Twin Cities campus
 
Twin Cities Campus

Population Studies Minor

Sociology
College of Liberal Arts
Link to a list of faculty for this program.
Contact Information
Department of Sociology, 909 Social Sciences, 267 19th Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55455 (612-624-4300; fax: 612-624-7020)
  • Program Type: Graduate free-standing minor
  • Requirements for this program are current for Fall 2022
  • Length of program in credits (master's): 6
  • Length of program in credits (doctoral): 12
  • This program does not require summer semesters for timely completion.
Population studies is a multidisciplinary research area at the intersection of the mathematical sciences, the health and social sciences, and public policy. The curriculum provides a solid grounding in the theories and methods of demography, with additional specialized training across five interdisciplinary subject areas: historical demography, population geography, economic demography, public health demography, and family and life course demography.
Program Delivery
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Prerequisites for Admission
Special Application Requirements:
Students interested in the minor are strongly encouraged to confer with their major field advisor and director of graduate studies, and the Population Studies director of graduate studies regarding feasibility and requirements.
For an online application or for more information about graduate education admissions, see the General Information section of this website.
Program Requirements
Use of 4xxx courses towards program requirements is not permitted.
Use of 4xxx courses towards program requirements is not permitted. Minor field coursework should be from the same subject area and may not be in the student's major field. Coursework applied to the minor must be approved by the Population Studies director of graduate studies. Coursework applied to the minor must be taken A-F unless offered only S/N, with a minimum grade of C earned for each course. The minimum cumulative GPA for minor field coursework is 2.8.
Required Course (3 credits)
Take the following course:
PA 5301 - Population Methods & Issues for the United States & Global South (3.0 cr)
Electives (3 to 9 credits)
Master’s students select 3 credits, doctoral students 9 credits. If any of the following courses are chosen, take the section noted: HIST 5970 -- Fertility and the Family; HIST 8970 -- Demographic Transition; PA 5490 -- Politics and Policy of Demographic Change (3 credits); SOC 8540 -- Patriarch, Power, & Pay; SOC 8890 – Sex, Death, & Mobility (3 credits; PA 5022 -Economics for Policy Analysis & Planning II- Population Economics; SOC 8090/GEOG 8080 Global Health Data Analysis.
FW 5051 - Analysis of Populations (4.0 cr)
GERO 5103 - Aging and Society (2.0 cr)
HIST 5797 - Methods of Population History (3.0 cr)
HIST 8970 - Advanced Research in Quantitative History (3.0 cr)
PA 5022 - Applications of Economics for Policy Analysis (1.5-3.0 cr)
PA 5043 - Economic and Demographic Data Analysis (2.0 cr)
PA 5281 - Immigrants, Urban Planning and Policymaking in the U.S. (3.0 cr)
PA 5401 - Poverty, Inequality, and Public Policy (3.0 cr)
PA 5451 - Immigration, Health and Public Policy (3.0 cr)
PA 5490 - Topics in Social Policy (1.0-4.0 cr)
PA 8312 - Analysis of Discrimination (4.0 cr)
PA 8331 - Economic Demography (3.0 cr)
PA 8461 - Global and U.S. Perspectives on Health and Mortality (3.0 cr)
PUBH 6370 - Social Epidemiology (2.0 cr)
PUBH 6605 - Sexual, Reproductive, and Perinatal Public Health (2.0 cr)
PUBH 6737 - Structural Racism and Health (2.0 cr)
PUBH 6845 - Using Demographic Data for Policy Analysis (3.0 cr)
SOC 8090 - Topics in Sociology (1.5-3.0 cr)
SOC 8540 - Topics in Family Sociology (3.0 cr)
SOC 8551 - Life Course Inequality & Health (3.0 cr)
SOC 8607 - Migration & Migrants in Demographic Perspective (3.0 cr)
SOC 8890 - Advanced Topics in Research Methods (2.0-3.0 cr)
Program Sub-plans
Students are required to complete one of the following sub-plans.
