A college sociology degree would give you opportunities to study people and the societies they establish.
During your studies, you might learn about communities, human relationships, global dynamics, and patterns of behavior. This can be an interesting field of study for students who want to learn more about the world in which they live.
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In this degree program, you’d explore some of the problems in society, but you might also graduate with the desire to help create meaningful and lasting change in your community.
Online Sociology Degrees
If you’re interested in people and society, then you might want to earn your college degree in sociology. Professionals in the field of sociology study human institutions and societies. They look at the ways that people interact with each other and organize themselves.
Sociology studies often address problems within societies. They may consider how to address those issues and work toward change. Students in sociology majors often study issues related to:
- Law and public policy
- Race and ethnicity
Sociology is a social science, so this program usually includes courses on research as well. You can learn to work with data and interpret findings.
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Online students study the same material as on-campus learners, but they often do so in interactive, innovative ways. For example, they might participate in discussion boards or role-play simulations. There are often concentrations available within the sociology major. Students may be able to specialize in an area like:
- Public health
- Social justice
After finishing the coursework for a sociology degree, there may be an internship component. Interns learn more about the practical applications of sociological principles as they work alongside real-world practitioners.
After graduation, students may work in a business, community service, healthcare, or criminal justice organization. Another option is to enroll in grad school for a sociology master’s degree, which may lead to a job as a sociologist.
Common Online Bachelor Degree in Sociology Concentrations
Where is sociology useful? In many fields! Because there are so many different ways to apply your sociology studies, you may want to focus your studies on a particular niche. That’s what degree concentrations are for.
Possible concentrations that you could choose for your sociology major include:
- Health Sociology: You might study public health, biomedical ethics, and food access as you learn about the intersection of sociological principles with health and medicine.
- Inequality and Justice: This concentration will focus on social issues related to gender, class, race, sexuality, and age and consider how those factors shape a person’s relationship with society.
- Law and Sociology: You might look at both domestic and global situations as you consider how sociology applies to matters of crime, courts, correction, politics, and public safety.
- Sociological Research: In a research-focused concentration, you may take fewer sociology classes so that you can spend more time in courses on data management, statistical methodology, and quantitative and qualitative analysis.
- Urban Society: This specialization would give you opportunities to explore issues faced by American cities as well as the strengths of modern urban settings.
Concentration selections aren’t the same at every school. You might have options that aren’t listed here.
Sociology Careers and Salaries
A bachelor’s in sociology can open the door to a wide variety of career opportunities. With this degree, you could get your start in a business occupation. Potential departments you could work in include human resources, public relations, and project management. With experience, promotions to supervisory positions might be available.
You could also look into helping people in a social services role. For instance, you might get hired by a human services or community improvement agency. Some graduates become case managers or social workers. A bachelor’s degree might also be sufficient for a job as a program director or an agency manager.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, here are some potential career paths associated with the study of sociology.
|Annual Median Salaries
|Project Management Specialists
|Social and Community Service Managers
|Market Research Analysts
|Public Relations Specialists
|Human Resources Specialists
|Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists
|Paralegals and Legal Assistants
|Correctional Officers and Bailiffs
|Community Health Workers
Community health is a related field. As a community health worker, you might help people learn about health-related programs that are available to them. Your support could help them access the care that they need.
Criminal justice is another area where you could make a difference in the community. Possible job titles include corrections officer or correctional counselor. Working as a paralegal is another job to consider, but additional training is often required. You might pursue a paralegal certificate program to complement your sociology degree.
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During your sociology program, you can learn about research and data analytics. That could make you a potential candidate for a job as an analyst of some sort. For example, some graduates work as market research analysts who study consumer behavior and sales trends.
If you go on to get a master’s degree, you could work toward becoming a sociologist. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that sociologists have a median annual income of $92,910.
Sociology Bachelor’s Curriculum & Courses
Sociology students may take an array of classes related to sociology and its many areas of study.
Your curriculum might have classes like:
- Community Problems: During your time in this class, you’ll get an introductory look at some of today’s top social issues and consider how sociological perspectives can help.
- Criminal Justice and Social Science: Your college might have a course that focuses on the interplay between law and sociology, such as looking at how laws influence social behavior.
- Environmental Sociology: This could be a class that investigates sociological factors that influence worsening climate change and other environmental issues.
- Gender Issues and Inequality: Many sociology majors include a course on gender, in which students consider cultural attitudes toward gender and how they influence matters like salary and educational achievement.
- Introductory Sociology: Toward the beginning of your program, you might have a class that provides an overview of sociology and teaches you to ask questions and look for answers as sociologists do.
