The BA in Advocacy and Social Justice offers an upper division program focused on advocacy and social justice theory, research and practice. Students will develop the skills to critically evaluate the motivations and implications of injustice, disparity, inequity and systems of dominance to become practitioners grounded in the principles of social justice, advocacy, respect for diversity and multi-culturalism, and the uniqueness of each person. Students are immersed in a multi-disciplinary curriculum through coursework aimed to develop a holistic lens of empowerment, equity and justice for social impact and change.
The attainment of applied experience is critical to students who are committed to and engaged in their communities. Field Experiences at an approved site are part of the BA completion program in Advocacy and Social Justice. Fieldwork experiences are to occur while student is registered in HD459- Exploration & Implementation: Fieldwork/Internship
Graduates are prepared to effectively apply advocacy and social justice theories and principles in their roles as community advocates in governmental and non-governmental agencies, civil liberties workers, disease & disability advocates, social services conservators, community health workers, case managers, LGBTQ activists and special interests advocates
Contributions to the wider body of intellectual knowledge are critical and the completion of a Social Action Research Capstone Project is required for successful fulfillment of the BA degree completion program in Advocacy and Social Justice as a part of the HD 497-Capstone course.
Concentrations are additional areas of focus which are designed to immerse students in a more specific area of advocacy and social justice. The BA completion in Advocacy and Social Justice offers concentrations in Culture & Communities and Education.
Program Learning Outcomes (PLO)
Development: Students analyze and assess utility of advocacy and social justice theories impacting domestic and global systems to assess opportunities and strategies to increase inclusion, multiculturalism and equity.
Diversity: Students are able to identify and analyze the dynamics of institutional and individual biases and the uses of power to impact social, community and political systems. They demonstrate a value and commitment to diversity, social justice, equity and inclusion.
Communication: Students will assess and examine the qualities of communication tools used to fight injustice, maintain oppressive systems and empower individuals and communities to develop strategies for social impact.
Research: Students are able to use critical thinking and information literacy skills to distinguish between observations and theory in published research. Students create original research, present their findings, and link their research with existing literature in the field.
Praxis: Students develop a philosophy of learning reflective of advocacy and social justice theories guided by reflective engagement and grounded in a lens of equity and multiculturalism. Students evaluate and explore the knowledge, skills, attitudes and attributes of the advocate role and assess their impact on other persons, groups and systems (ethics, values, principles and empowerment). Praxis will involve activities such as practica, internship, fieldwork or student teaching.
Program Specific Requirements
The BA Advocacy and Social Justice program is a 120-127 credit undergraduate program, comprised of 37 credits in General Education, 30-58 credits in Human Development and/or Education (including Concentrations), and 53 credits of general electives. This is a year-round program, including enrollment in summer. On-ground attendance includes fall and spring 16-week semesters and a 12-week summer semester. Online attendance includes two 8-week terms in fall and spring, and two 6-week terms in summer.
A full-time student entering with 0 credits and successfully completing 12 credits per semester would have a time to completion of ten semesters, which is equivalent to 3 1/3 years, or 40 months.
BA in Advocacy and Social Justice Credit Requirements
40 General Education Credits
50 General Elective Credits
18 Upper Division Advocacy and Social Justice Program Credits
- Plus 12 Concentration Credits OR
- Plus 37 credits for Elementary Education Credential Concentration
120-127 Credits Total
BA Advocacy and Social Justice Program Courses - All credits earned in courses offered by Pacific Oaks College are considered PO residence hours, regardless if the courses are taken on-line, on-ground, at instructional sites or at Off-campus cohort locations. Credits earned from institutions other than Pacific Oaks College are considered non-resident credits. All students must complete a minimum of 30 residence hours to complete the B.A. in Human Development degree.
Admission Requirements and Standards
Admission to the B.A. program is open to any person who meets entrance requirements as outlined below. Applicants will be judged on their overall ability to successfully complete an undergraduate degree program. Generally, a high school cumulative GPA of a 2.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale is required for admission. However, applicants with a cumulative high school GPA below 2.0 will be considered for admission with the submission of additional required documents (see below). Applicants with college level studies will be expected to demonstrate an undergraduate cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher. It is required that transcripts are submitted from all undergraduate schools where credit was received to support the application and request for transfer credit. (See Undergraduate Transfer Credit Policy).
Factors and materials to be considered for admission will include:
- Completed application and $55 application fee
- Applicants must provide proof of the qualifying conferral of high school graduation (or the equivalent) or proof of successful completion of a minimum of 24 semester credits at a regionally accredited post-secondary institution. Proof of qualifying academic history must be provided in one of the following ways:
- Official high school transcript recognized by the U.S. Department of Education showing an earned high school diploma, 2.0 GPA or higher, and date of graduation. A copy of a high school diploma, if transcripts are not immediately available, can be submitted with a contingency that original transcripts will be on file prior to day 5 of the term/semester of entry. Financial aid will not be disbursed until the compliant documentation is received.
- Official college transcript with 24 credits of transferable units with a grade of C or better.
- Official Associate degree transcript from a regionally-accredited institution showing degree earned and date conferred
- Official college transcript from a regionally-accredited institution that contains the high school name and date of graduation
- Official NACES, ACREVS or AICE evaluation of an international diploma that contains the high school name and date of graduation
- High school equivalency completed through home schooling as defined by state law
- Official General Educational Development (GED) document. A copy of the student’s GED Certificate, or unofficial GED score issued by the state, can be submitted with a contingency that the Official GED document will be on file prior to day 5 of the term/semester of entry. Financial aid will not be disbursed until the compliant documentation is received.
- Official Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) document
- Official High School Equivalency Test (HiSET) document
- Official documentation showing a passing score on a state-authorized exam that the state recognizes as equivalent to high school graduation
- Applicants must submit a resume showing three or more years of significant professional or life experience or an official transcript confirming 24 transferrable credits from a regionally accredited university.
- Personal statement
Applicants with a cumulative high-school or undergraduate GPA below 2.0, applicants without three years of significant professional or life experience, or with less than 24 transferrable college credits are required to submit additional documentation:
- One letter of support from someone (a non-relative) familiar with your ability to be successful in this program
- An additional essay three pages, double spaced typed (approximately 500-750 words). In your essay, please answer the following question:
- What life and professional experience do you possess that would enable you to be successful in the Pacific Oaks classroom focused on application of experience to course content?
- Why it is important to you to study this discipline at a school that emphasizes social justice, cultural humility and respect for every individual (refer to the Mission and Vision statement of Pacific Oaks College)?
- Interview with a member of the Admissions Committee
Each concentration has a fieldwork requirement. Fieldwork is study and learning that consists of practical and applied activities completed outside of the classroom or typical learning environment. Each student is required to engage in 45 hours of service at an approved fieldwork/internship site during the semester enrolled in the three-credit fieldwork course (HD459)