B.A. in Sociology

If you are interested in understanding why people behave as they do in social situations, sociology is for you. For instance, in elevators why do most people press the button, face front, and avoid eye contact? Why are women and men expected to be different? Today, why can’t we have essential conversations about gun control, immigration, or healthcare without vitriol and animosity? We use sociology – the systemic study of groups and society – to investigate these issues.

The skills and concepts that sociology majors learn are useful for wide variety of jobs. Sociologists highlight the importance of problem solving and we focus on social justice. To that end, students in sociology classes at Otterbein University learn sought-after skills including data collection and analysis, constructing surveys and conducting interviews, evidence-based practices, statistical reasoning, empathy, collaboration, and teamwork. Our curriculum features hands-on work with internships, community engagement, and research.

Because sociology teaches a distinctive way of looking at the world, we pose unique questions and insights into behavior and social outcomes. Featuring global perspectives, we offer coursework in:

  • nonprofits and community organizing
  • criminal and environmental justice
  • economic inequality
  • family diversity
  • gender
  • healthcare
  • race and ethnicity
  • social movements

Sociology students at Otterbein University customize the major and faculty help to align their courses with specific career paths or graduate and professional degree goals. The study of sociology guarantees the kind of broad knowledge and skill set that enables students to prepare for a number of professional paths.

A major in sociology is exceptionally flexible. You can easily complement a sociology major with an additional major and minor. Many students combine sociology with psychology, political science, communication, English, history, business, or a modern language.

Student Learning Outcomes University Learning Goals (KMERI*)
1. An ability to express the application of sociological concepts in a clear and organized manner in a public presentation Multi-literate
2. Are able to compare and contrast basic theoretical orientations; can show how theories reflect historical context in which they were developed Knowledgeable
3. Students will be able to design and carry out a research project Multi-literate, Inquisitive
4. Students should be able to apply sociological concepts and principles to individual experiences and the social world Responsible
5. Connect and apply sociological knowledge through meaningful service in the community Engaged

*NOTE: KMERI refers to Otterbein's learning goals. It stands for KnowledgeableMulti-literateEngagedResponsible, and Inquisitive. To learn more about KMERI, visit our University Learning Goals page.