Frequently Asked Questions

Do students need to make an appointment to speak with the Undergraduate Advisor or can they just drop-in?

Tina Cossaboom is the Sociology Undergraduate Program Coordinator (Undergraduate Advisor). Drop-in advising hours with the undergraduate advisor and the peer advisors can be viewed on the advising calendar during the regular academic year (the first week is generally different). Appointments are only needed if you cannot make any of the drop-in advising hours. To make an appointment, email with a few days and times that work for your schedule and are outside of drop-in advising hours. In the summer appointments are available.

Where should students not yet admitted to UCSC go for advising?

Departmental questions can be answered by the Undergraduate Advisor even if the student has not yet applied or been admitted. General information and admissions questions should be referred to the Admissions Office. Transfer students can talk to the STARS advisors for transfer-specific questions.

How many classes can students take Pass/No Pass?

The Sociology department does not have any restrictions on the number of courses a student can take Pass/No Pass in their major beyond the campus restrictions.  However, students must take Socy 1, 10, 15, 30A, 30B and 30C for letter grades, in order to satisfy the grade requirement for declaring. The campus Pass/No Pass policy states: No more than 25 percent of your credits earned at UCSC may be graded on a Pass/No Pass basis. Students must be in good academic standing to choose the Pass/No Pass option. Students should check with their college to ensure that they have not gone over the University-allotted amount of courses that can be taken Pass/No Pass.

Can students declare after the last declaration session?

Frosh, Sophomore, and Junior students interested in declaring a Sociology major must attend a Sociology declaration workshop. Seniors and students declaring a minor must meet directly with the Undergraduate Advisor during drop-in advising hours. If the student has met the major qualification requirements, but a workshop has not been attended, and the student is required to declare a major in the current quarter, then an exception to the mandartory declaration workshop may be possible. Please contact the Undergraduate Advisor.

Can students enroll in a class if it’s full or they don’t meet the prerequisites?

The students should plan on crashing the course by attending the first day of class, and wait list for the course is they have met the prerequisites and restrictions. The only exception to this is when senior students are attempting to enroll in core courses (SOCY 3B/103A, 3A/103B, 105A, 105B, 196A). If you are a senior, graduating at the end of the academic year, contact the Undergraduate Advisor ASAP for assistance.

What do students do if they are required to declare a major in the current quarter but are missing a lower-division requirement needed to declare the major?

The deadline to declare a major is typically spring of sophomore year. For transfer students the deadline to declare is by their second quarter of enrollment at UCSC. Students who have not completed their lower division requirements to declare the major by their declaration deadline, must work with their college on forms and plans that may be needed to remove/prevent a hold on their account. Juniors and Seniors interested in declaring a Sociology major but who were not able to enroll into SOCY 1, 10 or 15 during their enrollment appointment should contact the Undergraduate Advisor. If seats are still available, a permission number will be issued. If seats are no longer available, students should add themselves to the wait list and crash the course on the first day. Students should also review wait list information prior to wait listing, on our Enrollment page. 

What do senior standing students do if they can't get into a core course in their last year?

Students in this situation should contact the Undergraduate Advisor ASAP as some seats may be saved for students with this issue. If a seat is available a permission number will be issued.

I have taken SOCY 1, 10, and/or 15 but did not earn the C+ or better needed in the courses for the Sociology BA, what do I do?

First, do not retake the course if you earned at least a C or better. The University policy regarding repeating courses states that only courses in which a grade of C- or below or No Pass may be repeated. Instead, the department allows students to appeal to the Sociology department’s UEC (Undergraduate Education Committee). Please contact the Undergraduate Advisor for directions.

Please note that the information you share in your appeal or with your advisers will be kept private and shared only with campus officials as required to serve you in an advising capacity or process your appeal. However, in limited circumstances, including those related to potential harm to yourself or others, sexual assault, and abuse, we may be required by law to report incidents you disclose to other need-to-know offices on campus such as the Title IX Office and/or University of California Police Department. If you are in need of support for any issues, please see the list of confidential and/or support resources

Do students need to do a thesis if they want to get into graduate school?

Not necessarily. Students should contact the graduate schools they are interested and ask about this. Many students are accepted into graduate school without having completed a thesis. However, a thesis might give students an advantage, since they will have already learned how to conduct research, and will have a substantial body of work to provide as a writing sample. In addition, the faculty member will get to know the student fairly well in the course of working on the thesis, which would make them an excellent resource for a letter of recommendation.

What classes do students need to take in order to get into graduate school?

Students should contact schools they are thinking of applying to. If the program is offered at UCSC they can contact the graduate program here to get a general idea. Students should research GRE requirements, deadlines (typically earlier than students would anticipate), and obtaining letters of recommendation.

What can students do with a degree in Sociology?

The department has a few handouts for students– the Careers in Sociology booklet, and the Career Options for Sociology Majors handout. The answer to this question is somewhat challenging due to the nature of Sociology. It can be applied to almost any field, which allows for great flexibility and also great uncertainty when it comes time to go out into the workforce. One common theme seems to be that most students want to go into a career where they will be helping people, though applications of this range from social work, to politics, to medicine, to teaching, to give a few examples. Some students choose to go on to graduate school, which is necessary for many careers, and some choose to get a job.  Students should go to the Career Center for more information.

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