poverty, conflicts and emergencies, health inequity, health systems reforms, and major global initiatives for disease prevention and health promotion. Lecture 3 (Annual).
ANTH-310
African Film and Popular Culture
Popular culture has a political dimension. Created and consumed by ordinary people, African popular cultures, including film and popular cinema, are linked to political processes as forms of expression, perspective, and critique. As a result of accessible digital formats for producing and distributing films and other popular genres, African film and cinema is literally exploding onto the global scene, dynamically affecting intercultural communication and African economies. Nollywood, the Nigerian film industry, for instance, is now the third largest film producer in the world, competing with Hollywood and Bollywood for audiences and market share. This course introduces students to African film as a genre of popular culture and explores the political contexts in which it is forged. Throughout the semester, we consider the diversity and complexity of African film as a creative genre and engage in debates about forms of intercultural communication that challenge contemporary African artists and consumers. By the end of the course, students will have gained an understanding of the enormous impact of popular cultures through which many Africans express political sentiments that might otherwise be suppressed. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-325
Bodies and Culture 
Our bodies are more than mere physical entities; they are conditioned by culture, society, and history. We will take a comparative approach to the cultural construction of bodies and the impact of ethnic, gender, and racial ideologies on body practices (i.e. surgical alteration, mutilation, beautification, surrogacy, erotica). We will critically investigate the global formation of normative discourses of the body (regarding sexuality, AIDS/illness, reproduction, fat/food) in medical science, consumer culture, and the mass media. The course features discussion, writing, and project-oriented research, encouraging students to acquire a range of analytic skills through a combination of text interpretation and research. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-328
Heritage and Tourism
Tourism is a global industry and an important part of the human experience. There are many forces within tourism that act upon people’s lives, and in particular their environments, economies, cultural heritage, and identity. This course will explore tourism and its many dimensions. Beginning with an examination of kinds of tourism, this course unpacks tourism’s ancient trade and pilgrimage roots as well as its class dynamics of post-industrialization. Other aspects of tourism to be explored include strategies and effects of tourism development and production, nationalism and cultural identity, commoditization and marketing of culture and the ethics of development, labor and infrastructural changes, social inequalities, ecological impact, sustainable tourism, the experience of tourists, ritual and authenticity, and the relationship between tourists and tourism workers. This course provides opportunities for cross-cultural analysis of tourism sites, for participant-observation of the tourist experience, and for evaluation and recommendation of tourism site development in and around Rochester. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
ANTH-330
Cultural Images of War and Terror 
This course critically examines the visual culture of war and terror in a global world from an anthropological perspective. Representations of violence are endlessly transmitted on television, on the internet, in print media, in cinema, and in recreational games to become part of our everyday visual culture. Whether disseminated as news, documentary truth, or entertainment, the ubiquitous encounters with images of violence require a new form of visual literacy that not only highlights the intersection of the local and the global, but also recognizes the ways in which visual technologies, cultural politics of memory and history, media practices, and national ideologies intervene in the formation of a visual culture of war and terror. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-335
Culture and Politics in Latin America
This course introduces cultures of Latin America and the Spanish-speaking Caribbean in the context of political and economic forces that have shaped them. We examine Spanish and Portuguese colonialism and its modern-day legacies, including ethnic inequalities, economic vulnerability, and social unrest. We look at how art, music, and literature have engaged critically with the forces of fascism, revolution, socialism, dictatorship, and neo-colonialism. We consider indigenous activism, religious diversity, changing experiences and expectations of women and men, rebellion and revolution, impacts of and creative responses to globalization, and Latinos in the U.S. Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
ANTH-341
Global Addictions
This course evaluates global forms of “addiction” in medical, cultural, national, and transnational situations of encounter. Though primarily a EuroAmerican concept of illness, addiction is now discursively and experientially widespread, assuming the status of a “global form.” Addiction narratives and experiences shape people and social life everywhere, as scientific and cultural or national knowledge intersect to form subjectivities, identities of addicts, and communities of addicted bodies. Concepts of will, morality, the addicted self and other, and living and dying also impact the cultural, national and international infrastructures we build—whether and how, for instance, we put resources into medical or criminal justice systems and networks. A closer look at the intimate lives of addicts thus enables us to consider identity boundaries and crossings; addiction languages; family relations and parenting; self-made communities and social bonds; work at the economic fringes of society; personal and institutional violence; policing and navigating enforcement or incarceration; homelessness and legal, medical and social service bureaucracies; as well as transnational production, trafficking, forms of addiction, and policing. By the end of the course, students will comprehend concepts and theories of addiction, and global perspectives on people living with addiction. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
ANTH-345
Genocide and Post-Conflict Justice
