Sociology Honors Requirements and Timeline

Sociology Honors Requirements:

Students must be a major in sociology and complete 9 hours of honors credit with a grade of "B+" or higher, including:

  •  Completion of two sociology honors seminar courses OR
    •  Completion of two honors contracts in 3000-4000 level sociology courses OR
    •  Completion of two 410 sections of sociology courses OR
    •  Any combination of the above
  •  SOC 4510 Senior Honors Thesis
  • Overall GPA of 3.4 or higher

Honors Completion Timeline:

  1. Complete SOC 3885 Research Methods I with an overall GPA of 3.4 or higher. At this point, qualifying students will be invited to apply for the program. Submit an honors application and writing sample to the Departmental Honors Director prior to the start of the next semester. Students will receive word of the status of their application within two weeks.
  2. Complete two SOC courses for honors credit. See above for the various ways students can fulfill this requirement. Students must complete these courses with a grade of "B+" or above for honors credit. If not, they will only receive regular course credit for the work.
  3. One to two semesters prior to graduation, students should identify an Honors Thesis Advisor and a second reader and complete an approximately 10-page honors thesis proposal. Upon completing the proposal, students should turn in the honors thesis proposal form to the Departmental Honors Coordinator.
  4. Complete SOC 4510 Senior Honors Thesis. This includes conducting an independent research project and writing a 30-35 page paper. The paper should be in the form of an academic journal article. SOC 4510 can either be taken prior to, in conjunction with, or after SOC 4450 Senior Seminar, but please note that the expectations for the paper produced for SOC 4510 are greater than those for SOC 4450. The research undertaken must be more extensive and the paper must be longer and more in depth. However, the topic may be the same for both courses and, if granted by the instructor of SOC 4450, the final paper may be the same as well.
  5. Format Honors Thesis. The Honors Thesis should be formatted as follows and include the following components: 

    Title Page: The title page must be arranged in the prescribed manner with all the pertinent information and required signatures. 

    Abstract: Spacing and Margins All text should be double-spaced. Left margins should be 1.25 inches; all other margins should be 1 inch.

    Body: The body of the paper should include the following sections: introduction, literature review, methods, findings, conclusion, references.

  6. Complete thesis defense just prior to graduation. The thesis defense is an oral presentation of the honors thesis research. Students should prepare a 20-30 minute talk on their work. After their talk, students will answer questions from the committee and audience members for the remaining 30-40 minutes of their defense. The thesis committee then determines if the student has "passed" or "failed" their thesis defense. Committee members should have a copy of the thesis two weeks prior to the defense date and students should be prepared to make any final changes deemed necessary by the committee immediately after the thesis defense and prior to graduation. As such, the thesis defense date should be 1-2 weeks prior to the first day of final exams. Once the student has confirmed a defense date with their committee, they must then reserve a room for their defense with the sociology office manager. When the room has been reserved, the student must email the Departmental Honors Director with the information so that it may be publicized to the rest of the department. The Honors Thesis Advisor alone determines the student's grade for SOC 4510, which is then submitted during the regular grading period.
  7. Submit the Honors Thesis