Socio-Legal Studies



The concentration in socio-legal studies offers a model for educating and training students in the study of legal ideas, institutions and practices from the perspectives of the social sciences, law, and the humanities. The distinction between law "on the books" and law "in action," which refers to how people experience law in their everyday lives, is a cornerstone of the concentration. Course work provides students with multiple and intersecting theoretical and methodological approaches that reveal law as a socially embedded system of loosely connected institutions, practices, presumptions and rules. Students participating in the concentration will learn how to apply these socio-legal tools of analysis to their study of law in action.

The concentration consists of four components to ensure students develop a broad understanding of socio-legal studies. Foundational courses in socio-legal theories (three credits) and in legal institutions (three credits) will be required. Students will then have the option of selecting three electives (nine credits) from a set of approved courses, providing flexibility so that they may pursue an individualized course of study. Additional courses beyond those listed on this proposal may be added with approval of the certificate director. Finally, a three credit experiential learning component will be required, for a total of 18 credit hours, of which a minimum of 12 hours must be upper division. This may be an internship within the U.S. or abroad, or a research experience under the guidance of a member of the socio-legal studies certificate faculty.


  • Students must complete a minimum of 18 credit hours including 12 of upper division hours from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences for this concentration.
  • All courses must be completed with a grade of “C” (2.00) or higher.
  • Students are required to consult an advisor in School of Social Transformation for Interdisciplinary Component courses and internship options.

Ethics, Morality & Theories of Justice 3 hours
Select course from the following:

HON 494 Great Traditions of Jurisprudence (Barrett Honors College students only)

JUS 303 Justice Theory (3)

PHI 307 Philosophy of Law, HU (3)

PHI 408 Feminist Ethics, HU (3)

Legal Institutions & Structures 3 hours
Select course from the following:

JUS 308 Courts and Society (3)

JUS 360/CRJ 350 Law and Social Control, SB (3)

JUS 410 Punishment: Logic and Approach (3)

JUS 463/CRJ 470 Discretionary Justice, SB (3)

JUS 465 Death Penalty in the United States, L (3)

JUS 479 Law and Disputing, L or SB (3)

POS 315 The Supreme Court, SB (3)

POS 465 International Organization and Law, SB, G (3)

POS 471 Constitutional Law I, SB (3)

POS 472 Constitutional Law II, SB (3)

Interdisciplinary Component 9 hours
Select in consultation with an advisor in the School of Social Transformation.

AFR 215 Bob Marley and Reggae: Lyrics of Resistance, HU, G (3)

JUS 422/WST 422 Women, Law, and Social Control (3)

AFR 414/JUS 414 Black Political Movements: Pan Africanism to Black Power, SB, G, H (3)

JUS 425 Race, Gender and Justice (3)

AFR 420/JUS 421 Race, Ethnicity and Politics in African Diaspora, SB, G (3)

JUS 430 Social Protest, Conflict and Change, L or SB, C (3)

AFR/APA/JUS/SST 428 Critical Race Theory (3)

JUS 432 Racial Justice, L (3)

AFR 301/JUS 300 Race and Racism in Africa/African Diaspora, SB, G (3)

JUS 450 Alternatives to Incarceration, L (3)

JUS 467 Terrorism, War and Justice, SB (3)

JUS 469 Political Deviance and the Law, L or SB, C (3)

AFR 304/JUS 304 Islands of Globalization: Carribbean Politics and Political Economy, SB, G, H (3)

JUS 470 Alternative Dispute Resolution, L or SB, C (3)

JUS 474 Legislation of Morality, L or SB, C (3)

PSY 468 Psychology and Law (3)

ASB 445 Globalization, Development and Resistance, SB, G (3)

POS 370 Law and Society, SB (3)

CRJ 305 Gender, Crime and Criminal Justice, C (3)

POS 470 Law and the Political Order, SB (3)

CRJ 306 Race, Ethnicity, Crime and Criminal Justice, C (3)

SOC 340 The Sociology of Deviance, SB (3)

HON 310 Justice and Law (3)

SOC 445 Globalization, Development and Resistance, SB, G (3)

HON 410 Philosophy, Politics, and Law (3)

SOC 446 Sociology of Crime, SB (3)

HST 306 Studies in United States History: Race and the Law, HU or SB, H (3)

TCL 340 Chicana/o and Latina/o Politics and Policy, L, C (3)

JUS 329/CRJ 461 Domestic Violence (3)

TCL 335/HST 323/AFR 335 Historical Studies in Race, Crime, and the Law (3)

JUS 350 Immigration and Justice, SB, G (3)

JUS 374 The Holocaust, Genocide and Human Rights (3)

WST 345 Gender, Religion and Global Violence, SB, G (3)

WST 375 Women and Social Change, SB, C (3)

Internship 3 Hours
Consult an advisor in the School of Social Transformation for options.






Interdisciplinary Studies Advising
All appointments:

Downtown Phoenix
Arizona Center, Suite 380

Santa Catalina Hall

Urban Systems Engineering





College of Liberal Arts and Sciences