Requirements of the HSOC Major (14 cu)

The HSOC major has four components:

1. Core courses
2. HSOC Electives
3. Concentration courses
4. Capstone course

I. Core Courses (4 cu)

  • Required Core Course (1 cu)HSOC 10 or HSOC 145 (required for declaring the major)
  • Quantitative Requirement (1 cu):  SOCI/HSOC 100 or SOCI/HSOC 111
  • Core Discipline - Historical: HSOC/STSC 002 or HSOC 112 or HSOC 150
  • Core Discipline - Social Science: ANTH/HSOC 238 or SOCI 175/HSOC 175

II. HSOC Electives (3 cu)
     The only courses that fulfill this requirement are listed here:  "What counts as an HSOC Elective." 

III. Concentration (6u)
     A student selects one concentration and creates a combination of six courses (pre-approved, petitioned, etc.) to fulfill the requirement

     The concentrations are

  • Bioethics and Health
  • Disease and Society
  • Environment and Health
  • Gender and Health
  • Global Health
  • Health Care, Markets and Finance
  • Health Policy
  • History of Medicine
  • Public Health

IV. Capstone Research Seminar (1 cu)  

  • Every HSOC major does a research project within a capstone seminar or independent study in which students write a 20+ page original research paper.
  • A capstone seminar is any 400-level HSOC or STSC course.  
  • Only 400-level courses taken during a student's last three terms before graduation count to fulfill this requirement
  • HSOC 420 satisfies this requirement
  • HSOC 499 satisfies this requirement

Computing your progress toward graduation.docx

What Counts for the HSOC Major:

  • HSOC 10 or HSOC 145: There is no exception to the rule that in order to declare the HSOC major, a student must have taken or be currently enrolled in HSOC 10 or HSOC 145.
  • Core Courses: there are no substitutes for courses fulfilling quantitative and core discipline requirements.
  • HSOC Electives can only be fulfilled with courses on this list of HSOC electives (no petitions for substitutes)
  • Concentration courses: There is a list of pre-approved (but not required) courses for each concentration.
  • Petitioning courses: Petitions are only accepted for concentration courses, and seniors may not petition courses after the add date of their last semester.
  • Non-College courses: Students may have up to three non-College courses in their concentrations.
  • Transfer courses count if approved through XCat for the major
  • Study Abroad: Up to two courses may count if approved through XCat but only for the concentration. EXCEPTIONS: up to three courses from IHP may be counted in the major
  • AP courses do not count toward the HSOC major
  • Minimum Grade required for credit in the HSOC major is a C-.  Courses with less than a C- or taken pass/fail do not count toward the HSOC major [this is College policy].
  • Double-counting courses: You cannot double-count within the HSOC major--you need 14 separate courses to complete the major.  You may double-count ONE course between the major and the sectors.
  • Double-counting with MINORS: HSOC majors may only double count three (3) courses between an HSOC major and the STSC minor or the BIOE minor.  HBS concentrators may not minor in BIOE.

How your HSOC worksheet works:

  • You cannot update or change your own official worksheet.
  • The worksheet requires regular manual override by Dr. Barnes or Dr. Greene to update it. The software doesn't place courses accurately onto your HSOC worksheet, and it doesn't remove courses for which you registered but then dropped.  If courses are in the wrong place, it is a software problem.  Stop by office hours for a worksheet update.
  • The HSOC WEBSITE is always more accurate in terms of requirements than the worksheet on PennInTouch.
  • Red Xs are normal and common occurrences because of how the software works.  Overrides do not always hold.  [Calmly] Contact Dr. Greene about any Red Xs.
  • Red circle with a line through it: indicates a problem with an incomplete or with a grade that is too low for the major  (minimum is a C-)