Social Sciences students studying outside


The Social Sciences Department at Cal Poly offers bachelor’s degrees and minors in Anthropology-Geography and Sociology, as well as a minor in Latin American Studies.

Within each major, students are required to choose a concentration relevant to their future career endeavors. The Anthropology-Geography major concentrations include global studies and international development, environmental studies and sustainability, and human ecology. Sociology majors can choose a concentration in criminal justice, organizations, or social services.

The strength of our department lies in its focus on practical training, critical thinking, and “Learn by Doing” experiences.  Students are trained in applied technical skills including GIS, remote sensing, research design, social data collection, and qualitative/quantitative methodology.

Alongside these skills, students are encouraged to critically investigate contemporary issues, asking hard questions about society, behavior, and the environment in an increasingly diverse and global world.  Finally, students are required to bridge classroom learning with the real world through hands-on practical experience such as internships, service learning, study abroad, and senior projects.

In Cal Poly Social Sciences Department, we encourage students to Learn by Doing through various extracurricular activities such as archeological digs in the Channel Islands, picking strawberries or cutting broccoli in Nipomo, studying educational inequality abroad, or learning about gender issues in Fiji.                 

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