What Do Sociologists Do?

posted on Thursday, Apr 21 2011

You never know where you might find a sociologist. In fact,  sociology—an increasingly popular field of study in online education—offers its graduates a breadth of possible career paths. You may find a sociologist working within urban development or a large corporation or a student outreach program. For many, this wide range of opportunities is precisely the point that caught their original interest. Why be nailed down to one, rigid type of job? An online degree in sociology enables graduates to pursue and be qualified for many types of professions. However, before you start to sign up for the program online, you need to have a firm grasp on what exactly a sociologist might be asked to do.

In a general sense, sociologists focus on the study of human behavior in all its many forms. Therefore, a sociologist could narrow their specialty down to such areas as: identity formation, behavior development, social interaction, physical activity, or group dynamics.  A professional in sociology would be particularly interested in the effect demographics, such as ethnicity, gender, and age, have on the development and behavior of an individual. On a larger scale,  sociologist also study the role social institutions have on humans’  perspective and identity. Regardless of job type, sociologist must have a strong sense of research and critical thinking skills, in order to maintain a competitive edge within the job market.

Realizing the many categories build within the sociology field, it is no wonder that students choose early on to specialize in a particular subject within the discipline. Subfields a student can purse within sociology include: education, criminology, gender roles, demography,  education, family, organizational sociology, race relations, social psychology, urban and rural studies.

The most common jobs held by sociologists are educators, researchers,  administrators, consultants, and counselors. Outside of the type of position, certain organizations are prone to hiring a professional sociologist. Possible locations a sociologist may be employed at are government and international agencies, management or consulting firms,  research and testing services, and social service organizations.

Online education has taken a particular interest in the sociology field. While an accredited degree is an essential aspect of candidate’s resume, he or she must also have a firm ground of experience in the field. Therefore, distance learning programs in sociology have risen across the nation, in order to provide working professionals in the sociology discipline the best of both worlds. Students and professionals, alike, can earn their degree while maintaining an experience-building job.


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