Mount Saint Mary's College



New Ethnic Studies Minor

Ethnic Studies is the interdisciplinary study of the historical, political and lived experiences of racialized peoples of the Americas that include: African Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, Chicana/os, Latina/os, Native Americans and other racialized communities. It encourages the examination, recognition and critical articulation of colonialism, race/racism, and ethnic identity within a comparative framework to illustrate the intersection of class, gender, immigration status, sexuality, spirituality and other identity markers that impact power relations.

The Ethnic Studies minor encourages engagement in academic interdisciplinary research of various communities of color and the issues that impact their social development and power dynamics and will encourage a philosophy of advocacy and transformative thinking. Students will examine the domestic and global experiences of oppressed communities and provide comparative analysis in preparation to live and work as a citizen of a globalized and ever changing world.

The Ethnic Studies minor provides an educational experience that will support admission to graduate programs, professional schools, and careers in law, medicine, nursing, education, public policy, public health, social work, counseling, business, film, journalism, urban planning, psychology, international relations, human rights, politics, creative writing, advertising, and other fields.

BS Degree in Sociology core required courses
  • SOC 1 Introduction to Sociology (3)
  • SOC 117 Quantitative Research Methods (3)
  • SOC 118 Qualitative Research Methods (3)
  • SOC 160 Diversity in Society (3) or SOC 161 Majority-Minority Relations (3)
  • SOC 162 Human Rights (3)
  • SOC 166 Sociological Theory (3)
  • SOC 175 Urban Sociology (3)
  • SOC 197 Internship and Practicum--two semesters (6)
  • Plus 8 additional courses in sociology, which can consist of one specialization in sociology (see six options listed below in BA for Sociology) (24)

Total units for BS degree in Sociology: 50
No lower division courses in sociology can be applied for the BS in Sociology other than SOC 1.

BA Degree in Sociology core required courses
  • SOC 1 Introduction to Sociology (3)
  • SOC 117 Quantitative Research Methods (3)
  • SOC 118 Qualitative Research Methods (3)
  • SOC 162 Human Rights  (3)
  • SOC 166 Sociological Theory (3)
  • SOC 197 Internship and Practicum--two semesters (6)

Plus five additional courses in sociology. A maximum of 12 lower division units in Sociology may be counted toward completion of the major. These units cannot, however, include lower division internship units (SOC 25).

Total units for BA degree in Sociology: 36

To fulfill a BA Degree in Sociology students must complete the sociology requirements, the general studies requirements, which includes a language requirement, for a total of 124 units. 

Areas of Specialization

The following specializations within the sociology major are available, but not required. However, a specialization can enhance your preparation for certain career directions, as discussed within each specialization. The courses required within each specialization will count toward the required 36 units for the BA in sociology.

For the BS or BA degrees in Sociology, there are five specialization options:

  • Human Rights—Designed as preparatory for graduate studies or entry-level careers in areas such as human rights advocacy, international social work, working in international non-governmental agencies (NGOs), environmental advocacy, and global agencies such as the Red Cross and a range of United Nations' agencies or affiliates (e.g. World Health Organization).
  • Medical Sociology—Recommended for health services professionals, such as medical social work, health care policy, and healthcare management.
  • Communications—Preparation for careers in mass media, such as film, television and radio broadcasting production.
  • Social Services—Preparation for careers in social work, non-profit organizations, and government social service agencies.
  • Family Relations—For students interested in working with couples and families in a variety of social service settings.
Minor in Sociology

A minimum of six courses, two of which must include:

  • SOC 1 Introduction to Sociology (3)
  • SOC 166 Sociological Theory (3)

Plus four elective courses in the Sociology curriculum.

Total units for the Minor in Sociology: 18

Minor in Ethnic Studies

Required Courses:

  • SOC 141: Introduction to Ethnic Studies and Critical Theory (3)
  • SOC 193: Chicana/o and Latina/o Identity in Southern California (3) OR
  • SOC 143: Asian and Pacific Islander Identity in Southern California (3) OR
  • SOC 144: African-American Identity in Southern California (3)

Plus 4 additional courses (12 units) from below for a total of 18 units:


  • ART 173 Multiculturalism and the Visual Arts
  • ART 178 The Arts and Myths of Mesoamerica


  • CRI 123 Crime and Minorities
  • CRI 179/SOC 179/GIS 179 Commodifying Bodies: Human Trafficking


  • ENG 123 Women?s Voices in Literature
  • ENG 129 Ethnic Literatures of America
  • ENG 165 Novels of the Americas: Latino Voices

Film, Media & Communication

  • FLM 131 Film, Media and Social Justice
  • FLM 124 Gender and Media
  • FLM 168 People of Color in Film
  • FLM 177 Human Rights and Science Fiction


  • GIS129/SOC 129 Mapping the Bias: Race, Class and Crime in the U.S.
  • GIS 179/SOC 179 Commodifying Bodies: Human Trafficking
  • GIS 182/SOC 182 Demographics
  • GIS 183/SOC 183 Locating Ourselves: Immigration Patterns in the U.S.


  • HIS 132 Civil Liberties
  • HIS 185A African American History: American Slavery, 1619-1865
  • HIS 185B African American History: Emancipation to the Modern Era
  • HIS 185C Race and Racism in American Life and Thought


  • PHI 162 Philosophy and Native Cultures
  • PHI 170 Social and Political Philosophy
  • PHI 178 Philosophy of Women

Political Science

  • POL 147 Women and Development
  • POL 148 Refugees and International Migration


  • PSY 144 Psychology of Prejudice

Religious Studies

  • RST 146 The Catholic Justice and Peace Tradition


  • SOC 130 Organizational Communication and Diversity
  • SOC 161 Dynamics of Majority-Minority Relations
  • SOC 162 Human Rights
  • SOC 164 Advocacy and Human Rights
  • SOC 167 U.S. Women of Color
  • SOC 179 Commodifying Bodies: Human Trafficking
  • SOC 180 Social Stratification
  • SOC 182 Demographics
  • SOC 183 Locating Ourselves: Immigration Patterns in the U.S.
  • SOC 185 Human Rights and Global Development
  • SOC 186 Immigration and Human Rights
  • SOC 193 Chicana/o Identity in So California

Or any course approved by the Department

Minor in GIS

GIS (Geographic Information Systems) is a field of study that combines spatial theory, GIS technology and software, geographic data and analysis (including GPS and field work), and cartographic design principles for the purpose of exploring and understanding the world around us from a spatial perspective.

Employers in the most competitive industries continue to seek applicants whose resumes include additional computational skills beyond the Microsoft Office Suite, and having a GIS Minor would give students an "edge" in the workforce. According to the most recent edition of the Harvard Business Review, one of the most valuable jobs emerging in the 21st century is that of the "data scientist," which includes skills such as knowing how to find, manipulate and interpret different types of data. Being able to work with and visualize spatial data using GIS technology will be an invaluable tool for any student in a variety of majors and concentrations.

A GIS Minor is particularly valuable when paired with the following fields of study: Sociology, Business Administration, Biology and the STEM Sciences, though it is not confined to these disciplines. For instance, someone pursuing a career in urban planning, law enforcement, environmental science, forensics, health care and health policy, epidemiology, marketing, etc., could benefit greatly with a background in GIS, as nearly every company or governmental agency uses GIS within their organization.

A minimum of six courses, two of which must include:

Total units for the Minor in Sociology: 18

GIS elective courses:

Additional GIS Courses (Not Required)

  • GIS 150: Remote Sensing
  • GIS 160: Introduction to Data Management
  • GIS 170: Advanced Spatial Modeling