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University of Colorado Denver College of Liberal Arts and Sciences


Master of Social Sciences Program

Social Justice Track


Director: MSS: Dr. Omar Swartz
Associate Director: MHMSS: Dr. Myra Bookman
Anthropology: Dr. Marty Otanez
Communication: Dr. Barbara Walkosz
English: Dr. Nancy Ciccone, Dr. Catherine Wiley
Ethnic Studies: Dr. Donna Langston
History: Dr. Christopher Agee
Philosophy: Dr. David Hildebrand, Dr. Chad Kautzer
Political Science: Dr. Jana Everett, Dr. Lucy McGuffey
Sociology: Dr. Candan Duran-Aydintug 


This interdisciplinary graduate track is available to students admitted to the Master of Social Science program.  It encourages graduate students to broaden and deepen their intellectual tools as well as their practical knowledge as to how democracy, education, consumerism, media, race, class, gender, and law intersect.  It expands students' recognition of the many ways that they are already engaged as citizens and their power to effect change through theoretical and moral education, critical thinking, and community engagement.  Students are provided with a list of recommended courses, which they select based on consultation with a faculty advisor. These targeted elected courses must total 12 credit hours in addition to the 3-6 credit hours for the culminating thesis or project. The core Social Science courses required of all Master of Social Science Program students comprise 9 credit hours.  The remaining credit hours will consist of appropriate courses offered by several departments and approved by the student's advisor. The Social Justice Track is relevant for students who are interested in vocations or avocations with advocacy organizations, who plan to continue their education in professional school or Ph.D. programs, whose current careers will benefit from knowledge of social justice issues, and/or who are secondary school teachers in humanities and social studies.

​This program is relevant for students with an interested in vocations or avocations with advocacy organizations, who plan to continue their education in professional school or Ph.D programs, whose current careers will benefit from knowledge of social justice issues, and/or who are secondary school teachers in humanities and social sciences.

​Core Courses (9 credit hours):

SSCI 5103 Philosophical Problems in the Social Sciences and the Humanities

SSCI 5020 Elements of Social Thought

SSCI 5023 Research Perspectives in the Social Sciences


It is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED that students in this track take at least one quantitative and/or one qualitative research methods course. There are quantitative and qualitative methods courses offered in Anthropology, Environmental Science, Political Science, Sociology, and Research, Evaluation, and Statistical Methodology (RESM), which can be approved by a student’s program advisor.  

SJ Electives

(Pre-approved electives are listed below. Other courses may qualify but must be approved by the student’s advisor.)

Anthropology (ANTH courses subject to revision)

ANTH 5070-Culture of Development and Globalization

ANTH 5180-The Nature of Power

ANTH 5190-Ethnicity and Nationalism

ANTH 5200-Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective

ANTH 5400-Archaeology of Power and Inequality

ANTH 6041-Human Genetics: Legal, Ethical and Social Issues

(Cross-listed with HBSC 6320 and 7320)


BUSN 6540-Legal and Ethical Environment of Business


CMMU 5040-Comunication, Prisons, and Social Justice

CMMU 5250-Difference Matters and Organizational Communication

CMMU 5268-Communication and Diversity in U.S. History


ENGL 5306-Survey of Feminist Thought

ENGL 5701-Multimedia in the Community

ENGL 5190 Special topics in Rhetoric and Writing ( depending on topic; they change with instructor)

Health and Behavioral Sciences

HBSC 5200-The Global HIV/AIDS Epidemic


HIST 5032-Globalization in World History Since 1945

HIST 5055-The Atlantic Slave Trade: Africa, Caribbean and U.S.

HIST 5225-Urban America: Colonial to Present

HIST 5303-Sex and Gender in Modern Britain

(Cross-listed WGST 4303)

HIST5307-History of Sexuality

(Cross-listed with WGST 4307)

HIST 5308-Crime, Policing and Justice in American History

HIST 5345-Gender, Science and Medicine: 1600 to the Present

HIST 5412-Mexico and the United States: People and Politics on the Border

HIST 5414-Nationalism and State Building in Latin America

HIST 5415-Social Revolutions in Latin America

HIST 5455-African Struggle for Independence

HIST 5466-Teaching about Ethnicity, Race and Prejudice


HUMN 5650-Reflections on Modernity

HUMN 5720-Sexuality, Gender and their Visual Representation

HUMN 5750-Philosophical Psychology 


PHIL 5000-19th Century Philosophy

PHIL 5101-Pragmatism

PHIL 5242-Bioethics

PHIL 5250-Environmental Ethics

PHIL 5260-Philosophy of Law

PHIL 5600-Philosophy of Religion

PHIL 5920-Philosophy of Media and Technology

Political Science

PSCI 5025-Local Governance and Globalization

PSCI 5145-Indigenous Politics

PSCI 5206-Social Movements, NGOs and Global Politics

PSCI 5225 Democracy and Democratization

PSCI 5245-Gender, Globalization and Development

PSCI 5274-Conflict Resolution and Public Consent Building

PSCI 5276-Conflicts and Rights in International Law

PSCI 5286-International Relations: War or Peace?

PSCI 5374-Public Priorities for the 21st Century

PSCI 5414-Organizational Change Agents

PSCI 5545-Immigration Politics

PSCI 5555-International Women’s Resistance

PSCI 5644-Ethical Responsibilities of Leaders

PSCI 5837-Contemporary Issues in Civil Liberties


SOCY 5040-Social Determinants of Health

SOCY 5410-Advanced Study of Social Change

SOCY 5440- Seminar: Social Stratification

SOCY 5680-Hate Groups and Group Violence

Social Science

SSCI 5400-Women and Violence

SSCI 5650-Reflections on Modernity

SSCI 5750-Philosophical Psychology

SSCI 6010-Methods and Theories of Feminism and Gender Studies

(Cross-listed with WGST 6010)