If you have a broad range of talents and interests, and making a positive global impact is your goal, consider Clarkson's undergraduate Social Documentation program. Offered jointly through the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences and the Department of Communication, Media and Design, the Social Documentation Double Major program combines a major such as History, Humanities, Interdisciplinary Liberal Studies, Interdisciplinary Social Sciences or Political Science with a major in Communication. This combination gives you a wide range of research skills and a concrete set of production skills, making you very marketable to future employers.

As a Social Documentation double major, you will produce portfolio pieces that explore your intellectual curiosities while demonstrating your ability to deliver in demanding job markets. Whether you are interested in producing oral histories from the under-represented or launching websites and online content that documents social issues, our curriculum creates the flexibility and course work you need to not only reach, but exceed your career goals.

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Social Documentation Careers

With an undergraduate bachelor's degree in social documentation, you will be prepared to begin your career in any of the following areas:

  • content creation for the public and private sector
  • social media advocacy
  • web-based education and outreach
  • web-based training content creation
  • support and outreach for NGOs
  • data visualization
  • employment with social justice organizations
  • digital content curation
  • public or private radio or television broadcasting
  • leadership in media-oriented firms
  • nonprofit creation and leadership
  • consultant work
  • museum installation work
  • geographic information systems (GIS) creation

Social documentation combines a major in communication with a major in one of our humanities and socials sciences majors, including history, humanities, interdisciplinary liberal studies, interdisciplinary social sciences and political science. Students from these majors have gone on to work for companies such as: AllianceBernstein, AmeriCorps, Epsilon, Johnson Controls, Message in a Bottle Productions and the NBA. They've also gone on to attend graduate school, work for law offices and local not-for-profits, and start their own companies. 

-Forbes Top 25 STEM Colleges

Social Documentation Curriculum & Academic Options

Double Major in Social Documentation

The Social Documentation double major bachelor's degree program represents 67 of the 120 credits required for graduation. The remaining credits are earned in knowledge area electives combined with the Clarkson common experience. This flexibility allows you to explore your interests while earning your degree. Social Documentation majors take courses such as:

  • History of Social Documentation
  • Feature Film Screenwriting
  • The History and Art of Animation
  • Europe Through Film and Fiction
  • Sex and Commerce
  • Digital Design
  • Documenting Social Activism
  • Food and Society, or What to Think About What You Eat
  • Women and Religion
  • Environmental Policy
  • Introduction to Web Design 
  • Typography and Design
Social Documentation Major Curriculum

The social documentation double major program consists of combining majors in the Social Sciences (history, political science, anthropology and sociology) or Humanities (literature, film and philosophy) with a major in Communication & Media. Students must complete all credit hours in each major along with 21 credit hours as stated below.

All courses are 3 credits unless noted.


Clarkson Common Experience

The following courses are required for all students, irrespective of their program of study. These courses are offered during the fall semester, with FY100 First-Year Seminar being required of only first-year students. Both FY100 and UNIV190 are typically taken during the fall semester of the first year at Clarkson.
FY100 First-Year Seminar (1 credit)
UNIV190 The Clarkson Seminar (3 credits)


Social Documentation Core Requirements

    Students are required to complete the following courses:

    Social Documentation

    • SD200 History of Social Documentation

    Professional Experience

    Students are required to complete the following Professional Experience:
    SD480 Major Research Seminar
    and SD490 Major Research Project


    Social Documentation Core Electives

    Students must complete the following electives:


    Students must complete one of the following courses:

    • FILM226 Short Film Screenwriting
    • FILM230 Cinemas of Resistance 
    • FILM235 Crossing Borders 
    • FILM240 Films From Fiction 
    • FILM250 Dystopian Visions in International Cinema 
    • FILM322 The Hollywood Cinema 
    • FILM326 Feature Film Screenwriting 
    • FILM340 World in a Frame 
    • FILM344 The History and Art of Animation 

    Video Production and Digital Design

    Students must complete two of the following courses:

    • COMM1002D Digital Design 
    • COMM320 Digital Photography 
    • COMM322 Typography and Design 
    • COMM327 Digital Video Production I 
    • COMM341 Introduction to Web Design 
    • COMM360 Audio Production 
    • COMM427 Digital Video Production II 
    • DA110 Drawing 
    • DA120 Elements of Design 


    Social Documentation Electives

    Knowledge Area/University Course Electives

    Students will have at least 15 credit hours available to use toward Knowledge Area and/or University Course electives to satisfy the Clarkson Common Experience requirements.

    Related Minors

    While Social Documentation is a double major, students can find time to also choose a minor to complement their educational experience even more. In particular, the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences offers many unique minors, such as anthropology, gender & sexuality studies, international and cross-cultural perspectives, literature and the arts, philosophy, sociology and war studies. 

