Sociology is the study of society and its parts, and the social interaction between people and groups. This means that sociologists study the structure of societies, groups, organizations, and social institutions and how people interact in these settings.

Sociology is about the understanding and explaining of social phenomena, and how they evolve and change over time. The subject matter of sociology encompasses all phenomena that have a social aspect, e.g., organizations, culture, ethnicity, gender, disability, stratification, risk and disasters, deviance and crime, mass media, social theory, health care, social welfare, religion and legal institutions.

Studying sociology gives the student a distinctive way of perceiving the surrounding world and offers unique insights into social behaviour. An important aspect of the sociological perspective is the research techniques used to collect and analyze data. These techniques can then be applied to the analysis of social issues, e.g., organisational change, entrepreneurship, social responses to catastrophes, poverty, immigration, or love.

Sociology provides students with a broad social scientific background and in-depth understanding of the dynamics of social behaviour. Therefore, although many jobs do not specifically include “sociologist” in the title, a degree in sociology prepares students for careers in virtually any field that requires a sound understanding of human behaviour in social settings, powerful analytical tools and strong communication skills. Consequently, sociology alumni are found in virtually every possible career -- journalism, the criminal justice system, politics, human resources, public relations and public administration.

The page was updated 8/22/2014