The destruction and survival of societies often hinges upon the ideas and the social, cultural constructions of identity and belonging. When ideas fail to incorporate people, essentialist categories of identity, historical memory, and accounts of extreme violence become interrelated, potent sources of destruction. Slavery and exclusive ownership of resources leave people starving or living in perilously polluted environments. Globalizing cultural economies threaten local systems and self-representation. Group identities may be sites of crises within nation-states and global political, economic, and cultural processes. In this course, we will take critical, anthropological approaches to studies of ethnocide, genocide, and post-conflict justice. Students will use critical, anthropological approaches to assess ethnocides and genocides from the 19th century forced assimilation and slaughter of Native Americans and Amazonian Indians to more recent genocides in Cambodia, Bosnia, Rwanda, and the Sudan, to understand the impact of globalization on techniques and technologies of genocides, the legal, moral/personal responsibility for genocides, media representations of genocides, and the affects of cultural, historical memory and social, global inequities upon future genocides. Students will use anthropological perspectives on genocide to assess post-conflict concepts of justice, reconstruction and reconciliation and local-global debates about their cultural resonance and effectiveness. Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
ANTH-361
Digitizing People
Much of the knowledge of our social worlds has been digitized. This course explores how social technologies shape our relationships, personal lives, and sense of self. The metric manufacture of diversity has produced new forms of population management and inequality. Our biographic histories as citizens, consumers, workers/professionals, parents, lovers, and social media users are collected as data-bites and assessed in metric terms, thereby forging new sets of identities. The transformation of people into numerical entities is an act of statistical objectification. This process frames the creation of social and racial typologies, and is well demonstrated by the US census. Students will investigate the formation of racial, ethnic, and gender identities in the context of the accelerated desire to digitize humanity. Lecture 3 (Annual).
ANTH-365
Culture and Politics in the Middle East
With a focus on everyday life in families, communities, and nations, we examine the diverse cultures and peoples of the Middle East in the context of political and economic forces that have shaped their lives in the past and present. We examine European colonialism and its modern-day legacies, including ethnic inequalities, economic vulnerability, labor migration, urbanism, and social unrest. We look at how art, music, oral traditions, and literatures have engaged critically with the forces of political change and neo-colonialism. We consider political activism, religious diversity, changing experiences and expectations of women and men, rebellion, revolution, and war, and the impacts of and creative responses to globalization. The cultural, political, social, and religious dynamics of Middle Eastern peoples will be discussed from a humanistic perspective. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-370
Media and Globalization
The cultural importance of mass media has undergone tremendous growth in the context of globalization. Analysis of the global flows of media images across national borders emphasizes the cultural, social, and political impact of global media culture on communities in different parts of the world. How, for example, do mass media represent or shape cultural values and beliefs in developing societies? What is the role of mass media in forging national and ethnic identities, body images, cultural constructs of sexuality and gender, and the perceptions of war and violence in different societies? Lecture (Biannual).
ANTH-375
Native American Cultural Resources and Rights
Indian nations have substantial interests in access to and control of their cultural resources. In addition to land, those resources may include objects, traditions, and symbols. Many of those interests may be treated under tribal, federal, and/or international law as forms of property (including access to sacred sites, possession of funerary objects, masks), intangible resources (such as intellectual property of tribal names, symbols, stories), and/or liberty interests (including religious freedom, preservation of tribal languages, customs, Indian arts and crafts). Classroom lectures will be supplemented with roundtable discussions and instructions by museum professionals, guest speakers, and Native American representatives. At the conclusion of the course, students will comprehend the breadth of federal legislation regulating tribal cultural resources as well as the complex legal and social issues facing museums, academic institutions, and the community. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-410
Global Cities
This course examines the impact of global dynamics on cities from the early 20th century to the present. By tracing urban formations from metropolis to global city, emphasis will be placed on the making of identities, communities, and citizens in the architectural spaces, cultural places, ethnic zones, and media traces of urban life in the context of globalization. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-425
Global Sexualities 
By exploring issues of gender and sexuality in a global context, students will be introduced to anthropological perspectives on the experience of men and women, as gendered subjects, in different societies and historical contexts, including colonialism, nationalism, and global capitalism. In turn, we will explore how cultural constructions of masculinity and femininity are configured by race, class, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. Course materials are drawn from an array of sources, reflecting various theoretical perspectives and ethnographic views from different parts of the world. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
ANTH-430
Visual Anthropology 
We see others as we imagine them to be, in terms of our values, not as they see themselves. This course examines ways in which we understand and represent the reality of others through visual media, across the boundaries of culture, gender, and race. It considers how and why visual media can be used to represent or to distort the world around us. Pictorial media, in particular ethnographic film and photography, are analyzed to document the ways in which indigenous and native peoples in different parts of the world have been represented and imagined by anthropologists and western popular culture. Lecture (Fall, Spring).
ANTH-489
Topics in Anthropology
This topics course focuses on specific themes or issues in anthropology, chosen by the instructor, vetted by the department chair, announced in the course subtitle on SIS, and developed in the syllabus. The topics of this course will vary, but the course number will remain the same. Students may not repeat the same topic. Seminar 3 (Fall, Spring).
ANTH-503
Scholar's Thesis II
This is the second course of a two-semester Scholar's Thesis sequence in anthropology or urban studies in which students will conduct an original research project. In this second course, working with a thesis adviser, students will finalize data collection, analyze the data, write and defend a thesis paper, following the conventions of the discipline. (Prerequisites: ANTH-502 or equivalent course.) Research (Fall, Spring, Summer).