    All Clarkson Minors, Concentrations and Tracks

    Anthropology Minor

    A minor in anthropology introduces you to culture and cultures around the world: how people do things, why they do things or why they are made to do things. 

    Anthropology connects the global to the local, the economic to the social, the real to the symbolic. Studying anthropology allows you to see how other cultures deal with gender differences, raise children, grow food, organize themselves and create systems of justice and power. Insights into these different ways of doing things gives you a much broader perspective on your own culture, raises your curiosity about people unlike you and helps you to become a more conscious citizen.


    What is Anthropology

    an·​thro·​pol·​o·​gy : anthropos (human) + logos (knowledge, science, word) — the study of humans and their cultures.

    Unlike psychologists, we study people as members of groups, in which group identity, economy and locality are critical facets of personhood. Unlike philosophers, we study people in the flesh, not just their ideas. Unlike sociologists, we study people all over the world and at varying degrees of subgroups. Unlike economists, we study people making a living and the conditions in which they do so while also making a life. Unlike political scientists, we study relations of power with reference to the particularities of the culture within which people are embedded.


    Career Opportunities

    Anthropology provides diverse opportunities and careers:

    Real World Applications

    • Forensic anthropology
    • International relations and diplomacy
    • Translation and cross-cultural communication in diverse settings such as hospitals and corporate offices
    • Work in the non-profit and governmental sectors in the U.S. and abroad
    • User experience research for large corporations

    Potential Employers

    International organizations, nonprofits, police departments, schools, medical environments, consulting firms, user-experience research firms, corporations, marketing firms, and more!


    Anthropology Minor Curriculum

    Explore anthropology through courses such as:

    • ANTH201 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology 
    • ANTH285 Food and Society
    • ANTH225 Global Perspectives on Sexuality
    • ANTH238 Men and Masculinities
    • ANTH255 Culture and the Environment
    • ANTH311 Ethnography — Studying People Firsthand or "People Watching"
    Business Minor

    The minor in business is designed for students with a major outside of the Reh School of Business who wish to pursue a collateral area in business.

    Completion of the minor provides broad exposure to the foundations of major business functions, complementing technical majors very well. These areas include accounting, economics, finance, law, organizational behavior, operations management and marketing.

    All courses are 3 credits unless noted.


    Business Core Requirements

    All students choosing to minor in business must complete 18 credit hours, or six courses, from among the following:

    • EC150 Principles of Microeconomics or Economic Principles and Engineering or EC350 Economics
    • EC151 Principles of Macroeconomics or Economic Principles and Engineering or EC350 Economics
    • AC205 Introduction to Accounting for Decision Analysis
    • LW270 Law and Society I
    • OS286 Organizational Behavior
    • FN361 Financial Management I
    • OM331** Operations & Supply Chain Management
    • MK320** Principles of Marketing

    *Students who complete EC350 Economics are exempt from taking EC150 and EC151. EC350 covers material from both EC150 and EC151. EC350 will satisfy one course toward the minor. Students must then choose their remaining five classes from AC205, LW270, OS286, FN361, OM331 or MK320.

    **Students choosing to take either OM331 or MK320 must also complete IS200 Computer Application Fundamentals (1 credit) or IS211 Intro to ERP Tools and Applications (3 credits) either as a prerequisite or a co-requisite.

    Literature and the Arts Minor

    Stand out with a Literature and the Arts Minor on your diploma

    The minor provides you with the opportunity to explore works of literature, film and drama from diverse cultures and perspectives. Our courses enable you to investigate how the human condition and experience have been captured in literature and art.

    All courses are 3 credits unless noted.


    What Can the Literature and Arts Minor Do for You? 

    A literature and the arts minor shows that you are well-rounded, well-read and can talk about big ideas in an engaging way. If you are a STEM, business or pre-professional major, a literature and the arts minor will set you apart from others with similar degrees by signaling the breadth and depth of your education. It will prepare you for the ever-changing modern world by giving you the skills needed to adapt quickly as jobs change. That’s one of the perks of being a passionate lifelong learner. 

    Like a humanities major, a literature minor has practical applications. For example, did you know that according to The Princeton Review, humanities majors score better on the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) than biology majors do? Literature is all about using words effectively, and medical schools are looking for applicants who can communicate well with patients. 

    In short, a literature and the arts minor will prepare you for life.


