Undergraduate Degree & Course Catalog

Sociology Minor

(HEGIS: , CIP: 45.1101 Sociology)


430 Park Hall
North Campus
Buffalo, NY 14260-4140
Dr. Debra Street
Department Chair
Dr. Kristen Schultz Lee
Director of Undergraduate Studies

Why study Sociology Minor at UB?

*Not a baccalaureate degree program

Sociology is the scientific study of social life. In particular, sociology examines how membership in different groups and interactions with social structures and social institutions affects our daily lives. Sociologists study questions such as: Why do women earn less than men? What effect does poverty have on health? How do couples decide who is responsible for household chores? Are married people happier than single people? Why are so many neighborhoods racially segregated? Why do individuals commit crime? How does a prison record affect a person's chances of getting a job? At UB, we offer courses related to a wide variety of social problems and institutions including family, gender, race, social class, the city, law, social policy, crime, health, organizations, aging populations, and the environment. Training in sociology prepares students for a wide variety of professional careers as well as active, enlightened participation in local, national, and world affairs.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of all requirements, the student will:

  • Be able to identify the major research methods used by sociologists, compare and contrast the utility and relevance of a range of methods to the study of different social issues, and apply some basic research methods to the analysis of social issues
  • Obtain knowledge of basic social science statistical methods and be able to apply statistics
  • Be able to describe the significance of social theory to society, compare and contrast basic theoretical orientations, and apply some basic theories to social issues
  • Have comprehension of the theory, methods, and content of one or more of the areas of Family and the Life Course, Law and Social Policy, Social Inequalities, Urban and Community, or Work and Organizations. Students who choose among the major electives in our core areas will obtain more knowledge of the major historical and contemporary approaches, theories, and methods associated with the subarea within the discipline.

The Learning Environment

We offer courses from across the main subfields in sociology, with specializations for majors in health and society, crime, law and justice, and global sociology. Our course offerings range from small discussion-based classes to larger lectures and online courses. Our department encourages the development of research skills among our undergraduate students both in the classroom, through our research-intensive course offerings, and outside the classroom, through faculty-student research collaborations.

About Our Facilities

The Sociology Department is housed in Park Hall. The department holds classes in centrally scheduled space throughout the campus, which includes traditional classrooms and lecture halls.

About Our Faculty

We have an intellectually diverse and research-productive faculty that deliver high quality graduate and undergraduate mentoring and training, engage in extensive professional service, and publish research in top general and specialty journals. More than half of the Department faculty actively seek grants, and several faculty members have received awards over the years for outstanding teaching. We also have 3 Teaching Assistants and 4-5 adjuncts who teach our undergraduate courses.

Faculty List Directory

Please visit our department website for additional information about our faculty.

Career Outlook

As a broad social science, an undergraduate degrees in sociology provide students with the technical and analytic tools, critical thinking skills, and global perspective needed to navigate the 21st century successfully and succeed in many careers. The jobs current students apply for after graduation may not even exist yet. To keep up with a rapidly changing world, sociology majors acquire the tools to critically analyze the world and their place within it. They also learn the practical skills they need to succeed.

Graduates apply their knowledge and skills across a wide variety of occupations and professions including medical and health services, recreation, business, law and law enforcement, urban planning, social policy, and social services. They are also prepared for graduate and professional school programs in areas such as sociology, medicine, health professions, law, public policy, business, social work, and other social sciences.

Academic Advising Contact Information

Students may contact the Sociology department (716-645-2417) for information on advising, or contact the CAS Advisement Office (716-645-6883). Darren Portis advises Sociology students with a last name beginning with A-L, and Eric Streeter is the adviser for students with last names M-Z.

Scholarships and Financial Support

The Sociology Scholarship for Study Abroad is awarded annually to undergraduate sociology majors and minors and criminology minors who require financial assistance to fund their participation in a study abroad program. Awards are granted on a competitive basis to defray the expense of airfare for the study abroad program.

The Department of Sociology also offers several scholarships to eligible UB undergraduate sociology majors and minors and criminology minors who decide to extend their studies after receiving the Bachelor's degree, by pursuing a Master's degree in Sociology at UB.

Students in our program may also qualify for scholarships and financial support from a number of other sources, including: UB Financial Aid, including Scholarships, Nationally Competitive Fellowships and Scholarships, and UB College of Arts and Sciences Scholarships and Awards.

Experiential Learning

Independent Study
Sociology students occasionally work individually with faculty through independent studies, assisting with ongoing research projects or developing projects of their own. Valuable research experience may be acquired in this manner.

