Become an expert on the social world

The Bachelor of Arts in Sociology at St. Edward’s University prepares students to analyze and understand the causes and consequences of human beliefs and behavior. You will study a wide range of subjects that cover every aspect of social life, such as:

  • Interpersonal relationships shaped by romance, family bonds, conflict, or prejudice

  • Individual and group identities related to age, sex, gender, class, and race

  • Societal institutions, including politics, family, religion, education, and sport

  • Community and national patterns of crime, poverty and wealth, and migration

  • The behavior of groups and organizations that maintain the status quo, as well as those that upend and reshape society

Students take part in both academic coursework and experiential projects to learn more about the events, beliefs, policies, and practices in society and in doing so, strengthen their critical thinking, communication, and investigative skills.

The program teaches students to approach human behavior from a scientific perspective. You'll become proficient in research skills and presenting professional-level work. 

Students complete their degree with a service-learning internship which involves active learning and application of their sociological skills in the classroom and the community. You will have the opportunity to invest in creating positive and meaningful change through the pursuit of social justice as you gain a broad understanding of the discipline. Special emphasis is placed on sociological perspective, social theory, social research methods, statistical analysis, and application. 

As a BA in Sociology major, students:
  • Gain an understanding of the complex social world
  • Develop strong research and statistical skills
  • Cultivate a passion for social justice and improving the well-being of diverse communities
  • Examine differences and inequalities in race, social class, and gender as they are manifested in social interaction and the environment, housing, education, media, legal system, sport, wages and work, and food security

Learning Goals

The Sociology program at St. Edward's University aims to:
  • Help students acquire the sociological perspective with its three central aspects: the link between private circumstances and public issues (i.e., the individual experience and larger social processes); the preeminence of social structures and their influence; and the value of empirical analysis
  • Contribute to students' liberal arts education, characterized by: literacy, numeracy, skills in abstract logical thinking, historical consciousness, understanding science and scientific inquiry, values and their relationship to a variety of life situations, and international and multicultural experience
  • Help students develop knowledge and analytical skills necessary for successful careers in community agencies, government, private employment, and not-for-profit organizations
  • Provide a foundation for graduate and professional education

Outcomes

Ultimately, students develop the ability to explain the important influence of culture, social structure, and social processes on human behavior. They acquire an understanding of the causes and consequences of social inequalities and build awareness and appreciation of cultural diversity throughout the world. 

With a BA in Sociology, graduates can step into a wide array of professions.

Our Sociology graduates have found rewarding careers in:
  • Research
  • Nonprofit organizations
  • Social services
  • Human resources
  • Business
  • Education
  • Health professions
  • Government
  • Criminal justice
  • Communication fields
  • Politics
  • Youth services

Many of our graduates pursue advanced degrees to become specialists in academia, public policy, education, counseling, research, publich health, administration and law.

Internships and Community Service in Sociology

Recent and current field placements include:
  • Texas Coalition Against the Death Penalty
  • Texas Advocacy Project
  • Travis County Forensic Lab

Outside the Classroom

Internships

Every Sociology senior will complete an internship during their enrollment in the Integrative Sociology Seminar. These internships provide valuable opportunities for Sociology majors to apply their skills and knowledge, receive professional socialization, expand their networks, and explore career opportunities for after graduation.

Below is a list organizations where sociology majors have held service learning internships in the past:
  • Austin Partners in Education
  • Autism Society of Austin
  • BreakThrough
  • Caritas
  • Children’s Advocacy Centers of Texas
  • Crockett High School
  • C5 Youth Foundation of Texas
  • Girls Rock Camp! – Austin
  • Girlstart
  • Mothers Against Drunk Driving
  • Posada Esperanza
  • Ridge Oak Living Community
  • Texas Civil Rights Project
  • Texas Victims Services Association
  • Trinity Center
  • Youth Advocacy

Research Opportunities

Below is a list of places where students may seek research opportunities:
  • Texas A & M University Summer Institute
  • University of Maryland Summer Research Initiative
  • University of Nebraska Summer Research Program
  • University of Michigan Summer Undergraduate Research
  • University of Minnesota Undergraduate Research
  • University of Delaware Summer Research Initiative
  • Tisdale Public Policy Fellowship (Summer)

About the Minor

Students who are interested in learning more about the science of human interaction or who will benefit from the expanded perspective in their chosen career should consider pursuing a minor in Sociology. The Sociology minor requires 18 hours of coursework.

Students who minor in Sociology are required to take the following courses:
  • Self and Society
  • Social Theory
  • Topics in Sociology
  • Race, Class and Gender
  • Two upper-division sociology courses