The Diversity and Social Justice Studies Minor is an 18-credit interdisciplinary program that examines the creation and meaning of social identity across current and past societies and institutions. This program provides students with a critical analysis of how socially constructed identity categories including gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, religious affiliation, and national identity relate to power and knowledge, and to one’s global position. The program (a) emphasizes the notion that cultural and social systems, such as legal, political, educational, familial and economic, are organized around and reproduce assumptions and beliefs about identity categories, (b) explores the links between “difference” and (unequal) power relations and access to resources by exploring inequities in wealth and political distribution, and social privileges, (c) examines social justice as the fair and just relationships between individuals and larger social institutions, and (d) contributes to the existing and growing body of scholarship that recognizes and acknowledges the role of power differences in individual and group well-being.
The goals of the program are four-fold:
- to examine and analyze the social construction of identity categories (gender, sexuality, race, class, age, national status, religious affiliation, etc.) and recognize differences and similarities between these categories.
- to recognize, address, and challenge global inequities around these intersecting identity categories and analyze how social structures and policies, and systems of representation perpetuate these inequities.
- to examine the concepts of social identity from multiple and interdisciplinary perspectives and recognize the complex contexts that shape those views.
- to explore how social justice has been achieved across space and time and the effectiveness of social initiatives in addressing and remedying social inequality.
The Diversity and Social Justice minor encourages students to draw on social scientific understandings of identity and inequality, while incorporating interdisciplinary approaches and the development of intercultural knowledge through diverse course offerings and learning opportunities. The examination of how identity influences the social world enhances the meaning and scope of study in many fields, including psychology, sociology, criminal justice, health, literature, art, philosophy, law, and history. Courses are divided into three thematic areas: Identity and Inequality, Social and Cultural Representation and Analysis and Social Justice.
* Courses required for this minor are offered primarily on the Albany campus.
Part 2: Thematic Areas
- Complete 12 credits from the sections outlined below
- 6 credits must be at the 300 or 400 level.
- Minors may be declared any time before the completion of the drop/add period in the first term of the senior year or before completion of 87 credit hours, whichever comes later.
- Successful completion of at least one course required in the minor is a prerequisite to such declaration.
- Only two of the required minor courses may also count toward major or another minor’s requirements.
- A minimum of one-half of the required credits for the minor must be completed at Sage.
- GPA in Minor required (minimum): 2.200 or higher.