    Literature and Arts Requirements

    To complete the requirements for the literature and the arts minor, you simply need to take five LIT and/or FILM courses and enroll in LIT499 to complete the Minor Portfolio

    Course Offerings:

    • FILM237 The Horror Film
    • FILM2xx Major Marginalized Movie-Makers
    • FILM322 The Hollywood Cinema
    • FILM345 Film and Native America
    • LIT220 American Gods
    • LIT221 Great American Authors
    • LIT222 Philosophy for Life
    • LIT225 American Short Story
    • LIT227 Tales from the Tropics
    • LIT230 Monsters in the House
    • LIT235 Science Fiction
    • LIT240 Gender and Popular Culture
    • LIT248 Nobel Prize Winners
    • LIT250 World Literature
    • LIT253 Greek Mythology
    • LIT255 Close Encounters of the X Kind
    • LIT262 Women Acting Out
    • LIT265 Creative Writing
    • LIT270 Comics of Conscience
    • LIT275 Demons and Witches
    • LIT280 Disaster Lit
    • LIT335 Violence and Reconciliation
    • LIT355 Power, Exploitation, and Freedom: Postcolonial Literature
    • LIT380 Shakespeare's Game of Thrones: Blood, Lust, and Power
    Product Development & Marketing Minor

    The minor in product development and marketing is for students interested in exploring concepts and tools associated with the design and marketing of new products.

    Through coursework, you will learn about marketing new products, including clear message development, appropriate distribution channel identification, customer acquisition and engagement, customer co-innovation and social media and analytics use to manage messaging.

    All courses are 3 credits unless noted.


    Product Development and Marketing Core I

    Students are required to complete the following courses:


    • MK/PY321 Consumer Behavior 
    • MK332 Marketing Research 
    • MK436 Creativity, Innovation, New Product Development

    Marketing Portfolio

    Students must complete a 0-credit new product development and marketing portfolio to maintain a repository of work from the minor classes related to work during their time at Clarkson.

    • MK419 New Product Development and Marketing Portfolio (0 credit)


    Product Development and Marketing Core II

    Students must complete one of the following courses:

    • SB236 Introduction to Customer-Focused Design 
    • COMM229 Principles of User Experience Design

    Students must complete two of the following courses:

    • COMM100/DA100 2-D Digital Design
    • COMM210 Theory of Rhetoric for Business, Science and Engineering
    • COMM219 Introduction to Social Media
    • EC370 Economics of Innovation
    • COMM345 Information Design
    War Studies Minor

    The war studies minor allows you to develop the perspective necessary to confront both historical and contemporary questions about war and warfare with greater depth and understanding.

    War studies is an interdisciplinary minor with an emphasis on the history of armed conflict. The minor is available to all Clarkson undergraduates. An emphasis on extensive reading, analytical writing and critical thinking makes the minor a good choice for students who seek a fuller appreciation of their major field of study, as well as an enhanced set of professional skills.  


    About the Minor

    The war studies minor focuses on the key human challenges of war and conflict. In the study of the history of warfare, you will be challenged to think critically about a range of disciplines, which transcend military history to include engagement with the subject of war from the viewpoint of combatants, societies, economies and cultures across history. You will explore topics from a range of disciplinary angles, including history, politics, international relations, sociology, philosophy and strategic studies. 

    The Minor Will Allow You To ...

    • Analyze and understand the causes of armed conflict.
    • Gain an understanding of the conduct of war.
    • Apply arguments to real case studies, both historical and current.
    • Appreciate the changing role of technology in warfare.
    • Explore and gain an understanding of the varied experiences of war.
    • Engage with a wide variety of sources to understand war, including memoirs, biographies, personal testimony, battle studies, literature, poetry, painting and film.
    • Develop skills that are valued by employers in a range of fields, including the armed forces, the defense industry, foreign policy, humanitarian aid, journalism and finance.
    • Develop and improve communication skills.

    Career Opportunities

    A war studies minor will give you skills and knowledge that are valued by a wide variety of potential employers, from governments, supranational bodies and security agencies to charities, NGOs, news and media organisations and international corporations.

    Your detailed knowledge of specific topics and your proven capacity to investigate and analyse new or emerging issues will enable you to contribute to policy and decision-making in a variety of relevant sectors and businesses. The analytical, research and communication skills you will develop are widely recognized by businesses and public-sector employers alike.  

    Related Programs

    This is a particularly useful minor for students enrolled in Clarkson’s Army ROTC or Air Force ROTC programs or who plan on doing graduate work in history or various sub-fields of political science, including public policy, security studies, or international relations. It is also a useful minor for any student who expects to work in the defense industry or government.



    Students who minor in war studies take one foundation course, HIST240 War and Society, and choose four additional classes from a list of designated war courses. Each minor also produces a culminating Minor Portfolio

    Current course offerings include:

    • War in Ancient Greece
    • War in Ancient Rome
    • War in the Middle Ages
    • War Stories (ancient and medieval)
    • World War I
    • World War II
    • The Soviet Union at War
    • The Cold War

    Internships & Co-ops

    As an undergraduate major in social documentation, you will have the opportunity to take on internships/co-ops in a variety of different roles. A few of these opportunities include working as a Title IX office intern, an intern at the Champlain College Emergent Media Center, an InVentiv Creative Studios intern and a Biodiversity Heritage Library resident (Harvard University).

    Explore Social Documentation

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