Sociology & Criminal Justice
We've earned 'Excellence' in undergraduate and graduate teaching

Welcome to the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice at the University of Delaware. The department offers a BA in sociology or criminal justice. We have a long tradition of quality teaching and are proud of the fact that five of our faculty have earned the university's Excellence in Teaching Award.

Graduate students may earn an MA or a Ph.D. degree in sociology or criminology. Teaching assistantships, research assistantships and fellowships are available on a competitive basis. The department is home to the Center for Drug and Alcohol Studies and affiliated with the Disaster Research Center.

You can find information on this site about our graduate and undergraduate programs and faculty, but if you have a specific question please contact us.

General inquiries can be directed to the department or you may contact individual faculty directly. For information about the Sociology Undergraduate Program e-mail For the Criminal Justice Undergraduate Program e-mail For inquiries regarding the Graduate Program, click here.

Graduate Program Application Form






University of Delaware Commencement
Spring 2015
Saturday, May 30, 2015

Planning for commencement is underway. Please check back often. As events and other details are confirmed, this site will be updated.

Spring Commencement will take place on Saturday, May 30, 2015 at 9:00 a.m. in the Delaware Stadium, rain or shine. Gates open at 7:00 a.m. and guests should plan to arrive no later than 8:00 a.m. Commencement tickets are not required. General seating for guests will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Commencement is a rain or shine event. In the case of inclement weather, the ceremony may be shortened. Please note: convocations remain as scheduled.

Some convocations do require tickets or reservations. Please refer to the convocation schedule at the bottom of the website to determine if your convocation requires tickets or reservations. Not all convocations are confirmed yet, so please check the convocation schedule again closer to May 30, 2015 to make sure you have the latest information.

All degree candidates should arrive no later than 7:30 a.m. and should proceed immediately to the procession line–up area next to the Delaware Field House and north of Delaware Stadium. All degree candidates should immediately assemble in their assigned areas. The procession into Delaware Stadium will begin promptly at 8:20 a.m.

For more info:



Sociology and Criminal Justice Convocation
Saturday, May 30, 2015
Location: The Green
Venue: BLUE Tent
Time: 12:00pm
Graduates please arrive dressed in cap and gown by 11:30am



Doctoral Hooding Ceremony
Friday, May 29, 2015
Location: Blue Tent on THE GREEN
Time: 8:00am
Graduates please arrive dressed in cap and gown by 7:30am



What is Commencement? What is Convocation?

Commencement is our larger event where the students process onto the field at the Delaware Stadium, degrees are conferred by the President of the University, the graduating students are acknowledged by College, the commencement speaker delivers his/her address, and several notable recipients are awarded honorary degrees. This is the only time when the entire graduating class is brought together.

Convocation is the smaller ceremony where students are individually recognized by their college or department and each graduating student walks across the stage to receive his/her graduation certificate ~ the diplomas are mailed to the student approximately six weeks after all course work is completed.




SOCI 467 010 - Fads and Fashions

This course is not about fads in boots, width of ties, or beer-can hats, but is a serious examination of the very important thrusts in key social institutions in society over time. Throughout the core social institutions such as education, healthcare, medicine, technology, family, criminal justice, science, and business, we find many phenomena that have short-lived publicity or social value, but their repeated presence over time reveals much about the social institutions and the society we live in. Using classic and contemporary sociological theory to examine these phenomena, we will develop a coherent sociological approach to explain how fads and fashions in our key social institutions come and go over time, rise and fall in popularity over time, and though their form may change some, how they are similar in function and follow cyclical patterns that we can observe.

SOCI 667 010 - Sociology of the Body

This course examines the body as the product of complex social arrangements and processes. Drawing from an interdisciplinary literature and a range of theoretical traditions, we will consider ways in which the body is constituted by various cultural discourses including race, class, gender, sexuality, medicine, and normality. We will also trace the treatment of the body in key traditions of social theory.

SOCI 667 011 - Sociology of Health & Illness

This course presents a substantive overview of fundamental issues in medical sociology including the determinants of health, the structure and implications of healthcare, the experiences of healthcare workers and patients, medicalization of social problems, health occupations, as well as politics and the changing healthcare system.




May 30, 2015 – Convocation





University of Delaware Student Angel Ortiz along with
5 friends founded REVIRESCO to bridge the gap
between civilian and military relations by educating
and empowering society to understand their role in
helping provide financial, spiritual, and moral support
for all Veterans.

REVIRESCO team will run from
Sturgis, South Dakota to
Los Angeles, California beginning August 4 – August 23, 2015.

To donate to the team click on weblink:
August 4, 2015
Sturgis, SD to Los Angeles, CA



For more information about these upcoming events call the Department at 302-831-2581.


Rysheema Dixon has been doing some amazing things in a short time

Since graduating from UD with a degree in sociology six years ago, she has done community service work with Delaware Public Allies, started her own business that is continuing to grow, worked with a nonprofit women’s group in India and, in 2014, was named one of the top women in business in Delaware.

College of Arts & Sciences Article

First Delaware medical team members arrive in Kathmandu

Our graduate student Sam Penta was briefly interviewed for this article:

Delaware Online Video and Article

Sam Penta (as well as fellow DRC) team member Dr. Sarah DeYoung were shown packing and moving suitcases in this local NBC coverage:
NBC Video and Article
Sex offenders have few places to live

Watch Chrysanthi Leon's video about how eight towns have written rules expanding state restrictions on where sex offenders can live in relation to schools, day cares and play grounds.

Delaware Online Video

Celebration of Community Engagement to be held at Clayton Hall on Monday, March 9, from 5:30-8 p.m.

The event is organized by the University's Community Engagement Commission and will celebrate the shared research, service and scholarship of the University community working with numerous community partners.

