Getting a Sociology Education

Completing a sociology education at an accredited college or university can prepare you for a rewarding career in a variety of fields, including business, social work, education, psychology and criminal justice. Sociology education and training programs explore the different societal influences and events on human behavior. Some sociology education programs are more focused on research and data analysis, while others are more focused on psychology principles and social behaviors.

The field of sociology is very broad so you will have several options when you are completing a sociology degree program. Many schools offer certificate programs and advanced studies in a particular specialization, which means you can become a sociologist or researcher in a specific field.

Obtaining an Education in Sociology

You can choose from several types of sociology education programs when you attend an accredited college or university. Some schools offer certificate and two-year associate's degree programs in sociology education, while others offer four-year degrees, master's degrees and doctorate degrees in the field. Master's degree programs typically take between two to three years to complete after a bachelor's degree, while a doctorate degree can take up to two years or more depending on the research studies you are involved in.

When you are completing your sociology education, you will take a variety of classroom-based courses, participate in group study sessions, complete lab work and attend observational study programs where you might work with a trained sociologist. Some students are able to get an internship near the end of their sociology education and any work experience acquired during college can help the student obtain more attractive positions in their field right after graduation.

If you decide to pursue a research career in sociology, you may need to apply for grants before entering a doctorate degree program. Students who complete doctorate degrees in sociology may end up working in government research facilities or on site on various research projects at their college or university.

Talking to a career counselor or academic advisor early on in your educational career can help you make the most of your sociology education experience and ensure that you are putting yourself on the path towards an attractive career in the field.

Studying Sociology Online

Some students who already have a bachelor's degree in a related field, are working full-time, or are taking care of children at home may consider completing their sociology education online. Many schools now offer complete or partial degree programs in an online format, and this can make it easier for some students to complete the coursework they need for their a degree. However, it's important to remember that even though an online sociology degree can provide more flexibility, it also requires a lot of self-discipline and organization. Students who decide to complete some or all of their courses online need to be prepared to participate in online discussion groups or group chats, check in with their instructor via email regularly, complete and submit assignments over the web, and also take some of their quizzes and tests on an online platform. If there is an observational element or clinical study requirement for the degree, this type of training may be completed offsite at a designated location.