The study of sociology encompasses the individual, groups, and
society. The major or minor will become proficient in the understanding
of social life its characteristics, causes, and consequences.
Sociology courses emphasize the understanding of social issues and
the analysis of small-scale social interactions as well as large-scale
social institutions. Learning objectives and assessment of learning
are described in the Handout for Sociology Students, available in
the department office. Internships are a recommended service learning
Graduates will have the knowledge and skills to apply the sociological
perspective to their own lives and to the social environment of which
they are a part. They will possess what C. Wright Mills called the sociological
imagination, where they are able to see how their biography relates to
the time in history in which they live. Socrates said the unexamined life
is not worth living. The sociological perspective is crucial for the
examined life, a rich interior life in which ones relationships to others
and to social institutions are analyzed in this age of rapid social change.
Students will have the knowledge and ability to use sociological concepts
creatively in analyzing and critically thinking about social phenomena.
Graduates in sociology will have acquired a respect for and appreciation
of the need for data, not only for public policy decisions, but for life
decisions. Graduates will also have acquired sensitivity to people from
various ethnic, religious, racial, economic backgrounds, and sexual identities
and will see how prejudice and discrimination are socially created attitudes
and behaviors. They will be able to critically analyze the news of the
day as well as changes in the global economy and other major social institutions.
Graduates will have facility with computers, writing and research
skills and appreciate ethical considerations. They will also acquire
statistical skills necessary to gather, interpret, and analyze quantitative
and qualitative data. These skills will allow them to participate
in research projects, particularly those of survey research and
Faculty, Facilities, and Scholarships
The sociology faculty, all with PhDs, share a commitment to excellence
in teaching. Our areas of special interest are as diverse as our offerings.
The universitys computer facilities provide students with excellent opportunities
for developing research skills. Students are also given the opportunity
for direct field experience through the Applied Sociology Internship Program.
The department annually recognizes outstanding graduating students with
the Robert Rankin Award. Other awards include the outstanding sociology
Distance student, highest GPA in the major, and overall outstanding student
are presented as well. Information is available from the undergraduate
advisers or department chair.
Sociologists work in industry, community programs, social services, and
in the many federal and state programs focused on our societys needs.
Most PhD sociologists are college and university professors who are involved
with both teaching and research.
Students graduating with a BA in Sociology offer their prospective employers
skills in research and social analysis, as well as an understanding of
our culturally diverse and changing society. A person with a masters degree
may teach at the community college level, and opportunities for applied
sociologists exist in government and private industry as well. Sociologists
trained in research methods, advanced statistics, and computer use will
have the widest choice of jobs.