Study Abroad

London Study Abroad Program
Each spring, the Department offers a semester-long study abroad program in London, one of the most vibrant, multicultural, and truly global cities in the world. The program provides an insider's view of London by combining comparative coursework on cutting-edge social issues, the opportunity to pursue independent research, and a professional internship for academic credit. The internships are designed to integrate students into a local organization and provide students with an opportunity to enhance intercultural skills and career prospects while making an active contribution to the company or organization. You can find more information about the program on our website, by contacting the Study Abroad office (716-645-2417).

Winter Session
The Department usually offers a number of Winter Session courses, which can include courses in London and Singapore.

Extracurricular Activities

Alpha Kappa Delta/Zeta Chapter at UB accepts sociology majors and minors with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in sociology and overall. Students must have completed at least 12 credit hours in sociology and must be at least a junior. For more information, call (716) 645-2417.

The Undergraduate Sociology Club welcomes all students interested in sociology, regardless of major. Attending the meetings and events of the Sociology Club is one of the best ways to get connected to the department. The Club sponsors events such as movie nights, dinners with faculty, seminars and speakers, field trips, job market and graduate school information sessions, and otherwise serves as a gathering-point for student interests and activities. The Sociology Club also helps organize the departmental graduation ceremony. For more information, email Professor Kristen Schultz Lee (kslee4@buffalo.edu) or call (716) 645-2417.

See the UB Student Association.

Honors and Awards

Sociology majors and minors and criminology minors in good standing are invited each year to submit term papers or sociological research projects (including Honors theses and Independent Study final papers) written within the current academic year for consideration for the Best Undergraduate Student Paper Award.

Becoming a(n) Sociology Minor Student

Becoming a University at Buffalo Student

Admission to UB is highly competitive. For the 2016 incoming freshman class, UB reported an average ACT score of 24-30 and an average SAT (CR+M) score of 1100-1300. 90 percent of admitted students are in the top 50 percent of their class.

Admission to UB is based on a holistic review. We consider high school average, class rank, SAT (critical reading and math) or ACT scores, and strength of the high school academic record. A personal essay, recommendations, documented creative talent, demonstrated leadership, community service and special circumstances are also considered.

The following is not required for admission, but is suggested as adequate preparation for university-level coursework:

  • Four years of English (with a substantial writing component)
  • Four years of social studies
  • Three years of college-preparatory science
  • Three years of a second language
  • Three years of college-preparatory mathematics

Visit Undergraduate Admissions to learn more.

Suggested Introductory Courses

SOC 101 Introduction to Sociology
SOC 206 Social Problems
SOC 211 Sociology of Diversity

Completing the Sociology Minor Program

Academic Requirements

Minimum GPA of 2.0 overall. Minimum GPA of 2.0 in SOC 101 and in two other sociology courses.

Academic Advice

At least 12 of the 18 credits in the sociology minor must be 300- to 400-level.
Students may substitute one elective with a course from outside the Department of Sociology, with permission of the Undergraduate Studies Committee.
No more than two courses may be used to satisfy credit requirements in the student's major, other minors, or programs.

Transfer Credit Policy

Students may transfer sociology courses taken elsewhere; however, the department accepts no more than 9 credit hours of appropriate sociology courses toward the minor requirements. Course descriptions and syllabi may need to be provided to the department.    

SUNY Seamless Transfer is a SUNY-wide program intended to make transferring to UB and other SUNY Schools simple and efficient for SUNY students. SUNY has defined courses that SUNY students can take before transferring which will apply to the major at UB and ensure timely graduation.

Information about the Transfer Path for this major can be found on the SUNY Website.

Students are encouraged to contact their academic advisor or department to discuss how their coursework will apply to their degree.

Prerequisite Courses

SOC 101 Introduction to Sociology
Two other SOC courses

Required Courses

Three additional sociology courses (9 credit hours)

UB Seminar courses cannot count towards minor requirements.

Total Credit Hours Required

Total Credits Required for Minor: 18

Minors and certificates must be completed in conjunction with a major and all university degree requirements must be met.

Students should consult with an academic advisor to determine how any transfer or exam credit might be used in meeting general education, prerequisite, or major requirements.


430 Park Hall
North Campus
Buffalo, NY 14260-4140
Dr. Debra Street
Department Chair
Dr. Kristen Schultz Lee
Director of Undergraduate Studies
Published: May 22, 2017 11:17:07 AM