Students may not complete the program with more than one sub-plan.
Masters
Doctoral
 
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PA 5301 - Population Methods & Issues for the United States & Global South
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: PA 5301/Soc 5511
Typically offered: Every Fall
Basic demographic measures/methodology. Demographic transition, mortality, fertility. Perspectives on nonmarital fertility, marriage, divorce, cohabitation. Cultural differences in family structure, aging, migration, refugee movements, population policies. Discussion of readings. prereq: Grad student or instr consent
FW 5051 - Analysis of Populations
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: EEB/FW 5051
Typically offered: Every Spring
Regulation, growth, general dynamics of populations. Data needed to describe populations, population growth, population models, regulatory mechanisms. prereq: [4001 or STAT 3011 or ESPM 3012], [EEB 3407 or EEB 3408W or EEB 3807], Senior or grad student
GERO 5103 - Aging and Society
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Examines the broad range of topics and issues related to aging, and how the process of aging is shaped by social context and relationships in connection with individual factors, including family, the economy, health care, and the political system. Students in Master's or doctoral programs most likely to benefit. Students new to the field of aging studies are recommended to begin with GERO 5105/PubH 6883: Multidisciplinary Perspectives in Aging.
HIST 5797 - Methods of Population History
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: Hist 3797/Hist 5797
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Standard methods of population analysis. Focuses on methods widely used for historical population research.
HIST 8970 - Advanced Research in Quantitative History
Credits: 3.0 [max 12.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Students carry out publishable-quality research on quantitative history topic. prereq: Grad student
PA 5022 - Applications of Economics for Policy Analysis
Credits: 1.5 -3.0 [max 9.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Application of economic reasoning to a wide range of contemporary public policy issues. The following topically-focused courses also fulfill the MPP economics requirement: PA 5431: Public Policies on Work and Pay, PA 5503: Economics of Development, PA 5521: Development Planning and Policy Analysis, PA 5722: Economics of Natural Resource and Environmental Policy, and PA 5805: Global Economics. prereq: 5021 or equiv
PA 5043 - Economic and Demographic Data Analysis
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Economic/demographic data analysis techniques for planning. Exposure to most important data sources. Conceptual understanding of range of methods/hands-on experience in applying these methods. prereq: Major or minor in urban/regional planning or instr consent
PA 5281 - Immigrants, Urban Planning and Policymaking in the U.S.
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Social, political, economic experiences of contemporary U.S. immigrants. Draws from sociology, economics, demography, political science, public affairs. Local government policies/plans. Cities/suburbs as contexts for immigrants. Interactions between immigrant communities/urban planners/policymakers. prereq: Grad student or instr consent
PA 5401 - Poverty, Inequality, and Public Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Nature/extent of poverty/inequality in the United States, causes/consequences, impact of government programs/policies. Extent/causes of poverty/inequality in other developed/developing countries. prereq: Grad or instr consent
PA 5451 - Immigration, Health and Public Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: PA 5451/PubH 5281
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
How to access demographic, health, and background information on US immigrants. Characteristics and health needs of immigrants. Designing culturally competent health programs. How to advocate for needed policy changes to promote immigrant health and wellbeing. Community visits required. Online course.
PA 5490 - Topics in Social Policy
Credits: 1.0 -4.0 [max 12.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Selected topics.
PA 8312 - Analysis of Discrimination
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Policy analysis/other applied social sciences as tools for measuring/detecting discrimination in market/nonmarket contexts. Application of modern tools of labor econometrics/race relations research to specific problems of market/nonmarket discrimination.