- Organizational Sociology: You might spend a semester studying how groups and organizations structure themselves and function.
- Research in the Social Sciences: During this class, you’ll get to know the research methods that social scientists use and go through some of the steps of a research project yourself.
- Studies in Inequality: You might have a course that covers various types of inequality in American society and explores some of the far-reaching problems that inequality can create.
- Sociology and Money: You could study economics and global markets through the lens of sociology.
- Theories of Sociology: You will consider historical and contemporary perspectives from key figures in the field of sociology.
As part of the 120 credit hours that are typically required for your degree, you may be able to select several sociology elective courses.
How to Know If a Major in Sociology Is Right for Me
Sociology can be a valuable major for many students, especially those who possess some of the characteristics listed here:
- Analytical thinking. This program includes courses on how to interpret and apply data and statistics.
- Curiosity. Sociology majors are often individuals who want to know more about people and how the world works.
- Desire for justice. College sociology programs often focus on social inequality and consider strategies for correcting injustices.
- Drive to be involved. Sociology graduates are well prepared to take active roles in their communities.
An admissions counselor may be able to provide additional insights about whether this is a fitting degree program for you.
How to Choose an Online Sociology Bachelor’s Degree Program
Sociology degrees are common, so it’s helpful to narrow down the choice of schools by weighing a variety of factors, such as the following:
- Accreditation. Most college experts recommend choosing a regionally accredited school.
- BA vs. BS. For more elective options, you might want to get a Bachelor of Arts (BA). If you want to focus on research or go to grad school, you might think about a Bachelor of Science (BS) instead.
- Concentrations. If you want to narrow the focus of your studies, you can choose a concentration for your degree. Some colleges offer a wide variety of sociology concentrations. At others, the selection is more limited.
- Price. While financial aid can help, the per-credit-hour cost of a school may determine whether it’s reasonable for you to attend there.
- Program structure. Online programs might include live courses or recorded sessions. Some schools occasionally have online students come to campus for short residencies.
Determining what you want in a school can help you identify the sociology programs that would be the best fit.
Once you decide to earn a sociology bachelor’s degree, you can start applying to colleges.
As part of the application process, you might be required to turn in:
- Application form and a nonrefundable fee
- High school transcripts with a GPA of at least 2.0, on average
- Personal essay
- Test scores from the ACT or the SAT (only requested by some colleges)
Some of the colleges you consider may be rather selective about their admissions, so it’s usually strategic to send applications to multiple schools.
Before committing to a school, it’s strategic to take a look at its accreditation status. Regional accreditation is the most widely accepted and respected form of accreditation in the US. Regionally accredited colleges are trusted as institutions that educate students well.
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Regional accreditation is valued by both colleges and employers. By choosing an accredited school, you may be giving yourself the flexibility to transfer credits to another college or apply to grad school. When searching for jobs, you can feel confident about listing your accredited college on your resume. For more information on accredited colleges, you can consult the US Department of Education’s website.
Financial Aid and Scholarships
There may be financial assistance available for your degree program in sociology. Government programs provide grants and loans to qualifying students. There are also state assistance programs in addition to federal ones, and you might be able to receive both.
Most students begin the process of claiming government aid by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You can look into college scholarships as well. Schools often give scholarship money to promising students, and other organizations administer scholarship programs as well.
If you’re currently working, you may want to check and see whether your employer will help cover a portion of your educational costs.
Sociology Professional Organizations
You can join a membership organization to sharpen your skills as a student or a professional in this field. By joining a professional association, you may have opportunities to network with others. You might also gain access to journals, online resource libraries, newsletters, member directories, professional discounts, and advocacy opportunities.
Here are some professional organizations in the field of sociology:
- American Sociological Association (AMA)
- Association for Applied and Clinical Sociology (AACS)
- International Sociological Association (ISA)
Membership is often open to students, so you may be able to join now and continue your participation throughout your career in sociology or a related field.
What Is a Sociology Major?
A sociology major is an undergraduate college program for students who are interested in learning about organizations, society, and human interaction.
Sociology students often explore issues that affect society. You may take classes about topics like gender inequality, environmental problems, criminal justice, and race relations. Sociology programs provide research training, too. You can learn to gather and interpret data.
Earning this degree usually takes about 4 years with full-time enrollment. After graduation, students often enter jobs in business, social services, or criminal justice. Some choose to enroll in graduate programs.
Is Sociology a Good Major?
Yes, sociology is a good major for many undergraduate students. This degree program provides valuable training that is useful in a diverse assortment of jobs.
