Courses

Online Social Science Degree Courses

Benefit from a multidisciplinary approach to social sciences, where the perspectives of different social sciences are combined and applied to real-world issues. Your curriculum includes coursework in history, psychology, and global economics. Your courses in this program are taught by graduate-degreed faculty with experience in the fields they teach.

Introductory Courses
Major Course Requirements
Specializations

  • History
  • Political Science

Introductory Course

All Bachelor’s program students are required to successfully complete EXP 105 Personal Dimensions of Education as their first course. Students with zero (0) traditional college-level transferable credits are also required to successfully complete the Student Success Orientation prior to enrolling in credit-bearing coursework. Following successful completion of orientation, students are required to successfully complete EXP 105.

Student Success Orientation
The orientation is designed to provide students with a complete overview of the Ashford University experience, prepare them for success in their courses, and help them to self-evaluate their readiness to succeed in an online classroom setting. Students will be instructed on Ashford University policies and the learning resources that are available to them through interactive videos and assessments. Students enrolled in orientation must successfully complete all assigned activities.

EXP 105 Personal Dimensions of Education
This course is designed to help adult learners beginning their university studies to achieve academic success. Students will explore learning theories, communication strategies, and personal management skills. Adult learners will develop strategies for achieving success in school and work. Students will also be introduced to the University's institutional outcomes and learning resources. A minimum grade of C- is required to successfully complete the course.

Major Course Requirements

(39 credits, all courses are 3 credits. Courses are listed in the recommended sequence.)

SSC 101 Introduction to Social Sciences
This course introduces students to the interdisciplinary field of social sciences and some of the disciplines that comprise this field, including anthropology, sociology, political science and history. These subject areas figure prominently in the Social Science major. In this course, students will learn important social science concepts and theoretical approaches, along with the research methods that social scientists use to study human behavior. Throughout the course and through a summative assignment, students will examine how social factors shape social behavior, and some of the consequences of current social problems.

SOC 205 Social Theory
Social theory refers to efforts to understand and illuminate the nature of social life. As such, social theory is not only the domain of sociologists. Contributors to social theory include economists, philosophers, psychologists, historians, activists, dramatists, essayists, poets, and novelists. Moreover, ordinary folks like us also theorize about social life. Social theories are crucial for helping us as individuals make sense of our daily lives, and they are essential to understanding new research, social practices and institutions. With the long-term aim of helping us better understand our lives and the world we live in, we will study what sociological theorists, have to say about the social world. The course covers key theorists such as Marx, Durkheim, Weber, Bourdieu and Foucault, Du Bois, Butler and Bauman and their seminal works, as well as the key social thought movements of Capitalism, Modernity, Alternative Knowledge, Self and Society.

ENV 230 Concepts of Sustainability
This course is designed to provide a sound understanding of the ecological, technological, economic, political, and ethical dimensions of environmental sustainability. Through the study of selected incidents and current projects, students will examine food systems, transportation, energy, urbanization, rainforests and global climate change, and defend a position in sustainability.

POL 255 Introduction to International Relations
This course in International Relations is an introductory study of the interactions and interconnectivity of the countries of the world. The course emphasizes the need to think critically about international politics and foreign policy. Consequently, this course focuses topically on how and why wars begin, balances of power between states, international institutions, collective security, international communications, human rights, globalization, regime types, international trade, environmental change, imperialism, injustice, inequality, and other issues relevant to the changing world.

PSY 301 Social Psychology
Students explore how the thoughts, feelings and behavior of individuals are influenced by other human beings in a variety of social situations. This course also entails a survey and critical analysis of the various methods used by researchers in social psychology. Topics include: social cognition, aggression, prejudice, interpersonal attraction, altruistic behavior, conformity, group influences, and conflict resolution.

SOC 333 Research Methods
This course examines quantitative, qualitative, mixed methods and associated data interpretation within the context of research, policy and practice within the social sciences. This course also examines the relationship between research, policy and/or theory. Students will examine types of data, measurement scales, hypotheses, sampling, probability, and varied research designs for research in the social sciences and related disciplines.

ANT 353 Anthropology of Gender
This course examines cross-cultural analysis of gender roles, while focusing on non-Western societies, using data from other societies to better understand the gender system of our own culture. Issues include status of women and men, the meaning of “femaleness” and “maleness” historically and in contemporary society. Gender roles, transnational migrations, social movements, international relations and religion are explored.

