College of Arts and Sciences

Department of Sociology

Connecting Learning with Communities: Service Learning Courses


Service learning courses offer students the opportunity to make a difference in the community. The Department of Sociology currently offers several service learning opportunities:

Soc 102: Social Problems

All sections of Social Problems include a 10 hour service learning component. Students may choose to complete the service learning component or to complete an alternative assignment. The course offers students an opportunity to connect their academic learning about social problems with what is happening in the community.

Soc 433: Urbanization and Community Organization

How we identify something as a "community" may reflect the processes of urbanization, the urban/rural divide, or the spatial locations of those who share certain characteristics. "Community" may also be reflected in and defined by the strategies used to bring about social change and ultimately social justice. Throughout the semester we discuss theoretical perspectives and empirical research on urbanization, community, organizing for social change and civic engagement. Experience-based learning grounds our theoretical debates in every day life. Participation in community related projects that advocate for social change enhance students' understanding of "classroom" materials, and reciprocally students' academic knowledge enables them to critically think about their civic engagement work.

Soc 496: Capstone: From Theory to Practice - The Sociology of Service

Students spend a lot of time in their sociology courses talking about social problems and the structural causes of those problems. They spend much less time discussing solutions and their own potential role in producing social change. This course takes theoretical knowledge from the classroom and into the community. Student connect theoretical approaches to solving problems with on-the-ground efforts in community-based organizations. Students also explore how they might increase their own capacity to contribute to their communities either as volunteers or as part of a career. Students must have completed Soc 310 (theory), Soc 317 (research methods), and Soc 321 (statistics) before taking this course. This course fulfills the capstone requirement for sociology majors.


Service learning courses offer students the opportunity to make a difference in the community.




Sociology Department, PO Box 644020, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-4020, Ph: 509-335-4595, Fax: 509-335-6419, Contact Us