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Why Major in Sociology?

Choosing a major is a crucial step in launching a career. The right major can open doors to internships and other early work opportunities that build a record of accomplishment. But it is important to note that a bachelor’s degree in sociology carries a unique benefit as a liberal arts degree. Sociology, a study that in many ways rests in between politics and science, will prepare you for wider responsibilities associated with leadership as it teaches fundamental analytical and critical thinking skills.

Benefits of Majoring in Sociology

People with a bachelor’s degree in sociology have many opportunities in the workforce. You can work in fields directly related to the major, like social services and counseling, or branch out to areas like teaching, administrative services and sales. A liberal arts degree offers the benefit of bringing critical thinking and analytical skills to the forefront. Students learn how to come to cohesive conclusions from seemingly divergent pieces of information. This strategy of evaluating disparate ideas does not limit you to a narrow range of technical skills, “but rather prepare[s] you to make knowledgeable and responsible decisions on and off the job,” according to “Navigating the Sociology Major” by Sweet and Rothenberg.

The benefit of this approach is an ability and flexibility to switch jobs with relative ease. Because a sociology degree is a generalist degree that teaches fundamental skills rather than specific skills, workers are not necessarily tied down to a particular industry. For instance, more than 71 percent of all professionals who earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology did so to move up to a better job. Workers pursue new jobs to increase their level of responsibility, earn more money, be more independent, and have a greater intellectual challenge.

Why Earn a Sociology Degree?

A bachelor’s degree in sociology explores the full breadth of human interaction and emphasizes thinking techniques. You will learn about various research methods — how to test hypotheses, conduct analyses and evaluate information. Learning how to explore social and cultural issues using these research methods will teach you how to think and evaluate information in new ways. You can apply these skills directly to the field of sociology through areas like public policy, or you can leverage the skills in entirely new ways.

Sociology studies include groupthink, family dynamics, diversity, religion, education and culture. Professions associated with these studies include law, business administration, healthcare, politics, human resources, marketing, public relations, criminal justice, and education. The nonprofit sector offers career opportunities, too. If the possibilities seem endless, it is because sociology studies intersect with a wide range of knowledge both inside and outside of the major.

A recent employee survey of 2012 sociology graduates found that the concepts and skills they learned in their undergraduate programs were useful to them on the job. More than one-half of respondents in all types of jobs strongly or somewhat agreed that they use nine of the ten concepts/skills associated with the bachelor’s degree in sociology. This suggests that the lessons learned in a sociology degree are useful for solving real-world problems and help prepare students for jobs that draw on skills learned.

Interested in a bachelor’s degree in sociology? Consider Lamar University’s online program.

Learn more about the Lamar University online BS in Sociology program.


American Sociological Association: Sociology as a Vocation

American Sociological Association: Navigating the Sociology Major

American Sociological Association: Jobs, Careers & Sociological Skills: The Early Employment Experiences of 2012 Sociology Majors

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