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Online Sociology (B.S.)

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Sociology is the study of social life, social change and the social causes and consequences of human behavior. The range of sociology is quite broad—including family dynamics, societal deviance and crime, government policies and the impact of contemporary issues on business corporations, schools and other public and private institutions.

In the Bachelor of Sociology program, students engage in research and studies related to criminal justice data analytics, human and social services, marketing and sales, management or public sector and nonprofit work. Courses equip students to develop and evaluate evidence-based arguments, adapt to changing situations and give presentations that non-sociologists can understand, leaving them well-prepared to enter the workforce upon graduation.

Credit for Prior Learning
The Department of Sociology and Rural Studies recognizes that not all learning occurs on campus and supports out-of-class, service and applied learning opportunities and internships. Experiential learning proficiencies based on education opportunities taken advantage of in workplaces, communities and civic engagements enhance the virtual classroom. Credit for Prior Learning is available to help transfer some of these real-world experiences into college credit.

Minor options
Earn a minor in Criminal Justice or Sociology to enhance your understanding and focus electives towards specific career goals. 

Personalizing Your Program

In studying our social world, students explore and analyze important issues in our personal lives, our communities and the increasingly global world we share. Students trained in Sociology learn to think critically about social issues, to ask important research questions, and to evaluate and communicate clearly and effectively. As a Sociology major, you will develop the knowledge and analytical skills sought by employers in a wide range of fields. Courses in Sociology also prepare students to work with diverse populations in both public and private organizations; to succeed in working with people in human relations and human services fields; and to collect, analyze and report on data. Graduates of our program are well prepared to engage in a wide range of career trajectories and vocational callings.

A Sociology Major Can Do Many Different Things

I Care About...

Planning Successful Communities and Neighborhoods

  • Urban and Regional Planners
  • Employment, Recruitment and Placement Specialists
  • Social and Human Service Specialists

Helping Individuals, Families and Communities Succeed

  • Medical and Public Health Social Workers
  • Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers
  • Child, Family and School Social Workers and Counselors

Learning, Teaching and Research

  • Secondary School Teachers
  • Post-Secondary Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement Instructors
  • After-school and Summer Program Leaders and Staff
  • Survey and Poll Research Assistant

Data Analytics

  • Collecting and Managing Data
  • Use Research to Solve Important Questions
  • Business Intelligence and Data Assurance

Justice and Rehabilitation

  • Correctional Officers and Jailers
  • Detectives and Criminal Investigators
  • Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers
  • First-line Supervisors / Managers of Police and Detectives
  • Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists
  • Jail Diversion and Youth Remediation Program Leaders

Effective Organizations

  • Human Resource Directors
  • Managers and Supervisors
  • Financial Analysts
  • Marketing Specialists
  • Evaluation Support

Program Contact

Mary Emery, Ph.D.
Department of Sociology & Rural Studies
Phone: 605-688-4889

SDSU Continuing and Distance Education

Phone: 605-688-4154

SDSU Admissions

Phone: 605-688-4121