SSC 340 Human Health and Global Environment Change
This course analyzes the relationship between health and the environment and takes into account how health is influenced by natural and manmade environmental factors. Students will consider the history of the relationship between health and the global environment, addressing how groups in the past understood the connection and the actions they took to improve both. The course will also address contemporary theories that highlight how race, gender, and class influence the relationship between health and the environment. By concentrating on these factors, students will consider the negative and positive influences of the environment on human health as well as possible future concerns and issues that might emerge.

LIB 320 Global Socioeconomic Perspectives
This course is an examination of major socioeconomic developments in different countries including Japan, Germany, Sweden, the United States, and the developing nations. Topics include population, natural resources, energy, sustainable growth, and policies such as privatization and free trade agreements. Social and economic justice in the global economy is considered.

SSC 350 eSociety: Science, Technology, and Society
The eSociety course focuses on the relationship between society, science, and technology and the social dynamics of knowledge production from a social science perspective. The course provides students with an understanding of how social values affect scientific research and technological innovation as well as the transformative impacts of technologies on society. Through discussions of key concepts and case studies, students will explore how particular scientific facts or technologies become accepted, how controversies are settled, and how science and scientists retain credibility and authority. Students will also engage with the social, ethical, and political consequences of technological developments.

COM 360 Advanced Communications in Society
This course integrates the use of advanced communication techniques into a variety of contexts shaped by socially and culturally-constructed distinctions between and among individuals and groups. Topics include intercultural, multicultural, international, and inter-gender communications.

ANT 464 Applied Anthropology
This course introduces the use of anthropology and its application to problem solving in the areas of cultural dynamics, public policy, and contemporary social problems such as health, housing, nutrition, and education. Students will learn how anthropologists conduct research to address issues and solve problems facing living communities across the globe.

SOC 490 Social Science Capstone
This course requires students to reflect upon and synthesize the major insights gained in their study of the Social Sciences. A substantive paper is developed which requires students to critically analyze their experiences and knowledge in order to build leaders in the interdisciplinary field of Social Science.

Specializations

You may also choose to delve deeper into other areas of business administration when you add a specialization to your degree program. A specialization consists of four (4) courses, each worth three (3) credits each. These courses are taught online as part of your degree program. Choose from the following specializations:

History
HIS 331 World War II
Covering major developments in Asia since the early twentieth century, this course focuses on China, Japan, and the Indian subcontinent. The course traces the rise of Asian nationalism, the decline of western imperialism, and the region’s rise to economic prominence. Recommended prerequisite: HIS 378. Prerequisites: Successful completion of General Education History Subject Area and English Proficiency.

HIS 340 Recent American History
This course will examine the foreign policy, political, cultural and social developments in the United States in the years after World War II. Recommended prerequisite: HIS 378. Prerequisites: Successful completion of General Education History Subject Area and English Proficiency.

HIS 342 The Middle East
This course is intended to introduce students to the complex history of the Middle East, focusing on the development of the core region in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Among the most important topics we will discuss are the organization of the Ottoman and Safavid Empires, the nature and influence of the region’s relationship with Western countries, the impact of the discovery of oil in the region, the causes and course of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the rise of nationalisms and Islamist movements, and the Arab uprisings of 2010-2011. Recommended prerequisite: HIS 378. Prerequisites: Successful completion of General Education History Subject Area and English Proficiency.

HIS 379 The Atlantic World
The history of the Atlantic basin from the late fifteenth century through the early nineteenth, including the interactions of Africans, Europeans, and the indigenous peoples of the Americas and the societies their interactions produced. Themes covered include the Columbian exchange, migrations (forced and voluntary), empire-building, strategies of resistance, identity formation, and the transatlantic dimensions of the American and French Revolutions. Recommended prerequisite: HIS 378. Prerequisites: Successful completion of General Education History Subject Area and English Proficiency.

Political Science & Government
POL 319 State & Local Government 

This course examines the structure and processes of state and local governments and their related current problems and issues. There is a focus on the effect of Federalism and its effect on States.

POL 310 Environmental Policies
Environmental Policies examines the political, social, and economic implications of environmental policy in the United States and the global environment. It, also, explores ways in which policy decisions can serve to protect the environment.

POL 255 Introduction to International Relations 

This course in International Relations is an introductory study of the interactions and interconnectivity of the countries of the world. The course emphasizes the need to think critically about international politics and foreign policy. Consequently, this course focuses topically on how and why wars begin, balances of power between states, international institutions, collective security, international communications, human rights, globalization, regime types, international trade, environmental change, imperialism, injustice, inequality, and other issues relevant to the changing world.

POL 411 Political Behavior
Students will study political behavior as it relates to campaigns and elections in the United States. Selected course themes include political communication, participation, voting, and elections.

If this program fits your personal and professional goals, contact Ashford University at 866.711.1700 to learn more, or request additional information.