Course Requirements

Summary of Major Course Requirements

  • CMMU 10: Introduction to Community Activism (fall)
  • CMMU 101: Communities, Social Movements, and The Third Sector (winter) 
  • CMMU 102: Preparation for Field Study (spring)
  • CMMU 105ABC: Independent Field Study (summer & fall)
  • CMMU 107: Analysis of Field Materials (winter)
  • Three Upper Division Topical Courses (see course offerings) (fall/winter/spring)  

Course Offerings by Academic Year

Satisfactory completion of all major course requirements is defined by a grade of C or higher.  All courses in the major must be taken for a letter grade.  The three topical courses must be taken prior to field study and students must declare the major before enrolling in CMMU 102.

CMMU 10, Introduction to Community Activism - Introduces students to different approaches to community activism including charity, volunteering, labor and community organizing, non-violent resistance, non-profit sector involvement, and media advocacy.

CMMU 101, Communities, Social Movements and the Third Sector – Critically engages with concepts central to the major including constructions of community in social change efforts and the institutionalization of social movements in third sector organizations. It is designed to deepen your understanding of the opportunities and obstacles embedded in various avenues of social action.

CMMU 102, Preparation for Field Study – Examines participatory and other social-research methods including participant observation, conducting interviews, writing ethnographic field notes, and collecting descriptive data. Students receive practical experience with developing research questions, methods, and writing field notes. The course also addresses ethical and logistical issues of community-based research. The final project is a literature review completed in partial satisfaction of the disciplinary communication (DC) general education requirement. 

Topical Courses - In addition to the core curriculum, students must successfully complete at least three topical courses (approved upper-division electives) to develop expertise in their designated emphasis (health justice and/or economic justice).  The topical courses must be completed prior to field study. 

CMMU 105ABC, Full-Time Field Study - During the full-time, six-month field study, students are enrolled at UCSC for full university credit (15 units). They recieve onsite supervision by the sponsoring organization and regular distanced supervision by campus faculty. Students are required to submit field notes and several analytical essays during the field study. 

CMMU 107, Analysis of Field Materials – This course is designed for students returning from their full-time field study and has two related goals: (1) to help students, both individually and collectively, analyze and gain perspective on their field experiences; and (2) to facilitate completion of the senior capstone requirement. Students work with their field material to develop findings and arguments and connect them to relevant theoretical literature(s). The written work of CMMU 107 completes the DC requirement.

Additional Capstone Options:

CMMU 195 Senior Thesis – continuation of CMMU 107 senior capstone essay begun in CMMU 107. Outstanding students may choose to further develop their capstone essay and complete a senior thesis, which is comprised of field-study observations, historical and theoretical contextualizations of the field study, and deeper analysis of the social justice issues at the heart of the field study. Students work independently with a faculty advisor.

Student-Directed Seminar (SDS) – The SDS capstone option is reserved for exceptional students. Under the direction of a faculty adviser, the student develops and teaches a CMMU 42 course related to the student’s field study and academic course work and submits a seminar completion report. Student-directed seminars need advance planning; a proposal for the SDS must be completed before beginning the field study.