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Introduction to Sociology Course


Introduction to Sociology is taught in virtually all U.S. colleges and universities, including community colleges.  Each year the course is taken by an estimated one million students in U.S. institutions of higher education.  The number of sociology majors has varied between 1966 and 2006, with 28,541 individuals earning a B.A. degree in sociology in 2006.

  Degrees in Sociology

  Data provided by the American Sociological Association


    This graph, "Sociology Degrees Awarded by Level" shows the fluctuations in Bachelors, Masters and Doctorate degrees awarded between 1966 and 2006. Across degree levels, there was a period of high growth in the number of sociology degrees awarded from the late 1960s to the mid 1970s. By the late 1980s, the discipline once again witnessed trends of increases in degrees awarded. While Bachelors degrees, which have experienced the most dramatic fluctuations during this period, continued to increase, graduate sociology degrees have remained fairly stable. Despite ups and downs and year-to-year fluctuations, the number of sociologists receiving degrees has grown substantially since 1966.


Sociology is also taught on every continent in the world except Antarctica


Examples of courses (introductory and others) from 48 countries around the world have been collected at McMaster University.



Sample syllabi and other teaching materials for the course are available for sale through the ASA online bookstore .

For example, Introductory Sociology Resource Manual.

E-book edition Only available in the ASA online bookstore. (No phone, fax, or mail orders accepted.) Purchasers will receive access to an online pdf file to print or download within 30 days. Access information will be provided on your online and e-mail receipts. No shipping charges are added for e-book purchases.

Compiled by James Sikora and Njeri Mbugua. The sixth edition contains eight articles about the core; 21 syllabi of introductory sociology courses; a wide array of assignments, projects, and class exercises, and a list of contributors. 262 pp., 2004.

To purchase the printed edition, click here.


Research on teaching and learning in introductory sociology and upper level courses is published regularly in Teaching Sociology.  

There is considerable convergence in these sources and among major textbooks in the field on substantive units of sociological inquiry.