Studies & Degrees in Sociology
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Sociology Study Programs
Sociology is simply the study of human social relations or group life. What sets this field apart from other areas within the social sciences, such as economics and psychology which are concerned with specific human activities, is that it discusses human society as a whole. To illustrate, economics is linked to the flow, that is, from the production up to the distribution, and consumption of goods and services; while psychology focuses on mental processes and human behavior. Sociology, on the other hand, is involved with nearly the entirety of human life beyond the economics of life or its biological and physical aspects.
Practically all human activities have a social characteristic, social in that multiple individuals engage in one activity together and hence reciprocally, directly or indirectly, influence each another. This interaction is the basic concept where the Sociology program circles. The reason for this is that this interaction is the fundamental building block of every relationship and thus, in the long run, every society.
Sociologists may be classified either as microsociologists or macrosociologists, depending on the scope of study; the former deal with human interactions as they occur in the everyday, while the latter study interactions collectively in relation to the society, such as the economy, the state, religion, or even international affairs.
Some of the most distinct specializations in the Sociology course are related to politics, religion, language, history, anthropology, and psychology, among others. The common interdisciplinary subfields of the Sociology program are also as diverse. To name a few:
• Criminology has been closely linked to sociology and psychology for a long time running, owing to the fact that the study of human behavior and interaction is growing only more relevant to the effectiveness of law enforcement and the understanding of how and why violations and distortions occur.
• Demography, usually related to anthropology, economics, and sociology, involves the study of the quantitative (such as size and growth) and qualitative (population distribution with respect to gender) factors used to describe certain groups.
• Social Psychology focuses on the impact of norms, such as roles, gender, class, and the like, dictated by society on individual behavior and personality. Common concerns in this subject are family, peer, school, and other locales where socializing or interaction occur.
• Comparative Historical Sociology, as its name implies, is the study of how societies have evolved, particularly with respect to the economic and political aspects.
Since range of this body of knowledge is so broad, Sociology has long been thought of as a synthesizing field of the other social sciences. This is why graduates of the Sociology Program do not have a hard time finding areas to work in, because as students, they have received excellent training in skills and research methods that most employers look for. Most graduates of the Sociology work in the academe as professor or lecturers, in research institutes, or focus on interdisciplinary and applied sociology.
Sociology is a very interesting knowledge to impart as it is a fusion of science and society. Its undeniably relevance is one of the most common and major reasons why a lot of graduates opt to teach not only in universities, but even in the lower academic levels.
Other graduates move on to becoming staff in research institutes, as already mentioned, out of the fact that a lot of research methods are practiced in the Sociology program. Still others, wanting to pursue the knowledge further, take graduate studies or move on to Applied or Clinical Sociology.