INGS-101
Global Studies
Within the past three decades, planetary computerization, burgeoning media industries, and other global processes have significantly altered the ways in which we experience our local and global worlds. Global reconfigurations of time and space change our consciousness, sense of self and others, and the material realities in which we live and work. This course provides the conceptual tools to assess emerging global processes, interactions and flows of people, ideas and things that challenge historical patterns of international studies and relations. The course will introduce you to international and global processes in areas such as global cultural economies, global cities, new forms of democracy and civil society, global religions, sexualities, health, and environments, increased competition for resources, political conflict, war and terrorism. Beyond understanding the causes and consequences of global change, this course will introduce you to ethical dilemmas in global justice movements, and in transferring ideas and technologies in new global contexts. Lecture (Fall).
INGS-270
Cuisine, Culture, and Power
Physically, culturally, and socially, humans live through food and drink. Spanning the globe, as nearly limitless omnivores, humans have developed myriad ways of collecting and cultivating food and taking advantage of local environments. We also put food to work for us socially by creating cuisine. Through cuisine, we forge and nourish relationships, commune with deities, and through luxury choices, demonstrate our "taste" and lay claim to elite status. Through the cultural practices of production and consumption of food and drink, we wield power. Food and drink consumption patterns have sustained slavery, poverty, malnutrition, and illegal immigration, and have laid waste to the environment. In this class, we explore physical, cultural, social, political, and economic dimensions of food and become more aware of how the private, intimate act of a bite connects us to the rest of humanity. Lecture 3 (Fall).
SOCI-361
Digitizing People
Much of the knowledge of our social worlds has been digitized. This course explores how social technologies shape our relationships, personal lives, and sense of self. The metric manufacture of diversity has produced new forms of population management and inequality. Our biographic histories as citizens, consumers, workers/professionals, parents, lovers, and social media users are collected as data-bites and assessed in metric terms, thereby forging new sets of identities. The transformation of people into numerical entities is an act of statistical objectification. This process frames the creation of social and racial typologies, and is well demonstrated by the US census. Students will investigate the formation of racial, ethnic, and gender identities in the context of the accelerated desire to digitize humanity. Lecture 3 (Annual).
Sociology
Electives–Choose nine of the following
ANTH-361
Digitizing People
Much of the knowledge of our social worlds has been digitized. This course explores how social technologies shape our relationships, personal lives, and sense of self. The metric manufacture of diversity has produced new forms of population management and inequality. Our biographic histories as citizens, consumers, workers/professionals, parents, lovers, and social media users are collected as data-bites and assessed in metric terms, thereby forging new sets of identities. The transformation of people into numerical entities is an act of statistical objectification. This process frames the creation of social and racial typologies, and is well demonstrated by the US census. Students will investigate the formation of racial, ethnic, and gender identities in the context of the accelerated desire to digitize humanity. Lecture 3 (Annual).
SOCI-201
Ethnographic Imagination: Writing about Society and Culture 
SOCI-210
African-American Culture
This course will describe the historical and contemporary conditions that have given rise to the distinctive cultural orientation of African Americans in the United States. Students will be provided with an explication of African American culture as it is perceived by the majority of African Americans. Furthermore, the course will outline an operational articulation of the African American experience, and analyze the characterological responses that result from it. Lecture (Spring).
SOCI-215
The Changing Family
Families are the microcosm of society. Sociological concepts and theories define the family as a fundamental institution that both mirrors and propels societal change. The field of family studies explores various parameters of family systems, including gender, race, class, ethnicity, sexuality, division of labor, marriage and divorce, children, and generational relations. In the wake of significant changes in family forms, experiences, and prevailing household arrangements, the scope of sociological inquiry has expanded to meet the new realities of American family life. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
SOCI-220
Minority Group Relations
The course will provide a context in which to examine the multiple and contradictory social relations of domination, subordination, resistance, and empowerment. The kinds of questions we will explore focus on how power, knowledge, meaning, and cultural representation are organized. We will analyze a variety of political and ideological themes which bear upon the formation of minority group relations, their identity and how these themes complicate the processes by which people construct their understanding of the nation, world, of others, and themselves. Through reflection on theoretical texts and fictional works, as well as film and other popular media, we will consider for ourselves how culture is differently represented and signified, and how the politics of understanding and misunderstanding minority relations work through practices within and outside cultural institutions. Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
SOCI-225
Social Inequality
This course examines various forms of social inequality, including economic, political, health, higher education, race and sex inequality. It uses a variety of sociology's ideas to explain why these kinds of inequality exist, how they persist and what can be done about them. Lecture (Spring).
SOCI-230
Sociology of Work
This course analyzes and assesses social relations of paid labor. Sociology's major ideas about the ways we work will be examined and applied to numerous important topics such as: workplace organization, unions, labor legislation, health and safety, workplace culture, interplays between work and family, experiences of work as alienating or satisfying, inequalities at work, and social mobility. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
SOCI-235
Women, Work, and Culture
