Return to: Programs of Study
Dr. Beth A. Eck, Department Head
Phone: (540) 568-6171
Location: Sheldon Hall, Room 123
Dr. Benjamin D. Brewer, Coordinator
Phone: (540) 568-7391
Location: Sheldon Hall, Room 212
Dr. Liam M. Buckley, Coordinator
Phone: (540) 568-6171
Location: Sheldon Hall, Room 117
L. Buckley, B. Eck, A. Paugh, S. Poulson
B. Brewer, B. Bryson, C. Colocousis, K. Dobransky, M. Ezzell, R. Lawler, J. Linder, M. Polanco, J. Solometo, J. Spear, K. Tanaka, M. Tracy
D. Blanton, R. Howes-Mischel, S. Newman, L. Porter, D. Trouille
The mission of the sociology program is to develop students’ ability to analyze the social world by using diverse sociological theories and research methods that stress the importance of social, cultural and historical contexts for understanding relationships between social actors and structures.
Goals and Objectives
To fulfill its mission, the sociology program cultivates the sociological imagination, providing students the following sets of skills and experience.Upon completion of the B.A. or B.S. degree in sociology, students will be able to:
- Recognize and understand the social dimension of the human experience and the diverse social arrangements and practices found within and across societies and cultures.
- Recognize how developing a sociological lens is a practical skill for living a productive and meaningful life. Identify and understand sociology’s major theories, schools of thoughts and analytical paradigms.
- Identify and understand sociology’s origin, development and practice within its social and historical contexts.
- Demonstrate the use of skills in investigating the social world utilizing methodological components such as concept formation, measurement strategies, data analysis, summary and presentation of findings.
- Demonstrate the use of the scholarly tools needed to practice sociology, including rigor, perceptiveness, creativity, logical consistency, tenacity and discipline.
- Recognize the norms of the scholarly community and of a participatory society, including collegiality, openness to public scrutiny, testing reinterpretation and refutation.
Career Opportunities and Marketable Skills
Working as a professional sociologist most often requires a graduate degree, but the following careers, some supplemented with collateral training, are representative of our previous graduates:
- Teacher, professor, social worker, researcher, case manager, biostatistician
- Admissions officer, demographer, data analyst, personnel interviewer
- Nursing home director, hospice coordinator, day care provider/director, epidemiologist
- Mediator, congressional aide, writer/author, advocacy worker, job analyst
- Population specialist, management trainee, sociologist, market research analyst
- Secret service agent, customs/immigration officer, labor relations specialist
- Personnel administrator, public relations specialist, public health statistician
- Urban/regional planner, race relations specialist, underwriter, fundraiser
- Education specialist, community services director
- Criminologist, probation/parole officer, police officer, corrections officer
A major in sociology provides skills and perspectives that enhance all careers. Students who study sociology gain:
- Increased general knowledge.
- Broadened viewpoints informed by sociological perspectives.
- Sensitivity to organizational issues and social change.
- Abilities in critical thinking, analysis, writing and communication, examination of attitudes and values, and enhancement of computer skills.
- Further information about careers in sociology is available from the American Sociological Association website under Careers and Jobs.
Co-curricular Activities and Organizations
- Alpha Kappa Delta, the Sociological Honorary Society
- Student Research Symposium
- The Sociology Club