Special Enrollment Procedures for Seminars & Other Sociology Courses

Certain courses in sociology require a selection or application process in order to gain admission.  These courses are listed below along with the relevant instructions and/or links to the application.

Sociology 101 & 102
Sociology 190 (Capstone Seminar)
Sociology H190A/B (Honors Thesis Program)
Soc 98, 197, 198, 199 (Special Studies and Independent Study Courses)
Soc 198 Career Planning in Sociology



Sociology 101 and 102 (Sociological Theory I and II).

Sociology 101 and 102 (formerly 101A and 101B) is a yearlong sequence course in sociological theory. As this is a required course for all sociology majors, priority is given to declared Sociology Seniors and Juniors.  

Sociology 101 (Sociological Theory I):  The only students who will be able to add during Phase I are declared Sociology seniors (entering their 7th semester, with 90 or more completed units).  In Phase II, declared Sociology juniors (entering their 5th semester, with a minimum of 60 completed units) will be able to add the course.  Sophomores and intended majors must wait-list in Phase II.  We will begin processing the wait-list after Phase II ends.  Intended seniors have priority off the wait-list, then intended juniors, then declared and intended sophomores.   There is a required discussion section which you must enroll in through Cal Central.  

Sociology 102 (Sociological Theory II): Restricted to students who have completed Sociology 101 with a C- or better.  Students should add to the course directly and enroll in a discussion section no later than the end of Phase II.  Anyone who is not eligible for the course because they have not completed Soc 101 will be dropped. 



Sociology 190 (Capstone Seminars)

Students are unable to directly enroll or wait-list themselves into a Sociology 190 capstone seminar via Cal Central during Phase 1.  Instead, students must fill out a 190 Placement Request form.   Enrollment permission into seminars is done manually to ensure placement for those who are graduating seniors in the Sociology major and those considered high priority.  However, we are usually able to accommodate most interested Sociology seniors.  Please see an advisor for assistance.



1) Review the course descriptions for the Sociology 190 Capstone Seminars and identify the courses you are interested in.     https://classes.berkeley.edu/


2) Complete the Sociology 190 Placement Request Form online at:   

Qualtrics SOC 190 Seminar Request Form 

Or cut and paste the following into your browser:

https://berkeley.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_0CKKyYCkn32QRzE (available April 22, 2024)

** Be sure to submit your request online by or before May 3, 2024.  You must submit this request by the deadline in order to ensure placement in a course.  


 3) Students are recommended to list at least their top 3 preferences on the online request form. We will do our best to assign students to their top choice, but cannot guarantee this. You may take more than one seminar course only after all other students are added AND if space permits. Additional seminars count as electives in the major.

4) We will assign most of the available space in each seminar prior to the beginning of classes. Priority is given to declared sociology seniors who have not satisfied the seminar requirement – graduating seniors first, then seniors graduating the following semester, etc. After these students are accommodated, other students may be considered by the instructor during the first day of instruction, if space permits. Students will get an email informing them of their seminar placement.

5) During the break, you will be granted permission to add the seminar you were assigned to.  Students must enroll into their assigned seminar course via Cal Central before the first day of instruction. In order to retain your placement, students must also attend the seminar class during the first 2 weeks of instruction or you will be dropped from the course.

6) After the first class meeting, any remaining seats in each seminar will be filled with interested students who have been attending the class, and meet the priority groups listed above in item #4.  Enrollment into the course is at the discretion of the department. 



SOCIOLOGY  H190A & H190B (Senior Honors Thesis Program)

The Sociology Senior Honors Program provides an opportunity for senior sociology majors who are accepted into the program to write an honors thesis. Honors students participate in the yearlong Senior Honors Seminar, Sociology H190A (4 units) in the fall and H190B (5 units) in the spring. Each student conducts an independent research project as part of their participation in the seminar, and writes an honors thesis (minimum 35-page paper of acceptable honors quality). One grade is assigned for 9 credits upon completion of H190B, based primarily on the thesis paper and participation in the course. Sociology H190A fulfills an elective in the major, and H190B fulfills either a seminar or elective requirement. Students earn honors in the sociology major by successfully completing this course and the thesis, as well as maintaining the required 3.5 GPA in the major and 3.3 cumulative GPA.

Sociology H190A/B is offered as two small sections, limited to 15 students each. Both sections will meet on Thursdays from 12-2pm.


Sample Syllabus for H190A
Sample Syllabus for H190B

ELIGIBILITY: Minimum 3.3 cumulative g.p.a and a minimum 3.5 major g.p.a. at the time of application. Successful completion of at least 4 upper division Sociology classes. Students must have completed at least 75 units and plan to graduate no later than the Fall following completion of the program.  Acceptance of strong honors proposal submitted with application.  

Please note, applicants should not have any outstanding incompletes at the time of application.


Admittance into the Senior Honors Thesis Program is determined by a committee, which includes the two instructors. This committee conducts a holistic review of the applications and decides which students will be admitted to the course.  The selection process is based on the information provided in the application, including the proposed research question. The committee will consider topic areas, possible research methods, degree of preparation, and clarity of expression in making these decisions.  The committee will also decide which section/instructor to assign each admitted student to, usually based on subject and method areas indicated in the proposal.

INFORMATION SESSIONS:  We have historically offered an INFORMATION SESSION for students who are interested in applying to the Honors Thesis Program:

1. Faculty Panel - APRIL 30, 2024 @ 11 AM via Zoom (see an advisor for details)  -  this session touches upon course content and structure for the honors thesis program. The professors facilitate this meeting and applicants are strongly encouraged to attend.  For more information, please contact a major advisor.

