What is Sociology? How are societies, communities, institutions, and organizations created, maintained, and transformed? How do they shape individuals? How can we understand and explain patterns of communication, cooperation, and conflict? Sociologists seek answers to such questions about the processes and patterns of social life.

UCSB’s Sociology major provides education in the foundation of the discipline and assures breadth and depth of learning in more advanced areas of study. The major grounds students in theory and methods of sociology and provides training within a wide range of specializations. Aside from developing a solid foundation in planning and organizational skills, problem solving skills, research skills and communication skills, all relevant to a range of career areas, sociology students are also prepared for graduate study, professional schools, and credential programs in law, social work, counseling, theology, and teaching.

General Major Information

How Can I Tell If I Would Like Sociology?

Students who pursue Sociology major tend to be inquisitive about themselves and the social world in which they live. As a discipline having a self-avowed concern for society, it is not surprising that students who pursue a Sociology major are oftentimes interested in preparing for careers in service professions such as social work, urban planning, education, counseling, business, and law.

What Are Potential Topics Within This Major?

Although the following list can provide students with topics that may be covered in this major, look at the UCSB catalog and consult with the Undergraduate Department Advisor for more detailed information about requirements and course offerings.

Cultural Analysis
Globalization and Culture
Global Religion
Television as a Cultural Institution
Urban Society
Political Sociology

To learn more about whether you might enjoy this major, check with a peer in the Career Resource Room for details on:

- Focus 2 to explore college majors and careers.

- The Strong Interest Inventory®, an assessment that compares your interests against six broad categories of work. This assessment helps match your interests and suggests potential careers to explore.

General Career Information

What Are Some Possible Career Options?
Note: On its own, your major does not dictate what your job will be. The following list provides only a handful of possibilities. Sociology majors with strong liberal arts background may pursue career options in many fields. Depending on experience, specialized coursework, and possible graduate study, options include:

Business: Advertising Trainee, Human Resources Coordinator/Manager/Specialist, Insurance Agent/Broker, Marketing Research Analyst, Public Relations Specialist

Education: Admissions Counselor, Teacher/Professor, Social Scientist, School Counselor/Psychologist, Student Affairs Officer/Administrator

Human Services and Government: Adoption Agent, City Planner, Community Outreach Worker, Corrections Officer, Rehabilitation Counselor, Marriage Family Therapist, Social Worker


To learn more about these and other occupations, please visit:
O*Net Online

Occupational Outlook Handbook

Come visit the Career Resource Room to see our vast collection of career books and resources.

See what other UCSB alumni are doing with their major on LinkedIn.

What Can I Do With a Major in Sociology
A short guide of transferable skills, types of employers, and resources for Sociology majors.

What Can I Do With A Major In Sociology
Overview of related job titles, and major skills for Sociology majors.

What Can I Do With a Sociology Degree?
California State University at Fullerton provides general and specialty career areas, employers, and strategies for pursuing those careers.

Career Opportunities for Sociology Majors
Rutgers University provides occupational titles, as well as types of employers for Sociology majors.

Focus 2
Check out “What Can I do with a major in…?” under Focus 2.

Graduate and Professional Schools
This is a comprehensive website that provides information about where graduate programs are offered throughout the nation.

This is a database to help find where graduate programs are offered throughout the U.S.

Council on Social Work Education
Click on Accredited Programs for graduate school listings.

Experience Search Strategies

Get Experience
Build your qualifications by exploring various opportunities to get experience in your field of interest.

Job Listings

UCSB Career Services “Job Search” section
Check out job links in the following categories: Local/CA, National, Industry Specific, and UCSB Careers By Majors.

When you join LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network, you get access to people, jobs, news, updates, and insights that help you be great at what you do.

Search for jobs in social service based on level of education, full/part-time, and location.

Social Work Job Bank
Lots of jobs, all over, in the field of social work.

UCSB Career Services “Job Links” section
Check out job links in the following categories: Local/CA, National, International, Industry Specific, UCSB What Can I Do With a Major In… and Diversity.

Professional Associations

American Sociological Association
The National Association: Advancing Sociology as a Science and Profession. Dedicated to advancing sociology as a scientific discipline and profession serving the public good.

UCSB Resources