December 3, 2002

Sociology department plans change in honors requirement

The sociology department may see some changes in the near future as department heads negotiate alterations to the curriculum to better fit the needs of students.

"The changes are geared toward making the program more responsive to students' needs, such as accommodating the increasing number of students going abroad [and] improving personal advising," said Andreas Glaeser, undergraduate sociology program chairman.

Glaeser said that changes are being made to remove some of the pressure from the quarter before graduation and to make honors designation more discriminating. Under this year's curriculum, students must have at least an overall GPA of 3.0 and a concentration GPA of 3.25 to be considered for graduation with honors. Papers for honors credit are due a week before the regular deadline in eighth week of Spring Quarter.

Alterations to the sociology requirements are similar to the requirement changes introduced last spring for political science, when the mandatory B.A. paper was dropped and the GPA requirement for honors was increased. Although it is uncertain as to whether the sociology department is thinking of removing the B.A. paper, earning honors credit will be more difficult than it is now.

Current sociology concentrators are required to fulfill the general education social sciences sequence, two introductory concentration sequences, one statistics course, four sociology courses, three courses in sociology or related fields, a senior seminar, and a B.A. paper in order to graduate.

Modifications to this curriculum will be included in the new program catalog and a new handbook will promptly be issued. In contrast to the confusion regarding new versus old political science requirements, Glaeser said that proper and timely notification would be given in regards to the changes in the sociology concentration. "As soon as we have decided on the final changes, they will be immediately communicated to current majors," Glaeser said.