In this course, we analyze historical and contemporary patterns of gender, race/ethnicity, sexuality, and the organization of work. Using the theoretical perspectives we analyze the work historically undertaken by women in societies and its relationship to broader political and economic structures. While our primary focus is on the U.S., we will also conduct a cross-cultural analysis of gender and work in developing and industrializing societies. Specific issues include gender discrimination (e.g., wage discrimination, sexual harassment), sexuality, reproduction, and women organizing to control their work and working conditions. Lecture (Fall, Spring, Summer).
SOCI-240
Deaf Culture in America
This course is an introductory survey of Deaf culture in the United States. Students will study the scholarly literature pertaining to various social groups in the Deaf community and have contact with their members. This course will familiarize students with the characteristics of Deaf Culture, as well as general perceptions of the Deaf community within the dominant mainstream society. Lecture (Fall, Spring).
SOCI-246
Gender and Health 
This course examines connections between gender and health that are both conceptual and empirical. Students will explore the causes of gender-based differences in health outcomes through case studies of sexual and reproductive rights, HIV/AIDS epidemics and violence. Students will also examine global gender and health trends. The course concludes with an examination of gender inequity in health care and policy implications of these inequities. Lecture 3 (Annual).
SOCI-295
Global Public Health
Global health is a term that reflects a complex series of problems, policies, institutions and aspirations that have only recently made their way to the global stage. From its earliest days, global health was guided by principles in public health that situate the nation-state as responsible for the health of its population. While international health and tropical medicine, the precursors to global health, was driven by the distinction between wealthy and poor nations, global health today, as this course explores, is oriented to the unequal burden of disease around the world. The course will consider major global health challenges, programs, and policies through an integrated social science lens. After placing global health in historical context, we will focus on how the science of disease cannot be dissociated from the social context and policies that both drive the emergence of disease(s) and respond to the unequal burden of disease around the world. We will analyze current and emerging global health priorities, including emerging infectious diseases, poverty, conflicts and emergencies, health inequity, health systems reforms, and major global initiatives for disease prevention and health promotion. Lecture 3 (Annual).
SOCI-300
Sociology of American Life
This course will examine major U.S. institutions and dominant values that pattern everyday life. It will focus on the nation’s multi-national corporations, mass media, lawmaking, schools and the military, and dominant ideologies and values that guide these institutions such as the American dream, individualism, competition, faith in technology, consumerism and democracy. Alternative organizations and countercultures will be studied. The course will examine the interconnections between the U.S. and other nations as expressed by such issues as international trade agreements, cultural diffusion, environmental degradation, and war. Lecture 3 (Biannual).
SOCI-305
Crime and Human Rights: Sociology of Atrocities
How is the murder of one person different from that of one million? Why is one act a crime while the other simply history? While mass atrocities have occurred, and continue to occur, throughout human history, it is only until recently that international laws started to name and criminalize these atrocities as human rights violations. This course revolves around the worst mass atrocities in recent human history and the responses they receive, focusing on violent crimes perpetrated by the state and the emerging human rights regime in response to such crimes after WWII. As a class, we will seek answers to questions such as: Why do ordinary people participate in extreme violence against their neighbors? How is violence sanctioned and organized by the state different from interpersonal violence? Who is responsible for state-sanctioned violence? What is the role of those who do not participate in or stop the violence? What is the role of human rights and human rights laws in preventing state-sanctioned violence? What are the possible responses to state-sanctioned violence under human rights laws? What are the consequences of such responses? Whether/how does social context matter in the way mass atrocities unfold and the responses they receive? To answer these questions, we will examine historical documents, watch movies, read literature, and study scholarly work. This course will be useful for students who seek careers in areas such as international law, diplomacy, human rights advocacy/prosecution, and criminal justice in general. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to students with at least 2nd year standing.) Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
SOCI-315
Global Exiles of War and Terror
Daily we watch, seemingly helplessly, as people are displaced from their communities, homelands, and countries and subsequently seek asylum around the world, sometimes within our own local communities. Causes of displacement include war, violence, persecution, and modes of terror that increasingly affect the lives of women and children. In addition to the loss of human life and potential, the ensuing consequences of violent displacement include poverty, disease, physical and psychological trauma, hopelessness, and vulnerability to human rights abuses. In this course, we explore how the rights and dignity of refugees can be protected. We also examine resettlement processes and, for those who are eventually repatriated, we address how they can successfully reintegrate into reconstructing societies that remain barely functional. Most importantly, we consider how the trauma of displacement can be minimized. Lecture (Fa/sp/su).
SOCI-322
Health and Society
What would a healthy society look like? What questions should we be asking of those in power to ensure health equity? What is health equity? The objective of this course is to develop a sociological language for answering these and other questions. To do so, students will evaluate the relationship between health and society – that is, the connections between contemporary health disparities and today’s social, physical, and political economic environments. This includes an analysis of macro-factors (climate change, environmental pollution, global and/or national economies, laws) and micro-factors (social media, neighborhood conditions, green spaces, poor- or low-quality housing, and leisure spaces). The course emphasizes that health is impacted by the social circumstances into which people are born; inequitable distributions of power; and social/legal categories of exclusion and inclusion. Though sociological in orientation, this course resonates with the disciplinary and professional aims of medical anthropologists, public health professionals, community health practitioners, and anyone committed to eradicating health disparities. Lecture 3 (Annual).
