Skip to main content

Desired Student Learning Outcomes - Undergraduate


Table of Contents:


Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) for Sociology 101

    1. Students will be able to define social structure (i.e., social organization) and explain some important elements of social structure, including status, role, class, power, ethnicity, race, gender, and social stratification.
(Relates to UNM/HED Area IV, Competency 1)

    2. Students will be able to define culture and explain some important elements of culture, including beliefs, values, norms, and language.
(Relates to UNM/HED Area IV, Competency 2)

    3. Students will be able to explain the socialization process and how it operates through at least three major agents of socialization (e.g., the family, education, peer groups, and the media).
(Relates to UNM/HED Area IV, Competency 3)

Broad Program Learning Goals for the BA Degree in Sociology

A. To understand the characteristics and dynamics of the social world, and how sociologists attempt to understand the social world.

B. To understand the classical sociological theories of Karl Marx, Emile Durkheim, and Max Weber.

C. To understand major themes and issues in selected examples of contemporary sociological theory.

D. To understand the nature of sociological research methods, and major expressions of scientific research within sociology.

E. To understand the nature and role of statistical procedures in sociological research.

Click for List of Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) for Sociology BA Degree Program


A General and Overview SLOs
A.1. Students will be able to define social structure (aka social organization) and explain some important elements of social structure, including status, role, class, power, ethnicity, race, gender, and social stratification.
A.2. Students will be able to define culture and explain some important elements of culture, including beliefs, values, norms and language.
A.3. Students will be able to explain the socialization process and how it operates through at least three major agents of socialization (for example, the family, education, peer groups, and the media).

B. Classical Theory SLOs
B.1. Students will be able to explain the major themes of Marxian, Durkheimian, and Weberian perspectives on the social world.
B.2. Students will be able to compare and contrast these perspectives.

C. Contemporary Theory SLOs
C.1. Students will be able to explain the major concepts and assumptions of at least two of the following perspectives in contemporary sociological theory: symbolic interactionist theory; rational choice, utilitarian, and/or exchange theory; phenomenology; the perspective of Parsons, Bourdieu, Giddens, Habermas, or Foucault; feminist theory; socio-biology.
C.2. Students will be able to discuss the merits and limitations of each of the two chosen theoretical perspectives.

D. Research Technique SLOs
D.1. Students will be able to explain the major characteristics of the scientific method.
D.2. Students will be able to explain the major characteristics of surveys, field research/ethnography, and experiments.
D.3. Students will be able to discuss the main ethical concerns sociologists face in conducting research and how sociologists attempt to overcome those ethical concerns.

E. Statistics in Research SLOs
E.1. Students will be able to describe the difference between descriptive and inferential statistics.
E.2. Students will be able to describe and give examples of what is meant by measures of central tendency and measures of variation.
E.3. Students will be able to explain what is meant by correlation, how knowledge of the correlation between two or more variables helps clarify understanding of the social world, and why correlation does not necessarily imply causation.
E.4. Students will be able to explain the logic of multivariate analysis, including the concept of controlling for variables

Broad Program Learning Goals for the B.A. Degree in Criminology

A. To be familiar with major sources of crime data.

B. To become familiar with the key correlates of crime and delinquency.

C. To become familiar with mainstream criminological theories.

D. To become familiar with the primary formal social control institutions.

Click for List of Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) for Criminology BA Degree Program


A. Crime Data
A.1. Students will be able to identify three major sources of crime data: official data (UCR/NIBRS), victimization data (NCVS), and self report data (e.g., NYS, MTF)
A.2. Students will be able to identify strengths and weaknesses of each source.
A.3 Students will be able to identify the kinds of research questions each source of data can address and the types of questions each is unable to adequately address.

B. Correlates of Crime and Delinquency
B.1. Students will be able to identify some of the key correlates of crime (e.g., age, gender, race, SES)
B.2. Students will be able to articulate some of the explanations/mechanisms that help explain these correlations.
B.3. Students will be able to distinguish between micro- and macro-level correlates of crime and related explanations.

C. Criminological Theories
C.1. Students will be able to articulate the key assumptions, central arguments, and core hypotheses of mainstream criminological theories (e.g., social control, strain, labeling, social disorganization).
C.2. Students will be to distinguish between individual and macro-level theories.
C.3. Students will be able to apply these theories to empirical facts at both the micro and macro levels (e.g., peers and crime (micro) or poverty rates and crime rates (macro)).

D. Social Control Institutions
D.1. Students will be able to identify the key functions and goals of criminal justice institutions.
D.2. Students will be able to explain the nature and form of inequality in the criminal justice system (especially race, class and gender) and be able to articulate the central (and often competing) explanations for these inequalities.
D.3. Students should be able to identify and discuss some of the factors and/or conditions that make formal social controls more or less effective.