UDaily Article

Congratulations to Barret Michalec for being selected as a Salzburg Fellow

Four University of Delaware professors have been selected as 2015 Salzburg Fellows. Martha Buell, Rena Hallam, Barret Michalec and Michael O?Neal will travel to Salzburg, Austria, where they will participate in a Salzburg Global Seminar.

UDaily Article

Victor Perez, along with an interdisciplinary research team, is working with Wilmington's Southbridge community on environmental issues.

Results of a survey show that more than half the residents have serious concerns about pollution and sea level rise.

UDaily Article

"Dirty Pictures: Scandal and Censorship in Contemporary Art"

Anne Bowler presented an invited lecture on contemporary art controversies as part of Haverford College's Distinguished Visitor speaker series on February 4, 2015.

Haverford College Article

An alum from the undergraduate sociology program, Rysheema Dixon, has been honored by Delaware Today magazine.

Delaware Today Article

Darryl Chambers is featured in a Newsweek article that was released online.

Wilmington once again ranked third on the FBI's annual list of most violent cities among cities of comparable size. Wilmington also ranked fifth when compared to all cities with populations greater than 50,000, up from eighth in 2012.

Newsweek Article

Matthew Manierre, in an Advisory Board Company Daily Briefing article, said it shows patient satisfaction surveys are missing critical data. "While satisfaction measures may be useful in certain contexts, they may leave things out that eventually drive disparate health outcomes later on,".

Daily Briefing Article

Contexts, a publication of the American Sociological Association, featured "Molly Deaths and the Failed War on Drugs" by Tammy L. Anderson

ASA Article

The National Women's Studies Association (NWSA) has selected Maria Johnson to be a member of the 2014 Women of Color Leadership Project (WoCLP) cohort.

Department News

Barret Michalec and his colleagues from TJU win the Journal of Allied Health's 2014 J. Warren Perry Award!

Their article, "Dissecting First-Year Students' Perceptions of Health Profession Groups: Potential Barriers to Interprofessional Education", appeared in the Winter 2013 issue. The award will be presented during an awards dinner on October 22 in Las Vegas.

Read Article

Ann Bell was interviewed in New York Magazine about her recent book Misconception: Social Class and Infertility in America.

New York Magazine Article

The Ferguson incident brought race/racism once again back to the central stage of the U.S. policing.

Ivan Y. Sun would like to share two newspaper reports that feature his work on race and policing.

The New York Times Article
The Washington Post Article

An NGO founded by Aaron Fichtelberg, with a couple of other criminologists, (entitled "Criminologists Without Borders") has just received special observer status with ECOSOC (at the United Nations).
U.S. Club Drug Law Could Put Ravers At Risk

It's been more than a decade since a federal law made venue owners criminally responsible when patrons use illegal club drugs. But after years of fieldwork, attending raves in Philadelphia and elsewhere, University of Delaware sociologist Tammy Anderson is convinced the drug law is a bad idea.

WHYY Article

How Mega Rave Electric Zoo WIll Try to Keep the Drugs Out

Tammy L. Anderson, who closely follows youth culture and drug use, says that in the heyday of rave culture music fans banded together on websites and they were wiser about their drug consumption.

Village Voice Article

UD's Tammy Anderson has found that the federal anti-drug RAVE Act may do more harm than good.

A federal law enacted to combat the use of "club drugs" such as Ecstasy - and today's variation known as Molly - has failed to reduce the drugs' popularity and, instead, has further endangered users by hampering the use of measures to protect them.

UDaily Article

Welcome to new Faculty member, Dr. Maria Johnson!

Dr. Johnson researches the role of race and gender within family relationships and federal family policy. Her current work examines Black women's identity construction, daughter-father relationships, Black fatherhood, and structural and cultural influences.

Department News

New book: Joel Best and Kathleen A. Bogle

Kids Gone Wild: From Rainbow Parties to Sexting, Understanding the Hype Over Teen Sex. New York: New York University Press, 2014.

Ann Bell recently published her new book.

Ann V. Bell, Department of Sociology & Criminal Justice, recently published her book entitled, Misconception: Social Class & Infertility in America"

Rutgers University Press

Congrats to Victor!

Congratulations to Victor for being awarded an IT Transformation Grant (funded through CTAL) for his proposed course on (geo) mapping in the social sciences for non-geography majors with no GIS experience. Very cool stuff. Well done, Victor!

Tamara Keith, White House Correspondent for NPR ran a story about the White House Sexual Assault Task Force. Our students, Abigail Samuels, Melissa Pleasanton and Gabby Coleman were featured in the story.

Listen to the Story

The University Diversity Initiative held its annual Diversity Awards Celebration.

Dr. Brian Chad Starks, who is an alumnus of the Dept. of Soc/CJ and an Associate Professor at Delaware State University, won the Louis L. Redding Award.

Department News

Jeremy Mathis, an Undergraduate Criminal Justice Major won the Student Ambassador for Diversity Award.

Department News

Our students, Emily Bonistall and Brandie Pugh, as well as undergrad Abigail Samuels, did a fantastic job at the National VAWA conference (of which our dept was a co-sponsor).

2014 Powerful Partnerships Conference

Aneesa Baboola and Bri VanArsdale were selected to attend the National Science Foundation's workshop in Arlington, VA.

Department News

Dana Alvare and Kristen Hefner were selected to attend the Law & Society Association's 2014 Graduate Student Workshop in May in Minneapolis!

Department News

Emily Bonistall has been selected to receive the Julie Mapes-Wilgen Award in Human Sexuality & Gender Studies.

Department News

Congratulations to this year's (two!) Scarpitti Award winners, Kristen Hefner and John Brent. Bravo! Well-deserved!

Department News

More News