Skip to main content

Law & Society Minor

The Law and Society (LASO) minor encourages students to see the law from numerous vantage points and at the intersection of multiple social structures. By studying law as an interdisciplinary field, students will appreciate how legal systems are linked to patterns of class, geography, and privilege. When paired with a related major, LASO provides preparation for careers in legal practice, corrections, enforcement, and public policy, whether in a domestic or international context.



Law & Society is an interdisciplinary minor comprised of 18 credits, including one required gateway course and 15 credits of electives, six of which must be completed at the 300/400 level. Students may not earn both the minor in Law & Society and the previous Legal Studies concentration in Political Science.


Students will:

1. Demonstrate knowledge of law and legal institutions from multiple perspectives with a focus on the relationship between law, social structures, and political and social change.

2. Demonstrate academic and intellectual skills: critical analysis, academic writing, and oral communication.

3. Apply critical thinking skills in a social justice context and diverse world.

4. Apply legal reasoning to identify key legal issues and problem solve.

5. Be prepared, by interest, for graduate programs and/or careers related to operations of the law.

Program Director: M. Farrar (Political Science)

Advisory Committee:

E. Stiles, Pre-Law Advisor (Political Science)

M. Berg (History)

B. Brossmann (Communication)

E. Hahnenberg (Theology & Religious Studies)

K. Knoll-Frey (Sociology)

E. Spurgin (Philosophy)


PO 106/SC106: Introduction to Law & Society

An inquiry into the relationship between the law and social structure, both in the US and global contexts.  Includes considerations of how laws are formulated, enforced, and challenged.  Will explore how legislatures, courts, enforcement, and corrections serve public interests while also perpetuating patterns of social inequality.

Elective Courses:

The complete list of elective course offerings can be found in the Undergraduate Bulletin.

PO 106/SOC 106: Introduction to Law and Society

HS 464:  Genocide & War Crimes 

PJHR 150:  Conflict Resolution

PL 320: Philosophy of Law

PO 314A: American Constitution Development Pre-1865

PO 340: Law and Film

SC 220: Criminal Justice System

SC 435: Law, Ethics, and Criminal Justice Policy

TRS 262: Religion, Freedom, and Law

Program Spotlight

Faces made of crinkled paper.

Current LASO Electives

Required Course: PO 106/SC 106

COM 349   Communication Law

HS 114       Trials of the Century

HS 125       Introduction to Human Rights 

HS 175       Latin American Dictatorships

HS 464       Genocide & War Crimes

PJHR 150  Conflict Resolution

PJHR 300  Transitional Justice

PL 320       Philosophy of Law 

PO 213       Wrongful Convictions

PO 314A    American Constitution Development Pre-1865

PO 314B    American Constitutional Development 1865-1965

PO315     Civil Rights and Liberties

PO 317    Judicial Politics

PO 334    Int. Institutions, Law, & Human Rights

PO 340    Law and Film

PO 357    Gender, Sexuality, and the Law

PO 417    The U.S. Supreme Court

SC 220     Criminal Justice System

SC 265     Victims of Crime

SC 335     Prisons and Human Rights

SC 364     Race, Crime, and Criminal Justice

SC 435     Law, Ethics, and Criminal Justice Policy

TRS 262   Religion, Freedom, and Law

Introducing the Law and Society Minor

Information Session for Interested Students

We are so excited to launch the new Law & Society minor!

There will be a virtual information session for interested students on Wednesday, March 16, 2022 at 2:00.

Meeting ID: 921 4474 3886
Passcode: 633083