SOCI-330
Urban (In)Justice
With a focus on forms of (in)justice in urban communities worldwide, we investigate the impact of race, class, and gender and related systems of unequal power relations on perpetuating patterns of social, political, economic, and environmental oppression (policing, hunger, pollution, violence, disease). How do ways of governing urban populations affect the lives of inner city residents and their demands for justice when attempting to navigate the everyday urban worlds? Specific course topics include both historical and contemporary perspectives on urban (in)justice locally, in Rochester NY, and nationally, across the U.S., and in a global comparative framework. Thereby the effects of crime, violence, and inequality on people in urban neighborhoods are also examined among and within nations. By the end of the semester, students should be able to identify and explain various theories that seek to explain (in)justice patterns in the urban context at local, national and global levels. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
SOCI-345
Urban Poverty
Urban poverty has been recognized as a persistent problem in the United States since the middle of the last century. In many cities, poverty is associated with high levels of teenage pregnancy, low levels of employment, limited educational attainment, chronic community-based health problems, and high levels of crime. This course examines causes, consequences, and proposed policy solutions to urban poverty. Special emphasis will be paid to U.S. urban poverty. Lecture (Fall Or Spring).
SOCI-350
Social Change
This course describes and applies competing explanations for major transitions in a variety of institutions, including the economy, work, politics, family and education. These transitions are seen within historical and global contexts, but the interplay of these changing social structures with individual experience is explored as well. Topics include economic, racial and gender stratification, culture, labor-management relations, and the source and consequences of technological change. Students will learn to understand, assess, and manage social change rather than to simply react to it. (Prerequisites: ANTH-102 or ANTH-102H or SOCI-102 or equivalent course.) Lecture 3 (Fall Or Spring).
SOCI-355
CyberActivism: Diversity, Sex, and the Internet 
Sociologists look to cyberspace to test theories of technology diffusion and media effects on society. This course explores the Internet’s impact on communities, political participation, cultural democracy, and diversity. How have digital technologies and electronic information flows shaped or diminished inequalities of gender, sex, and race? For instance: new electronic technologies have pushed the cultural and physical boundaries of how we have sex; with whom we have sex; and with what we have sex and/or have observed having sex, such as sex toys and avatars. The sociological implications of this new technology depend on economic, legal, and policy decisions that are shaping the Internet as it becomes institutionalized. The course analyzes such new forms of cyber-democracy with a focus on issues of gender, sex, and race. Lecture 3 (Spring, Summer).
SOCI-361
Digitizing People
Much of the knowledge of our social worlds has been digitized. This course explores how social technologies shape our relationships, personal lives, and sense of self. The metric manufacture of diversity has produced new forms of population management and inequality. Our biographic histories as citizens, consumers, workers/professionals, parents, lovers, and social media users are collected as data-bites and assessed in metric terms, thereby forging new sets of identities. The transformation of people into numerical entities is an act of statistical objectification. This process frames the creation of social and racial typologies, and is well demonstrated by the US census. Students will investigate the formation of racial, ethnic, and gender identities in the context of the accelerated desire to digitize humanity. Lecture 3 (Annual).
SOCI-395
Borders: Humans, Boundaries, and Empires
Borders are more than walls; they are social constructions with real consequences. This course examines the creation and consequences of borders. It discusses how borders developed historically, how borders function as tools of population management in places and systems far from the borderlands, and the politics and experiences of border crossing. We will look for borders both between and within nation states when addressing these issues. The course will utilize a variety of materials including but not limited to scholarly sources, policy transcripts, popular cultural products (e.g. films and TV shows), and art (e.g. poetry, paintings). Students will play an active role in determining specific course topics, though they can expect to discuss a range of relevant issues including contemporary immigration politics, Indigenous rights, the war on terror, border disputes and armed conflicts, privatization of immigration management, displacement and segregation of domestic populations, and border activism. This course provides students with tools that ground and expand their understanding of borders, preparing them for participation in one of the most important public debates of our time. The purview of this course is relevant for those who aspire toward professions in public policy, law enforcement, public service, law, and community-organizing, among others. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to students with at least 2nd year standing.) Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
SOCI-489
Topics in Sociology
This topics course focuses on specific themes or issues in sociology, chosen by the instructor, vetted by the department chair, announced in the course subtitle on SIS, and developed in the syllabus. The topics of this course will vary, but the course number will remain the same. Students may repeat the course for credit, but may not repeat a topic. Seminar 3 (Fall, Spring).
SOCI-503
Scholar's Thesis II
This is the second course of a two-semester Scholar's Thesis sequence in sociology or urban studies, in which students will conduct an original research project. In this second course, working with a thesis advisor, students will finalize data collection, analyze the data, write and defend a thesis paper, following the conventions of the discipline. (4th year status, 3.2 gpa, and permission of thesis advisor) (Prerequisites: SOCI-502 or equivalent course.) Research (Fall, Spring, Summer).
Thematic
Students choose three thematic modules of three courses each from modules approved by the department.

