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 one's relationships to others and to society 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 an appreciation of the need for evidence, 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 pre- judice 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 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 program evaluation.
Faculty, Facilities, and Scholarships
The sociology faculty, all with PhDs, share a commitment to excellence in teaching. Our areas of special interest are diverse. The university's computer facilities and technological resources 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 several awards sponsored by the sociology faculty and the Barbara Holland Peevers Award. Information concerning these awards is available from the undergraduate adviser or department chair and at www.csuchico.edu/soci.
Sociologists work in industry, community programs, social services, and in the many federal and state programs focused on our society's 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 master's 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 computing will have the widest choice of jobs.