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Top Sociology Programs and Schools

Whether you are interested in pursuing a sociology degree or any other field of study, there are many factors to consider when you are choosing a college.  The ranking of a school is just one of these factors.  The following is a list of the 10 top sociology colleges in the United States, as rated by the US News.

The University of California, Berkeley is ranked number one and has been held in high regard for decades as a top school for social studies.  This school includes a top ranked research center, comprehensive course offerings and award winning faculty.  Areas of concentrations offered at UCB include gender, poverty, culture, women’s movements, states, sexuality, prisons, churches, urban gangs, stratification and institutions.

The University of Wisconsin, Madison is ranked number two while Princeton and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor are tied for third.  Harvard University is tied with three other programs for fifth.  Harvard’s program offers a wide range of flexibility in developing a curriculum geared towards a student’s specific areas of interests and concentrations. Students learn strong research principals and study important social topics.  Numerous specializations and concentrations are offered and provide outstanding opportunities for the exploration of the social issues impacting the world.  Stanford University, the University of Chicago and the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill are all tied with Harvard. 

Northwestern University is ranked at number nine.  Northwestern University’s sociology program focuses on inequality among groups and various social organizations on both a small scale basis and large scale basis.  Their belief is that sociology is based in both scientific approaches and the human relationships being studied. The University of California, Los Angeles is tied with Northwestern for the ninth place ranking.  UCLA’s sociology department is known for their work in ethnicity, nationalism and international migration as well as other areas of strength.  Students attending the school as undergraduates will benefit from the extensive opportunities offered at the university.  They are considered one of the foremost authorities in the field of sociology.  The faculty has received some of the most prestigious awards in the field of sociology

While rankings are important when you are considering a college, it is not the most important.  You need to understand your own needs before you pick a school.  One of the factors to consider is your social self-sufficiency; do you want to study in a different area of the country or be close to family and friends.  The size of the college is very important.  You do not need to attend a college that is larger than your high school.  Most good liberal arts colleges have a student population of 4,000 or less to enable students to feel involved and have time for internal exploration.  Others may wish to pursue an education at a larger school with more offerings.  It really is dependent upon your individual preference.

Success in life has less to do with the choice of school than with the experiences and opportunities encountered in college.  Employers are looking for exceptional skills and experience, not a college ranking.  Researching college web sites prior to visiting is a good way to narrow down your search before a visit.  Don’t let a friend’s opinion of a school sway you from considering that school.  This is an individual decision and your friend’s reasons for picking a school could be quite different than your own.  Talk to a few students on your campus visit and ask if they would make the same college choice if they had the chance to do it over.  Imagine yourself as part of the campus community, can you picture yourself at the campus or are there issues you can foresee?  Make a list of your most important attributes for a school where you can get an education in sociology and try to match up as many as you can, this will help narrow your search.

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