A common definition is that sociology is a systematic study of human interaction.
The focus is on the social group, whether it be a two-person group or the whole world
community. In understanding human situations, sociologists go beyond mere "people
watching" and idle speculation; they use specialized types of procedures or analyses
to make their research more valid and reliable.
The ULM Sociology program offers its students a number of special activities to learn, network, and prepare for a future in the broad field of Sociology.
Dr. White with his son Charley and his students during Homecoming week.
Understanding oneself:A famous sociologist stated it this way, "The first fruit of sociological study is a better understanding of ourselves." Human beings are gregarious; we do not live in isolated splendor. Sociology studies human interaction and its three most important products: culture, social organization, and human personality. To understand ourselves, we must see our place within the social structure -- how it affects us, and how we affect it.
Understanding social behavior: The poet says that no person is an island, and the sociologist shows how and why this is the case. To better understand ourselves, we benefit by developing a "sociological imagination" -- a distinct awareness of how broader social forces make an impact on our personal lives. Sociology emphasizes the role of the human group in helping to make us the kinds of persons we are.
Learning factual information: Sociological research provides useful information about the social world. Students in sociology learn about the family, religion, economics, politics, medicine, education, lifestyles, conformity, and deviance. Special courses in these fields -- and others! -- dot the sociological landscape, providing students practical knowledge that can be applied to everyday life.
Becoming a creative thinker: Facts do not always speak for themselves. Sociology students are urged to stretch their minds so that "facts" can be understood, interpreted, and used more effectively. Individuals not only are the products of their environments but also are the sources of social change. Sociologists recognize the creative role that humans must play in shaping human existence.
Improving the human condition: A prevailing theme of Sociology at ULM is that "We're PEOPLE people." Sociologists
are truly concerned with the quality of human life, at both the individual and the
societal levels. Although the quest for knowledge may be an end unto itself; using
that knowledge for the benefit of humanity may be even more important. Sociology seeks
to develop one's heart as well as one's brain.
Preparing for a job:The average college graduate makes seven major career changes during a lifetime. The Sociology major at The University of Louisiana at Monroe is designed to help a student develop a number of job transferable skills that can continue to pay dividends throughout the work career. Moreover, when stepping from the classroom into the world of work, graduates with a superior, broad-based education generally find a broader array of job opportunities.
A wide variety of professions to choose from: Today, ULM sociology graduates hold important positions in business, education, church
denominations, and numerous public agencies. One important conclusion summarized by
many of these graduates is that their degrees help in their jobs because they understand
people better than do most of their co-workers. Find out what else they say. Career
Advancing in your profession:Sociology offers excellent preparation for admission to and success in many professional and graduate schools. Across the nation, as at ULM, many young men and women find that sociology offers a good background for seminary studies. Sociology majors pursue graduate studies in counseling, in urban and regional planning, and in social work; some of the most prestigious colleges of business accept them into graduate programs. Career counselors have recommended sociology as excellent preparation for law school. For those seeking direct career involvement, graduate study in sociology is an option. University teaching, social research, and census bureau careers as well as consulting with industry, government, church denominations, and labor unions are common professional options.