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Graduate Catalog 2019-2020

Sociology M.A.

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Are you curious about social problems? Do you have ideas about how to improve society? Are you interested in social policies and their effects? If so, Sociology may be for you. A Sociology degree prepares you for a wide range of careers in the following areas: business and industry, government, community and social services, the legal system, education, and research. Our majors work in nonprofit organizations, government, marketing, urban planning, and human resources. They also work with at-risk youth, senior citizens, and people struggling with substance abuse. Our faculty have areas of specialization in family sociology, medical sociology, immigration, religion, race and ethnic relations, social inequality, complex organizations and nonprofit organizations, and conflict resolution.

The Candidate Plan of Study (CPS) must include the following requirements:

  1. A minimum of twelve undergraduate upper-level hours in the behavioral sciences (Anthropology, Psychology, and Sociology). If this requirement has not been met prior to admission, then such courses should be completed before beginning work toward the Master of Arts.
  2. If students are not taking the coursework option (30 hours; see details below), then a minimum of six hours is required in one of the following master's options:
    1. Master's Thesis
    2. Graduate Internship
  3. Registering for a master's thesis or internship should not be seen as an automatic right. Students wishing to complete a master's option must submit a master's option proposal. For the thesis, the proposal should be 3-6 pages in length. It should include a literature review with references and a statement of the proposed methodology for carrying out the thesis. Before registering for thesis, a student must have the approval of a faculty member who agrees to supervise the work. Before registering for a graduate internship, a student must apply through the internship coordinator and meet the required criteria, including a grade point average of 3.00 or better. The university reserves the right to deny admittance to or to remove a student from a specific internship.
  4. Grades of "B-" or better must be earned for all coursework.
  5. No more than 6 credit hours may be transferred toward theSOCI MA. Courses may be transferred if: 
    1. The courses are pertinent to the degree.
    2. The courses were taken not more than five years prior to admission to graduate study at UCHL.
    3. Grades of "B-" or better were earned.
    4. The courses were not applied to a graduate degree already earned.
    5. The courses were not taken by correspondence or extension.
  6. At least 24 credits of the degree plan must be earned at UHCL.

Degree Requirements

General Requirements

SOCI 6730 and SOCI 6731 must be completed for credit within the first three long semesters (Fall/Spring) of a student's graduate coursework. Students seeking an exception must obtain written approval from the Sociology program director. 

Note: SOCI 6731 is offered in the fall and is a prerequisite to SOCI 6730 which is offered in the spring.  

Core Sociology Courses 

Courses
SOCI 5032 Mental Health and Illness
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5233 Religion and Immigration Studies in Houston
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5236 Religion and Global Change
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5333 Minorities and Majorities
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5334 Social Stratification
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5337 Complex Organizations
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5433 Social Conflict and Mediation
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5434 Marriage and Family
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5435 Gendered Inequality: Work and Family
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5438 Sociology of the Life Course and Aging
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5537 Urban Problems
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5633 American Immigration Studies
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5731 Politics and Protest
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5732 Seminar in Social Problems
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6734 Women's Health
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6737 Medical Sociology
Credit Hours: 3

Concentrations

Graduate Sociology students are also encouraged to work with their faculty adviser to structure their plans of study in order to reflect concentrations within the discipline. Five concentrations are available. 

1. Concentration in Diversity

Choose THREE of the following courses.

For SOCI 5236, the following may be substituted: CRCL 5033.

For SOCI 5333, the following may be substituted: PSYC 5534.

SOCI 5233 Religion and Immigration Studies in Houston
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5236 Religion and Global Change
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5333 Minorities and Majorities
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5334 Social Stratification
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5633 American Immigration Studies
Credit Hours: 3
2. Concentration in Work and Occupations

Choose THREE of the following courses. 

For SOCI 5532, the following may be substituted; PSYC 5532.

SOCI 5337 Complex Organizations
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5433 Social Conflict and Mediation
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5435 Gendered Inequality: Work and Family
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5532 Advanced Social Psychology
Credit Hours: 3
3. Concentration in Urban Studies

Choose THREE of the following courses. 

For SOCI 5333, the following may be substituted: PSYC 5534.

GEOG 5134 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5233 Religion and Immigration Studies in Houston
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5333 Minorities and Majorities
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5334 Social Stratification
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5537 Urban Problems
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5633 American Immigration Studies
Credit Hours: 3
4. Concentration in Health and Medicine

Choose THREE of the following courses. 

SOCI 5032 Mental Health and Illness
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6734 Women's Health
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6737 Medical Sociology
Credit Hours: 3
5. Concentration in Family Sociology

Choose THREE of the following courses.

SOCI 5434 Marriage and Family
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5435 Gendered Inequality: Work and Family
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5438 Sociology of the Life Course and Aging
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 5533 Sociology of Human Intimacy
Credit Hours: 3

Master's Options

Thesis Option (30 hours)

For SOCI 6432, the following may be substituted: GEOG 5134

SOCI 6939 must be repeated for a total of 6 hours.

In addition to the courses below, students should choose 9 hours from the "Core Sociology Classes" listed above; student should also complete a 3-hour SOCI elective. 

SOCI 5131 Contemporary Sociological Theory
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6730 Advanced Non-Experimental Research and Statistics
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6731 Graduate Research Methods
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6432 Qualitative Research Methods
Credit Hours: 3

Additional Information

The thesis is a 35-40 page paper that could potentially be published in a Sociology scholarly journal; it must be in American Sociological Association format, use real data (qualitative and/or quantitative), contain a literature review, and test at least one hypothesis derived from a sociological theory. Students must work with a thesis committee consisting of at least two faculty members. A thesis proposal must be approved by the student's thesis committee and the completed thesis must be approved by the committee, as well as by the dean and the associate dean. Students are required to hold a public defense (presentation) of their completed thesis.  
Internship Option (30 hours)

For SOCI 6432, the following may be substituted: GEOG 5134.

SOCI 6739 must be repeated for a total of 6 hours. 

In addition to the courses below, students should choose 9 hours from the "Core Sociology Classes" listed above; student should also complete a 3-hour SOCI elective. 

 

SOCI 5131 Contemporary Sociological Theory
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6730 Advanced Non-Experimental Research and Statistics
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6731 Graduate Research Methods
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6432 Qualitative Research Methods
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6739 Graduate Internship
Credit Hours: 3

Additional Information

Internships may be completed in one of two ways: 1) students may complete a 500-hour internship at a social service agency, nonprofit organization, or other association related to career goals and with approval of the Sociology Internship Coordinator; or 2) students may complete a teaching internship, which consists of acting as a teaching assistant for a community college professor in the first semester and then teaching a course independently in the second semester, most likely Introduction to Sociology at a community college.
Additional Coursework Option (30 hours)

For SOCI 6432, the following may be substituted: GEOG 5134.

In addition to the courses below, students should choose 15 hours from the "Core Sociology Classes" listed above; student should also complete 3 hours of SOCI electives.

SOCI 5131 Contemporary Sociological Theory
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6730 Advanced Non-Experimental Research and Statistics
Credit Hours: 3
SOCI 6731 Graduate Research Methods
Credit Hours: 3

Additional Information

Students should complete SOCI 6909 in the last semester of the degree. The Comprehensive Exam will be either a research proposal developed by the student in consultation with a faculty adviser or a written examination that includes questions contributed by all full-time sociology faculty.