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Painting by Paul Gaugin


Alpha Kappa Delta - The Sociology Honor Society

The University of Rhode Island's Department of Sociology has been a chartered member of the Alpha Kappa Delta (AKD) International Sociology Honor Society since 1959. This prestigious International Society was founded in 1920 to "promote excellence in scholarship in the study of sociology, research of social problems, and such other social and intellectual activities as will lead to improvement in the human condition." Junior and Senior Sociology majors whose Sociology and overall GPAs are 3.2 or better receive a letter of invitation to join late in the fall semester each year.

Students who accept the invitation are required to pay a small dues fee to the Society, and submit a short essay to the faculty advisor at URI (details in the invitation). An induction ceremony is held each April that is open to faculty, staff, students and their families to welcome new initiates into the Society, and to congratulate them for their accomplishments. The initiates are provided the option to wear the AKD tassel at graduation. They are also awarded certificates, AKD pins, and receive a one-year subscription to the journal Sociological Inquiry. For further information, please contact Professor Judy Van Wyk at

News & Announcements

New Faculty in Sociology:

Julie Keller Julie C. Keller has joined the department as an Assistant Professor of Sociology. She received her PhD in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2013. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Sciences from the University of California, Berkeley. Before coming to URI, Professor Keller was a Visiting Assistant Professor and Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at Oberlin College.


Early Career Faculty Research Award

For the second year in a row, an anthropologist has been awarded the University’s Early Career Research Award.

Assistant Professor Holly Dunsworth received the 2014 award for her research comparing energy use in apes and other mammals with particular reference to how the energetics and metabolic parameters of pregnancy, fetal growth, infant growth, and lactation and how those determine the timing of birth in humans and other mammals. Kudos to Holly!!!

Department contacts

Department Chair
Leo Carroll,

Justice, Law & Society Minor Coordinator
Professor Leo Carroll,

Administrative Assistant
Theresa Nobile,