The sociology honors program is a chance for students to engage in original sociological research under the guidance of a faculty member. Students will learn how to develop and refine a research question, develop and implement sociological methods, and read relevant academic literature and write a literature review. All of these endeavors will lead to the writing of an honors thesis, typically a 25-35-page research paper, which is in the style of an academic article or thesis. At the end of spring semester, you will give a public presentation about your research findings. Sometimes students take their projects beyond the University for presentation at conferences or competition in shows; such experience is invaluable for graduate school and later professional life.

All work will be completed over the course of two consecutive semesters (fall/spring). Students take SOCI 441WH in the fall and SOCI 499-H (independent study with faculty advisor) in the spring. 

The honors recognition appears on your permanent transcript and on your diploma, and it is often accompanied by letters of commendation from your thesis advisor, department chair, and the dean of your college, and you are specially recognized at graduation.

If you are interested, you need to do two things in the spring semester of your junior year:
1) Identify a subfield and tentative research topic(s) 
2) Approach a sociology faculty member and ask if they would act as your advisor. Ideally, this faculty member would be an expert or knowledgeable about your chosen field, topic, and/or methodology. 

Official honors thesis work begins fall semester of your senior year. If you’ve already taken SOCI 441 you are ineligible to do honors. Distance students should contact the Chair or Sociology Advisor to inquire if SOCI 441 WH will be offered online in the fall semester that you begin your honors thesis work. Please note, there is no honors program that is separate from what is described here.

CSU Chico Honors requirements and eligibility for the honors in sociology:

While Honors in the Major is part of the University Honors Program, each department administers its own program, which is described above. For more information contact the Honors Coordinator Nik Janos, in new window)

Detailed requirements of Honors in the Sociology Major are:

  1. You must complete 9 units of upper-division course work or 21 overall units in your major before you can be admitted to Honors in the Major. You must have completed SOCI 100, SOCI 300, and SOCI 310 in order to qualify for Honors in the Sociology Major.
  1. Your overall GPA must be 3.5 or above for the past two years and 3.5 or above in the major. You must also be recommended by a faculty member.
  1. To complete Honors in the Major, you must take 6 units in your senior year: 3 units of SOCI 441H in the first semester and 3 units of SOCI 499H in the following semester. You must complete these two courses with a minimum grade of B. You must also maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0 in your senior year.
  1. The independent study typically culminates with a public presentation of the results of your Honors project.
  1. While you may begin taking major courses during your freshman year, most students do not apply for Honors in the Major until their junior year.