Some graduates work in social services, and others decide on jobs in criminal justice, business, or research analytics. That’s because this degree program offers foundational skills that are relevant to many fields. If you study sociology, you can learn to perform research, write effectively, and better understand human society, institutions, and interactions.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, social workers tend to make between $36,520 and $82,840 annually. Public relations specialists often make between $37,020 and $124,620.
What Can You Do with a Sociology Degree?
Students often wonder what you can do with a sociology degree. Those who study sociology at the bachelor’s degree level might get a social services job after graduation. Examples include being a social worker, a child protective services officer, a case manager, or a program director.
You could also pursue work in community health or corrections counseling. Another option is to look at a role in the business world. Positions may be available in human resources or public relations. Such roles are offered not only by corporations but also by other organizations, such as schools and social assistance agencies.
Is Sociology Hard?
In a sociology program, you will study societal structures and community problems. You may grapple with issues related to race, gender, and socioeconomics. Many of the problems you discuss might not have clear-cut answers.
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You will study data collection and analysis as well. It is also necessary to learn how to interpret others’ studies and conduct accurate, ethical research of your own. Before graduation, you might complete an internship. This would allow you to put your sociology lessons into practice in a real-world setting. During that time, you could gain experience and skills that might influence your future professional endeavors.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Sociology Degree Online?
If you enroll as a full-time student, you can typically earn an online sociology degree in 4 years or less. In general, 4 years of college is the traditional timeframe for earning a bachelor’s degree. Students take courses spread over eight semesters during those 4 years.
With online colleges, the landscape has changed a bit. Many online programs use accelerated academic calendars with 8 week course terms. Students have the opportunity to take classes year-round and graduate with their degrees in less time. An accelerated online program may take around 3 to 3.5 years.
What Jobs Can You Get with a Sociology Degree?
Students can consider many different jobs with a bachelor’s in sociology. For example, some people use this degree for jobs in community agencies. They may become community health workers, social workers, or program directors. Others are employed in the correctional system as counselors or correctional officers.
A sociology major can also help graduates get started in the business. Human resources or project management departments might benefit from their understanding of society and human interaction. Analytical skills help some people become market research analysts.
What’s the Difference Between a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology vs. Psychology?
Both sociology and psychology are popular bachelor’s degree programs. Comparing and contrasting the two may help you decide which to pick.
|Bachelor’s in Sociology
|Bachelor’s in Psychology
Additional studies in either field could lead to more advanced job opportunities. A graduate degree is usually required for a role as a sociologist or a psychologist.
What’s the Difference Between a BA vs. BS in Sociology?
Your college might offer the sociology major as a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS).
|BA in Sociology
|BS in Sociology
While there are differences, opting for a BA over a BS—or vice versa—may not exclude you from any entry-level job opportunities.
Is a Bachelors Degree in Sociology Worth It?
Yes, a bachelor’s degree in sociology is worth it for many professionals. The skills acquired in a sociology program could be useful in many different sectors.
You may graduate with a stronger understanding of human organizations and society. That knowledge could help you navigate professional interactions and decisions and help prepare you for leadership roles. Some potential jobs for this degree are experiencing noteworthy growth.
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For example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says that jobs for the community and social service managers will increase by 12% over the next decade. The number of roles for community health workers may go up by 16%.
Universities Offering Online Bachelor in Sociology Degree Programs
Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.
Arizona State University offers a Bachelor of Science in Sociology. This program may be an excellent next step for students who are passionate about understanding social structures and thinking critically about how to support their communities. The program requires the completion of 120 credit hours. Classes meet entirely online, and each one is 7.5 weeks long.
Arizona State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
Arkansas State University offers a 100% online program for a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. Many graduates find fulfilling careers in non-profit, government, academic, and corporate settings. The program offers multiple start dates for incoming students each year. Students can potentially transfer in up to 90 of the program’s 120 required credit hours from outside institutions.
Arkansas State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
California State University—Fullerton offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. The curriculum covers concepts like research methods, social inequity, race, gender, and criminology. The program utilizes a fully online learning format to help accommodate the diverse needs of its students. Many students can complete the degree requirements in just 3 years of full-time study.
California State University – Fullerton is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and University Commission.
CUNY School of Professional Studies offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. This program aims to equip students with the skills needed to understand and address the increasing social changes in global communities. All classes meet online. Graduates often pursue careers in human resources, criminal justice, human services, market research, government agencies, public policy, and academia.
CUNY SPS is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
Fayetteville State University offers a fully online program for a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. This interdisplinary curriculum combines concepts from human services, criminal justice, education, political science, and business. The program seeks to build essential, broadly applicable skills in research, project development, interpersonal and cross-cultural interactions, and communication. On average, students can complete the degree in 4 years.
