Why Sociology & Anthropology

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The sociology and anthropology curriculum at Westmont offers students the unique opportunity to study the social nature of economic inequality, globalization, family, race, technology, gender, culture, religion, and deviance from a Christian perspective. Every society establishes relational patterns that determine how its members should behave. There are prescribed ways for members to conduct group life, carry on economic activities, and sanction those who deviate from its expectations. These and other patterns of social behavior constitute the subject matter of sociology, a branch of social science that seeks to explain the origins and functions of these social patterns.

Many Sociology-Anthropology majors receive academic credit for supervised field experience in various public and private agencies and organizations seeking to address social problems in Santa Barbara. Similarly, our majors are highly encouraged to participate in an off-campus program. Many students take advantage of the learning opportunities available at the nationally-recognized Westmont in San Francisco program. Our majors are required to conduct independent research and have the opportunity to present at the Western Sociology-Anthropology Undergraduate Research Conference held at Santa Clara University as well as the Westmont Student Research Symposium.

Concerned about both the intellectual and spiritual development of each student, the department hosts events such as the annual retreat which brings majors and faculty members to worship and pray together, as well as reflect on and discuss pressing issues such as urban renewal and how to respond to collective trauma.