Did you miss the 2024 Information Session?  There are SLIDES AVAILABLE from the 2024 Information Session (no video is available) (Please note: You will need to be logged in with your CalNet ID and passphrase to view the slides.)


Applications for the Sociology Senior Honors Program will be accepted from declared sociology majors during the summer.  However students also have the option to submit a draft of their application prior to the deadline in order to receive feedback from the committee.   

The Thesis Draft Proposals may be submitted no later than 4 PM, June 6, 2024.  Drafts will be reviewed by the committee in mid-June and students will be notified by email of any comments or suggestions that the committee may have.  Submission of a draft is optional and students are not required to submit a draft in order to be eligible to apply by the final deadline.  

The final application deadline will be 4 PM, July 15, 2024.  Students may submit their application electronically at the application link provided below.  If you will be eligible to apply to the Honors Program after taking summer session courses, please specify the summer session courses you plan on taking in your application.  Students will be notified via e-mail of their status in August before the first day of instruction in the fall semester.


Please review the following Google Form for more information about application eligibility and selection.  

2024-2025 SOC Honors Thesis Application


The 2024 - 2025 application is now available.  Please note that the current link is for the initial June 6th draft application.  The link for the July 15th final application deadline will be posted after June 6th.  The content of the application will remain the same but if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to a major advisor.  




Sociology Special Studies Courses: 97/197, 98/198, 199

Special Studies Courses:

*Do not count for Sociology Major Requirements

*Can be taken for 1-4 units

*Must be taken on a Pass/No Pass basis

*May be repeated for credit

*Have prerequisite: Soc 1 or 3 or 3AC

Further Requirements:

*Students must have completed at least 60 units and have a 2.0 GPA (Soc. 98 is the exception.)

* Students may apply only 16 units of Special Studies towards graduation

* Students are required to be sponsored by a professor or visiting faculty from the Department of Sociology. A list of faculty and their areas of specialization and research interests is available for  reference here: http://sociology.berkeley.edu/regular-faculty

*Unit value of a particular Special Studies course is arranged with the faculty sponsor. The workload determination is as follows: 1unit =3 hours of work per work, over the 15 week semester (to include meetings with the faculty member, research, etc.) 

DEADLINE FOR SPECIAL COURSES APPLICATIONS:(except De-Cal, 98/198: Contact amieacik@berkeley.edu for de-cal deadlines.): If you plan to do an independent study then the deadline is one week prior to the Add/Drop Deadline of the semester for which you plan to do an independent study.  Please submit the application to Curriculum Coordinator, Rebecca Chavez, via email at rebeccaisme@berkeley.edu. Once the application is submitted, it may take two weeks or longer to be evaluated by the Department Chair. If approved, the student/s will be emailed a Course Control Number to add the course. 


Sociology 97/197 (Field Study in Sociology): Supervised experience relevant to specific aspects of Sociology in off-campus organizations. Regular individual meetings with faculty sponsor and written reports required. Please see an Undergraduate Advisor in 424/426 Social Sciences Building if you have further questions.

APPLICATION FOR Soc 97/197: Independent Study Application (PDF)


Sociology 98/198 (Directed Group Study, DeCal, etc.):  Group studies of selected topics which vary over time. If you would like the Department of Sociology to host your DeCal, please see below for more information. If you have questions, please contact Amie Acik (amieacik@berkeley.edu).

Required Documents
The course proposal form must be completed each semester by the sponsoring department for every student-facilitated 98 or 198 course offered for academic credit. The following must be submitted to the Academic Senate:
  1. Course proposal form - The form (attached) unit value worksheet, instructions, and three checklists are combined into a course proposal packet that must be completed entirely, including all relevant signatures.
  2. Fully developed syllabus - A fully developed syllabus will include at least the following: an outline of course content, a reading list, a statement of frequency of class meetings, a clear description of assignments and requirements for passing the class, key learning outcomes, method(s) of instruction, and method(s) of evaluation of student performance.

    An example of a fully developed syllabus (link is external) can be found at the Center for Teaching & Learning. Additional resources may be found at the website for Undergraduate Course Facilitator Training & Resources (UCFTR) (link is external).
  3. Unit value worksheet - The worksheet to calculate workload and resultant unit value is available for download. Beginning for courses offered in fall 2015, this worksheet is required to be submitted to the Academic Senate.

    Unit value worksheet PDF (open and fill out in Acrobat Reader, then print)
    Unit value worksheet Word version (can be printed and filled out by hand)

    When completing the unit value worksheet ensure that the minimum total work hours are equivalent to the unit value of the course (e.g.: there are at least 45 hours for a 1 unit course). Also, ensure that any requirements outlined in the worksheet are explained fully in the course syllabus.
  4. Faculty Sponsor Letter of Support – A letter of support from the instructor of record must be provided for each course the instructor is sponsoring. The letter should address the five questions explaining the role and relationship the instructor has with the course. The letter should be written on department letterhead and signed by the instructor of record. This is required for all student-facilitated course proposals.


Sociology 199: (Independent Study). Independent Study is specialized study arranged by a student/s in conjunction with a faculty member or visiting lecturer in studying a particular are of interest within Sociology. Please see an Undergraduate Advisor in 424/426 Social Sciences Building if you have any further questions. 

APPLICATION FOR Soc 199: Independent Study Application (PDF)