Fayetteville State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Lamar University offers a Bachelor of Science in Sociology. This program may be an ideal fit for individuals interested in better understanding human behavior, societal structures, and social change. Students attend classes via the program’s convenient online learning model. The program allows up to 90 qualifying credits to be transferred in from outside institutions toward its 120 required credits.
Lamar University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Louisiana State University offers a 100% online program for a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. The curriculum is designed to help students develop a global perspective, communication skills, and the tools to conduct research and analyze data. The program requires the completion of 120 credit hours. Potential classes include Methods of Sociological Research, Intercultural Communication, and Sociology of Deviance.
Lousiana State University is accredited by the Southern Associate of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Maryville University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. This program may be an ideal fit for students wanting to gain the skills needed to affect positive change in their local and global communities. The curriculum is offered in a convenient online format. Students can select a concentration in Social Work, Social Justice, or Criminology.
Maryville University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
National University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. The curriculum covers topics like contemporary social theory, research methods, race and ethnicity, and social change. Courses meet entirely online, and each one is 8 weeks long. The program admits new students year-round, allowing students to take the next step in their academic journey at their earliest convenience.
National University is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.
Oregon State University offers a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science in Sociology. Many graduates pursue careers in criminal justice, law, social services, education, or non-profit work. Incoming students can select one of four yearly start dates. The curriculum consists of 180 total credit hours and is delivered fully online.
Oregon State University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
Southern New Hampshire University offers a 100% online program for a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. The 120 credit curriculum combines core principles from disciplines like history, economics, and political science. The program offers concentrations in General Sociology and Community Health. Students may be able to receive transfer credits for prior academic and professional learning experiences.
Southern New Hampshire University is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.
The University of Colorado—Denver offers an online program for a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. Students can also choose to pursue an additional Certificate in Families and Social Welfare, Criminology, or Sociology of Health and Medicine. Most students can complete the 120 required credits in 4 years. Graduates often pursue careers as human resource managers, urban planners, criminologists, or policy analysts.
CU Denver is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Northern Kentucky University offers a Bachelor of Science in Sociology. The curriculum covers key concepts such as research methods, intercultural communication, and the sociological theories of class, race, and power. Classes meet online, and each one is 7 weeks long. Students can select one of six yearly start dates to begin the program.
Northern Kentucky University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
The University of Central Florida offers a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science in Sociology. Both programs aim to equip students with critical thinking, research and analytics, and communication skills. Students must complete a minimum of 120 credit hours to graduate. Many graduates pursue careers in research, education, government, non-profit work, or corporate human resources.
The University of Central Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
The University of Florida offers a fully online program for a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. It requires the completion of 120 credit hours and can typically be finished in 4 years of full-time attendance. The program’s diverse electives in topics like gender and family studies, environmental sociology, criminology, and race studies allows students to tailor their degrees to their interests.
The University of Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
The University of Louisville offers an online program for a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. Potential courses include Social Theory, Diversity and Inequality, and Environment, Health, and Population Studies. Students must complete a minimum of 121 credits to graduate. The program admits new students three times a year and allows up to 60 qualifying credits to be transferred in from outside institutions.
The University of Louisville is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
The University of Massachusetts—Amherst offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. Students can select additional specializations in Criminology and the Criminal Justice System or Social Work and Social Welfare. The program utilizes a fully online learning format. On average, students can complete the degree requirements in 4 years.
The University of Massachusetts Amherst is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.
The University of Texas—Permian Basin offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. The program seeks to help students develop essential skills in critical thinking, communication, and research. This curriculum consists of 120 total credit hours. The program’s convenient online learning format is designed with working and non-traditional students in mind.
UTPB is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Washington State University offers a 100% online program for a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. Potential courses include Development of Social Theory, Research Methods in Sociology, and Human Issues in International Development. The curriculum consists of 120 total credit hours. Incoming students can select one of three start dates each year.
WSU is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
Western Illinois University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. The curriculum covers concepts like social institutions, family systems, social movements, and criminology. The program utilizes an online model, allowing students to complete the degree on their own schedules in the comfort of their own homes. Students must complete a minimum of 120 credits to graduate.
Western Illinois University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Getting Your Bachelors in Sociology Degree Online
As a sociology major, you could take interesting classes and explore societal issues. You might graduate ready to make a difference in the world around you, whether in social services, criminal justice, healthcare, education, or business.
Your journey might start with online classes. At an accredited school with online programming, you could engage with professors and classmates from afar while gaining new skills and knowledge. That can be especially beneficial for busy adults who want to earn a degree.
If earning your college degree online sounds like the right approach for you, you can check out accredited online programs in sociology today.