We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What are the Different Sociology Careers?

By D. Jeffress
Updated Feb 03, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGEEK is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGEEK, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Sociology is the scientific study of present-day human societies, cultures, and group behaviors. Sociologists attempt to explain human activities through careful observation and analysis of behavior. Since sociology is such a broad field, there are many different areas for specialization in terms of subject matter and motives for conducting research. Most sociology careers are found in government and political organizations, crime labs, and universities.

Many sociologists try to understand ongoing political and economic turmoil in hopes of uncovering solutions or better strategies. Sociology careers in the political realm may be found with nonprofit organizations, human rights lobbyist groups, and different levels of government. Experts commonly conduct research about the living conditions of people on a local or national scale. They might take census surveys, conduct personal interviews, or perform extensive historical research using the Internet and public records. Sociologists gather and organize their data to create reports and offer recommendations to lawmakers.

Law enforcement agencies and crime labs offer several options to people seeking sociology careers. Criminology is a branch of sociology that attempts to explain criminal behavior as it relates to society. Experts in the field analyze criminal activity in order to understand its causes and social impacts. Some professionals aid in investigations, using their knowledge of behavioral patterns to identify offenders and bring them to justice. Additionally, criminologists might study the behaviors of inmates in order to analyze the effectiveness of prison systems.

Sociology careers at colleges and universities entail teaching courses related to the field. Students majoring in different social sciences can benefit from taking sociology classes, as the principles of the subject apply to several academic disciplines. Sociology studies are especially relevant to people pursuing degrees in psychology, counseling, anthropology, and political science. Professors explain the principles of historical research, ethnography, and ethics as they pertain to understanding different cultures and societies.

Depending on a person's specialty, sociology careers require different levels of education and experience. A professional in a law enforcement, government, or political institution must usually obtain at least a bachelor's degree in sociology. To work as a counselor or social worker, a master's degree is most often required, along with fulfilling certification requirements. Independent researchers and university professors typically hold doctoral degrees.

WiseGEEK is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By visionary — On Mar 19, 2011

@donbri5--A criminologist can earn upwards of $40,000 annually. It can get as high as $80,000. As with most careers, the more education you have, the higher the salary.

Most sociology careers earn about the same, with it getting higher once you earn a Doctorate degree.

By donbri5 — On Mar 17, 2011

Great information! I was trying to figure out what career field I could study and include my interest of people watching!

Does any one know what a sociologist earns? I am especially interested in criminology.

By anon129348 — On Nov 23, 2010

This is a perfect article for this time.

WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.