PA 8331 - Economic Demography
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Classical theory, advanced econometric methods, recent empirical work, and available datasets for research in economic demography. Topics include the economics of mortality, fertility, migration, marriage, women's labor supply, intra-family bargaining, and age structure. Students develop critical analysis and academic discourse skills through in-depth discussions and replications of papers, presentations, referee-style writing assignments, and a term paper. prereq: Grad-level economic theory (PA 5021 or equiv) and econometrics (PA 5033 or equiv) and instructor permission
PA 8461 - Global and U.S. Perspectives on Health and Mortality
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
The health of populations in developing and developed countries is very different. Within countries, great health disparities exist between more advantaged and more disadvantaged populations. When crafting policies that aim to improve population health, it is crucial to know how to measure health and how to think about the health needs of the specific population in question. This course will provide an overview to the factors driving health, mortality, and aging across different populations. In addition, students will learn the best sources of data and measures to use to describe the health status of a population. They will also be able to assess policy options that address the health of their population.
PUBH 6370 - Social Epidemiology
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Typically offered: Spring Even Year
How a society's social interactions, past and present, yield differential exposures and differences in health outcomes between persons who make up populations. New disease-specific risk factors. How well-known exposures emerge and are maintained by social system.
PUBH 6605 - Sexual, Reproductive, and Perinatal Public Health
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Overview of perinatal, sexual, and reproductive health surveillance, programs, services, and policies in the U.S., with an emphasis on vulnerable populations and methods to assess and interpret perinatal, sexual, and reproductive health data. prereq: Public health student or grad student or instr consent
PUBH 6737 - Structural Racism and Health
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
This course offers an examination of U.S. health inequities from a historical lens and discussion of present-day issues. Through the readings, discussions, and assignments in this class, students will better understand historical policies, events, and movements that have led to health inequities and connect those to contemporary issues in the United States and within the field of public health. The course takes an intersectional perspective (to race, ethnicity, gender, and class) to examine health inequities, with a specific focus on inequities related to race and racism.
PUBH 6845 - Using Demographic Data for Policy Analysis
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
How to pose researchable policy questions, locate existing data, turn data into a usable format, understand data documentation, analyze data, communicate findings according to standards of the professional policy community. Quantitative issues. prereq: [Grad level research methods course, basic statistics course] or instr consent
SOC 8090 - Topics in Sociology
Credits: 1.5 -3.0 [max 12.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Topics specified in Class Schedule. prereq: instr consent
SOC 8540 - Topics in Family Sociology
Credits: 3.0 [max 12.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Families and mental health; families, work, and the labor market; historical/comparative research on the family. Topics specified in [Class Schedule].
SOC 8551 - Life Course Inequality & Health
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Seminar examines the changing life course in its social and historical context, including theoretical principles, methodologies, and policy implications. Focus on key societal institutions that offer unequal opportunities and constraints, depending on social class, race/ethnicity, and gender. Unequal access to age-graded social roles and resources shape the course of development, and in doing so, they have profound impacts on health. We will consider how inequality in the family, education, work, the military, and in the health care & criminal justice systems influence health behaviors and outcomes at different ages and life stages. prereq: grad student or instr consent
SOC 8607 - Migration & Migrants in Demographic Perspective
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
With fertility and mortality, migration is one of three core population processes. This course provides a graduate-level treatment of major theoretical and empirical debates in demographic/population research on migration and migrants. It examines topics like why and how people migrate, who migrates and who does not, and the effects of migration in migrant-receiving and migrant-sending areas. Along the way, it links to a number of related topics, including the impacts of migration on migrants themselves, the role of the state and policies governing migration and incorporation, and transnationalism. A common thread throughout is connecting these topics to issues of population size, composition, and change. While this course contains ?demographic? in the title and fulfills requirements for graduate trainees and the population studies minor in the Minnesota Population Center, it is necessarily interdisciplinary in scope and draws from research in economics, demography/population studies, human geography, history, political science, population health, public policy, and sociology. Credit will not be granted if the student has already completed a Soc 8090 topics course with the same title.
SOC 8890 - Advanced Topics in Research Methods
Credits: 2.0 -3.0 [max 6.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Advanced Research Methods (e.g., multilevel models), historical/comparative, field, survey research. Topics specified in Class Schedule. prereq: 8801, 8811, or instr consent. Cr will not be granted if cr has been received for the same topics title