Social Science and Special Programs

Mission and Goals

The mission of the BA in Social Sciences degree program is to prepare students to be informed citizens who use multidisciplinary understandings of concepts, theories, and methods from the social sciences to respond to a range of human experiences, events, and real-world social problems. The program promotes an understanding of diversity, equity, and inclusion, the value of research and service to the community, the importance of social and environmental responsibility and as well as active participation in civic life. 

The California State University, Chico Social Science Program acknowledges the Mechoopda lands on which it resides, our commitment as a Hispanic Serving Institution, and our surrounding rural and extended communities through on campus and distance education programs.

The Program has two options to best meet the needs of both on campus and distance education students: Multidisciplinary Studies and Specialization Studies.   

The option in multidisciplinary studies. (beginning Fall 2023) This is a 43-unit major with representative courses from the disciplines within the social sciences and history. Its primary intent is to give students a solid liberal arts grounding in the social sciences. This option also provides a waiver for the single subject matter competency requirement and CSET exam in social science for those pursuing secondary teacher preparation programs.

The option in specialization studies. (beginning Fall 2023) Students have the flexibility to create a personalized program within the behavioral and social sciences. It is a 43-unit major, which consists of 21 units from a selected area of concentration. There are 20 areas of concentration (AoC) from which to choose. The AoCs include all of the disciplines found within the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences, plus History. Areas of concentration also include area studies, and topical concentrations like Career and Life Planning, Environmental Studies, and Family Relations. Several of these AoCs may also be completed for a Minor (Career and Life Planning, Child Development, Family Relations, Gerontology) or a Certificate (Career and Life Planning, Gerontology) fully online.


Graduates will be equipped with the knowledge, skills, values, and ethics that are required to meet the challenges faced by diverse individuals, groups, organizations and communities in a changing global environment.

Graduates will learn to communicate clearly, intelligently, and effectively, in both writing and speaking, in their academic as well as professional careers.

Graduates will possess skills and perspectives to solve complex social problems, to engage in communication and collaboration across the social science disciplines, and to utilize a shared infrastructure for social science research.

Graduates will develop a sense of social responsibility and commitment to equity in a multicultural and multiracial society and apply these values in working with individuals and families, creating learning environments, and collaborating with community members and agencies.

Graduates will possess knowledge and skills to become informed and participating citizens.

Program Learning Outcomes

Students who graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences will be able to:

1. Demonstrate knowledge of the historical emergence, questions asked, and distinctive contributions of the social science disciplines to the analysis of human behavior and social issues.

2. Locate, analyze, assess, and communicate social science scholarship.

3. Assess and utilize concepts and theories from among social science disciplines to explore the varieties of social experience encountered by those of different nations, classes, races, genders, or sexual orientations.

4. Compare, contrast, and apply research strategies from two or more social science disciplines to the analysis of human experience, a social issue, or to the solution of a real-world problem.

5. Articulate the ethical implications of social science inquiry.

6. Utilize the Career and Life Planning Certificate as a logical bridge to the MA of SOSC Program.