Admission Requirements

Freshman Admission

For all bachelor’s degree programs, a strong performance in a college preparatory program is expected. Generally, this includes 4 years of English, 3-4 years of mathematics, 2-3 years of science, and 3 years of social studies and/or history.

Specific math and science requirements and other recommendations

  • Strong performance in English and social studies is expected

Transfer Admission

Transfer course recommendations without associate degree

Courses in liberal arts, sciences, and math

Appropriate associate degree programs for transfer

Liberal arts, environmental studies, economics, government, science

Learn about admissions, cost, and financial aid 

Latest News

  • July 29, 2020

    aerial view of buildings on RIT campus.

    RIT and Syracuse University College of Law enter into 3+3 admissions agreement

    RIT has partnered with Syracuse University College of Law to establish a “3+3” program for students interested in earning a law degree. A memorandum of understanding between the two universities was recently signed to allow students to complete three years of liberal arts and other studies at RIT, then transfer to the College of Law for three years to complete their doctorate in law.

  • April 1, 2019

    Large group of students stands with dean.

    RIT’s College of Liberal Arts honors students for writing excellence

    RIT’s College of Liberal Arts honored student achievement in writing on Friday with the presentation of more than a dozen writing awards for essays varying from sanctuary cities, how democracies can withstand outside meddling, and the excavation, preservation and reconstruction of a London theater where Shakespearian plays debuted.