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General Education Requirements

The Department offers eight courses that fulfill the Domestic component of the Perspectives on Diversity Requirement, SOAN 118, 215, 323, 325, 330, 335, 355, 371 and 372; and six courses that fulfill the International component of the Perspectives on Diversity Requirement, SOAN 115, 311, 320, 321, 327 and 368;  two courses that meet the Wellness Requirement, SOAN 335 and 355; and five courses that are Research courses — SOAN 309, 345, 346, 347 and 372. The Department also offers frequent Earlham Seminars.

The Major

Students majoring in Sociology/Anthropology complete at least 40 credits in the Department, of which up to four credits may be at the 100 level.

The following classes are normally required of all majors:

  • Core Requirement
    • SOAN 217: Foundations in Social Thought: Second Year Seminar
  • Methods
    • SOAN 345: Social Research Methods
    • SOAN 346 & 347: Ethnographic Practicum I & II
  • Theory
    • SOAN 341 Contemporary Social Thought
  • Capstone Experience
    • SOAN 488: Senior Capstone Experience


  • 21 credits of SOAN courses
    • Including no more than three courses below the 300-level

Note: SOAN 487 Senior Thesis is an optional course may not be counted towards the major.

Note: In cases where a different configuration would strengthen a student's course of study in the major, the Department will work with the student to develop an appropriate alternative.

Students are strongly encouraged to include an internship and/or foreign study as part of their studies. Students majoring in Sociology/Anthropology may take up to four credits in other departments or on off-campus programs at the discretion of their departmental adviser (and according to departmental criteria established for off-campus programs).

Students are normally expected to complete a research methods course by the end of the Junior year. In addition, in the Spring Semester of the Junior year, students meet with departmental faculty to discuss the Senior Capstone Experience requirement.

The Minor

Students minoring in Sociology/Anthropology are required to complete a minimum of 20 credits. These must include:

  • An introductory course
  • A course in Social Thought


  • 12 credits of upper-level SOAN courses

Note: No more than one course that counts toward the student's major or another minor may count toward the minor in Sociology/Anthropology. Also, at the discretion of the Department, one sociology or anthropology course from an off-campus study program may be applied toward the minor. Students may file a written petition with the Department if requesting a reasonable exception.